Renew Your Mind

~ Tim challies

There are many places in the Bible where God presents a stark contrast between two options, then urges the reader to make his choice. He gave his law to ancient Israel, then said, “I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life” (Deuteronomy 30:19). In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus contrasted wide and narrow gates and pleaded, “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few” (Matthew 7:13-14).

Another of these contrasts is found at a key point in the book of Romans. For 11 chapters Paul has expounded on the gospel, describing what Christ has accomplished for Jews and Gentiles alike. Then he confronts his readers with a contrast and implies they must make a choice: “Do not be conformed to this world,” he says, “but be transformed by the renewal of your mind” (12:2). There are only two options: conformity or transformation. You can be conformed to this world or you can be transformed by the renewing of your mind. The choice lies before you every day.

Many of today’s men have made a poor choice. They’ve chosen to conform, to feed their lust with the pornographic images of the world, to speak as the world speaks, to take on a sinful lifestyle marked by pride, apathy, and self-indulgence. If you are a Christian man, you are called to something different, something better, something far more challenging and far more satisfying. You are called to godliness. You are called to renounce anything that would hinder you in your race and to embrace a life-long pursuit of knowing Jesus.

This is the third entry in the series “Run to Win!” in which we are considering how God calls men like you to live with the same discipline, dedication, and self-control that an Olympic athlete brings to the pursuit of the gold. Such commitment demands self-control that extends even to the mind. More accurately, it demands self-control that begins in the mind. To run to win, you must renew your mind.

A Darkened Mind

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