{2 Corinthians 5:17; NLT}
This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!

You see, the “try harder” solution assumes these commands are given to motivate us to become something we aren’t presently. I lack love, so I’m told to try harder to be more loving. I lack joy, so I’m told to try harder to be more joyful. This, it is assumed, will help make me a more loving and more joyful person. I suggest that this is not at all what these scriptural exhortations mean. While a person can work at acting loving or joyful when he or she really doesn’t feel that way, a person cannot simply will to be more loving or joyful. Exhortations in the New Testament are not given on the basis of what we are not but on the basis of what we already are because of who we are in Christ Jesus.They are given not to motivate the believer to acquire something new but to express something that is already true. In other words, what the believer is called to do is based on who the believer already is. It is crucial to our growth in Christ that we understand this clearly.

Greg Boyd, Seeing is Believing, Kindle Edition

Questions to consider:

  • What is the promise if we “belong to Christ”?
  • Why does “trying harder” usually fail to bring about the change we desire?
  • Why is it important for us to realize that truth that we have new life?
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