TRANSFORMATION -- FROM FOLLOWING JESUS TO BECOMING JESUS
- Do you follow Jesus to miss going to hell?
- Do you follow Jesus to get to go to heaven when you die?
- Do you follow Jesus to fulfill your religious desires?
- Do you follow Jesus in order to have fellowship in a local church?
- Are you a Christian because your family or friends are?
- Why do YOU really follow Jesus?
LET'S HAVE A MINI-REVIEW FROM OUR LAST COVENANT KINGDOM COMMUNIQUE
GOD'S ULTIMATE GOAL FOR YOU IS TRANSFORMATION
Your salvation, though a spiritual encounter initially, deals with the whole of your being -- body, soul, and spirit. The work of the Holy Spirit permeates every area of your life.
"If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, and all things have become new!"
2 Corinthians 5:17
The process of change which takes place in your life after being born again begins to affect every area of your life. It is a process of change towards a very specific goal. The Scripture teaches you in 2 Corinthians 3:18 that "we are being transformed into Christ's image".
"For whom He foreknew, He predestined to to become conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren;..."
THIS IS THE ULTIMATE GOAL OF THE FATHER GOD FOR EVERYONE WHO BECOMES A CHRISTIAN AND ENTERS INTO HIS KINGDOM.
YOU ARE TRANSFORMED BY THE RENEWING OF YOUR MIND
A major part of "working out" what God has done in you begins by changing your thinking. The way you think as a Christian and what you let your mind dwell upon has a great bearing on your spiritual growth and stability. Your responsibility to think right as you work out what God has put in you is seen in the following Scripture:
"And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect."
"As a man thinks within himself, so he is."
How you are today is a direct result of how you have thought up to this point in time. What you feel and experience now has been conditioned by what you have let your mind dwell upon, even today.
The sort of person you will be in the future depends on how you think from this point forward. Make a conscious decision to work with God by filling your mind with his thoughts so that it can be your boast that:
"As He is, so also are we in this world."
1 John 4:17
A GREAT MISCONCEPTION
Many in the Church today believe that Jesus is their "Personal" Savior and that the entire relationship with Jesus is simply an individual relationship. It's just Jesus and me. We read and interpret the Scripture as God speaking directly to me. But when we see who Jesus was speaking to and who Paul was speaking to, we find that they generally were speaking to groups of people not simply individuals.
Look at the words the Holy Spirit used when He wrote the Scriptures describing the Church. Words like "family", "body",
"building", etc. The Holy Spirit was constantly using words and phrases that described relationships between people not just the individuals.
In a family we have multiple people related to one another, in a body we have multiple parts connected to one another, in a building we have various materials joined together. In all the examples He gave us it shows a picture of groups of people related to one another. As a matter of fact, there are about 30 "one anothers" we are commanded to do to one another in these relationships we have. This is also a picture of the Church that Jesus is building. People joined to each other through committed relationships. That is the reason for small house churches and cell groups because that it the atmosphere in which relationships are formed. Large assemblies of people with professional clergy giving speeches is not what God had in mind when Jesus said "I will build My Church".
These small groups of followers of Jesus is also the place where real transformation takes place in the life of a Christian. This is the place where true discipleship functions. After all, discipleship is caught, not taught.
In a family don't the children learn the majority of their values and skills by watching and interacting with there parents and siblings and relatives? The same is true for spiritual children. They learn by being involved in groups of other committed followers of Jesus and interacting with them, asking questions, talking about real life issues and seeing how others handled them by following the Holy Spirit's leading, by praying together, by searching Scripture together, by serving one another, etc. As they do this they grow in their relationship with Jesus because Jesus is being formed within them.
Paul said in Galatians 4:19 -- "My children, with whom I am again in labor until Christ is formed within you---"
DISCIPLESHIP AND TRANSFORMATION ARE ACTUALLY 2 SIDES OF THE SAME COIN
The commonly known Great Commission was given to the small community of people that saw Jesus just before He was taken to Heaven. His final command to His followers was "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."
I hope this material will prove to be beneficial to you as you press forward in your walk with the Lord of the Universe.
Until next month, remember, "as He is, so are we in this world."
If you have any questions, comments, or thoughts on this subject, please go to the website at
the-covenant-kingdom and communicate with me on the "contact us" page. I will respond to you quickly.
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