Lesson 6 - The Secret of a New Life
Have you ever wondered how you can become the person you really want to be? Why is it that when we try so hard we fail so often? At times we seem to be prisoners of our habits—chained in the dungeon of evil desires.
Unaided by the grace of God, we are all helpless prisoners. We are captives of our fallen sinful nature. We may desire to change, but we don’t have the power to change. Separated from God, we are subject to death. The death of Jesus paid the penalty of sin for every person. However, this gift must be accepted individually. It becomes effective when a person chooses to acknowledge Jesus as Saviour. God’s grace provides pardon from the penalty of sin. It also provides a new power for living. In our lesson today we will discover the real secret of power for living in the twenty-first century.
1. What promise does the Scripture give for those who surrender their lives to Christ? 2 Corinthians 5:17
The Bible Answer: If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; all things have become new.
2. Can human beings accomplish this change themselves? Job 14:4; Jeremiah 13:23
The Bible Answer: Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard its spots?
3. How did Jesus describe this change to respectable, God-fearing Nicodemus? John 3:1-8
The Bible Answer: Unless one is born again; of the water and of the spirit.
4. How does this miraculous change take place? Galatians 2:20The Bible Answer: Crucified with Christ
When an individual surrenders totally to God, the Holy Spirit takes possession of the life. The result is a mysterious union with God. The person becomes a new individual. They are now under the control of a completely new nature (Romans 6:6-11). By receiving Christ, they receive power for victorious living (John 1:12) and, day by day, as they abide in Christ, the Holy Spirit writes the principles of the law upon their heart (John 15:4; Hebrews 8:10).
Salvation is totally of grace, never of works. By faith we receive God's grace. Even when the born-again Christian obeys God, it is Christ who empowers them to work. We only cooperate with Christ and let Christ work in us. Our responsibility is to be willing to do anything Christ asks us to do. Love is the motive for obedience. Christ will never ask us to do anything that He will not provide us the power to do.
To receive Christ is to receive this power. As He enters our lives, He is the power for victory. In our natural state we are incapable of doing good. When we want to do what is right, another power seems to take possession of us. Through Jesus we have the power to overcome. We no longer need to fail again and again, fixed in the rut of perpetual discouragement. Now we can be victorious.
The greatest evidence that Christ dwells in our hearts is a transformed life. To "crucify the flesh" is to voluntarily go through the pain of surrendering our will to Christ.
9. What was the one guiding principle of Jesus' life? John 8:29
The Bible Answer: I always do those things that please Him.
10. When Jesus breaks the bondage of sin, what wonderful privilege does He offer us? Romans 8:15-17
The Bible Answer: We are children of God; heirs with God; joint heirs with Christ
What a wonderful privilege to know we are an adopted son or daughter of God through Christ. We are part of God's royal family with all the rights and privileges of a family member. We never need feel lonely, insecure, or uncertain again. Jesus is our Elder Brother; God our wonderful, loving heavenly Father; the Holy Spirit our Counselor and Guide; and the angels our protectors.
11. What does Christ promise He will do deep within us? Hebrews 8:10
The Bible Answer: I will put my laws in their mind and write them in their hearts
God promises to change us from within. He will place His law in our mind so we know it. He will also write it in our hearts so we love it. When God changes us inside, we will love to do His will.
12. What was Jesus' heart hunger? Hebrews 10:7
The Bible Answer: To do your will, oh God
Jesus' longing was to do the Father's will. His heart's desire was to please God (John 8:29). The heart desire of every Christian who has been transformed by God's grace is to do God's will.
13. When will this miraculous new birth take place? Revelation 3:20
The Bible Answer: When we open the heart's door. I stand at the door and knock...if anyone opens...I will come in and dine with Him
Jesus delights in giving us new power for living. As we consciously choose to invite Him to become the Lord of our lives, His dynamic, life-transforming power changes us. He lifts us from our human weakness and gives us His divine strength. No longer must we battle the desires of our human nature alone. We are now conquerors through Jesus Christ our Lord. In Christ we are free to become the people we were born to be.