Rom 12:2 Do not be conformed~| to this present world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may test and approve what is the will of God– what is good and well-pleasing and perfect.
When someone accepts Christ as his Savior, Paul wrote that he “become[s] a new creature” (2 Cor 5:17), which is true—-at least inwardly. This new Spirit, which regenerated our inner lives in our souls by the abiding presence of the Spirit, now seeks to “work out your salvation” (Phil 2:12) from the inside out.
In Romans 12:1, the believer is commanded to give control of his body as a “living sacrifice” to God as part of his “reasonable service” (lit. a “logical worship”). True worship can happen if the believer commits to “stop being conformed to this present world.” Though his body is attracted to sin, his mind must make the right choices. We either commit ourselves to obedience to God or yield to sensual pleasures and live in disobedience.
To “stop being conformed” (Gk. “to fashion alike, follow the same pattern”) refers to an outward expression that hides what is within. The verb is passive, meaning that we are to stop allowing the world to force us into its mold or lifestyle.
Is the world’s approval more important than Christ’s approval? Instead, you are to “be continually being transformed by the renewing of your mind.” The word for transformed—-that is, “a process within, which eventually becomes external or evident”—-was used to describe the transfiguration of Jesus when He revealed His inner nature to His disciples (Matt 17:2). This verb is also in the passive form.
The Spirit works in our lives “by the renewing of your mind,” which is “the control center of our attitudes, thoughts, feelings and motivations” (Zuck, The Bible Knowledge Commentary, p. 487). This happens when we “let the Word of Christ richly dwell within [us], with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another” (Col 3:16).
We must “test and approve what is the will of God.” When our minds are transformed, our new spiritual understanding evaluates everything according to the will of God, approving what is “good and well–pleasing and perfect” to Him. It begins with knowledge of His commands and our commitment to practice them. Are you with Him in all He says, or are you against Him?
“Lord, it is so challenging to avoid the influence of popularity and fame in the world; help me be humble in my decisions and desires today.”
For a year's daily devotional of these Bible studies, order a copy of the book Walking His Way at Branches Publications or order the Kindle version at Amazon.com. You can also download the App for Android Smartphones.