How can a man be born (change) when he is old? Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born! 1
– “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. 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 – his good, pleasing and perfect will.” 2
The renewing of the mind doesn’t mean ‘brainwashing’, but just the opposite it means to cleanse the mind of brainwashing it received previously from other sources. It means to look at life from a clean and fresh perspective; one that is able to give an accurate, more precise and true frame of reference based on better interpretation of information. As a simple example, the whole world may view a diamond as something very valuable, but a renewed mind would see it for what it is: a fairly common pebble dressed and polished, having no outstanding significance other than common opinion places on it.
The renewing of the mind comes to us through effort as we actively read, search, study, glean and absorb/ integrate into our life the Bible’s direction, information and wisdom. We are able to do this by way of instruction and interpretation provided by the Holy Spirit who “will teach you all things.” 3
As we progress in this we begin to take on what is often called a Biblical-worldview. That is, a mind that views the world, its values, its business by comparing those with the truths and instruction of the Bible. It doesn’t mean being contentious with those of the worlds view, it simply means being true to our own new direction of thought and values. Our attitudes of mind and habits of thought are transformed.
One great benefit that begins to take root is the “peace that surpasses all understanding” is finding a new home in us, increasingly and rooting deeper.
The world is full of people who, through “self-help” try to change themselves as they think is right, only to snap back the way they were, or even to a worse condition.
But as ol’ Nicodemus perceived – true and lasting change is possible only through the author of life, Jesus Christ.
- 1)John 3:6
- 2)Romans 12:1,2
- 3)John 14:26