Let me explain why I am only partially happy that Scott Brown won the Senate race in Massachusetts yesterday. I am happy to see Americans awakening from the apathy that has far too long affected our citizenry. I am glad that Americans are sending a message to Washington that they do not want higher taxes or socialist healthcare; both are sinful.
I am however greatly troubled by the message this vote sends to Republican Party leaders. It sends the message that you can run a pro-abortion, supporter of RomneyCare (aka ObamaCare) and the people will vote just to send a message to Washington. And it also tells the GOP apparatchiks that you can put Christians in an ethical dilemma and not only win, but have church and conservatives leaders sell the candidate as good and not evil.
If ever weâ€™ve needed the truth of Romans 12:1-2 it is now:
â€œI beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.â€
I want to look at these two verses from last to first so we can see where we need to go before we take off. Paul tells us in verse 2 to â€œnot be conformed to this world.â€ That is exactly what is happening in the Evangelical and Catholic movements. Leaders from both groups were selling Mr. Brown as a solid conservative and not as much pro-abortion as his opponent.
The Greek transliterated for â€œconformedâ€ is syschematizo and it gives the impression of being pressed into a mold by great outside force. It is following a pattern and Paul exhorts us not to follow the pattern of this world. Another blogger makes an excellent point about this:
â€œWhen we conform to the world, we attempt to outwardly model what we see or perceive to be the lifestyle of those who walk in darkness. Itâ€™s a funny thing, that we who bear the light and were called to be different, would then disguise our light to blend in and look like those who are ignorant of the hope that lies within us.â€
Thatâ€™ll preach! Beloved, even if the Pope himself declares it is okay to vote for the lesser of two evils, that does not override Scripture and Isaiah 5:20 bears repeating:
â€œWoe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; Who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!â€
Something bitter when swallowed can cause a person to wretch almost to the point of vomiting. That is what is happening to blood-bought, born-again believers who cast their votes for the lesser of two evils. The world, its system which is demonic and lead by the Prince of this World Satan, wants to control your mind. And guess what? It is winning!
Why is that?
Because as Christians we are not being â€œtransformed by the renewingâ€ of our minds! So what does it mean to be transformed? The Greek for â€œtransformedâ€ comes from the verb metamorphoo and this is where we get our word metamorphosis. This action word means nothing less than being changed in form; transfigured. This happens from a change from within. God wants to change your mind about this world. In his commentary on this passage, Warren Wiersbe writes:
â€œThe world wants to change your mind so it exerts pressure from without. But the Holy Spirit changes your mind by releasing power from within. If the world controls your thinking, you are a conformer; if God controls your thinking, you are a transformer.â€
So which are you dear Christian? Are you a conformer or a transformer?
Does the world control your thinking or does the Holy Spirit?
You know that confusion you are experiencing about things political and worldly? It is not from God:
â€œFor God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.â€ (1 Corinthians 14:33)
Beloved, we are in a spiritual and social civil war and we must choose sides. We cannot stay neutral, independent, or moderate. We must choose. And our old friend gives us a great promise on what this renewal will bring. Pay close attention to Matthew Henryâ€™s words:
â€œConversion and sanctification are the renewing of the mind; a change, not of the substance, but of the qualities of the soul. The progress of sanctification, dying to sin more and more, is the carrying on this renewing work, till it is perfected in glory. The great enemy to this renewal is conformity to this world. Take heed of forming plans for happiness, as though it lay in the things of this world, which soon pass away. Do not fall in with the customs of those who walk in the lusts of the flesh, and mind earthly things. The work of the Holy Ghost first begins in the understanding, and is carried on to the will, affections, and conversation, till there is a change of the whole man into the likeness of God, in knowledge, righteousness, and true holiness. Thus, to be godly, is to give up ourselves to God.â€
Tomorrow weâ€™ll look at verse 1 of Romans 12:1-2.
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Copyright Â© 2010 David Jeffers