Sunday, November 1, 2015

Can We Change Our Status?

So, this morning during Bible Study, we were working through a Bible Study Series put out by the folks over at BasicGospel. The book is called, The New Covenant Journey, and can be purchased over at their online store, if you're interested. The guys get together and work through it themselves on Friday, and invite you to join them. 

My friends and I, we're still trying to catch up, but that's okay. Each at his own pace. We're in chapter 2 that talks of the 4 promises of the New Covenant. We only made it through the first 2. But one of the questions that totally just filled my heart with joy, was the one that asked: Can you change your status in any way once you have entered into the New Covenant? A resounding NO! is our answer.

I know, I know.. many people would gawk at that, and get all indignant like. You know the ones--backslide into hell, God not being able to look on sin, we have free will to change our minds... etc, etc.

However, the verses that were brought out was found in Hebrews. One of the guys in the study said that Hebrews is basically just the Reader's Digest version of the New Covenant. I Corinthians was also mentioned.

Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5

Again, the answer to "can we change our status" is a resounding no! Why? The Old has gone, the New is here. Once we're "new", we no longer have access to that old person. Sure, the same fleshly body, but it's a body that in indwelt with the Holy Spirit. Will that ever change? No. I can never go back to that old self. It's gone. It's not here for me to go back to.

Another assurance we have that our status will never change, is the fact that God made a promise with Himself. Nobody else was able to enter into that promise He made. If God promises something, you can bet it's so. Hebrews 8 quotes some prophecies that were told to Jeremiah, concerning Christ, and what that means to us...

 For if there had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would have been sought for another. But God found fault with the people and said[b]:“The days are coming, declares the Lord,    when I will make a new covenant
with the people of Israel    and with the people of Judah.It will not be like the covenant    I made with their ancestors
when I took them by the hand    to lead them out of Egypt,because they did not remain faithful to my covenant,    and I turned away from them,declares the Lord.10 This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel    after that time, declares the Lord.I will put my laws in their minds    and write them on their hearts.
I will be their God,    and they will be my people.11 No longer will they teach their neighbor,    or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’because they will all know me,    from the least of them to the greatest.12 For I will forgive their wickedness    and will remember their sins no more.[c]13 By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear.

Guess what? The New Covenant has come. His laws--believe in the name of His son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another (I John 3:23) are written on the heart of every believer. Guess what? The New Covenant has come. He has forgiven ALL our sins and remembers them no more (2 Corinthians 5 talks about that--the same passage that talks about the new has come and old has gone)
Can our status change? No. Those who belong to God will always belong to God. Those who have the Holy Spirit living inside of us will always have the Holy Spirit living inside of us. 
I recall being introduced to the New Covenant many years ago. After months of talking back and forth, the book, Classic Christianity by Bob George was introduced to me, and upon reading it, I knew there was a decision to be made. A few minutes before making the conscious decision to embrace Jesus and all that He is, all He has to offer, the thought came to me that, if I did indeed decide that Jesus is the gospel that saves, I would be turning my back on a lot of my religious upbringing. I would be turning my back on the theology of the local church I had attended, and most likely, would be ostracized by family and friends. I felt as if I were betraying the time and love my Granny had spent on me; my Granny, as far as I was concerned, walked on water, herself. Was this gospel really worth all of the betrayal? Was it worth the ostracizing? Was it worth the potential loneliness? 
Yes. Of course, when one has Jesus, one is never lonesome. He really does supply our every need. If He feels we need someone with skin on, then He'll make it happen. But that's another story. 
The point is, once we've determined in our heart that we are indeed in the New Covenant, then that status will never change. 
It is so worth it.