Bible Ballistics: Climate Change??????? Vol 4 #10
We’ve all heard the banter regarding ‘global warming’, or as some people put it, ‘climate change’. There is debate on both sides and drastic differences in opinions over the interpretations of the scientific data. I’d like us to look at a different ‘climate change’. Besides references to the weather, climate also can mean: ‘the prevailing trend of public opinion or of another aspect of public life’.
This is the meaning I’d like us to consider today. Are we allowing ‘public opinion’ and/or ‘public life’ and trends to dictate how we, as believers, think and behave? Are we also allowing the world into our churches, even inviting and welcoming the world’s ways into our churches?
Romans 12:1-2 says, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
God calls us to NOT be ‘conformed to the world’. When we give our lives to the Lord Jesus Christ, we are to live our lives as a ‘living sacrifice’ to Him; which means we are to live for Him not ourselves. When we belong to Jesus (also a wonderful song by Dennis Jernigan) it should be seen in a yielded heart, mind and soul, given to Jesus’ control: not letting the world shape us with it’s mind-numbing gadgets and trends. We can choose to be water shaped by the ice tray (the world)—completely incapacitated by it, or we can yield ourselves totally to God and watch HIM do a mighty work that can ‘change’ the climate around us. How? Only in God!!
“And being confident of the very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6.
God is working to transform YOU and ME, in all things.
As Philippians 2:12-13 says, “Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.”
As we talked a few weeks ago, we are to yield to God and work out what He has put in. To let HIS work shine!!
Ephesians 5:17-18 is a marvelous word picture of this.
“See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. 18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;”
To be filled with the Holy Spirit! Filled can also be translated ‘Pervaded’: ‘to cram full, to fill to overflowing’. We are to be filled with (or pervaded by) the Holy Spirit not worldly lures. We all understand that drunkenness, short-circuits control of mental and bodily actions—they are out of control. The liquor controls them. Paul warns us NOT to be controlled by wine (or any element, substance or alienation of our devotion to God), but we are to be controlled by the Holy Spirit of Christ. We are to behave (walk), according to the Spirit’s direction in our hearts and lives. Then the world will see Jesus when they look at our character and behavior.
Matthew 5:15-16, “Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”
And Psalms 119:133, “Order my steps in thy word: and let not any iniquity have dominion over me.”
Walking ‘circumspectly’, (referring to straightness or perfectness) before the world. Also ‘redeeming’ the time—the time we are given by God, the time in which we live here and now. To redeem: ‘buy back, or rescue from loss’. God calls us to walk (live) straightly before the world and to rescue our time from loss. Those twenty-four hours that we are all given each day, are to be ‘bought back’ from worldly desires and given to God. I know I can get wrapped up in an old movie, a video game or just daydreaming and waste hours that I could have used to please and serve Jesus. No, I’m not talking about balanced times of leisure or diversion, but letting our passion for ‘things’ rule our lives.
We are to walk with Jesus everywhere we go, and in all that we do–every hour of every day—to be HIS for the using. To display the character of Jesus,
as an employee,
neighbor or friend.
To ‘work out’ all that Jesus wrought ‘in’ for us at Calvary. Do people see Jesus in me
at the grocery store,
or just out running errands?
Am I living out God’s presence in me when I encounter
or a flat tire?
Do I let the ‘climate’ around me divert or reshape my devotion to the Lord?
Romans 12:1-2 presents a contrast between conformity and transformation.
Conformity—to be shaped like or by something. In contrast transformation is–a change in form or appearance.
The Greek word translated ‘transformed’ is ‘metamorphoo’: the word from which we get our English word ‘metamorphosis’: The process whereby a worm changes into a butterfly. Not just a temporary mask or imitation, but a permanent change of form.
When God redeems us we are made new. As 1 Corinthians 5:17-18 says,
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 18 And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;”
Are we reconcilers or alienators?
As we are ‘transformed by the renewing of your mind’ we are empowered to live out the ‘good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God’ before the world. But the cost is the sacrifice of our own will to God’s. To allow His awesome, ‘transforming’ power to be displayed to a lost and dying world that needs Jesus.
By yielding to His word
as He transforms our minds,
and our lives.
Feasting on it continually.
I’ll close with a few verses to think about this week.
Galatians 2:20, “ I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
Living the crucified life!!!!!
Yielding to Christ’s Lordship in ME!!!
Phil 2:5 & 8b, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:…..he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” (Read all of chapter 2 to see the beauty of His servant life)
So does your ‘climate’ change with the world?
Are you standing fast with Jesus?
Does your speech betray our Lord?
Do your actions call into question your devotion to Him?
The world tells us it doesn’t matter, but Jesus says it does. He has called us to
by His redeeming power;
to trust to His unchanging hand,
and be a mirror of His redeeming power to the world.
No climate change here!!!!
We are being ‘transformed’!!!
To the image of our Lord!!!