As the new year approaches, people are speaking of New Year’s resolutions and setting goals they will try to accomplish in the upcoming year. However, we do not need a new year to come to have a new beginning. We can start over anytime. No we cannot start our entire life over, yet each new day is a brand new start. God calls us to this new beginning through baptism. This time, we are going to look at several example of God’s call to start over and then we will apply them to our life. So let us begin.
The first example of a new beginning we are going to discuss is the great warrior Gideon. Gideon was called to be a great war leader. In Judges 6:12 an Angel of the Lord calls him a “mighty man of valor”. The Lord called upon Gideon to save Israel from the Midianites (6:14). However Gideon responds by saying his clan is the least in Manasseh, and that he is the least in his father’s house (6:15). But as Gideon accepts his call, he does great things for the Lord. He destroys the altar of Baal, he defeats an army with three hundred men, and defeats the Midianites. Gideon started as the lowest of the low, but ended as a great war leader.
Another example we see in the Bible, is a new covenant God makes with his people. Jeremiah 31:31 says, “‘The days are coming,’ declares the Lord, ‘when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah.’” This is the covenant through Jesus Christ. This was the largest and most important “new beginning” in history. God made a new covenant with His people and it was a new beginning. How blessed we are to be a part of this new covenant.
Another example of starting over we see is after the Flood, when Noah and his family came out of the ark. Genesis 9:11 says, “‘I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be destroyed by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.’” This was a new beginning. All life had been destroyed except those that were on the ark. God promised that he would never flood the earth again to destroy it, and that promise has stood and will stand forever. This was a chance for the human race to accept God’s covenant, and to have a new beginning.
Now we can have a fresh start with God by being washed with the waters of baptism. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” Once we have come up out of the water, we are a new creation. The slate is clean and we have a fresh start. So as the new year comes, what better time is there to make a commitment to God than right now? Tomorrow is not a guarantee. The time is now to come to Christ and to be baptized for the remission of sins.