When you believe in Jesus Christ, repent and become born again, which means that you have died in Jesus Christ, and your spirit has been risen from the death, by the power of the Holy Spirit, there shall be a change in your life. Because everything that happens in the spiritual realm, will become visible in the natural realm. That includes the birth of the new creation; the new man.
When you are born of God, you have become a son of God and you possess His nature. That means, that your old devilish carnal nature will be replaced by a new godly nature. How long the transformation process takes place, depends on your love for God. It depends on how much time you spend with Him, how fast you renew your mind with His words, apply His words to your life, and if you are willing to lay down your old life, including your culture. Because all old things, including your culture disappears in Jesus Christ.
When you are circumcised in Christ, you belong to God’s people
When you are circumcised in Jesus Christ, you belong to God’s people, and not to the people of……. (you name it). You can have a nationality on paper, but that’s it.
For the scripture saith, Whosoever believes on Him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved (Rom 10:11-13)
For you are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus (Gal 3:26-28)
Many times believers use their nationality and culture as an excuse to stay carnal and keep living after the flesh. But a nationality and a culture is no excuse for God, to keep living after the flesh and keep living in sin.
Culture is part of the old man
Culture is part of the old man. If you have become a new creation, than culture doesn’t matter. Because as a new creation, you are created after the image of God. By the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, you have received God’s nature. Now, that the Holy Spirit dwells in you, and through the process of sanctification, your character will change, especially morally.
Unfortunately this doesn’t always happen. Because many people cannot lay down the old and cannot say goodbye to something that is part of them and is familiar. That’s why many believers hold on to their culture, customs and habits. But if you really want to follow Jesus Christ, it also means to lay down your culture and its customs and habits.
The demonic activities in a country become visible in its culture. When you look at the lives of the people and their customs and habits, you will see, with what kind of principalities, powers and rulers you’re dealing with.
In some cultures it is customary to have idols and images in houses and practice certain rituals. Like for example sacrificial rituals, witchcraft, white or black magic, voodoo, indian rituals, remembering and honouring the death, rousing dances, orgies, sexual rituals, drugs and/or alcohol use and so on.
A culture can also have an influence on the character and moral aspect of a person. The character has been developed with all the aspects, characteristics and morals of a culture, that often goes against the Word of God. For example: lying, stealing, cheating, adultery, fornication, pride, always being too late, selfishness, no respect for others, angriness, murmur, slander, gossip etc.
Let’s have a look at the characteristic ‘lying’. In some cultures lying is a normal habit and is not considered as evil. Lying and manipulating the truth is considered as something that just happens to be part of the culture. But according to the Word of God, lying is part of the old man:
Lie not one to another, seeing that ye have put off the old man with his deeds (Col 3:9)
There no big or small lies or little white lies. A lie is a lie.
The world wants you to believe that there are different kinds of lies, but that’s a lie of the devil. All lies, even the smallest lies, are lies. When you even say, that you are born again, but don’t walk as the new man after the Spirit, then you also lie.
If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth (1 Jo 1:6)
If you keep lying, you are a liar. Your life is unchanged in that area, and you are still the old creation, with the devil’s character. Because the devil is a liar, and lying is part of his character and nature. Therefore if you keep lying, your character is unchanged, and you still obey the devil and give him power. No lie is part of the truth.
I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth (1 Jo 2:21)
That’s why it’s important, if you have become a new creation; a son of God, to put off lying. Don’t give any heed to this lying spirit, who’s casting all kinds of lies into your mind. But rule over this lying spirit and ignore his lies. Take authority over your thoughts and your mouth. Think twice before you speak. Don’t speak as soon as a thought, a lie, comes up in your mind. Because before you know it, you will say something that isn’t true. You will lie to cover up something or you will make a promise, which you won’t or can’t keep.
Remember that God is trustworthy, because He speaks the truth and doesn’t lie. If you are born of God, and the Holy Spirit dwells in you, then you shall also be trustworthy and shall speak the truth. That means that you won’t lie anymore, and manipulate the truth. Because the father of lies is the devil; he is a liar. If you habitually keep lying, you prove, who your real father is, and that you possess his lying spirit.
Always being late
Always being late is also a well-known phenomenon, that is part of many cultures. Many people are always running late, but if a church service or any other gathering is a little bit over time, or if something takes too long, then all of a sudden they take time seriously.
If you are always running late, than you don’t consider something as important, because otherwise you would be on time. When you’re running late, it proves that your own things had a higher priority, than the place you had to go to. If you are always late, it proves that you are selfish and prideful and have no respect for others. Because you consider yourself important and don’t want to yield yourself to time. But if you are always being late, you dupe others.
There are believers, who confess that Jesus is the most important Person in their lives, and that they cannot live without Him and the faith. But they are chronically late for church services and other gatherings, such as bible studies, prayer meetings, outreach etc. And let’s not forget the leaders of the churches and congregations. Because it often happens that church services and other gatherings are scheduled at a certain time, but never start on time. Indirectly they’re lying to the believers, by saying that a service starts at a certain time, but they don’t keep their promise.
Of course it can happen once in a while, that you’ll be too late, due to unexpected circumstances. But if it chronically happens, than it proves, who the most important person in your life is, namely: you and your own life. You can confess all you want. But your actions speak louder than your words. Your actions prove what’s important in your life.
Besides that, if you always running late, it proves that the devil still has power in your life and you are an instrument in his hand. Because by running late, you not only dupe the believers, who are on time and do take the things of the Kingdom of God seriously, but by being late, you also dupe God. You show Him, that He is not the most important Person in your life. Even when you say that He is, your actions prove otherwise.
When you are late for a meeting, you create disruption and chaos. We all know that the devil is the author of disruption and creating chaos. Yes, the devil wants nothing more than to disrupt gatherings. Because of the fact that many believers are spiritually not awake, they don’t have a clue of what’s really going on and therefore his tactics still work.
In some cultures, cheating and infidelity is considered normal, especially for men. You don’t have to live monogamous, and be loyal and faithful to one woman, but you can have other sexual relationships outside of the bonds of marriage. In some cultures even polygamy is accepted. But what is considered normal in these cultures isn’t considered normal for God. God created man and woman and have joined them together, to become one flesh. Jesus says in Mark 10, that a man shall leave his parents, and cleave to his wife and become one flesh. Jesus didn’t say man and wives.
For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife; And they twain shall be one flesh: so then they are no more twain, but one flesh (Mar 10:7)
In the Old Testament it happened, that a man had multiples wives. But that was the old carnal man, who lived after the lusts and desires of the flesh. They were not the new man, who lived after the Spirit. Therefore by using this argument to make it ok, makes no sense.
The Word is very clear about cheating and adultery. If God had approved adultery, then first of all Jesus wouldn’t have spoken about the marriage covenant between a man and a woman. Secondly, cheating, adultery and fornication wouldn’t be considered as sin, and wouldn’t lead to death. But the Word says:
For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honour; Not in the lust of concupiscence, even as the Gentiles which know not God (1 Th 4:3-5)
Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body (1 Co 6:18)
But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints (Eph 5:3)
Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things’ sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience (Col 3:5-6)
Every culture disappears in Jesus Christ
Every culture disappears in Jesus Christ. Therefore you cannot hide behind your culture anymore. You cannot use your culture as an excuse for idolatry, witchcraft, lying, chronically running late, adultery, stealing, gossip etc. Culture derives from the acts and customs of man and oftentimes these acts and customs derived from ungodly man. Culture belongs to the old creation; the old man and the carnal works.
Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. (Gal 5:19-21)
The people, who keep doing the works of the flesh, shall remain a slave of the flesh, and shall not inherit the Kingdom of God. Because the carnal man cannot see nor enter the Kingdom of God.
When one day, you’ll be standing before the throne of God, then mentioning your culture and using your culture as an excuse for your deeds and works, has no use. You cannot hide behind your culture, because in Jesus Christ you have become a new creation, where there is neither Greek nor Jew.
And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of Him that created him: Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all (Col 3:11)
‘Be the salt of the earth’