10. 1Pe 1:23 “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever” X.
Ezekiel 36: 24. “For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land. 25. Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26. I will GIVE YOU A NEW HEART and PUT A NEW SPIRIT WITHIN YOU; I will TAKE THE HEART OF STONE OUT of your flesh and GIVE YOU A HEART OF FLESH. 27. I WILL PUT MY SPIRIT WITHIN YOU and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them. 28. Then you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; you shall be My people, and I will be your God.”
2nd Corinthians 5: 17. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is A NEW CREATION; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18. Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19. that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. 20. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. 21. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD in Him.”
Let’s focus for a few moments on “NEW CREATION”, which is also synonymous to “being born again”. But before that, I’d like to share with the reader what my reasoning is for using Hebrew and Greek definitions, the languages in which the Bible was originally penned. Some of us have been going to churches that have always shared with the congregation the definition of certain words in those languages. But many churches don’t. So for those of you who are familiar with Brown-Driver-Brigg’s Hebrew Definitions, Thayer’s Greek Definitions and Strong’s Concordance, please be patient with the rest of us. We’re all just trying to be more like the Bereans, aren’t we?
When I was a kid, there was this long-running commercial on TV designed to keep kids like me in school. Some of you may remember hearing these words at the end of that commercial but you’d have to be in my age bracket. It went “Reading Is Fundamental”. Well, it didn’t work that well on me, because I ended up dropping out of High School anyway. That’s something I can’t take back and will always regret, and yes Christians aren’t impervious to regret. The good news is Christ, He’s good news any day of the week. And The Holy Spirit has been the best Teacher any of us could’ve ever hope for. Absolutely invaluable.
Through Him, I’ve been brought back to that television commercial from my youth, “Reading Is Fundamental”. So what’s ‘Fundamental’: Adjective-1. “serving as an essential component, or 2. being or involving basic facts or principles”. Reading is the foundation for any type of formal education. But what would be the point of knowing how to read if you don’t have any understanding of the words being read? That’s what they call an exercise in futility. You would just be spinning your wheels in the mud and going nowhere. Children start with basic sentences like “I saw the dog, the dog ran fast”. But those words are absolutely useless if they had no knowledge of the meaning of every word in that sentence. Defining the words will always clarify whatever we read.
Wikipedia says “Reading comprehension is the ability to read the text, process it, and understand its meaning… An individual’s ability to comprehend text is influenced by their traits and skills, one of which is the ability to make inferences”.
An inference is conclusion based on evidence and reasoning. So what does all of that have to do with fried green tomatoes? Nothing, but it has everything to do with how you study your Bible. You see I have a burden for the millions of Christians all over the world, some of whom that have been Believers all their lives and have never even tried, or been encouraged to draw their own conclusions based on the indwelling Spirit of God. Adding to that evidence found by personal study and deductive reasoning, i.e. engaging the mind when it comes to The Word of God. We often trust whatever comes across the pulpit of our local church. Just like we trust whatever the FDA says about the contents written the on the side of a jar of mayonnaise. I mean really, who knows what might be in that stuff? You won’t laugh when you find a shoe string in your next jar.
Now some of you will think that I want you to distrust your Pastors and Teachers, I know that. I want you to be able to trust the leaders our God has placed before us in the Church, but I also want you to trust your own gut (your human spirit) also, that place where The Holy Spirit lives. Because He is the best Teacher ever. All that said, I just want to define two words in 2nd Corinthians 5: 17~ NEW & CREATION: Thayer Definition: kainos>new
1) new 1a) as respects form 1a1) recently made, fresh, recent, unused, unborn 1b) as respects substance 1b1) of a new kind, unprecedented, novel, uncommon, unheard of: Part of Speech: adjective
When looking at the definition of practically any word in any language, you’ll see at least 2-4 numbered meanings or ways that word can be defined and or used. In the case of 2nd Corinthians 5: 17 that one word NEW means, based on the context~ Thayer Definitions: 1b1) of a new kind, unprecedented, novel, uncommon, unheard of:
We are a new kind of creation, unprecedented is obviously something that has no precedence, or never existed before. And the word ‘novel’, well not exactly a pocket novel. It means~ original and of a kind not seen before. Next, we have ‘uncommon’1. not common or ordinarily encountered; unusually great in amount or remarkable in character or kind 2. marked by an uncommon quality; especially superlative or extreme of its kind. And the second word CREATION~ ktisis>means Thayer Definitions: 1b1) of individual things, beings, a creature, a creation. So the adjective NEW seasons the noun CREATION.
So the next time you come across 2nd Corinthians 5: 17 study that entire chapter just to make sure, like a Berean, as the Born Again man or woman that you really are, a species that has never ever existed before; unprecedented. To be continued…