Thursday, February 12, 2009

"Romans 12:2 Insights" - CHANGE YOU CAN BELIEVE IN



Romans 12:2
Do not be conformed to this world(age), but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Now lets break this very verse down, almost word by word, or at least point by point because there is an awful lot said here in this single verse..Probably one of the most profound verses you can find in the Bible when you crack it open and see the depths and layers..

*Conformed - While living on this earth, Christians have to fight the desires of sin, so they are called to be obedient children, separated from evil in all that they do. They are to be holy, for that accords with the character of God who is holy and has called believers to himself.

*the world -should not be read as an utter rejection of the world, for “God . . . loved the world” (
John 3:16). Rather, he warns against devotion to a world system that is opposed to God!

* transformed - their lives are changed as their minds are made new - New life starting with the mind -the weakening(surrendering) of the physical body in contrast with the strengthening of the spirit

*renewed - Col 3:10 says " and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator"

The renewal of your mind is the very act of reading and studying God's Holy Word - As it states above in Colossians "renewed in knowledge"-- knowledge is truth and truth comes only from the Word of God - after his image - that means getting to know what God is like and how He operates and what He desires - that can only happen if you seek Him and to seek Him you must read His Word ( In order to be more Christ like you must know what Christ is like) - How do we get to know someone in our culture..We spend time with them, we communicate with them and if they had a biography written about themselves, we might read that..The Bible is our Biography of God..All we would ever want to know about Him is contained in that book..His likes and dislikes, His desires, His ways, etc


testing you may discern - translates Greek dokimaz┼Ź, which often has the sense of finding out the worth of something by putting it to use or testing it in actual practice. What is essentially being said here is that the only way to know God's power of transformation in us is to place us in situations that will test our beliefs.. If you build an airplane, the only way to know for sure if it works is to test it out..If you build a boat, the only way to know if it functions as intended is to place it in the water..The only way to know if we are being transformed into a new being is to place us in situations that will reveal our inward self..Will we reveal our sinful self or our new self.?.If our sinful self arises, then we must renew our minds further and further in the Word so that all situations we find ourselves in elicit the proper response or attitude..That might mean that some areas of our life are upright but others are not were we want them and that is because we are not yet full of the knowledge needed from the Word to suppress our self and allow the Spirit to rule and reign..We still have maturing to do..We still have spiritual growth that needs to take place..This is exactly why just a one time response to God in accepting Him as Lord and Savior is just the first step for the Christian Life.IT DOES NOT END THERE (Read "The Pursuit of God" by AW Tozer for a total exhaustive explanation of this.)There is much more refining and molding that needs to be carried out by God as He proceeds to perfect us in the image of Christ..To discern the will of God we must know what God desires of us and we must be able to access the power given to us by the Holy Spirit to carry that out..You cant know and access if you are not constantly being renewed in knowledge...That does not mean just get up every day and say a prayer and start afresh..That means living out the principles that come from a vigorous study of God's Holy Word..So that when you access the power of the Spirit and you see Him perform in your life, you grow and renew and strengthen your commitment to the Faith you Claim..

So what does this mean in application?...How do you discern the will of God? How might we be tested? Try Thessalonians 4:3 on for size and see if the circles meet "For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality" - For former non believers, the lure of sexual sins are strong. By using the Greek term porneia (which referred to adultery, fornication, or other sexual immorality), Paul forbids any sexual activity outside the bounds of heterosexual marriage. Now I know this is just one particular area of our life that God's will is evident for us..just remember that God addresses all aspects of life from Sexual immorality to telling lies, to stealing..You name it, it is covered..So when you are able to discern the Will of God, it becomes very clear to you right and wrong, good from bad, upright from debase..what is "good and acceptable and prefect"

I am just amazed at all that is taught in this single verse..It again just reveals the vastness of God's word..As Paul said in
Romans 11:33 -

"Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and how inscrutable His ways!"


EB

(footnote : ESV Commentary, Biblegateway.com)
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