Moment of Transformation:
CHANGED BY BEHOLDING
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 by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Corinthians 3:18
The work of transformation from unholiness is a continuous one. Day by day God labours for man’s sanctification, and man is to co-operate with Him, putting forth persevering efforts in the cultivation of right habits. He is to add grace to grace; and as he thus works on the plan of addition, God works for him on the plan of multiplication. Our Saviour is always ready to hear and answer the prayer of the contrite heart, and grace and peace are multiplied to His faithful ones. Gladly He grants them the blessings they need in their struggle against the evils that beset them.
John and Judas are representatives of those who profess to be Christ’s followers. Both these disciples had the same opportunities to study and follow the divine Pattern. Both were closely associated with Jesus and were privileged to listen to His teaching. Each possessed serious defects of character; and each had access to the divine grace that transforms character. But while one in humility was learning of Jesus, the other revealed that he was not a doer of the Word, but a hearer only. One, daily dying to self and overcoming sin, was sanctified through the truth; the other, resisting the transforming power of grace and indulging selfish desires, was brought into bondage to Satan.
Such transformation of character as is seen in the life of John is ever the result of communion with Christ. There may be marked defects in the character of an individual, yet when he becomes a true disciple of Christ, the power of divine grace transforms and sanctifies him. Beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, he is changed from glory to glory, until he is like Him whom he adores.
God can be honoured by those who profess to believe in Him, only as they are conformed to His image and controlled by His Spirit. Then, as witnesses for the Saviour, they may make known what divine grace has done for them.
Ellen G. White, God’s Amazing Grace, p. 233 – August 13
Quote of the Day “The reality is, my prayers don’t change God. But, I am convinced prayer changes me. Praying boldly boots me out of that stale place of religious habit into authentic connection with God Himself.” Lysa TerKeurst
Did You Know?
The word “Amen” (which means “let it be, “so be it,” “verily,” “truly”) makes its first appearance in the Bible in Numbers 5:22. In that passage God commands it to be said by a person who is yielding to his examination.
The renewal which gives insight into God’s will is described as “renewal of the mind”-once again, not in antithesis to practical everyday living (“present your bodies … be transformed by renewal of your mind …”), but as a reminder that for Paul spiritual renewal of the people must begin in the inwardness of a person (cf. 2:29) and must include not least the person’s power of thought and reason. Neither Paul nor his readers would see this as a soft option or open door to irresponsibility: to ascertain the will of God is never easy, and far less so when it is recognized that God’s will cannot be reduced to a set of rules and regulations; the key, however, is the willing and eager submission of the creature to live out of his dependence on God – to seek to know God’s will as the first objective, and his enabling for the still harder task of doing it.
James D. G. Dunn, Romans 9 16, vol. 38B, Word Biblical Commentary (Dallas: Word, Incorporated, 1998), 718.
“…transformation of character … is ever the result of communion with Christ”. What does this statement mean to you?
This Week’s Homework