Conformed Yet Not Conformed

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Here is the challenge the Lord has set before us … be a living sacrifice. The question that follows from us is How? First the challenge.

Rom 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. 2 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. ESV

The life of the bride of Christ has to be lived inside, within her spirit. The whole of her spiritual being is completely controlled by the Lord and it is His life that is to be manifested in her life as a living sacrifice. There are two words used here that, in conjunction with Romans 8:29, sit at the heart of the challenge.

Rom 8:29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. ESV

Let’s take these words and look at them in conjunction with another word that is used in the eighth chapter …  form. All three are based on “form” but they are different.

  1. We are to be “conformed” to the image of Jesus.
  2. We are told not to be “conformed” to this world.
  3. We are told to be “transformed” by the renewing of our mind.

Putting them in their spiritual order we are challenged to:

  1. Turn away from our past by not being conformed to the world.
  2. Our character is to be transformed as God conforms us into the image (the character) of Jesus.

When we put them together they speak the same challenge that Paul wrote to the Thessalonians.

1 Thess 1:9-10 For they themselves report concerning us the kind of reception we had among you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, 10 and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come. ESV

Paul is stating the spiritual history of the Thessalonians; a message that speaks to our journey.

  1. Past – you turned from idols.
  2. Present – to serve the living and true God.
  3. Future – to wait for His Son from heaven.

The challenge of Romans 12:1-2 speaks the same three truths.

  1. Past – we are no longer conformed to this world.
  2. Present – we are being transformed in our daily life.
  3. Future – we shall be fully conformed to Jesus at His second coming.

The moment we believed the promise of God in John 3:16 we were forever changed. We are no longer slaves to the world of the flesh and the devil. Our journey from the cross to spiritual maturity is the process of being transformed into the complete character of Jesus.  For us it is a life-long process but in God’s eyes we were fully conformed the moment the Holy Spirit took up residence in us. God has both given us the challenge and the process to meet that challenge. And the process of transformation is one that is controlled by the Holy Spirit and the tool he uses is found in our opening verse … testing.”

Rom 8:28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. ESV

How fully we are transformed at the moment we stand before Jesus at His judgement seat is up to us. It will be the direct result of how we will answer the question that Jesus will ask us … What did you do with what you were given?

Yes … we are conformed yet not conformed!

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply