We cannot live how we used to live. Once we were baptized, that was the death of the old self and the birth of the new. We will find it hard to live two lives. One for the world and one for God. That is because we cannot do it. Life in Christ is to be entirely different than life in the world. The world would have us do things that are pleasing to the flesh and not the spirit. Galatians 5:16-26 tells us this in detail. Living life in Christ is not going to be easy. Especially, if you are still holding on to your old lifestyle and your old teachings.
20 That, however, is not the way of life you learned 21 when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
The old version of you was different than the one that is anchored in Christ. You cannot operate the same way that you used to operate. Paul goes on to tell us following the scripture above, ways in which we must be different. No longer can we gossip for fun. No longer can we allow anger to control us and our lives. No longer can we talk badly about one another, instead we are to uplift each other. No longer can we give ourselves over to our sexual desires in ways that are not pleasing to God. We are to be different from the world.
Since we are to be different, you will find that trying to fit in does not yield the same results. When we were of the world, of course there were consequences for doing wrong. However, now that we belong to Christ, the new self is supposed to be in control. This means that you will find your actions should align with Jesus and His teachings. When they do not, the consequences may not be the same as they used to be. This is because we know better than the world. Before baptism we were taught in the ways of The Bible. The ways in which we should behave and act now that we accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior.
Our choices in life will be aligned with where our heart lies. You cannot continue to think that doing whatever you want will yield good results. This is especially true when you belong to God. The way you used to handle things will not give you the same results. The fruits of the flesh will not give you the same feeling that they used to give. Instead of just answering to the world and its consequences, now you must answer to God. He wants you to be better than what you used to be. He does not expect you to do it alone but instead to go to Him.
This is the true way in which we will evade the ways of the world and the fruits of the flesh. Giving it to God is the only way. This doesn’t mean it will go away but instead that you have help on your side. God-given help to escape the old version and the temptation to go back to that lifestyle. Now that you are in Christ expect it to be hard but know that you are never alone. That in this life falling and stumbling are normal but God is with you. Remember that being different will paint that target on you back, but that God always provides help. The old man will always be there trying to come back. Stay strong and stay grounded in the Word and in God.
1 Corinthians 10:13
13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.