A New Creation
A Sermon on Acts 2:37-42
Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” And Peter said to them, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.
The Fellowship of the Believers
And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. (ESV)
Christianity is not a costume. It is not something that is added on top of a life of sin, or in place of previous practices. Christians are not people with refined manners and cleaner conversations. As Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains from Acts 2:37-42, "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation." All who repent of their sin and believe in Jesus are "born again" into the family of God. More than a new set of rules, it is a new identity, an entirely new person with a longing for holiness and an increasing hatred for sin. This is life transformation, but it comes at a cost. Christians are often forcibly removed from prior social circles and seen as judgmental and traditionalistic. The gospel opposes mankind's natural desire, which is to pursue self above all else. Listen as "The Doctor" provides a correct diagnosis of mankind's self-perceived free thinking; mankind is either in subjection to the devil or to God. There is no middle ground. What a person does reveals where their faith and hope truly rest. The choice is clear, either serve God and know the joy to true transformation or serve self and reap the disaster or eternal punishment.