The New Life

Sunday, January 6, 2019

"God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.  Whoever has the Son has life..."  (1 John 1:11-12 NIV)

How glorious, then, is the blessing which every one receives that believes in the Lord Jesus.  Not only does there come a change in his disposition and manner of life; he also receives from God out of heaven an entirely new life.  He is born anew, born of God:  he has passed from death into life.

This new life is nothing less than Eternal Life. (John 3:15-16, 36; 6:40, 51; 6:25-26; Romans 6:11, 23; 8:2; 1 John 5:12, 13)  This does not mean, as many suppose, that our life shall now no more die, but shall endure into eternity.  No:  eternity life is nothing else than the very life of God, the life that He has had in Himself from eternity, and that has been visibly revealed in Christ.  This life is now the portion of every child of God.

This life is a life of inconceivable power.  Whenever God gives life to a young plant or animal, that life has in itself the power of growth, whereby the plant or animal as of itself becomes large.  Life is power.  In the new life, that is, in your heart, there is the power of eternity.

More certain than the healthful growth of any tree or animal is the growth and increase of the child of God, who in reality surrenders himself to the working of the new life.  What hinders this power and the reception of the new spiritual life is chiefly two things.  The one is ignorance of its nature, its laws and workings.  Man, even the Christian, has of himself not the least conception of the new life that comes from God:  it surpasses all his thoughts.  His own perverted thoughts of the way to serve and to please God, namely, by what he does and is, are so deeply rooted in him, that, although he thinks that he understands and receives God's word, he yet thinks humanly and carnally on Divine things.

Not only must God give salvation and life; He must also give the Spirit to make us know what He gives.  Not only must He point out the land of Canaan, and the way thither; we must also, like the blind, be led every day by Himself.  The young Christian must try to cherish a deep conviction of his ignorance concerning the new life, and of his inability to form right thoughts about it.  This will bring him to the meekness and to the childlike spirit of docility, to which the Lord shall make His secret known.

There is a second hindrance in the way of faith... [B]ecause this mighty life is not visible or cannot be felt, but works in the midst of human weakness, the young Christian often becomes of doubtful mind.  He then fails to believe that he shall grow with Divine power and certainty.  He does not understand that the believing life is a life of faith whereby he reckons on the life that is in Christ for him, although he neither sees, feels, nor experiences anything.

Let every one then that has received this new life, cultivate this great conviction:  it is eternal life that works in me; it works with Divine power; I can and shall become what God will have me be; Christ Himself is my life; I have to receive Him every day as my life given by God to me, and He shall be my life in full power.

-Andrew Murray (excerpted and adapted from The New Life)

Read 1 John 1:1-4; 5:1-13

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