Because of God’s Mercy…Be Transformed, Part 2
September 13, 2020
We need to change. We have to change. We have been called to change. Change is necessary for the one who is in Christ Jesus. And we can change because of the gospel that has saved us. Just listen to a few passages that affirm the possibility and privilege of spiritual transformation (sanctification):
- “But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.…But now having been freed from sin and enslaved to God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome, eternal life.” [Romans 6:17–18, 22]
- “…[Christ] condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” [Romans 8:3b–4]
- “So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh…if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live…” [Romans 8:12-13]
- “Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is. And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.” [1 John 3:2–3]
- “For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.…But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.” [Galatians 5:13, 16]
- “…but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ…” [Ephesians 4:15]
- “So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” [Philippians 2:12–13]
As Paul transitions in the book of Romans to teaching theology to drawing out the implications of theology, the first thing he does in Romans 12 is to state that obedience and sacrifice is the only appropriate response to God’s merciful work in our lives (Rom. 12:1). And building on that idea, he also commands us to be transformed and changed spiritually (Rom. 12:2). He will say it this way:
Because God is merciful, let God transform the practices of your life.
In this well-known verse, the apostle Paul exhorts believers to change by revealing three characteristics of biblical transformation:
- The Obstacle to Transformation
- The Nature of Transformation
- The Benefits of Transformation
- You will Know God’s Will
- You Will Know Goodness in God’s Will
- You Will Know Delight in God’s Will
- You Will Know Maturity in God’s Will
- The Implications of Transformation for Church Leadership (Acts 6:3)
Download the rest of this sermon on Romans 12:2.
The audio will be posted on the GBC website by tomorrow.