I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you. (Ezek. 36:26)
Expanded Passage: Jeremiah 31:31-34; Ezekiel 36:25-27; Ephesians 4:22-24
Even as a child, Oscar was prone to trouble. As he got older, he was incarcerated a total of seventeen times. Prison psychiatrists concluded that he was incorrigible. During a brief interval of freedom, Oscar met an elderly man who told him about Jesus. Placing his trust in the Lord Jesus, Oscar became a completely changed man. He soon started a prison ministry, through which several inmates were converted. According to Chaplain H. C. Warwick, what professionals had failed to do for Oscar in years of counseling, Christ did in a moment of conversion.
While immediate change does happen in our heart and life at conversion, it takes a lifetime for our lives to be transformed completely. The Holy Spirit’s work of giving us a new heart and a new spirit is never perfected at conversion. God’s will for us is our entire sanctification, whereby the Holy Spirit puts the old self to death, resurrects the new self in its place, and keeps our whole spirit, soul, and body blameless until the coming of Christ. God, who began a good work in us, will be faithful to complete it.
God is committed to your sanctification. You must be committed to facilitating his work in you, yielding to him your spirit, soul, and body.
Climb upon God’s altar and stay there.
Theodore Griffin is a Wesleyan pastor and a DMin student. He and his wife, Randy, have two adult children and are the proud grandparents of a ten-month-old grandson.
© 2023 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.