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6/10/15 – Created to be like God!

Written by Carlton L. Arnold

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”   Ephesians 4:22-23

These verses talk about a major change that must occur in a Believer’s life.  The “old self” is what you would call your selfish ways (it has to be my way; what can I get out of it; why does everything happen to me; no one knows or even cares what I am going through; I need this; I need that).  Everything that has to do with self has to be “put off” – removed; eliminated; broken off; not thought about; denied; not to be given into. 

 

The Bible speaks of the “old self” as having a power over you.  You can never overcome that power on your own.  When you became a Christian, God gave you the Spirit to conquer that “old self”.  The difference in which one controls your behavior (old self or Spirit) depends on the action you decide to take for any situation.  If you decide the old self, then all the power of the flesh consumes you.  If you decide the Spirit, then the power that raised Jesus from the dead will flood your soul.  Therefore, a Christian must mature in removing the old self within themselves as an influencer of their actions.

And then, you can “put on the new self”.  You choose to think about God, Christ, others and not your “self”.  Do you realize how hard that is in today’s world?  Today’s world is all about satisfying “you” (the “old self”.)  But all the world really wants is your time and money.  The world will sap every ounce of energy out of you.  You end up empty trying to figure out what’s the next thing that will satisfy the “old self”.  Guess what!   Many people have tried everything but have failed.   

Solomon (the wisest man who ever lived) conducted several experiments at fulfilling the desires of the flesh.  In every experiment, the flesh was never satisfied.  You can read the book of Solomon in the Old Testament to learn the details of Solomon’s experiments.  If you have an addiction to something that is you giving control of your life to something you will never be able to control. This world has nothing that will satisfy the unending need to take care of the “old self”.

Only God can satisfy your deepest needs; heal your most painful hurts; and, give you peace that the world will never be able to give you.  But, you must “put off the old self” and “put on the new self”.  When you do, these verses say something that is hard to believe: “created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”  WOW!!!  “Like God in true righteousness and holiness”.  NO WAY!! NOT ME!   And, there’s the problem…I am thinking of “ME” – the “old self”! 

This verse describes the work that God has done to my self without “ME”.  He has created me as a new creation.  I am no longer that old self.  HE HAS CREATED!  Bottom line: Do I want to believe God or trust myself to the “old self”?  I think I want to pursue God and forget about this ME stuff.  What about you?

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