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A Renewed Mind (Romans 12:2)

Sermon on 16 May 2021 by Pastor Gauis


Introduction

Today, we talk about our minds. Let our minds not be conformed, but be transformed.





Message


Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. - Romans 12:2


Not only should we not conform to the behaviours of the world, but we should be transformed by the renewal of our mind. On the cross 2000 years ago, Christ has already defeated Satan. However, the devil has the influence to toy with our minds.


Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world — the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life – is not from the Father but is from the world. - 1 John 2:15-16


Eve was tested in these three areas, and she succumbed. In our daily lives, we struggle with these things of the world – desire of the flesh, desire of the eyes, and pride of life. Which areas of our lives can we change?


Desires of the flesh


For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. - Romans 8:5-6


Enjoyment is a desire of the flesh. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. If we keep thinking of enjoying pleasures, eventually we cannot attain eternal life. Because if we focus our minds on things of the flesh, we cannot obey God. And if we are disobedient, we are against God.


For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. - Romans 8:7-8


Instead, let us be transformed to mind things of the spirit. Be spiritually minded.


Desires of the eyes

Often, sin starts from what we see. Money is one concern. Money itself is not evil, but the love of money is. Matthew 6:21 tells us where our treasure is, our hearts are there. Although you have money, do you feel empty?


“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. - Matthew 6:19-21


“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” - Matthew 6:24


Here in Matthew 6:24, we are talking about the heart. You cannot love money and love God at the same time. You cannot serve both. Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all things will be added unto you. Love God.


Pride of life

For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. - Romans 12:3


When this letter was written to the Romans, there were many people who thought themselves more highly than others, including Jesus’ disciples. There was a spirit of comparison. In Galatians 5, one of the fruits of the flesh is anger. But the fruit of the spirit is patience.


Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. - Romans 12:9


Receive godly advice with humility. It takes humility and a renewed mindset to accept godly advice. The devil is trying to play with your mind, but God is trying to save you through godly people. Remove ourselves from things that are evil. Build up one another in doing good. It will not be easy – there will be people despising you, humiliating you. Jesus went through this – He held fast even as people spat on Him and humiliated him.


Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. – Romans 12:21


Overcome evil with good. We can only do this when we have love for others.


Closing


Be spiritually minded, love God and love others. This is the way to transform our minds. A renewed mind allows us to discern the will of God.


And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever. - 1 John 2:17


The world is not permanent, thus do not invest your life on things of the world. Instead, every day, present ourselves to God in a way that is acceptable to Him.


I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. - Romans 12:1

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