1 Samuel 16:7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Lately I have been turning wood on my wood lathe and making various gifts. I purchased various types of wood and realized long ago some of the brilliant colors which come out of them. The analogy to me is how we see things, and how God sees and does things. We see human beings from the outside, God sees from the inside.
We are all born sinners, so our ugly internals sometimes match the externals. Sometimes the external is brilliant and beautiful, yet the internal is quite ugly. Yet in both cases, the internal is rather filthy and ugly based on SIN. It is a drab appearance, and if compared to wood, it would be fit to be tossed in a fire.
Recently a store had a throw away box of wood pieces. I decided to buy a couple of pieces and turn them into wine bottle stoppers. From the external appearance, they looked terrible! Very dull in appearance, but the store owner told me this wood was from the Amazon jungle so I took a chance. Upon completing the final shaping, I doused the wood with a special oil, and WALLAH, in an instant it turned into a brilliant color I had never seen before. This wood I purchased for less than a dollar, looked at as garbage, transformed into an absolutely beautiful wine stopper. The more oil I applied, the more colors came out of it.
The analogy is based on our sin nature and God’s regenerating hand. Before one is born-again into a new creation, our internals are garbage, dull and dreary looking, fit only for the fires of hell. God takes His oil, so to speak, and if it be His will He makes a new creation where those internals instantly transform into brilliance! Why? Because the new creation now houses the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. The new creation houses NEW desires of repentance and holiness, and it is all a new natural.
And there is NO human being BEYOND restoration from God! Remember this!
Now a new creation does have that brilliance, but also can get dull in appearance just like a re-made wood creation, so more oil is applied by something called sanctification. A process by which the newly made sinner is being conformed to image of Jesus Christ. So as years pass, the brilliance of your internals is growing, not receding.
If you followed my analogy, it is a good way to test whether you or others have been truly born-again. Some might CLAIM they rec’d God’s regeneration by a ritual or a mere statement, but they remain dull in sin and knowledge. Their internals have not changed, as they do not truly repent of sin. They may sound excited for Jesus Christ for a while, then fall away, as the world entices them more because they are in fact in love with the world.