Conversion affects a sinner in two ways. He will make him reformed or transformed. A reformed person turns from sin without turning to God. (Each and every one of us has the will to stop doing something that is sinful.) A transformed person changes from the inside out. His desires change, and his lifestyle changes. A transformed person seeks to live to please God, not himself.
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.”
God tells us that every day we are to be conscious of the decision we are making. We are to willingly present our body as a sacrifice for His use and purpose. In other words, you are laying down your life daily, submitting your desires and will to do that of the fathers. That’s very hard to do because each of us has a strong will and the desires of our flesh working within us that is constantly fighting the spirit and it depends on which one we submit too, we obey.
Romans 6:16 says” Don’t you know that if you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of that one you obey—either of sin leading to death or of obedience leading to righteousness?”
We must be obedient to the leading of the Spirit. Allow the spirit to renew our minds with the truth of the gospel. Truth is what mankind seeks, the truth of their origin, their existence, the truth of the world around them. There is only one truth in this world, and that is the word of God. A transformed person seeks the things that are from above. A transformed person desires liberty from sin and the dominion it may have over them. See, the gospel isn’t just I receive Jesus and forgiveness of sin. It’s a transformed life, by the power of the Holy Spirit. It is to partake in the nature of our Lord Jesus. Not to be enslaved again to the yolk of bondage, but to obtain freedom through the blood of the Lamb.
The transformed person is dead to their old life. Pay attention to these next verses and see if you identify yourself with any, and come to the truth.
Col 3:3 says “for you have died, and your life is hidden with the Messiah in God.” vs. 5 -10 goes on to say “therefore put to death what belongs to your worldly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desire, and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, God’s wrath comes on the disobedient, and you once walked in these things when you were living in them, But now you must also put away all the following: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and filthy language from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self. You are being renewed in knowledge according to the image of your Creator.”
A reformed life is self- sufficient, It doesn’t rely on Christ for his righteousness, It relies on good works, morality, and one’s own strength to please God. A reformed person doesn’t desire God. They don’t want to grow in God. And they have no desire to reflect Christ. They have their own ideas and pursuits in life. But we can never be good without Christ’s offer of grace. Christ paid a price on that cross, not so that we can make it into heaven, and do good deeds down here. He bought us with the price of His blood. He bought us from a life of sin and bondage so that through Him, we will have and experience a full life, life in abundance!
Many times we come to God with our own ideas, with our own way of the way things should be. We are unwilling to yield to God’s will and His plan for our life. It’s like “thank God for dying for me, see you in heaven one day, but while I’m down there I’ll need you to just bless me, get me out of trouble, I’ll let you know when I need you, etc. We treat our heavenly father as someone who is a genie and is there to do our will. But if that is the way we approach God and see salvation. We haven’t truly understood the Gospel. We haven’t truly understood the reason behind us being saved.
What was Christ’s main purpose here on earth to accomplish? To do His fathers will John 8:28. To be obedient to His fathers’ voice and desires. And it wasn’t easy for Christ to do it, to give up His life being 100% man and 100% divine but he learned obedience from the things he suffered (Heb 5:8). That’s a lot to take in. So let us soak in this revelation for a second. It wasn’t just the cross He suffered, Christ was tempted in all things, says the Bible but He did not sin. I believe Christ suffered every time he had to submit His wills to the fathers. Every time the opportunity arouse itself, He had to deny himself, pick up His cross and follow God, which is the example he left for us to follow. Now, If Christ learned obedience from the things he suffered, where does that leave us? In 1 Peter 4:18 says” If it is hard for the righteous to be saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner.
Friends, does the word not say that we are to partake of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection.
Romans 6:4-5 ”Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so, we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection:
Salvation is God’s works, not our works. There is nothing we can do to work for our salvation, but we must obey the Word of God. Jesus purchased our salvation with His own blood. Salvation is a free gift by the grace of God. All we have to do is receive it by faith and apply it. We apply it by first believing in Jesus as the scriptures say.
Now I want us to examine ourselves. 2 Corinthians 13:5 says “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test? Let us examine our faith to see if we pass the test, to see if the motive of our hearts is to please God.
Ask yourself. Am I living my life being continually transformed by the Spirit of God within me, Am I continually yielding my will to the fathers or am I reformed? Am I still trying to save myself by being morally upright and good in man’s eyes? Am I living by God’s standard or my own?
Friends let us no longer lean unto our own understanding. Let us ask the Lord to show us His ways, guide us in His truth and teach us.