Summary: Paul called the Roman church to become “formed after the up newing of the mind” of God. In other words, he called the church and us to a revolution. We are no longer called to follow the world and become like it, but we are to demonstrate a very differe
“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.” (Romans 12:2)
Whenever the word revolution is mentioned, ideas of wars, conflicts and bloody struggles come to mind. Such ideas are reinforced by the art and historic documents left behind depicting the Revolutionary War, which granted the US its independence from England. For example, in late fall of 1777, General George Washington and has rag tag army of militiamen suffered 2 defeats at the hands of the British at Brandywine and Germantown. He and his 11,000 men retreated to Valley Forge, PA to establish winter headquarters. It was a dark time for the revolution. Many died of starvation or cold, never more than half of the force was in any shape to battle at one time. Many deserted the cause, because the stress and suffering was too great. But thousand others remained faithful. They stayed in there, despite frozen bodies, starvation, sickness and bone-biting coldness, because they had a goal and a purpose for being there - that was more important to them than personal comfort or even safety. In February they began a regrouping that prepared them for pursuing the British all the way across New Jersey in June of 1778.
It is in this same manner that the apostle Paul called the Roman church to become “formed after the up newing of the mind” of God. In other words, he called the church and us to a revolution. We are no longer called to follow the world and become like it, but we are to demonstrate a very different type of life and attitude. Yet, in order to have a revolution, we must understand what it is. What is a revolution? A revolution is the action by a celestial body of going round in an orbit or elliptical course. A revolution is also a sudden, radical, or complete change. A revolution is the overthrow or renunciation of one government or ruler and the substitution of another by the governed. Knowing the definition then, why is it time for a revolution?
I. BECAUSE WE HAVE BEEN ORBITING TOO FAR AWAY FROM GOD
“‘My people were lost sheep. Their shepherds led them astray. They abandoned them in the mountains where they wandered aimless through the hills. They lost track of home, couldn’t remember where they came from. Everyone who met them took advantage of them. Their enemies had no qualms: ‘Fair game’ they said. ‘They walked out on GOD. They abandoned the True Pasture, the hope of their parents.’” (Jeremiah 50:6, 7 – The Message).
A. When we consider the planets that orbit around the sun, we can learn important lessons.
1. It takes the earth 365 days to orbit around the sun
a. Earth is about 149,600,000 km away from the sun
2. Mercury, which is the planet closest to the sun, only requires 88 days to orbit around the sun
a. Mercury is 60% closer to the sun than earth (about 57,910,000 km in distance)
b. Mercury’s temperature, for the side facing the sun, can reach up to 750 degrees Fahrenheit
c. It’s side facing away from the sun can drop its temperature to -450 degrees Fahrenheit
3. Pluto, which is the farthest planet from the sun, requires 90520 days to orbit the sun (258 years!)
a. Pluto’s distance from the earth is 5,913,520,000 km
b. Pluto was discovered in 1930 and it will be until the year 2178 when a full orbit around the sun will be completed
c. Pluto’s temperature ranges from -378 to -396 F
B. When we orbit away from God, we become like Pluto
1. It takes us longer to do things for Him
“If you love me, you will obey what I command.” (John 14:15)
2. We become cold
“Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold” (Matthew 24:12)
C. God wants us to orbit around Him like mercury does to the sun
1. That way things will happen in our lives quickly
“And then GOD answered: ‘Write this. Write what you see. Write it out in big block letters so that it can be read on the run. This vision-message is a witness pointing to what’s coming. It aches for the coming--it can hardly wait! And it doesn’t lie. If it seems slow in coming, wait. It’s on its way. It will come right on time.’” (Habakkuk 2:2, 3 – The Message)
a. The example of Paul
i. A man who hated and persecuted the church
ii. One day he had a close encounter with Jesus and that changed him forever
iii. He preached the Word of God with power