Renewing Your Mind
2 Corinthians 3:18
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.
At verse two, we finally return to the concepts of Jesus mentioned above. Do not be conformed to this world. Be in the world, but not of the world. Be a Christian, a stranger, a sojourner walking through the filth of Satans realm, understanding that we are no longer of Satans realm but under the command of the Kingdom of God. We look above at Pauls language to the Corinthians and have an idea of the sincerity of the Apostle toward this concept. We are Gods so we should act like Gods possession. Throughout various places in Scripture we are told that the way to act like God is to use Jesus as our example.
This may seem to be overwhelming. We are sinful creatures (chaps 1-3). Even after our conversion, sin still wars within us, drawing us away from God (chaps 6-7). How can we possibly avoid being conformed to the world?
Pauls answer is surprisingly simple. We avoid being conformed to this world by the renewal of our minds! Paul tells us that when we renew our minds we are transformed! The Greek for transform is metamorphoo. We obtain our English word, metamorphous from this Greek word. The picture might be something like the transformation of a caterpillar into a butterfly. Some may want to violently object at this point. Wait! they will scream. We are already transformed. We are a new creation in Christ!
2 Corinthians 5:17
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
And, certainly, this is true. We are made new, at least in a legal sense. Pauls focus goes back to the entire discussion from about 3:21 through the end of chapter 8. When we accept Jesus by faith, we are adopted into the family of God and we have a new standing in Gods eyes. We are seen as righteous and holy and as part of the family. But, in reality, we still possess these earthly bodies. Our members still war against our new spirit (chap 7). We will have this continuous spiritual battle as long as we live on planet earth.
So, says the Apostle, our obligation to God is to fight this spiritual battle. We can only prevail if we commence to transform ourselves into the image of Christ in our daily walk. This is the process of experiential sanctification discussed throughout chapters 5-8. We must continually fight this war. Only then will we be transformed into the image of God!