Saturday, August 20, 2005

Discover the Passions of God

Do not be conformed this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you ma prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. (Romans 12:2)
First, note that the Greek word for behind “world” is aion. It is where we get our word “eon.” So it primarily refers, not to a place, but to a time (yes, yes, I know that time and space are relative, but I did say primarily). It should actually be translated, not at “world” but as “age.”

So we have, “Do not be conformed to this age.”

You see, they are two ages going on: this present one and the one that is to come. To one that is to come is the age of God’s kingdom — the age of His rule and reign. The age that is to come has actually already been breaking into to this present one. Has been every since Jesus began His ministry preaching “Repent and believe, for the kingdom of God is at hand.”

The enemy of our souls wants us to continued to be conformed to this age, to think the thoughts of this present world order. He wants to blind us to the age of God’s reign, which is breaking in all around us. Paul said,
But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. For we do not preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord, and ourselves your bondservants for Jesus’ sake. For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:3-6)
The light of Christ is already shining brightly in the world, and the whole earth if full of the glory of God (Isaiah 6:3). But the devil, the god of this present age, has blinded the eyes of so many so that they don’t even recognized the light and know the glory.

There are only two kinds of people in the world: those who are being conformed to this age, and those who are being transformed by the renewing of their minds.

Enough about the former. Let’s talk about the latter.

“Be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” For too long we have been discipled by the present age to think that way it thinks, feel the way it feels, act the way it acts. We have been conformed by it. Even in the Church, there are many who have been deceived by the spirit of religion to adopt a form of godliness, but totally lacking the power of godliness.

We need to be transformed, and it happens by the renewing of our minds. We need to begin thinking differently. That is what repentance means. The Greek word for “repentance” is metanoeo, and it literally means to think differently.
“My thoughts re not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.”
(Isaiah 55:11)

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. (1 Corinthians 2:9-10)
God’s thoughts and ways are different from those we have received in this present age. He wants us to think His thoughts and walk in His ways, because the age of His rule and reign is breaking in. That is why He has given us His Word and His Spirit, so we could be renewed in our thinking, and thus be transformed. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).

We need to be transformed and have our thoughts renewed so we can discover the will of God. The will of God is not a plan to manipulate and control us. The will of God is the passionate desire He has for us. He has created us for great things, to partake of His divine nature (2 Peter 1:4). He longs for us to enter into in, to see how good His will is, how full of favor His desire for us is, how perfect and complete His passions toward us are.

Our minds were made to think God’s thoughts, our emotions were made to express God’s heart, and our wills were made to express God’s desires. When we let God renew our thinking by His Word and the Holy Spirit, it will totally transform our lives and prepare us to receive His kingdom, already breaking in all around us — to discover the passions of God.