Life according to the new nature in Christ

Pastor of New Life Church Vyacheslav GoncharenkoApril 2nd, 2017

Viacheslav Goncharenko

1 John 4:16 (NLT)

“We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them.”

I want to reveal to you three great facts that come out of this verse.

-          First of all, we have known the love.

-          Secondly, we have put our trust in His love.

-          And thirdly, love allows us to dwell in relationship with our Heavenly Father.

We have known the love. 

When we say that we have come to know the love that God has for us, it is bigger than feelings or experiences. Yes, it does feel good to experience human love or favor. Even better- God’s love and favor. But our feelings are just a part of it.

What happened when we have come to know the love? We were born again. We have been born into love, born into the Kingdom of love. God is love and being born again means being born of God. When we are born of God, He gives us new nature- His nature, the nature of the Father. We get born into a family and become the children of love.

Romans 5:5 (NIV)

“…And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us”

The love of God has been poured into our hearts. Weymouth translation puts it this way: “…God’s love for us flooded our hearts and seized us through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”

As you see, it is not just a pleasant experience. When we have come to know God, we have been born of God, gained the nature of God that is directly connected to love, because God is love. We have come to know the love that God has for us. Because of that we now must live according to this love. When we start to live according to our new nature, we will start to develop the life of love. As a result, our life becomes more and more like the life of Jesus.

On our end, we have to allow the love that we have known, that we have been born into and that has been poured into our hearts abundantly to gain control over everything in our life. When we submit to love, then love does miracles. It makes us successful. Love makes us blessed and prosperous. A person starts to prosper in the areas he would have never prospered prior to being filled with love. Love never loses, it always wins, because love is our Lord God Almighty who dwells in us by the Holy Spirit. Imagine the Owner of the universe gives a human the power and abilities of Jesus Christ! That is why there is no power in the world that can withstand the power of love. There is no power in the world that can’t be subdued by love. Love makes us desirable, blessed and free.

What does love do to us? How drastically does it change us once we submit to it? We have come to know the love that God has for us. It is not only that we have experienced it, but we have been born into it. People testify of being supernatural filled by love to the point of saying “the day Jesus Christ entered my life and became my Lord, I was ready to embrace the whole world! I was ready to hug every person who passed by, even a passing by dog.” One person once told “I was acting as if I was crazy. I came home and everyone asked me what was wrong with me and why I kept smiling. And I was so overfilled, that couldn’t stop smiling.”

My friends, what God’s love does to us! It does miracles, it delivers us! Without love we are slaves. Without love, everything is very primitive. But in love we become so rich, so generous. In love, we are the image and likeness of God. It is through love that God returns a human His image and likeness. Love frees us from flaws; it makes us holy and pleasing to the Lord. This is how important love is!

 John 13:34 (NLT)

So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.”

In other words, Jesus is saying, “I am giving you a new law”. The new law of Christ is the law of love. “Love!”- is the law of Christ. And that law came as a substitute for the 10 commandments, which Jesus fulfilled and then gave the new law of love. People who live according to that law will never sin.

1 John 3:9 (NLT)

 “Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God.”

Reading this passage, many people say, “This is not true, because I always sin. I constantly have sin issues.” Today I want Holy Spirit to open your eyes to one simple truth. When God’s love dwells in you and you live according to the law of love, you are not able to sin. Is that so?!

Romans 13:10 (NLT)

“Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.”

Here we see the battle with sin in a sense of constantly thinking “I hope I am not going to sin!” is over. Many believers live with thoughts “I just don’t want to make mistakes, Oh, Lord, forgive me!” If you live in love, you won’t have to live like that, because you will not be able to sin. Love does no wrong to the neighbor. Is God’s word- the truth, or your thoughts is the truth? “Oh, I have such a rich life experience…!” You think you are right? As long as you think you are right, you are in danger zone. Because when you think you are right, you doubt the word of God. You may think: “I have my own opinion, because my experience is different. If only you knew what I have been through! I fell and had to rise many times.” The Lord wants you to stop trusting your experience and start trusting His word. If you have known the love- you are a new creation in Christ Jesus, you are a new person. I am not even talking about developing the love in you, as the Bible says. At least do not hinder the new creation in Christ from living according to the new nature. When you walk in love, you are unable to sin and do somebody wrong. How can you sin when your heart is overflowing with love? You have known that love, it filled you up, possessed you, and you are a new creation. The love of God has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit brought divine attributes of the Father into your heart.

We have put our trust in His love.

I was asking myself, why is it so depressing to live in this world, and came to realization, that many do not believe in love. Look at this world: people believe in their own strength, their mind, their abilities, their human wisdom. But what are the results? The results are depressing.

If you have believed in love, then all of your words, actions, intentions must be dictated by love. That is the proof of you believing in love. It is important to not only experience love, but to believe in it. If you believed in love, then everything in your life will be motivated by love. You open your mouth in love, you act in love, wherever you go, love will stand behind everything you do. And that is the life according to the new nature, you become a person who builds up.

And if you ever experienced love, if you know what it is, – doesn’t it disturb you to hear or see someone act in a way opposite to love? Don’t you feel the resonance when you see someone speaking and acting in an improper way? You consider such kind of behavior foolish. It cuts your ear, it opposes your new nature, because a new attitude lives inside of you. You look at this person, and you think: “I used to be like that. Ten/twenty years ago, I behaved the same way.” You ask yourself this question, because you cannot bear words and deeds that are not dictated by love. Thank God that you have experienced love. But did you believe in love? How can we believe in love?

2 Cor. 5: 14-15 (NLT)

“Christ’s love controls us. Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. He died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.”

Since we believe”- speaking of those, who believe in love that embraces us, fills us, and consumes us. To believe in love is to believe that Jesus died for all. Why did He die for all? So that all would no longer live for themselves, but for the One who died and was raised for them. When that scripture becomes your reality, the way you think, the way you live, the way you believe, then you are indeed filled by the Love. What does it mean? It means that you have believed in love, believed that Christ died for all, so that all, including you, would no longer live for themselves.

Majority of people live a life directed by selfishness. That is why there is so much destruction. Selfishness is a poison for our spirit. Selfishness causes diseases, wars, conflicts, and divorces. Selfishness rules the nations of the world. Except for the nation that is a new creation in Christ Jesus. If your life revolves around yourself, know that you are a destroyer, not a builder. If your life is dictated by selfishness, you will not be a builder. Selfishness is the kind of evil that no force can conquer, except for the force of love. When love reaches its apogee in us, selfishness ceases to reign.

1 Cor. 4:16 (NLT)

“So I urge you to imitate me, just like I imitate Christ”

This is the example of love that apostle Paul gives us. He says that his life is a life of imitating Christ. And he urges, “look at my life and imitate me, because I imitate Jesus.” Can we consider Paul a good example for us? Yes, we definitely can.

1 Tim. 1:16 (NLT)

“But God had mercy on me so that Christ Jesus could use me as a prime example of his great patience with even the worst sinners. Then others will realize that they, too, can believe in him and receive eternal life.”

Apostle Paul highlighted “I have been saved and believed, so that Jesus Christ could show on my example how to live and believe to receive eternal life.” Paul is a great example for all the later generations of Christians on earth. So we can boldly take his life as a personal example.

What does Paul teach and what is his personal example?

1 Cor. 10:24 (NLT)

“Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others.”

Did Paul live as he preached?

1 Cor. 10:33 (NLT)

“I, too, try to please everyone in everything I do. I don’t just do what is best for me; I do what is best for others so that many may be saved.”

This is what Christian life should look like and be manifested through love.

To live in love is to abandon selfishness and comfort; we are so used to comfort, that we might think it is the greatest blessing of God. The Word of God says not to seek own good, but the good of the others. What is the good of others?- “so that many may be saved”.

The Holy Spirit is speaking to you today, “when are you going to live in love? When are you going to live for others so they would be saved? When will you live in such a way that your neighbors get saved? When will your relatives see you consumed by love and as a result be saved? When will you allow love to make you generous, kind, uttering no reproaching word. When will you become a person through whose life clean springs flow, who shows the love of Jesus Christ on personal example, through the way you relate to your family and people around you. When will you allow that love to reign in your life and live according to your new nature?” 

1 Cor. 9:19-22 (NLT)

“Even though I am a free man with no master, I have become a slave to all people to bring many to Christ. When I was with the Jews, I lived like a Jew to bring the Jews to Christ. When I was with those who follow the Jewish law, I too lived under that law. Even though I am not subject to the law, I did this so I could bring to Christ those who are under the law.  When I am with the Gentiles who do not follow the Jewish law, I too live apart from that law so I can bring them to Christ. But I do not ignore the law of God; I obey the law of Christ. When I am with those who are weak, I share their weakness, for I want to bring the weak to Christ. Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some.”

This is what it means to believe in love: to meditate on the fact that Jesus died for all, and all must live for Him. “He died for me in the first place, so I must live for Him.” When you wake up and lay down with one intention -to live for the One who died and was raised for you, when you are driven by people around you receiving salvation and living for Christ as well, your life tells the heavens that the love in you have been perfected. It shows the heavens that you are filled with love, that you have known the love and you have believed in love. It tells God that that you are a person who lives according to the new nature. You allow the love to control your life and to keep you safe, to consume you and possess you.

When you deny selfishness, you start gaining, building and expanding. Love makes you fruitful in all ways. Love cannot lose, it never fails.

Rom. 15:1-3 (NLT)

“We who are strong must be considerate of those who are sensitive about things like this. We must not just please ourselves. We should help others do what is right and build them up in the Lord. For even Christ didn’t live to please himself…”

To have believed in love is to live out the new commandment of love.

Love enables you to be in a relationship with the Father.

1 John 4:16 (NLT)

“We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them.”

What happens when you live in love? It is written that when you live in love, you live in God and God lives in you. Many doubt “does God live in me? Is He on my side? Do I live in harmony with God? Does He hear my prayers? Does He know my name? Does He know the hardships that I am going through? Does God know my faith and my patience? Does God know about me?” If you live in love, and God live in you (we have known the love and believed in it), you will never have to doubt any of the things above. If you lifestyle is living in love and manifesting it, you have a guarantee, that God dwells in you and you dwell in Him.

Love allows us to live in harmony with God. It is so amazing, because through harmony with God, you will have harmony with yourself. Many people are searching for that harmony with self, they read hundreds of books about it, about how to not be at war with yourself, they say “know yourself!”. Have you ever heard people say, “Get to know yourself, get to know your inner world!” However, you will never get to know yourself, it you wont get to know your God. Only in God you can know your true DNA, your real nature, how God created you according to His image and likeness. How you were lost, deceived, and became a fallen man. And then Jesus saved you and made you a new person, beautiful and glorious. When that is how you get to know yourself, you get to enjoy who you really are in Jesus Christ!

On the opposite, what will you find within yourself apart from Jesus? If you are honest, without self-hypnosis (constantly repeating: “I am kind, nice, good, positive), etc., you will soon find out how corrupt your nature is without God. Your will see your destructive words, thoughts and actions: they have destroyed your body, your soul, your family, and they keep destroying it. That is the honest “getting to know self” apart from Jesus.

That’s why don’t get to know yourself, get to know Jesus, who is love. May He resurrect you to the new life. Become the new creation in Jesus Christ, get born again for Him and hold on to Him with all you have. Then you will start seeing that you like who you have become. You will wake up every morning smiling and thanking God. Everyone around you will see that you are a new person, a new creation.

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