In order to discover what God's will for our lives are, God has given us ordinary means by which we can be "equipped for EVERY good work". One of these ordinary means is the Bible. When we take it upon ourselves to read, hear, and attend upon God's word, we are able to accurately test and approve what Gods will is. As I have stated in previous blogs, one way to get yourself into trouble is to ignore the bible and make life decisions based on feelings apart from a careful examining of Scripture. Remember the steps from part 1: Read your bible, pray biblically about what you have read, think biblically based on what you have read and prayed about, and seek wise counsel. It is by putting these things into practice that we can truly follow the path(s) that God has ordained for us.
In this installment of this series, we now read in our focus scripture that we must “be transformed by the renewing of our minds”. When the bible uses the phrase “be transformed by the renewal of your mind” it is talking about a dual relationship in our accomplishing God’s will. As we learned before, some parts of God’s will (namely his sovereign will) is out of our hands, however, for the parts that are in our hands (namely his will of command), we must be careful to do them. In the case of being transformed by the renewal of our minds, we are not able to transform ourselves; this can only be done by the sanctifying power and presence of the Holy Spirit and is God’s sovereign will for us. However, what we can do is to work to renew our minds. Ephesians 4:17-24 puts it this way,
Now this I say and testify in the Lord, that you must no longer walk as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their minds. They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to their hardness of heart. They have become callous and have given themselves up to sensuality, greedy to practice every kind of impurity. But that is not the way you learned Christ!— assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self,[f] which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.
Notice in verse 17, that the Bible says that we must no longer walk as the Gentiles do. Then Paul lists several qualifying statements for what this means (v. 18-19). This means that we are to not walk in ignorance which results from a hard heart and that we should not be given to sensuality and the practice of impurity. Instead, the bible says that we have not LEARNED Christ that way. We were TAUGHT in him. We are to put off the old and to put on the new. This is how we are renewed in the spirit of our minds. In other words, God has given us the bible so that we constantly renew our minds by learning what who Christ is and what He wants us to do. So, in summary, if you want to know what God’s will is, abandon pagan traditions of feeling without thinking and examine scripture, seek God through prayer, seek wise counsel and over time, God will show you what He wants you to do. God bless.