How has your life changed after encountering Christ and the power of the Gospel? You cannot go “unchanged” after seeing Jesus. You will repent or reject. This past week we studied Galatians 1:13-24 and looked at the dramatic conversion of Paul. His life, and even his name, changed forever. In fact, the fruit produced as a result of his life change impacts us today as his missionary journeys took the Good News to Gentiles, like you and me.
What was your life like before Christ? I doubt any of us can “one up” the story of Paul. He was literally a terrorist and murderer. At the same time, some of us have more dramatic stories than others. Whether you were an adult addict freed from sin and shame or a child like me who doesn’t have a checkered past, we all share this one truth – before Christ we were condemned for our sins.
After you met Christ, the power of the Gospel literally transformed you. 2 Corinthians 5:17 describes a new creation. Literally, our spiritual DNA changes, and our citizenship is secure in heaven. Beyond our eternal change of address, we also experience a sense of peace and purpose on this earth like never before. Even as a child, I recall immediately being overcome with peace and joy. Furthermore, in the days and weeks ahead, I recall being more concerned for others and having a heart that grew with compassion.
For you, your story may describe other noticeable changes; but one thing is true for all believers. When we encounter the Gospel, we are changed forever.
Since I met Christ, my identity has changed, and my community has changed. I have discovered the beauty of living in fellowship with other believers who share a common mission and a common King. This camaraderie shapes my worldview, my confidence, and my family. What about you? What difference has it made to be in a church family?
Like any family, there is tension and imperfections. As we all grow in our sanctification, this creates tension and even friction. I pray that the example of Galatians 2:1-10 as it reflects on the council of Acts 15, will reveal the need for unity within disagreements and a focus on the mission rather than our own agenda. Ultimately the changing power of the Gospel gives us a reason to rejoice and a mandate to go and tell others. Join us on this mission today!