“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind…” (Romans 12:2)
Yesterday, we talked about how the gospel declares that we are afforded immediate change by the power of the One Who accomplished all that needed to be done, through His work on the cross. Jesus is the Author and Provider of immediate change. This is the amazing message of the Christian faith.
We also talked about how our way of thinking can be transformed. Most Christians struggle to believe that – because we have been trained (conditioned) to think otherwise… we have been “conformed to this world” and how it thinks and operates.
One of the most fascinating things to me is that the New Testament is constantly talking about what we were vs. what we are now (because of Christ!). The culmination of this is: We are NOT becoming new creations… we ARE new creations…
Think about that. IF we are already new… what needs to be done to renew us?
And IF we are already new, what needs to change in order for that truth to become a reality in our lives? Our thinking! How we think about God. How we think about us. And how we think about God’s work, done on our behalf.
All these things are the provision of God (His supply of what we need). All these things are ALREADY ours to possess… because of Jesus and His work.
Our solution to a changed life is not more work. “It is finished” actually means that there is nothing left to be done. Jesus accomplished everything for us… already.
Now, we just have to stop thinking according to our old patterns… and start thinking according to the new (in line with all that God has already done for us).
The apostle Paul looked at it this way…
The gospel is a message of immediacy and contrasts… Put off, put on. Set aside what you were, take up what you are now. The old self will always be tied to this world and its way of thinking. But the new self is birthed out of a totally different way. The old self is consumed with doing… and with what needs to be done. The new self is focused on what we ARE – and what we are… has already been made to BE “like God.”
In other words, IF we are already made to be “like God” what remains to be done in us? The apostle’s view is that nothing needs to be done… Jesus has already done it. We just have to take off the old, and put on the new. Simple. Immediate. Transforming.
It really is like a light switch. When you walk into a dark room, all you need to do is turn on the light. Hit the switch, and light immediately fills the room. What was (darkness) is immediately changed by the light of what IS now.
For many believers, the struggle to change (or to have God change us) is never-ending. That’s because the change we seek is always based upon a perceived need for continual effort/work.
If we really want transformation in our lives, God has provided an amazing solution… we just need to establish our thinking in accord with what God is telling us. Because when we are in Christ Jesus, the old is gone. The new has come.