Acts 19:18-20 — Putting away the past

Happy New Year!

After taking a day off from blogging due to a cold, I’m back.  🙂

I suppose as we head into a new year, it’s only natural to think of it as a time to start anew.  And the good news of Christianity is that God does give us a new start when we come to him.

That’s what he did for the people in Ephesus.  As people came to believe in Christ, they turned away from their sins.  Many who had been involved in sorcery went so far as to burn the scrolls they had used when practicing sorcery, which was worth no small amount of money.

Just as importantly, they did all this publicly so that all would know about their decision.

What can we get from all this?  A change in heart should lead to a change in our actions.  If we have truly come to believe in Christ, it should cause us to put aside the things in our lives we know are wrong, even though it may be costly to do so.

Maybe up until now, our business practices have been profitable, but shady.  God call us to put those practices aside.  Or perhaps we’ve been sleeping with our boyfriend or girlfriend.  God calls us to start living in sexual purity, even though it may cost us that relationship.

And as we do, we need to be clear to those around us just why we are making these changes.  Not simply because we want to turn over a new leaf, but because of the gratitude in our hearts toward God for all he’s done for us.  That through the cross of Christ, he has granted us forgiveness for our sins and a new start in life.  A life filled with his love, joy, and peace.

Some may become angry with us for it.  Some may mock us and reject us.  But some may be touched by the love of Christ through us and find him, as happened in Ephesus.

For because of those believers and the change God worked in their lives,

The word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power.  (20)

How about you?  What is God asking you to put aside in your life this new year?

 

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About bkshiroma

I'm from Hawaii, but have been in Japan as a missionary/English teacher since 1995. I'm currently going to a church called Crossroad Nishinomiya, an international church in Nishinomiya, a city right between Kobe and Osaka. Check out their website: crossroad-web.com 私がハワイから来ましたけど1995年に宣教師と英会話の教師として日本に引っ越しました。 今西宮にあるクロスロード西宮という国際の教会に行っています。どうぞ、そのホムページを見てください: crossroad-web.com
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