I thought to myself, "once?" I still feel alienated and hostile at times - sometimes with others; sometimes even with God. So how does this mesh with my christianity? I thought I was a "new creature"?
Verse 22 went on to say: "But now He has reconciled you by His physical body through His death, to present you holy, faultless, and blameless before Him."
Thanks to Jesus, the sin that we repent of is seen through Jesus; is paid for and no longer exists. Those areas of sin in our lives that we refuse to let go of, however, alienate us from God and cause us to be hostile with everyone, including God, in the midst of our guilt.
We all have different weaknesses of the flesh and, at times, those weak spots will lead us to "evil actions" in the sight of God and, on our part, will lead to alienation and hostility.
I'm trying to look on this as a good thing. I want to be more aware of my feelings of alienation and hostility because I have come to see those feelings as attached to a part of my life that God wants to make better! Does that mean that my weakness will automatically go away? No, but, with God's help, I will get stronger.
Read the last part of the first verse again. "....because of your evil actions."
Even if the weekness remains, we can make a conscious decision not to committ the "evil actions" that alienate us from God and stir up the hostility in our minds. I see my walk with God improving as I suffer through less and less periods of Him not talking to me. He must be eliminating many of my rough spots and giving me added strength for the weak spots.
The more and more that I study and spend time with God, the dearer and dearer His revelations to me are and the more careful I am to avoid those things that separate me from Him.