A life submitted in service to Christ overcomes the weakness of sinful nature, and is set free from the fear of death. Effective faith, evidenced by good works, overcomes the world... transforming families and communities.
- Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation. (1 Peter 2:11-12 NKJV)
- ...if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV)
- And those who are Christ's have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. (Galatians 5:24-25 NKJV)
- ...count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness. (Romans 6:11-13 NIV)
- For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:8-10 NKJV)
- ...put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. (Ephesians 4:22-24 NKJV)
- ...since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him... (Colossians 3:9-10 NKJV)
- Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts. (Romans 13:10-14 NKJV)
- I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. (Romans 12:1 NKJV)
- Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NKJV)
- Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent [from the Lord], to be well pleasing to Him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men... (2 Corinthians 5:9-11a NKJV)
- Just because we are "born again" in Christ's likeness, doesn't mean that we instantly and consistently bear an outward resemblance to Him. Just like our own kids, it may take years to show. Often we can see "his eyes" and "her nose", but there are other times that we wonder "whose child is that?", and then sometimes we feign parental responsibility and playfully accuse our spouse of infidelity. "That can't be my kid... whose is it?" Our greatest joy can be to hear our child declare they want to be just like us when they grow up. And it can be sorrow upon sorrow if they reject us and wish to be nothing like us.
- As God's children, we are predestined to be conformed to the likeness of Jesus Christ. Regardless of our attitude, and regardless of our resistance to the process. It will happen. Submission to that plan helps speed up the process.
- We are admonished to submit to God's plan for our lives ...today. We are encouraged to imitate Christ. To mimic His manner of life. Not just in our spirit, but in our body... publicly, in our daily life.
- When the children of the devil can see with their own eyes the outward changes in a child of God's life, they are much more willing to hear the gospel message.