Glory Days when you first come to know Jesus, there’s an aliveness about you. A newness. You’re excited, full of joy and wonder. Your friends notice that you’re different and they ask you what’s happened. They say something like this: “Hey! What’s happened to YOU?! Your attitude, your face, your smile. What’s HAPPENED to you?! They may also say, “Believe it or not, I’m going to CHURCH now! Jesus has come into my life and I feel like a whole new person!”
Then, you invite your friends to come to church with you. you just KNOW that they’ll be touched by the Holy Spirit and experience the same kind of joy and peace and power that YOU have! That’s the way it happens for most of us – at least for a while. Something happens. After several months, a change occurs in more than 80% of Believers. Somehow, they lose their zeal and joy. 8 out of 10 Believers find themselves in a rut. It’s not that they like being in a rut, they just don’t know what to do to stay on fire for Jesus.
So, they just gel out and hang around the churches, waiting for the Rapture or a Gospel concert or something of that nature. But what about the 2 out of 10 that DON’T dry up on the vine? How do they stay in a vibrant, exciting relationship with Jesus? How can the rest of us keep our sense of joy and freshness?
Getting back to your roots. When you first came to the Lord, you didn’t have any Bible knowledge to speak of. You hadn’t heard too many sermons. Basically, the Holy Spirit had spoken to your heart, and THAT’S what you responded to. You literally were taught by the Holy Spirit and He spoke to your heart and you listened. Then, you began to read Christian books, listen to Christian radio and let the preacher do most of your Bible reading for you. He’d read it and teach you from it on Sundays.
Listen to this. Ephesians 4:21 says, “If so, be that ye have heard Him, and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus…” It’s a matter of hearing HIM! Faith comes by hearing and hearing the Word of God. Hearing Jesus is what gives you faith! Hearing Jesus speak! It’s not hearing me, it’s not hearing a sermon, it’s not hearing Christian music, it’s not reading books, it’s not listening to a Gospel tape or CD.
It’s HAVE YOU HEARD JESUS? Are you listening to that still, small voice that breaks the yoke of bondage, sets the captive free, heals the sick and casts out devils. It’s about having an ear to hear HIM! Jesus said, “He that has EARS to HEAR, let Him hear!” It’s about being taught by HIM. Like Jesus said in John 14:26, “the Holy Ghost, whom the Father sends in My name, He shall teach you all things.”
Getting to the root of the problem. Too many people are taught by men, and by religious institutions. They’re all trying to bring you under their control. When you first came to the Lord, you didn’t know about all that, so you were literally taught by Him. Then, as you sat in church, instead of listening to HIM, you started listening to the preacher.
Never listen to the preacher. When I speak, listen to what Jesus is saying to you THROUGH the pastor. See, I don’t get my teaching from man or from Bible College or from a denomination. No, I get it from Jesus. He’s the truth. When I hear a man teach and it sounds good. I run back to Jesus and ask Him, “Is this true?”
Keeping brand new. In Ephesians 4:22, he says, “Ye put off the old man (your old nature), which is corrupt…” When you came to Jesus, He broke off every claim that the devil had on you. He broke off every yoke of bondage. In Heaven’s eyes, you became brand new. When you get born again, you ARE brand new.
That’s what it means in 2 Cor. 5:17, when it says, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature. Old things are passed away, and behold, all things are become new.” Jesus compares it to being clothed in the garments (or covering) of His righteousness. You’re covered in His righteousness and that’s what God sees when He looks at you, Jesus’ righteousness. Then, if you’re not careful, you start getting that religious thing going, and it begins to remove your new garments of righteousness from you.
The trouble with “religion”. Religion is a work of the flesh. That’s why there’s so many hypocrites hanging around the churches and standing behind the pulpits. Like it says in II Peter 2:19, “While they (the preachers) promise them (you and me), liberty, they themselves are the servants of corruption (the flesh). What they do is get you out of faith and back into trying to do good works – into being “religious”. And nothing turns people off like dead, cold religion. Teachers of religion work hard to clean up the flesh and make it religious.
They’ll teach you how to “prove” you’re right with God, when you’re actually walking in doubt and unbelief. The reason they want to keep you in doubt and unbelief is so you’ll be dependent on THEM instead of dependent on Jesus.
But MY God, sets you FREE! MY God. The BIBLE God. The God of Jesus of the Bible. We’re not talking about the wimped out, watered down Jesus of the religions of our day. The Jesus of the BIBLE says that, when you know the TRUTH, you’ll be free from the law in sin and death!
The old you and the new you. The OLD you is corrupt; not complete. The old you lives to earthly standards is limited and dead to the things of God. The New you lives by Heaven’s standard. That’s what people are drawn to, a person who isn’t limited by the smallness and pettiness of this world, God is telling us in the Word here to be renewed in our minds. To get rid of religious thinking, to have that old religion (even old Pentecostal religion) removed and to be made new again.
Colossians 3:10 tells us to put on the NEW man, which is RENEWED in the image of the image of JESUS, who created us. Transformation comes from renewing your mind to the Word of God like it says in Romans 12:2, “Be not conformed to this world, but ye TRANSFORMED by the renewing of your mind” to the Word of God, to the will of God, to be taught by Jesus through the Holy Spirit. We’re going to be coming to the Lord and opening our spirits to the Holy Spirit. He’ll renew us with a personal visitation to each of us as we open up to Him.
We’ll put on the NEW man which is renewed according to Heaven’s standards. The new man, who lifts up Jesus, drawing others to Jesus, like a magnet. The new man who can see, speak, is victorious, is well and under the blessing, favor and supply of God. Open your heart and spirit to Jesus once again. Ask Him to make you real and to keep you real.