Romans 12: 1 – 2
“I appeal to you, therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, 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.”
What renewal of heart is not
The non-conformity to the world does not primarily mean the external avoidance of worldly behaviors. That’s included. But you can avoid all kinds of worldly behaviors and not be transformed. “His face shown like the sun, and his clothes became white as light!” (Matthew 17:2). Something like that happens to us spiritually and morally. Mentally, first on the inside, and then, later at the resurrection on the outside. So Jesus says of us, at the resurrection: “Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father” (Matthew 13:43), (Matthew 17: 1-6)
Transformation is not switching from the to-do list of the flesh to the to-do list of the law. When Paul replaces the list the works of the flesh, he does not replace it with the works of the law, but the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:19–22).
So what is renewal of heart?
It is the triumphant power and transformation of the Holy Spirit through faith in Jesus Christ our Savior and our Lord. “God has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life” (2 Corinthians 3:6). So transformation is a profound, blood-bought, Spirit-wrought change from the inside out.
What is wrong with our mind (why does our mind need renewal)?
Ephesians 4: 17- 23;
“This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, 18 having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart; 19 who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.
20 But you have not so learned Christ, 21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: 22 that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 23 and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness
In conclusion, Paul, in the book Romans directed his statement to me and you, begging us to live as a holy sacrifice unto the Lord, and by that process renew our mind. It is, therefore, our job to engage in the process as Holy Spirit renews our mind.
This article was written by the Sunday School department of Family of Faith Chapel. familyoffaithchapel.org