RENEWING YOUR MIND (4)

And be not conformed to the world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God – Romans 12:2

LIGHT FOR NOW: To change any bad conduct, start first with a change in information.

From the explanations done so far on this study, we came to deduce that the expression “be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind” would imply that our conduct or lifestyle will be in accordance or in harmony with out nature (the spirit/light) if we renew, re-educate or remold our thinking. This renewal or re-education cannot be possible outside the word, but within the written word because it is in the word that we have our identity renewed. Hence, our culture as believers should be a culture of the word. We deduce the first inference in our previous studies which is “conducts will not change if thoughts do not change”. In other words, a change in thoughts leads to a change in conducts. How will there be a change in thought? For your thought to change, there has to be a change in information; meaning, any believer with a behavioural misconduct is with that because of the information he/she has fed his/her mind with or is feeding his/her mind with. The information is responsible for the thoughts and the thoughts are responsible for what he/she is doing. So, I will not change misconduct if I cannot the information I am feeding my mind on that is responsible for such misconduct. It will take a change in thoughts for there to be a change in action. So, a thought that is not your reality which is responsible for any behavioural misconduct is being exchanged with another thought which is your reality contained in the written word; and this is what is called repentance to the believer (a change in thinking). This means that the renewing of the mind is repentance to the believer. So a change in thinking brings a change in doings. Any change in doings without a change in thinking will land you in futility, why? This is because if the thoughts do not change, then the action will not change. So, five things are very vital:

  • Information
  • Thoughts
  • Words
  • Habits
  • Character

The information you expose your mind to forms the thoughts you think; your thoughts are responsible for your words; your words then form your habits; and character becomes an offshoot of all of this. So for there to be change at all in your character, it must begin first at a change in information. What are you feeding your mind with? Feed on the word and watch yourself live out your nature in this world. Hallelujah!

INSTRUCTION: Feed your mind on the word.

PRAYER: I declare that my mind is fed daily on your word and my life is a living expression of God in this world, in Jesus Name, Amen

QUOTE: For there to be a change in character, it must begin first at a change in information.

DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: ROMANS CHAPTER 12; EVENING: 1PETER CHAPTER 2

RENEWING YOUR MIND (3)

And be not conformed to the world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God – Romans 12:2

LIGHT FOR NOW: Any attempt to change conduct by mere saying is just mere works that will land you in futility.

We came to deduce that when Paul in Romans 12:2 said believers should not be conformed to this world, he was referring to us believers conducting ourselves in the reality of who we are in Christ; in our nature. It means we ought to walk in the Spirit; walk in the light. In other words, before we got saved, there was a lifestyle we had (Ephesians 2:1-3), that determined our thoughts, desires, words and actions. This usually, is a function of influence received from the world (the spirit that works in the children of disobedience). However, now that we are saved, we have a new nature (the spirit/light); thus, our conducts ought to reflect or be informed by or aligned with our nature. How was this going to be done? Paul in context of Romans 12:2 explained how this was going to be achieved or done, he says “but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind”. The word “transformed” here is the word “metamorphoo” in Greek which is where the English word metamorphosis was derived; it implies a change, a transformation from within to without. The word show developmental stages in growth. In essence, it implies an outward reflection of what is within/our nature. In other words, when there is a “transformation”, it will be seen or obvious in the believers’ conducts towards others. The word “mind” in our key text implies reasoning, mindset, intellect or understanding of issues, and the word “renewing” from its Greek word implies to re-educate, to remold or a renovation. Thus, the expression “be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind” would imply that our conducts or lifestyle will be in accordance or in harmony with our nature (the spirit/light) if we renew, re-educate or remold our thinking. This renewal or re-education will be the written word which reveals to us the realities of who we are in Christ. In other words, from the point of salvation, our culture as believers is the culture of the word. It is in the scriptures that we find our new identity. Our conducts will align to our realities when our thinking is remolded or when our mindset is renewed. In other words, you cannot change conducts by mere saying; this is because if the thoughts that makes you to do that thing is still there, you will still do it. To change conducts, change thoughts. When your thoughts change, your conducts will align to that change. Hallelujah!!!  

INSTRUCTION: Allow God’s word form the basis of your living.

PRAYER: My mind is renewed in your word, in Jesus Name, Amen

QUOTE: To change an act of sin stops the thoughts responsible for that act; to change the thoughts responsible for the act, changes the information responsible for the thought.

DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: ROMANS CHAPTER 12; EVENING: EPHESIANS CHAPTER 2

RENEWING YOUR MIND (2)

And be not conformed to the world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God – Romans 12:2

LIGHT FOR NOW: As men born of the Spirit, our walk should be in the spirit.

In our previous study, we came to deduce that Paul in our key text above referred to the believers’ lifestyle, conduct, behaviour, having believed in the gospel or received salvation. In other words, after salvation, the believer should allow his conduct, lifestyle and behaviour to be patterned after the word and not the world’s systems. Notice the word “world” in Romans 12:2 above, it was translated from the Greek word “aion”, which implies time, age, and activities. In other words, Paul admonished believers not to be conformed to or fashioned like this age, time or activities. In Ephesians 2:2-3, Paul has this to say “Where in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in time past in the lust of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others”. It is vital to note that the word “world” here was translated from a different Greek word; “kosmos”. This refers to the inhabitants or earth space, depending on the context it was used by the author. Thus, Paul here was referring to the activities or behavioural pattern of men which is according to the prince of the power of the air (the spirit that works in the children of disobedience to the gospel). This will be seen in their desires, mindset and consequently, their actions. The believer however, by faith in or obedience to the gospel has received, is indwelt and sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise/Spirit of God/the Spirit. By faith in the gospel of Christ where we were indwelt by God’s Spirit, we received a new nature in Christ – The Spirit. Therefore, since at salvation, we received the nature of the Spirit, our walk should be in the Spirit (in who we are). Therefore, when Paul said in Romans 12:2 that believers should not be conformed to this world, he was referring to believers conducting themselves in the reality of who they are in Christ; in our nature. Since we are born of the Spirit, it means we are to walk in the Spirit (Galatians 5:16). We are born of the light, so we should walk in the light (Ephesians 5:8-9), and not according to the behavioural pattern of this world which relates to the Spirit that works in or influences the children of disobedience or unbelief. Hallelujah!!!  

INSTRUCTION: Walk in the light.

PRAYER: Thank you father for the new birth wherewith I have a new nature (the nature of the spirit), I declare that I walk in the reality of this nature, in Jesus Name, Amen.

QUOTE: We can’t be born of the light and then allow men in darkness to create the pattern for our lives for us.

DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: GALATIANS CHAPTER 4; EVENING: GALATIANS CHAPTER 5

RENEWING YOUR MIND (1)

And be not conformed to the world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God – Romans 12:2

LIGHT FOR NOW: The lifestyle of the believer is not to be patterned after the world, but after the word.

The world we live in has its own ideas, principles, beliefs, philosophies, customs, and social behavior. Some of these differ according to time. Certain mindset will be molded based on our varying backgrounds as we grow older; the schools we attended must have built or molded certain mindset in us; interaction with friends, family, and the media inclusive. These eventually influence our thoughts, desires, choices, words and activities generally amongst men. There is still a tendency of patterning our lives after the system of the world even after we got saved but this should not be the case. This is because the lifestyle or conduct of every believer must be formed solely from the written word. Hence, in our above key text, Paul in his words to believers echoes this truth, he says “And be not conformed to the world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God”. The word “conformed” in the above text being translated from its Greek word implies to act like. It refers to an abuse or to be fashioned like another. It also implies to use something for a purpose other than it was intended for or its intended use. The word “conformed” is used for a “lifestyle”. In essence, Paul was saying to us that we should not be conformed to this world in our lifestyle; that is, our lifestyle or behaviour should not be patterned after this world. For more clarity, that word “conformed” is the same word Peter used in 1Peter 1:4 in reference to the desires and conduct of believers, it reads “As obedient children not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance”. The word “fashioning” here is the same word “conformed” used in Romans 12:2. The statement “…not fashioning yourselves according to the former lust…” implies that Peter made reference to their behaviour before they got saved, and admonished them as believers, not to pattern their lifestyle after such. Hence, in verse 14a, he referred to them as obedient children, and this obedience is to the gospel (1Peter 1:2-3). So the phrase “obedient children” was to explain their faith in the resurrection of Christ (the gospel), and also the fact that in that resurrection, we are begotten of God again (the New Birth/Sonship). Likewise Paul in Romans 12:2 referred to the believers’ lifestyle, conduct, behaviour, having believed in the gospel or received salvation. Hallelujah! 

INSTRUCTION: Your lifestyle is in the word, so know the word.

PRAYER: Father I declare that I live in the consciousness of my realities in the word, in Jesus Name, Amen.

QUOTE: The believer who is born of the word will only know his lifestyle in the word.

DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: ROMANS CHAPTER 12; EVENING: 1PETER CHAPTER 1

THE SPIRIT’S WORK WHEN BELIEVERS SINS (6)

And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him: For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? But if ye be without chastisement whereof all are partakers, then ye are bastards, and not sons. – Hebrews 12:5-8

LIGHT FOR NOW: We see the Spirit’s rebuke and correction in the word and in our lives when we do wrong.

It is very clear at this point that though the Holy Spirit doesn’t condemn the believer when he sins, he however condemns that sinful misconduct for growth and edification to take place. So, rebuke and correction is the Spirit’s work when we sin. In essence, when we sin, we see His rebuke and correction all over the Epistles, yet affirming our identity in Christ but not the deeds done in the flesh. Moreover, the Spirit of God inside of you grieves when you do wrong (that is, when you sin). When Paul was talking about grieving the Holy Spirit in Ephesians 4:30, it was as touching conduct. That is why the next verse (verse 31) of Ephesians 4 says, “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you with all malice”. So, the Holy Spirit inside of us grieves as touching bad conduct, what is this grieving? This grieving is the correction; that is, the judging of the bad conduct for correction to be effective. The rebuke and the correction explains the grieving; the judging of bad conduct is the Spirit grieving. The Holy Spirit does not get angry with us and leave us when we do wrong; He grieves and that is by judging our actions not for condemnation, rather for correction to effect. When the believer has allowed God’s correction from the scripture by the Spirit effective in him, the believer has himself or better still the believer has yielded to the correction of God’s Spirit. Note that the sole aim of this correction is for the believer to live out His realities and not for destruction (except the destruction of the flesh) or condemnation. This is because the believer in doing wrong does not change the fact that he is born of God and has the nature of God in him.

However, it is that nature of God in him that judges the bad actions which is not in sync with the nature of God in him for correction to effect. That is why the believer still has the authority to resist the devil even when he had done wrong/sinned. The authority does not leave because of misconduct; so never allow the devil accuse you or condemn you because you sinned. This is because your wrongdoing is not to the devil but within your father’s family and Satan is not your father neither is he part of that family. So while the correction is taking place by God’s Spirit via His word, don’t give the devil a place to harass you. This is why the word of God is critical, because if you do not know your place, status or right-standing with God, Satan will rob you of your realities and he will use your ignorance as an advantage to strike. And instance that the believer has given the devil a place to condemn him because of sin is when you hear the believer speak about doing or saying a lot of filthy things; meanwhile, God in Christ forgave you already before you ever thought of doing those dirty things. This reveals that such a believer has given Satan a place to harass and condemn him; and most importantly, the above statement reveals the level of such a believer’s ignorance of his reality in Christ; and because such a believer is ignorant, he sees sin as an end. Sin is not an end and you are not a messed up man. Don’t give up on your Christians walk and pursuits in life because you sinned. The problem is not God forgiving you because God forgave you already. But the problem is you forgiving yourself. Please forgive yourself, and if you have done that, let me take you through the next study which focuses on renewing your mind. Glory!!!       

INSTRUCTION: Forgive yourself!!!

PRAYER: Thank you Lord for my realities in you, in Jesus Name, Amen.

QUOTE: Know God’s word so you can know when it is God and when it is Satan.

DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: EPHESIANS CHAPTER 4; EVENING: EPHESIANS CHAPTER 5

THE SPIRIT’S WORK WHEN BELIEVERS SIN (5)

And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment. Of sin, because they believe not on me; of righteousness because I go to my father, and ye see me no more; of judgment because the prince of this world is judged – John 16:8-11

LIGHT FOR NOW: The Spirit’s work as touching the believers’ misconduct is rebuke and correction.

It is thus clear that rebuke and correction is the Spirit’s work when we sin. Though the Spirit doesn’t condemn the believer because of a sinful misconduct or habits of sin, the Spirit condemns such conduct or habits to the end that spiritual growth occurs. So, rebuke and correction is an anti-grace concept. Hear Paul in 2Corinthians 12:21, it reads “And lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and that I shall bewail many which have sinned already, and have not repented of the uncleanness and fornication and lasciviousness which they have committed”. This correction/rebuke could make us very uncomfortable and remorseful but never unworthy of what he has called us in Christ, though our deeds could be. He corrects us for growth. Hear Paul in 2Corinthians 13:10, “Therefore I write these things being absent, lest being present I should use sharpness, according to the power which the Lord hath given me to edification, and not to destruction”. Paul says “not to destruction”. If any destruction at all, it’s the work of the flesh. Hear this in 1Corinthians 5:5 “To deliver such one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus”. Satan here means opposition, and not Satan as a being. The spirit will always oppose the flesh. Paul has this to say in Galatians 5:17 which reads “For the flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would”. The word “contrary” here means opponent. In other words, the flesh and the spirit are opponents. Let’s look at the Amplified version of Galatians 5:17, it reads, “For the desires of the flesh are opposed to the (Holy) Spirit and the (desires of the) Spirit are opposed to the flesh (godless human nature); for these are antagonistic to each other (continually withstanding and in conflict with each other), so that you are not free but are prevented from doing what you desire to do”. This translation has expounded everything already. This is the Spirit’s work, rebuke and correction. So when we sin, we see His rebuke and correction all over the Epistles, yet affirming our identity in Christ but not the deeds done in the flesh. This is why we said earlier, the word of God is God’s corrective tool for the believer. Glory!!!

INSTRUCTION: Always allow God’s correction to effect in your spirit when necessary.

PRAYER: Thank you Lord for revelation knowledge, in Jesus name, Amen.

QUOTE: The flesh and the spirit are antagonists.                                   

DAILY BIBLE READING: MORNING: 2CORINTHIANS CHAPTER 12; EVENING: HEBREWS CHAPTER 12

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