Now that you have accepted God’s grace and have received salvation, what next? As you have become a child of God, the Holy Spirit indwells you. The Holy Spirit, Who convicts you of sin, guides you and prays for you. This is where the change in life begins. Many people nowadays steer away from the subject of sin. But, sin is real and God hates sin. Yes, I said it. God hates sin. But through Christ, you are freed from a life of sin. You will still sin, but you will no longer be in bondage to it and that will diminish as you live for Him, stay in God’s word, and continue in prayer. Your desires will be that of righteousness and the desires of sin will be washed away. There will be a battle within you, but now you can claim victory over sin. There is a continual growth throughout the rest of your life (Christians have a fancy word for this called “sanctification”). This will be a process. We must put away our old self, for that person has died and begin living a new, vibrant life full of love and joy that one can only obtain through the Holy Spirit (see the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23).
As I was thinking about this today, it reminded me of the transformation of a caterpillar into a butterfly. The caterpillar is gone and completely changes into a beautiful butterfly through metamorphosis. Or, the ugly duckling that changes into the beautiful swan. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” We are a new creation in Christ Jesus. It is a wonderful thing to know that we can start over no matter what we have done in the past. As we grow, we will live for Christ, God can use us in mighty ways, He will get us through our weaknesses, fill us with hope and joy, and lead us in the right direction. Praise God that He has changed my life and has put my past behind me giving me a new life full of blessings!
“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. For he who has died has been freed from sin. Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.
What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Certainly not! Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.
For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”