“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold the new has come.”
2 Corinthians 5:17
You may have heard of a famous sheep called Dolly. If you haven’t you’re probably wondering why there’s a famous sheep and why anyone has heard of it. Dolly is famous because she was the first mammal to be cloned.
A somatic cell from an adult sheep was used to reproduce a genetic clone of dolly – a living breathing sheep that was identical to the original. A brand new creation, but genetically, the same exact animal.
This may be a bit of a stretch, but when I read this verse, I think of Dolly. Dolly was exactly the same sheep as the one that she was cloned from. Genetically there was no difference at all. There would be no denying, however, that she was a totally separate being, a new creation. It may not be exactly applicable to us as Christians, but I think it serves as a pretty good metaphor.
When we believe in Christ, repent, and are baptized, we become a new creation. We may be the same exact being genetically, we may not have physically died and returned as a separate being, but we are a new creation. When we are in Christ, when we have received the Holy Spirit, there is no denying that we become a completely different person. We’re set free from sin, we’re led by the Spirit, and we turn our lives completely toward Christ. It’s not possible to be in Christ and remain in the same sinful life that you once lived in.
When we become Christians, true Christians, our life is indelibly changed. We are made new. Our sins and trespasses of the past are taken away completely. In many cases, the only semblance to the person before is purely physical.
Like Dolly the sheep, we keep the same genetic makeup, but our old self has died and now Christ lives in us. We are new. That’s the power of Jesus. He is able to join us to him in his death, burial, and resurrection to a new life even in our earthly bodies. Our soul is transformed and renewed into the image of Jesus, regardless of what the old self had been. It’s the same body, but a new person, a new Spirit.
Thank you for the transformative and resurrecting power of Christ. Thank you for making me a new creation through him. Help me to live by the Spirit, and never according to the life I lived before I knew you.
In Jesus’ Name,