When we were unbelievers, we just followed the crowd. We gave ourselves permission to be in harmony with the world. We did not know any better, and if we did, we did not want to start any trouble or be any different from others, so we went along. This is really what conformity is; changing one’s mind, stand or position in order to be looked upon favorably by others. (Having no objections, raising no objections)
When we conform to the world, we agree with it, and accept its point of view about issues as if it were our own. The Bible says, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:2 NIV).
The things the world calls us to conform to, are usually evil, things that God hates; things that we need to hate as well. In Christ, we have become a new creation; we need to walk in newness of life (see 2 Corinthians 5:17).
As Christians, we should no longer conform to the dictates of this world. The things we use to conform to as unbelievers are contrary to the things of the Spirit of God. Now we need to have the mind of Christ. We need to become more and more like Him in our thoughts and actions. The only way we can achieve this is to allow the Word of God to penetrate our hearts and renew our minds to think the way He does. We’ll not have renewed minds simply by us wishing or desiring it; it will take some effort on our part. We have to make time to study the Word, fellowship with other believers, learning from each other, and encouraging each other.
Transformation is a gradual process. As we continue to allow the word of God to renew our minds, transformation will become evident. Our way of thinking, attitude, and behavior will change. Our conscience will be more alive and sensitive to enable us to steer clear of what is evil, but draw us toward what is right.
The world is free, for now any way, to think what it wills about issues; our position on those issues should be based on the word of God. No more conformity! What will be the result of our transformation? The Lord will be pleased with us; we will be contributing to positive changes in our corner of the world, and in the process probably open up ourselves for persecution. But we need to remember that the servant is not greater than his master; if they persecuted Him, they will persecute us also (see John 15:20).
In the book of Matthew, Jesus says, “If the head of the house has been called Beelzebub, how much more the members of His household” (Matthew 10:25 NIV). We might be called worse things, and treated with hate!
Nevertheless, let’s take heart, because our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us, when we see Him face-to-face (see Rom 8:18).
Now that we’re His children, let’s portray His image!