A New Creation
Date: January 31, 2023
I use the BLESS method every morning for my devotional.
B - Bible Verse
L - Listen for God's Word and pray
E - Explore the History and meaning
S - Study and savor
S - Summarize and Share
You can read more about it by going to: What is a Faith Journal?
Bible Scripture Verse – Galatians 6:14-16
May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new creation. Peace and mercy to all who follow this rule, even to the Israel of God.
Listen for God’s Voice
Heavenly Father, Help me to fix my eyes on the cross of Jesus and to remember that it is through His sacrifice that I have been crucified to the world and the world to me. Grant me the understanding that what truly counts is the new creation that I am in Christ, and give me the grace to live out the peace and mercy that come with it, and to be a faithful member of the God’s family.
Explore History – Who wrote it, when and to what audience? Key people in the story?
This letter was written by the apostle Paul to the Christian churches in Galatia, a region in Asia Minor (modern-day Turkey). It was written around AD 49-55, likely from Antioch of Syria.
Paul is addressing the issue of false teachers who were promoting circumcision as a requirement for salvation. These false teachers were trying to convince the Gentile Christians in Galatia that they needed to follow Jewish customs and laws, including circumcision, in order to be considered truly saved.
In response, Paul reminds the Galatians that salvation comes through faith in Jesus Christ and not through human effort or works, such as circumcision. He emphasizes that what truly counts is a person's status as a "new creation" in Christ. He then pronounces blessings of peace and mercy upon those who follow this rule of faith in Christ alone.
Study and Savor – Key Words
"Boast": To speak with excessive pride or self-congratulation. In the context of this verse, Paul is saying that he doesn't have anything to boast about, except for the fact that he has been crucified to the world through the cross of Jesus.
"Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ": The place where Jesus was crucified, which has come to symbolize the sacrifice that Jesus made for the forgiveness of sins. Paul is saying that his only boast is in the salvation that he has received through Jesus' death on the cross.
"Circumcision": This was a common practice among Jewish people and was considered a sign of their covenant with God. In the context of this verse, Paul is saying that circumcision is not a requirement for salvation, but that what truly counts is being a "new creation" in Christ.
"New creation": A term that refers to the transformation that takes place in a person's life when they become a Christian. Paul is saying that what truly counts is not circumcision, but the fact that a person has become a new creation in Christ.
"Peace and mercy": Blessings of peace and mercy are pronounced upon those who follow the rule of faith in Christ alone, which Paul has outlined in his letter to the Galatians. These blessings serve as reminders of the salvation that we have received through faith in Jesus.
Summarize and Share
This scripture reminds us that our ultimate boast and source of pride should be in the cross of Jesus Christ, not in our own efforts or achievements. When we place our faith in Jesus, we become a new creation and are set free from the power of sin and death.
In a world that constantly tells us to strive for more and to boast about our accomplishments, it can be easy to forget that true salvation and peace come from Jesus alone. But this scripture reminds us that what truly counts is not our human efforts, but the transformation that takes place in our lives through faith in Jesus.
So today, let's make a conscious effort to fix our eyes on the cross of Jesus and to boast in Him alone. Let's live out our status as a new creation in Christ and follow the rule of faith in Him. And let's be a blessing to others by sharing the peace and mercy that we have received through faith in Jesus.
Take a minute sometime today to reflect on where you boast and where your source of pride comes from. Are you boasting in your own accomplishments or in the cross of Jesus? Make a commitment to fix your eyes on Jesus and to live out your status as a new creation in Him. Share the peace and mercy that you have received with others, and be a blessing to those around you.
Bible Cross Reference
Isaiah 45:24 – "Only in the Lord, it shall be said of me, are righteousness and strength." This verse emphasizes the idea that our righteousness and strength come from the Lord and not from our own efforts. This message is similar to the one found in Galatians 6:14-16, reminding us that our ultimate boast and source of pride should be in the cross of Jesus Christ.
Jeremiah 9:23-24 – "Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth." This verse reminds us that true wisdom, strength, and wealth come from a relationship with the Lord, and that we should boast in our understanding and knowledge of Him. This message is in line with the message of Galatians 6:14-16, reminding us that our ultimate source of pride should be in the cross of Jesus Christ.
Philippians 3:3 – "For we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh." This verse emphasizes the same message as Galatians 6:14-16, reminding us that our boasting should be in Christ Jesus and not in our own efforts or accomplishments.
Colossians 2:11-13 – "In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead." This verse explains that our circumcision in Christ is not a physical procedure, but a spiritual transformation that takes place when we place our faith in Him.
Romans 6:4-5 – "We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life." This verse reminds us that when we place our faith in Jesus, we become a new creation and are given the opportunity to live a life of peace and freedom in Him.
2 Corinthians 5:17 – "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come." This verse reinforces the message of Galatians 6:14-16, reminding us that when we place our faith in Jesus, we become a new creation and have the opportunity to live a life of peace and freedom in Him.