All Things New in Christ

All Things New in Christ

Text

If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new (II Corinthians 5:17).

Purpose of the Illustration

  1. To show Christ's power to change a life.

  2. To show that Christ is greater than sin or circumstances and can "make the vilest sinner clean."

Apparatus

  1. Three bottles or test tubes to contain the solutions.

  2. A medicine dropper.

  3. Three tall glasses.

Chemicals

  1. Oxalic acid.

  2. A few spoonfuls of ferrous sulphate.

  3. One or two ounces of tannic acid.

Method of Procedure

  1. Make a solution of ferrous sulphate by adding a few spoonfuls of the chemical to a half-glass of water.

  2. Make another solution of tannic acid by adding a small quantity of the chemical to a half-glass of water.

  3. Pour a small amount of oxalic acid into a half-glass of water.

  4. Into the first glass, containing the ferrous sulphate solution, pour enough of the tannic acid solution to make the mixture black.

  5. Into this mixture pour enough of the oxalic solution to clear the combined ferrous sulphate and tannic acid solution.

Chemical Reactions

  1. The tannic acid solution blackens the ferrous sulphate solution.

  2. The solution containing oxalic acid reacts as a clearing agent to the black solution.

Cautions

  1. Care must be taken in handling the oxalic acid solution, since it is poisonous if taken internally. When disposing of it, make certain that small children are not permitted to touch the glasses.

  2. Practice before you present the experiment in public so that you can determine the proper amount of each chemical necessary to produce the desired reaction.

Representations

  1. The combined solutions of tannic acid and ferrous sulphate represent the black heart of a sinner, or the condition of an unconverted person's soul.

  2. Sin in a heart is spoken of in the Bible as blackness or evil.

  3. The oxalic solution, which clears the blackness from the first solution, represents Christ's power to change the black heart of a sinner.

  4. This may represent the blood of Jesus, which John refers to as cleansing "from all sin" (I John 1:7).

Talk

Begin to talk as you set out your apparatus. There is no other method by which man's sinful heart can be changed, or made new, but by the power of Christ in his life. The heart of the unconverted man is black and sinful, and it cannot be changed or made new by any means whatsoever outside of Christ's entrance into the sinner's heart.

Begin to mix your chemicals. Too often people think that good resolutions will change the heart and give a new direction or course to one's life. Such a person may say, "Well, I'll do good deeds, or take a course in psychology, and determine to remake my life and heart." But such resolutions and attempts do not change one's status in God's sight.

Such folk merely become educated sinners, but their status before God is not altered. Set out the glasses, drop by drop put ferrous sulphate in the first glass, and then make your tannic acid solution.

Now combine the solutions until the resultant liquid is as black as can be. This is how man looks in God's sight, before he accepts Christ. He is evil. The natural man is wicked; the unconverted man is without light in his heart and soul. Salvation is spoken of as light, as cleansing, as making new the old heart of sin. Hold up the black solution for the audience to see. The Bible speaks of the darkness in which the evil world sits.

All the wars of the ages have issued from this black heart of man. The bloodshed which has brought misery upon the world from the beginning of time to the present comes from this black glass—hold up the glass—which represents man's sinful heart.

Most crimes today are committed by those under twenty, and every juvenile criminal in our reformatories and jails has a black heart like this. This black heart breaks homes, causing one out of six marriages to end in divorce. (In Los Angeles County, one out of three marriages terminates in divorce.) The natural man does not receive the things of God. His heart is black and there is no divine light in it.

But there is a Divine Person, the Light of the world, who will change this black heart.
Slowly drop amounts of oxalic solution into the black solution. Do not clear it all at once. Begin to talk as you carry on the experiment.

When Christ came on the scene, men began to ask, "What new doctrine is this?" (Mark 1:27). He came proclaiming that He could cast out the devils of iniquity and blackness in man's heart, and those who heard Him knew at once that this was a new doctrine. The same was true of Paul when he preached at Athens, for his hearers wanted to know more of the "new doctrine whereof thou speakest" (Acts 17:19).

The Gospel has always been a doctrine which declares that all things can be made new through Christ's power and blood.

Continue to add a few drops to the black solution. Paul admonishes us in Ephesians to "put off . . . the old man . . . put on the new man" (Ephesians 4:21-25). But the great promise is that all things can become new in Christ Jesus. Clear the black solution now. At this point repeat the words of the text.

Accepting Christ in the heart through faith causes the black heart of sin to be changed to the new heart of the Christian. The blood of Jesus cleanses from sin, according to John. This is forgiveness, the blotting out of one's past record of sin and evil-doing. The black becomes clean in Christ.

Even the way that we are to walk as Christians becomes a "new and living way"   (Hebrews 10:20).

John Bunyan said that when he was converted, everything looked new. Even the heavens seemed to have been made new. The grass and the trees were greener than he had ever seen them. The birds sang new melodies. Why? Because John had become a new creature in Christ Jesus. The world, the heavens, the grass and the birds' songs were the same—but John's heart was new.

John no longer desired liquor, for he was walking in a new and living way. He went forth to do good deeds, preach repentance, call men to accept Christ as their Saviour, and to write his marvelous books, most famous of which is the beloved Pilgrim's Progress.

So it is with every man. If sins bind you, let them be broken by the power of Christ coming into your life. Old habits will be changed to new ways of righteousness. Love of the world will become love for the things of God.

This change means that new friendships will be formed by young people when Christ comes in to make all things new. Evil companions will no longer pull you toward them when Christ is the directing power in your life.

Becoming a new creature in Christ Jesus changes even the song in your life. Paul says, "Be filled with the Spirit . . . singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord" (Ephesians 5:18-19).

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