Thursday, September 4, 2014

Transformation Requires Inner Surrender

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:1-2

Surrender of flesh = conformity
The word "transformed" means to change your outward expression to be representative of, conformed to, and consistent with your inward nature. Paul warns against matching our lives to the fashions of this world. Chameleon-like living creates a loss of personal identity.  Conformity invites compromise of all our lives. Don't let the world decide what you are going to be like. This is normally done for acceptance by others.

Surrender of mind = transformation.
A man has the choice of living "according to the flesh" or "according to the Spirit". This takes place by the "renewing of your mind".  This renovation of our mental processes is created by the existence of the mind of Christ taking control of our lives.

Surrender which is ongoing = growth
While conversion is instantaneous we find that transformation is life involving. Someone said it this way, "It took God just one day to get the children of Israel out of Egypt, but it took God forty years to get Egypt out of the children of Israel."  God can change a person's heart in a moment, but it takes a lifetime to get the sin out of that individual.  The person who ceases to agree with God concerning their need of change ceases to see the individual God desires to create.

Transformation results in obedience.
Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
  • Only a renewed mind can accept Gods will.   Someone who finds it impossible to obey God may need to be born again by the Spirit of God and given a new mind to respond to God. The old, carnal mind cannot respond to the things of God and will not obey.
  • Only a renewed mind can discipline to Gods will.  When God controls the mind, He can affect the desires as well.  This is how God can take full responsibility for our transformation.  He affects the desire, the commitment, and the power for our life change.  All He needs is a changed heart.
The one who can honestly say that God can and will do as He promises is the one who has done as Paul has commanded.  To say that Christianity does not work when you refuse to work Christianity is unfairness.

The highest goal of the Christian is to be like Jesus Christ in all areas of life. This is also Gods design for our lives.  Are you willing to say that God has the right to use any and all of your life for His purpose?  "Whatever It Takes" is the price for true Christian transformation.  Are you in the process of becoming more like Jesus Christ?

Scripture to Claim:
Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. Colossians 3:2

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