WEEKLY SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON
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CALLED TO BE TRANSFORMED
(A living sacrifice to GOD)
Romans chapter 12, along with 1 Corinthians 12, presents to us “the Christian image” of what “the Holy Body of CHRIST”, which is “the Church”, should look like. Paul has already shown us earlier how GOD has moved to provide and impart righteousness in chapters 6-8. Now, he moves on to the more practical issues that go to the heart of Christian theology, and what the attitude of the true Christian should be like.
CHRIST does not ask that we die for HIM, in as much as HE asks that we live for GOD. Paul says we should strive to be a living, acceptable, holy sacrifice to GOD, no longer allowing ourselves to be conformed to the world, but rather, to be gradually transformed from it by changing the way we think and make decisions. We have to learn to actively apply the ways and examples of CHRIST into our everyday life, and gradually move away from a worldly way of thinking, or, veiwpoint.
As GOD’s messenger, Paul warns us to be honest in our estimation of ourselves, by measuring our value by how much faith GOD has given us. And in doing so, we will be able to function better in the body of CHRIST. And just as our bodies have many parts that must work together in unison, so it is with the body of CHRIST, which is of course, the Church.
As Christians, we’ve all become a part of CHRIST’s body, and we each have different tasks to perform as members of that body. However, at one and the same time, we all belong to each other, and, need each other. GOD has given each of us certain gifts, and we are obligated by GOD to use those gifts in service of HIM, and, each other. We are to genuinely love each other, honor each other, and love what is right. We must also enthusiastically serve GOD as a member of the body of CHRIST in our homes, and, in all other areas of our lives.
In addition, we must not curse those who trouble us, but rather, we should pray for them that GOD might bless them also. When others are happy, be glad that they are happy, not envious because you’re not. And, when they are sad, we should share with them, in their sorrow.
Do your part to contribute to peace and don’t try to repay people for their evil deeds toward you, for that is a matter for GOD to handle. Don’t let evil conquer you, but rather, access the power of the HOLY SPIRIT in you, that you may be able to conquer evil instead.
GOD’s righteousness is revealed through the transformed lives of men and women, who strive to reflect HIS image to others through their behavior. As a person is transformed in their mind, and is, as a result, made more like CHRIST, they begin to, not only approve of, but also desire GOD’s Will.
To do GOD’s Will, will become paramount to us, as we begin to discover and understand more and more, that which pleases GOD. What pleases GOD and what is good for us, are, in fact, one in the same thing. In that sense, which is the spiritual sense, a person becomes complete in every way, and, is able to walk in the newness of life, that is CHRIST JESUS, and of course, enjoy GOD’s Will full time.
The commands of Scripture are as real today, as they were in the beginning. GOD’s, expectations of us, has not changed over time. HE still expects us to do things that the world cannot do, or understand. Things like, serving, instead of wanting to be served all the time, sharing, instead of keeping things to ourselves, blessing people, instead of cursing them, loving, instead of hating.
All of these actions are “conditions of the heart” that are expressed in our lives on a daily basis, and, they really do identify just whose side we are really on. It is always a sad commentary to hear a non-believer say this about a Christian, “You know, I didn’t really notice anything different about that person. What makes being a Christian so special?” As believers in the body of CHRIST, we must, at all times, focus on proving to the unbelieving world, through our lifestyles and examples, that Christianity, really does produce the best men and women.
A Sunday school lesson by,
Larry D. Alexander