Many charismatic Christians are wrong in teaching that man is a spirit; they teach that man died spiritually at the fall. They also teach that the new birth involves recreating the human spirit and that salvation is imparting of eternal life to the spirit of man. Scripture does not support such ideas. We have proven in our previous works (Apostles Doctrine; Lost in Adam, Restored in Christ and Eternal Life-books by the same author) that man is not a spirit and has no human spirit. So, there is no human spirit to be re-created. According to the Bible, the new birth involves two things: forgiveness of sins and the giving of God’s Spirit. The New Testament emphasizes the forgiveness of sins and the giving of God’s Spirit. The church of today is not strong on forgiveness but that is the Message of the New Testament. If anyone is in Christ he is a new creation, but anyone who is not in Christ is of the old creation whether he is a Jew or Gentile, male or female, free or bond, young or old, rich or poor. The resurrected Christ is the new man. In order to be a new man one has to be in Christ. What makes a man a new creation is not his behavior or actions but his inclusion in Christ.
At the salvation, one does not stop all his old habits and behaviors. Truly, some sinful habits may stop at the point of believing. But the experience is not same with everyone. The new birth is not about stopping bad habits. The gospel does not deal with character modification. It deals solely with the righteousness of God.
Adam is sin, our sin. Christ is righteousness, our righteousness. Adam is the old man; Christ is the new man. So the old man or old creation is sin; the new man or new creation is righteousness. The old creation which is called unrighteousness is a state of being in enmity with God. The New Creation which is called Righteousness is a state of peace and harmony with God. A sinner is one who is in enmity with God; a righteous man is one who has been reconciled with God.
On the basis of Christ’s sacrifice on the tree, God now forgives anyone who believes in Jesus. Reconciliation between God and man happened on the cross for on it God forgave the sin of man. The separator was removed once and for all! Now through Jesus Christ, God holds nothing against man; he has no case against man. He has forgiven man totally and eternally! Man now stands before God without any sense of guilt, shame or inferiority. This is righteousness! Man receives the reconciliation by faith. Unbelief means refusal of God’s offer of reconciliation.
When anyone believes in Christ, he is included in Christ. In Christ, one’s natural ancestry does not matter. Everyone in Christ is a new man-he has no history outside Christ. In Him, all are equally forgiven, equally righteous, equally accepted by God, equally anointed with God’s Spirit and all have equal access to God. There is no closed heaven in Christ; heaven is ever open to all in Christ.
God promised through Moses and all the prophets that he will make a new covenant with man. The new covenant will guarantee that God will forgive the sins of man and will never again remember them. Now, on the basis of the cross, God gives man everlasting righteousness. Everlasting righteousness which was long prophesized in the old covenant has now been manifested. Now anyone who believes in Christ Jesus receives everlasting righteousness. The believer is now a new creation and the righteousness of God!
According to Scripture, the gift of righteousness does not render the recipient incapable of doing wrong things because righteousness is not imparted or stamped on the inner man of the person. It is only imputed. So, the recipient may still do wrong things. The difference is that God no longer keeps records of the wrongs committed by anyone he forgives and declares righteous by faith.
At salvation our sins, past, present and future, are once and for all time, entirely forgiven.