New Behaviors

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV)

I love getting new clothes, don’t you? When I get a new suit, I like to make sure it is well coordinated with shoes and accessories so that it is distinctly different from other outfits I have owned.

According to 2 Corinthian 5:17, when you accept Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, not only are you a new creation, you put off old habits and put away the behaviors that identified you in your former life, and you put on a new suit of righteous behaviors that distinctly set you apart from your former life.

How can you recognize the difference between who you were in your former life and who you are in Jesus Christ?  The Apostle Paul encouraged believers to conduct themselves in humility, gentleness, patience, love and peace. He offers a great ‘before’ and ‘after’ comparison in Ephesians Chapter 4. You can identify those differences in the chart below.

Before Christ 5 4 3 2 1   1 2 3 4 5 After Christ
Living a life of hopelessness                       Living in righteousness and holiness
Immoral                       Virtuous
Untrustworthy                       Honor
Lazy; unproductive                       Industrious
Angry; bitter; quarrelsome                       Self-controlled
Intolerant; uncaring                       Compassionate; kindhearted
Vengeful                       Forgiving
Rowdy, unruly                       Peaceful
Slanderous                       Gracious

 

On a scale of 1 to 5, (5 is best), how are you doing so far this year as you strive to walk in humility, gentleness, patience, love and peace? You can identify your areas of success and begin to overcome your challenges. (1) Take the quick self-assessment above. Place an (x) under the number that best describes where you are in walking in righteous behavior. (2) Earnestly seek the Lord to change you in the areas of your behavior that have not taken on the likeness of Jesus Christ. It’s a new year! Put on your new suit!  New Behavior Handout

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