“… and be continually renewed in the spirit of your mind [having a fresh, untarnished mental and spiritual attitude], and put on the new self [the regenerated and renewed nature], created in God’s image, [godlike] in the righteousness and holiness of the truth [living in a way that expresses to God your gratitude for your salvation]” (Ephesians 4:23-24 AMP).
“Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, 22 throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. 23 Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. 24 Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy. So stop telling lies. Let us tell our neighbors the truth, for we are all parts of the same body.” (Ephesians 4:22-25).
Truth exists as revealed in the Bible and what we do with this truth has decisive consequences in every area of life and culture. The cultural upheaval or culture wars of our day can be mind boggling. Yet, I believe as Christians we can make a positive impact on one another and society as we grow spiritually in our relationship with the Lord and the truth revealed in scripture. The apostle Paul made it clear that no one is immune to deception, so he called us to humbly recognize our need to be renewed in the way we think:
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2). I love The Message Bible translation of this verse. Let’s take a look: “So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.”
God’s desire is that we change our way of thinking about our daily lives and place if before him as an offering. We are not to be conformed to the superficial values and customs of the world. Instead, we are to be transformed and progressively changed as we mature spiritually by the renewing of our mind focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes. This way we are able to prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect in His plan and purpose for humanity.
As Christians, we must be mindful not to allow subtle deception to trick us into believing we are inoculated against the blindness that plagued previous generations. The apostle Paul made it clear that no one is immune to deception, so he called the church to humbly recognize the deceptive patterns that can steer the us away from the truth of God’s Word.
“Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. Therefore let the one who thinks he stands watch out that he does not fall. No temptation has overtaken you except something common to mankind; and God is faithful, so He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it” (1 Cor. 10:11-13).
As believers, we must reject all falsehood [whether lying, defrauding, telling half-truths, spreading rumors, conspiracy theories, any such as these], speak truth in love to one another, for we are all parts of one another, and we are all parts of the body of Christ.
Pray for revival and reformation of the church, and spiritual awakening in America and abroad!
Minister A. Francine Green
Notes: All scripture references are taken from the New American Standard Bible unless otherwise noted.