© Rosemary Bardsley 2016
New horizons - salvation/redemption: 2Corinthians 5:17
Becoming a Christian is not a matter of adding something to what we already are and have: it is a matter of A COMPLETE AND RADICAL CHANGE brought about by God himself -
Let us look at some areas of this radical newness.
1. BEFORE WE WERE ENEMIES OF GOD - NOW WE ARE FRIENDS OF GOD
This is the first NEW HORIZON - we no longer, and no more, are the targets of God's wrath: we are the recipients of his love. We are on his side.
2. BEFORE GUILTY AND CONDEMNED - NOW FORGIVEN AND ACQUITTED
This is the second NEW HORIZON - the great wall of sin that stood as a barrier, cutting us off from God, condemning us to life without him, has been removed, cancelled. Sin no longer separates us from God; guilt no longer makes us tremble - we are forgiven. This New Horizon is so broad, so vast, so far reaching - its scope is far beyond our limited vision. We will always be discovering new depths in the NEW HORIZON OF FORGIVENESS.
3. ONCE A CHILD OF THE DEVIL - NOW A CHILD OF GOD
The Christian stands in a totally NEW RELATIONSHIP to God.
What a RADICALLY NEW HORIZON - from the Devil's family to God's! Again, we will NEVER see, never plumb the depths of this overwhelmingly glorious New Horizon -
- so unexpected
- so beautiful
- so peaceful
- so secure.
4. BEFORE IN THE DARKNESS (BLIND) - NOW IN THE LIGHT
In the darkness - we experienced fear, loneliness, ignorance, despair.
- we see God in Christ, and the sight is glorious, the vision is splendid.
- and there is always more of God's glorious truth to be discovered!
Again, what a New Horizon!
- the fear
- the loneliness
- the ignorance, the despair, are dispelled forever by the brilliant light of his appearing.
5. BEFORE SLAVES - NOW FREE
Galatians 4:31 - 5:1
Once we were slaves -
- to sin
- to Satan
- to the Law
Christ died to set us free from this bondage.
But this New Horizon is so unexpected that half the time we do not see it - we live as though still confined to the old slavery - to the old masters.
6. BEFORE REJECTED - NOW TREASURED
7. ONCE DEAD - NOW ALIVE
8. BEFORE UNBELIEVING - NOW BELIEVING
By the sheer mercy of God the call came to us:
And a Galilean carpenter stood and beckoned to us: "Come! Follow me!"
Who is this one who commands us to repent, to believe, to follow?
What right has he to do this?
9. BEFORE REBELLIOUS - NOW REPENTANT AND SUBMISSIVE
He is the King, the Lord of Glory.
Those who respond to his call enter:
- a new allegiance
- a new commitment
- a new citizenship.