Illustration results for conformity
Sermon Central Staff
THE VACUUM SALESMAN
A vacuum salesman down in rural Tennessee. He had a his vacuum cleaner and all of this tools and everything, and he went out there and he told a lady, "I’ve got the most exciting vacuum cleaner you have ever seen. It will clean your house from top to bottom...you only have to pay so much down."
And the lady said, "It sounds real good."
He said, "You see that big pile of dirt right there on the floor with all those fur balls and bugs and things." He said, "My vacuum cleaner will just pick up all those things up just like that and if they don’t, I’ll eat it."
She said, "Well, you might as well get your knife and fork, because we do not have any electricity out here!"
Power is the one thing nations, politicians and businessman
covet. But the power that we need is not an earthly
power. God has promised believers Spiritual power.
Vance Havner once rightly said,"We are not going to move this world by criticism of it nor conformity to it, but by combustion within it of lives ignited by the Spirit of God."
(From a sermon by Donnie De Loney, Pentecostal Power, 5/22/2012)
Earlier in his life, Gandhi was actually considering becoming a Christian. He was attracted by the life and teachings of Jesus. Gandhi attended the services of a church in Pretoria, South Africa. He later wrote, "The congregation did not strike me as being particularly religious; they were not an assembly of devout souls, but appeared rather to be worldly-minded people going to church for recreation and in conformity to custom." Christianity, he concluded, could not add anything of value to Hinduism. So he turned away from Jesus, to his own loss, and to the loss of many who followed after him.
Peter Drucker says; "Americans today go to church for reasons very different from those of two generations ago. Then attendance was steered by heritage, habit, and social status, now it is an act of commitment, and therefore meaningful. It is no longer an act of conformity, and therefore meaningless. People need community, yes, and they need responsibility. They need the feeling that they contribute." (The Atlantic Monthly 5/97)
Chuck Swindoll tells about a study of teenagers and peer pressure. The design of the study was simple. They brought groups of ten adolescents into a room for a test. Each group was instructed to raise their hands when the teacher pointed to the longest line on three separate charts. What one person in the groups of ten did not know was that the other nine had been instructed ahead of time to vote not for the longest line, but for the second-longest line.
Regardless of the instructions they heard, once they were all together in the group, the nine were not to vote for the longest line, but rather vote for the next to the longest line. This left the tenth student being the only one who would be voting for the longest line. Guess what happened. Time after time, this tenth student would glance around, frown in confusion at the way the others were voting, and slip his hand up with the group. The instructions were repeated and the next card was raised. Each time, the self-conscious stooge would s...
Virtues are not emotions. Emotions are movements of appetite, virtues dispositions of appetite towards movement. Moreover emotions can be good or bad, reasonable or unreasonable; whereas virtues dispose us only to good. Emotions arise in the appetite and are brought into conformity with reason; virtues are effects of reason achieving themselves in reasonable movements of the appetites. Balanced emotions are virtue’s effect, not its substance.
Thomas Aquinas (c. 1225–1274), Italian philosopher, theologian. Summa Theologica, pt. 1, 2nd pt., qu. 59, art. 1 (1273).
According to Wikipedia:
Normative influence is a function of social impact theory (Lantane, 1981), which has three components. A group’s strength is how important the group is to you. Groups we value generally have more social influence. Immediacy is how close the group is to you in time and space when the influence is taking place. The number of people in the group has a surprising effect. As the number increases, each person has less of an impact. Psychologists have constructed a mathematical model using these three factors and are able to predict the amount of conformity that occurs with some degree of accuracy (Latane & Bourgeois, 2001).
Indeed, the more sanctified the person is, the more conformed he is to the image of his Savior, the more he must recoil against every lack of conformity to the holiness of God. The deeper his apprehension of the majesty of God, the greater the intensity of his love to God, the more persistent his yearning for the attainment of the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus, the more conscious will he be of the gravity of the sin that remains and the more poignant will be his detestation of it....Was this not the effect in all the people of God as they came into closer proximity to the revelation of God’s holiness." (John Murray, Redemption Accomplished and Applied)
"Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will (Rom 12:2, NIV).
The word we translate "transformed" is metamorfousthe. Does that sound familiar?
We are familiar with metamorphosis in biology. Physical life forms transform. The larva (caterpillar) enters the pupa (cocoon) stage, then becomes an adult (butterfly). An egg grows into a tadpole that lives only in water, breathes with gills and has a tail. Soon it grows lungs and legs. The gills and tail are absorbed into the body and you have a frog.
Metamorphisis also appears in mythology as humans are said to have become other creatures. For example, Pleiades, the seven daughters of Atlas were attendants of Artemis the goddess of wildlife and hunting. They were pursued by Orion the hunter and rescued by the gods who transformed them into doves. After death, they were transformed by Zeus into a group of stars in the constellation Taurus. They were said to be forever pursued across sky by the Orion constellation.
But we need to understand metamorphosis in theology. It is the word translated “transfigured” in Matthew 17:2 and Mark 9:2. “There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light” (Matt 17:2, NIV).
The word also appears in ...
On His Side
During the US civil war, Abraham Lincoln met with a group of ministers for a prayer breakfast. Lincoln was a man of deep, if at times unorthodox, faith. At one point one of the ministers said, "Mr. President, let us pray that God is on our side". Lincoln's response showed far greater insight, "No, gentlemen, let us pray that we are on God's side."
If we want to know what God wants us to do, then we must first strive to live a life of conformity to Him.
From a sermon by Nathan Johnson, "Conformed To His Image" 8/4/2008
Sermon Central Staff
HAVNER ON HOW TO MOVE THE WORLD
Vance Havner said, "We are not going to move this world by criticism of it nor conformity to it, but by the combustion within it of lives ignited by the Spirit of God."
(From a sermon by Guy McGraw, Don’t Leave Home Without Him)