Happy Almost New Year

I am thankful that the “All I want for Christmas…” season is over, but we are no firmly implanted in the “This year, I resolve to…” season. These seasons are vanity, though, both coming and going within a span easily measured in weeks. It’s just as well; the vast majority of people want nothing to do with Christ (He is the Light which reproves their evil deeds) but suffer Him (more and more grudgingly) for a time each year. Likewise, the vast majority of people have a problem with a little thing called pride. I know I certainly do. And this pride is antagonistic to personal change, personal growth. Why should we change? Everyone else are the ones with problems, right?

I have challenged Christians here in the past to make Christmas a year round thing; to cease celebrating Christ is to celebrate self and sin, a party at which our Father does not tolerate us making an appearance.

It is a bit harder to tie in “New Years” into a year ’round Christian activity. I’m wise enough to know that God does not operate using a Gregorian calendar and I know He doesn’t buy into all the traditions that come along with the changing of a calendar.

That New Year, however, is a phenomenal event for man. I applaud those who are able to take their resolutions and make them part of their lives for as long as they live, but for far too many, the New Year merely represents another in a long string of “the beginning of next year” promises.

Daily Bible reading? Next year…
Get in better shape (to serve the Lord better and with more vigor)? Next year…
Reduce indulgences? Next year…
Pray more often? Next year…
Correspond regularly with those you don’t see often? Next year…
Be more faithful, watch less television, evangelize more, write more, read more, and so on? Next year…

Friends, these things are too important to put off until next year, and when next year comes, it is all too easy to push it back to yet another next year.

The Bible says we ought to be renewed “day by day.”:”(2 Corinthians 4:16)”: As I said, God is not operating on a Gregorian calendar. Regarding those things which are spiritual, there’s no reason why we ought to either. The renewing of our mind is the opposite of conformity to the world.:”(Romans 12:2)”: and as commentator John Gill says, the renewing takes place by “attending to the spiritual exercises of religion, as reading, meditation, prayer, conference, the ministration of the word and ordinances.”

These things ought to fill the Christian’s life, “day by day,” preventing and undoing any and all conformity to this vain world. When we tie such importance to the New Years, we take the transforming power of a “day by day” relationship with God and hope to transfer it to a calendar date. Remember that in a couple of days.

But perhaps you are reading this and you are not a Christian. The things I have said probably seem silly to you, and that’s perfectly fine. But of all the New Years resolutions a person could make, none are as big as the change from being lost to saved, unforgiven to forgiven, dead to alive. This too is something that ought not to be put off until a New Year. The Bible says that today is the accepted time, the day of salvation.:”(2 Corinthians 6:2)”: And as it has been asked before, “What must I do to be saved?”

Jesus Christ was given by the Father so that those who believe in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life. We have all sinned — you, me, and all of us — and the penalty, the wages of that sin is death. God’s holiness, His wrath demands it. He has, however, elected to save those who believe in His Son. For believers, Jesus has bore all wrath, all punishment, eradicating any evidence of it, so that when we stand before the Father our sin will not even be a memory in any mind. All that will matter is Jesus Christ, and on His merit will believers enjoy eternal life in Heaven forever.

Repent of your sins, turn from them and believe that the Lord Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. All those who do so will not perish but will have everlasting life.

8 thoughts on “Happy Almost New Year”

  1. Are you in Connersville? I’m a reformed Christian who lives in Connersville and I’d like to get in touch! I’ve been pondering the whole thought of every day being Christmas for His disciples lately and really teaching my kids about it. Christ at the center…always.

  2. Rick,

    I am David’s brother (from the comment above). We grew up in Connersville. I currently am one of the pastors of a Reformed church in Bloomington, but I am very interested in seeing a church planted in Connersville. I am in town this week–why don’t we get together? Send me an email and I will give you my cell phone number.

  3. Yay! More Reformed brethren! That means more people that I can share my good news with!

    Guess what, guess what, guess what?!?!?

    “Spurgeon’s Sermons” are coming in the mail today! Yay! :D :D :D

  4. David & Stephen: I’ll shoot you both an email, if not here within a few minutes, then after I get off work. (Lunch breaks go by oh-so-quick…)

    Edit: Okay, emails sent; off to work I go!

  5. Oh man, I wish I could purchase “The Works of John Owen”. But it’s $279, and that’s the sale price. So, I’ll have to save up some money for quite a while, and this is considering I don’t purchase the other probably $100 worth of books that I would like/need.

    There we go, guys. I figured out another New Year’s resolution: Earn lots of money. :)

  6. I have heard the definition of a “New Year’s Resolution” defined very aptly.

    It is simply a promise you have no intention of keeping. I don’t really make resolutions anymore. I used to all the time, but I NEVER followed through on them.

    I had some weird resolutions though. One year I made a resolution to count how many times I ate pizza that year. That didn’t really last very long.

  7. Happy New Year, all!

    Do I have any formal resolutions? No, I don’t.

    However, for several hours leading up to midnight, I was reading from The Radical Reformission, a book advocating a very radical, very (dare I say) biblical and Jesus-centric method of evangelizing, a method which in any church I have ever been in has never been taught and in the majority of cases probably would have been frowned upon at best.

    Mark Driscoll, the author, is thoroughly challenging my comfort zones and my own personal ideas of what it is to be a witness for Jesus Christ.

    I don’t have any resolutions, but God may well be pushing me to some radical changes in my life for His glory and good pleasure.

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