Be made new in the attitude of your minds; and . . . put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. (Eph. 4:23–24)
Expanded Passage: Ephesians 4:22-24
Having accepted Christ as her Savior, a young girl expressed to her pastor her desire to become a member of the church. The pastor inquired of her what she was before Jesus came into her life, to which she replied, “A sinner.” Asked if she was still a sinner, she replied that she sometimes felt like an even greater sinner than before. When asked if she had really changed, she replied that she used to be a sinner running after sin, but now she felt like a sinner running from sin.
Running from sin is hardly the best description of being saved. Being made new is. Being made new begins in the heart, but it also proceeds to the mind. If the apostle Paul was right that being made new must be reckoned or credited to a person, he was referring to a mental calculation. It is only a renewed mind that enables us to understand that being made new must be characterized by putting on the new self. This speaks to the in-working of a new God-like character, which results in the out-working of the fruit of the Spirit.
Being made new cannot merely be a running from sin; it must involve a yielding to the Spirit. It is he who produces in us godly character, which is the fruit of holiness.
Stop running and start yielding.
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®.