New Life, New You – Have You Been Born Again?

Shared on March 31, 2024

Do you believe Jesus is the resurrection and the life? Many people love to say they are born again believers, yet the make vain His resurrection. Jesus gave His life for a purpose and a reason. Join Pastor McCrary for this year’s Resurrection Sunday sermon about being born again and living as the new you.


What does the resurrection of Christ mean to you?  Before raising her brother from the dead, Jesus said to Martha, “I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in Me, though he may die (physically die), shall live.  And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die.”  Jesus then asked Martha, “Do you believe this (John 11:25-26)?”

Do you believe Jesus is the resurrection and the life?  In my sermon for today, we will focus heavily on resurrection.  You and I must understand what His resurrection means for us.  If you confess to believe in Jesus’ resurrection, you must understand what it means to have part in the resurrection.

This is the thought that leads to my key verse for today where we see Paul speaking about former conduct.  Paul tells us to put off our former conduct and put on the new man— a new life, new you.  

Two Types of Resurrection

There are two types of resurrection.  The resurrection that we think of first is the resurrection of the body from the grave in the end.  Within the resurrection of the body there are two parts.  The first part is one that Paul spoke of when he spoke of the righteous being caught up to meet the Lord in the air (1 Thess. 4:17).  Paul’s teaching came from what Jesus promised when He promised to come again and receive His followers unto Himself (John 14:3).

The second part is the resurrection of the condemned.  This resurrection is shown to us in Revelation 20:11-15.  Those who chose not to follow Christ, are shown standing before the great white throne of God.  Rather than being raised to life, the condemned are raised to be cast from God’s presence for eternity.  So, in other words, the condemned are resurrected to die the second death- the spiritual death.

I don’t know about you but I would much rather be caught up to meet the Lord in the air than to be cast away from Him for eternity.  In order to be caught up with Christ, we must have part in the second type of resurrection.  What is the second type of resurrection we must be aware of?  It is the resurrection of the spirit.

In Ephesians 2:1-8, we will see Paul speaking to the resurrection of the spirit.  Let us notice in Ephesians 2:5, Paul speaks about the spirit once being “dead in trespasses”.  What we should understand from this statement is that sin corrupts and kills the soul day by day.  The Lord gave the world His only begotten Son to bring life to the dead soul.

So, as Paul said, Christ has made alive the souls that were dead in trespasses and sins (Eph. 2:1).  All who believe in the resurrection, have been made alive by the grace of God through our faith in Christ  (Eph. 2:8).  As Paul said, there is nothing else we can do to bring life to our soul.

We must remember what Jesus said to Nicodemus about being able to enter the kingdom of God.  Jesus said to him, “Unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God (John 3:3).”  To clarify, Jesus was not talking about physically being born again.  Jesus said, “unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God (John 3:5).”  So, you must be resurrected in your soul – born again spiritually – in order to be resurrected unto everlasting life in God’s kingdom.

The Born Again Believer

Do you believe that Jesus is the resurrection and the life?  Have you been born again or is your soul dead in trespasses?  

If you believe in the resurrection then it should be a new you moving in this world today.  Do you understand that you have been given a new life to live by Christ?  Many love to profess to be born again believers, but with every step they take, they make vain the resurrection.  You and I must not make vain Christ’s resurrection.

In Romans 6:1-14, Paul expounded on believers being born again.  Paul asked those who believe in the resurrection, “How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it (Rom. 6:2)?”  The sincere believer ought not still be living in sin when Christ has given His life to free us from sin!  With this in mind, Paul asked, “Do you not know that we were baptized in Christ’s death (Rom. 6:3)?”

Many believers seemingly forget or don’t give much thought to the fact that Christ died as a sinner for a reason.  You and I must not make a mockery of the resurrection and take away its meaning and power.  What do I mean by this?  Consider this question:  while Jesus died as a sinner, did He rise from the grave as a sinner?

When He rose from the grave, Jesus said to the disciples, “all authority has been given to Me in heaven and earth (Matt. 28:18).”  You see, no sinner would be given authority over heaven!  So, when Jesus rose from the grave, He rose holy and righteous!  What this means is that Jesus changed when He rose!  Jesus left sin in the grave when He rose!

In Romans 6:9, Paul wrote, “Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more.  Death no longer has dominion over Him.”  Death, physical death, only has dominion over the condemned— the sinner.  Jesus gave His life so that sin no longer has dominion over us— true believers.  So, as Paul said,  we should consider ourselves dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord (Rom. 6:11).  

Paul said it even better in Romans 6:4.  “We were buried with [Christ] 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.”  Are you walking in the newness of life or does sin still have dominion over you?  Are you born again or still that same sinful person from before you said you believe?

Put Off Your Former Conduct

If you truly do believe in the resurrection, then you ought not be the person you were yesterday— sin no longer defines you.  You have been born again in your spirit which means you have a new life, therefore, it should be a new you!  So, why are there so many that make vain the resurrection of Christ by how they live?

Stop walking as a sinner

If you desire to live as the new you, then you must live in the change of your resurrected – renewed – soul.  In Ephesians 4:17, Paul encouraged the believer to “no longer walk as others who walk in the futility of their mind.”  What does this mean?  Futility (futile):  useless.

As a born again believer, you ought to be abiding by the divine truth- the word of God.  Jesus said that if you abide by His word, you will know the truth and it will make you free (John 8:31-32).  As I said throughout my series – On the Path to Glory – there is hope in the truth of salvation.  Therefore, the born again believer should march forward towards that hope!

The condemned soul walks without true hope.  This is not to say that the condemned don’t hope for anything.  The condemned have hope that is of the world which is the hope of vanity— fleeting riches one cannot carry with them after life.  As Paul said in Ephesians 4:18, this kind of mindset is darkened because it is alienated from the life of God.  The condemned end up wandering blind in their heart to the true blessing of God and miss it.  

What is most sad about this is how the condemned conduct themselves just to gain the fleeting riches of the world.  The sinner conducts themselves in a way that often tears others down rather than lifts them up.   Don’t believe me?  Just take a look at how the wickedness of one man tears others down others just to lift himself up higher.  

If you truly believe in the resurrection of Christ, do you think you should tear others down just to lift yourself up?  I hope you don’t think that is OK!  I also hope that you don’t support such conduct while saying you’re a born again believer!  So, the new you must stop walking as a sinner!  Stop walking as a sinner and supporting such if you love to say you are a child of the Most High!

Put away lying

If you believe in the resurrection, Paul tells us plainly in my key verse to put off your former conduct.  You have a new life so why should you be still trying to live as you did when you were a sinner?  

The old you, Paul tells us, was given over to lewdness and to “work all uncleanness with greediness” (Eph. 4:19).  Do you think that conduct is fit for one who says they are a born again believer?  We were once given over to such conduct but that conduct should be left in the past— it should not define you today.  

If you believe in the resurrection, in Ephesians 4:25, Paul tells us to put away lying.  James wrote that the tongue is a fire and a world of iniquity (Jas. 3:6).  He said that the tongue is an unruly evil that is full of deadly poison (Jas. 3:8).  The lying tongue creates a bunch of mess and confusion.  In all of the confusion of the lying tongue there comes division.  Within divisions there is no peace!  Just look at what the lying tongue does today!

Some men rejoice at creating mass hysteria of division and confusion.  These frauds and scammers of the faith rejoice in spreading darkness.  Yet, born again believers are supposed to be lights in the world!  Born again believers are not supposed to be authors of confusion!  No, we are supposed to be authors of peace.  Therefore, the born again believer should put away lying and also remove themselves from those that love to lie.

Put away corrupt behavior

Has your soul been renewed?  To those who stole in their past life, Paul wrote, “steal no longer” but do honest work.  Just quickly on this thought, I want to add, there are more ways to steal than the way we often think.  The thought here is to do right by people— live an honest life.

Even more when it comes to the pure and honest way of living, Paul said, “let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth (Eph. 4:29).”  Some of us may try to tie this thought in with the lying tongue, but Paul wasn’t necessarily talking about lying.  There is a way that we should speak to one another which is with some kind of dignity and honor, right?

Sadly, we live in a world where speaking with dignity and honor is mocked.  In fact, foul and harmful language that is meant to put others down is what is celebrated.  I don’t know how you feel about this, but honestly, it truly is bizarre to see people think nothing of it.  There are many who will say they are born again believers that are more quick to use foul and harmful language.

What gives?  I know many of you will frown at this thought but such language is unbecoming of a child of God!  What words should come from the mouth of the born again believer?  Paul said, “what is good for necessary edification that it may impart grace to hearers” (Eph. 4:29).  We were saved by grace and from that same grace we should live.

Put away all bitterness

On that note, Paul speaks to how the new you should let all bitterness, wrath, and anger be put away with all malice (disgust) (Eph. 4:31).  Do you understand why it is so important for you to put away all of these things from you?  Firstly, because we have been given a new life, right?  We are born again believers.

However, of even more importance is that such poor conduct grieves the Spirit.  Paul said, “do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption (Eph. 4:30).  I think something that many of us believers forget is that the Holy Spirit has made a home within us.  This was something that Paul had to remind the Corinthians in that our body is a temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 6:19).

Paul said to the Corinthians, “you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit (1 Cor. 6:20).”  When we sin it grieves (hurts) the Holy Spirit.  Our goal should be to live in harmony (fellowship) with the Lord.   How can there be harmony, peace, if we grieve the Holy Spirit?

Walk in the Newness of Life

I asked at the start, do you believe Jesus is the resurrection and the life?  

You have heard me say that the word of God demands action.  The one who revealed the word to us is Christ and He forces us to make a choice.  You see, the resurrection forces you to choose your identity.  Will you be the sinner from yesterday or the new you

 The new you should be putting forth the effort to become holy and righteous!  I call on you to walk in the newness of life and stop living in the past!  Your identity should now be Christ!  So, rather than the lying tongue, we are encouraged today to speak truth (Eph. 4:25).  The born again believer shouldn’t speak fables and we shouldn’t share conspiracies!  

Paul made it very clear that the born again believer ought not be giving place to the devil (Eph. 4:27).  The devil, we must remember, is the father of sin.  Jesus said of Satan that he was a “murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him (John 8:44).”

Rather than being an imitator of Satan, Paul encourages us to be imitators of God (Eph. 5:1).  How do we go about being imitators of God?  Again, Paul said that we should “walk in love, as Christ has loved us (Eph. 5:2).”  This is a notion that needs to be continually repeated today because so many so-called believers are doing the complete opposite.

Many say they love the Lord and are born again believers but their speech is filled with lies and corrupt words.  Again, the sad part about all of this darkness is that many professed believers are rejoicing in it today.  I’m not sure what god or resurrection they believe in but we don’t believe in the same God or resurrection!  If you believe in the resurrection of Christ, then walk in the love of God and live for peace in all that you do.

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