Transformed By The Renewing Of Our Mind
Result Of Transformation

In a Brief Survey of the Epistle of Paul to the Romans
Based on sermons preached in PCC Worship Services, July 2003 to Sep 2005
Part 59c of 83


And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Romans 12:2).

[We are considering the famous words of the apostle Paul as he brings his readers from the doctrinal section of his letter to the practical section of the letter. Essentially, he gives us three instructions: (1) Present your bodies as living sacrifices; (2) Do not be conformed to this world; and (3) Be transformed by the renewing of your minds. We have already looked at all these three imperatives. In this final instalment, we shall consider what is the result of having our lives transformed by the renewing of our minds —JJL]

3.  The Result of Such a Transformation

a.   Paul says “that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

What is the will of God? Well, there are two things which the Scripture designates as the will of God. One is the decretive will of God. This refers to what God has determined to do from all eternity. Now, what God has decreed is secret to us, so we cannot live by it. The other thing designated as the will of God in the Scriptures, is the precepts of God or what God wants us to do. The perceptive will of God is recorded in the Scriptures. This is the will of God which we are to live by.

“The secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law” (Dt 29:29).

When we are transformed by the renewing of our minds, then will we be able to live according to the principles and standards set in the Word of God, —that our lives may be a demonstration of our approval of the will of God for us!

Let me put it this way: At least three things happen when our lives are transformed by the renewing of our minds:

In the first place, we will begin to enjoy living according to the Word of God! God has given us His Word as a spiritual boundary in which we can find true freedom. If we step out of the Word of God in our lives, we sin against God and we are taken bondage by sin.

The Law of God, as I said before, is like water to fish in a fish tank. When you look at fish confined in a fish tank it may seem very restricted. How to give freedom to the fish? Take it out and leave it on the table. Well, it is now not restricted by any boundaries any more. But what will happen to the fish? It will die.

So too God has given us the Law of God that we may dwell in freedom therein. The Ten Commandments is like a ten sided aquarium for us to dwell in.

As long as we are not transformed by the renewing of our minds, we will find the law of God grievous. We will be like toads which hate water. A little water is alright for the toad, but it prefers dry land.

Oh, if only we will be transformed by the renewing of our mind, we will not just be frogs but fish in the water of the Word of God. We will find the law of God not grievous. Indeed, we will find our lives most happy when we are walking in the will of God.

In this way we will prove to ourselves that the will of God is good, acceptable and perfect.

But in the second place, when our lives are transformed by the renewing of our minds, then others observing us will praise the Lord for His wisdom—for if we are transformed by the renewing of our minds, then our lives will be living epistles of recommendation for the gospel.

If your life brings shame or blaspheme the name of God, there can be no other reason, but that you have not been transformed by the renewing of your mind!

But if you are living as a Christian should live, then oh what a powerful witness for Christ you will be! And what a tremendous testimony you will be to the world that the will of God is good and acceptable and perfect!

Experience has shown us, that more people are lead to Christ by godly lives rather than by tracts or by evangelistic talks.

O reader, will you not be an epistle for Christ by living a life transformed by the renewing of your mind?

But now in the third place, when our lives are transformed by the renewing of our minds, then our lives will most greatly glorify God by acknowledging to God that His will is indeed good and acceptable and perfect.

When we live transformed lives, we are saying by our lives: Lord, Thy Word is good for me. No other way is better. And Thy Word is acceptable, well-pleasing to me. It is not grievous to me to live after it. I do not consider it a sacrifice any more, for I find my heart beating according to Thy heartbeat. Indeed, Thy Word is perfect. I know it to be perfect now not only because Thy word says it, but because I have tasted it and proven it.

It is the best way! Oh how greatly is God glorified when the vessels of His mercy exclaims with their lives and speech that God is God and His will is good, and acceptable, and perfect!

Conclusion

Dear believer, what will you do with these things?

Will you not take heed to the apostle Paul:

… be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

1.  Will you not examine how you have allowed yourself to be moulded by the fashions, expectation and principles of this world? Will you not repent of them? Will you not ask the Lord to wash you of these things by His Word and Spirit and remould you to be the kind of person He wants you to be?

2.  Will you not begin henceforth to seek to know the Word of God well that your life may be transformed by the renewing of your mind?

Oh do not continue to live that mundane, earthly, routine, beggarly Christian life. It ought not to be the case, for you can live a heavenly Christian life even here on earth!

3.  But finally, will you not begin to pay more attention to the Word? You do not want to continue to be like caterpillars of the faith, do you? Oh be the butterflies of the faith, for only such will bear forth a bright testimony for Christ in this world and the world to come. Amen.

—JJ Lim