In-Sight: Moving from “Old” to “New”

If you’ve followed Oboedire for a while, you know that 2 Corinthians 5:17 is my favorite verse and also a significant one for understanding spiritual formation.  One significant aspect of it is Paul’s assertion that when we are in Christ, “the old has passed away; the new has come.”

Advent is a time for this transition—an invitation to make the journey from the “old” to the “new.”

I like the way Richard Rohr describes how the Scriptures effect this in his book, Preparing for Christmas (pp. 64-65),

When the Scriptures are used maturely, they proceed in this order:

  1. They confront us with a bigger picture than we are used to, “God’s kingdom” that has the potential to “deconstruct” our false and smaller kingdoms.
  2. They then have the power to convert us to an alternative worldview by proclamation, grace, and the sheer attraction of the good, the true, and the beautiful (not by shame, guilt, or fear which are low-level motivations, but which operate more quickly and so churches often resort to them).
  3. They then console us and bring deep healing as they “reconstruct” us in a new place with a new mind and heart.

As you read the Bible during this Advent season, I pray you will experience them in this transformative way.

About Steve Harper

Dr. Steve Harper is retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 43 books. He is also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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