“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2).
This New Testament verse offers believers the chance to be “renewed” by turning away from what the world wants — and instead turning toward what God wants.
But what were the letters to the Romans — and why did Paul decide to share such important teachings in this type of communication?
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In the early Christian church, it was “impractical” for the apostles to “personally visit each fledgling Christian community,” according to Biblegateway.com.
So the “central tenets of the faith” were spread “throughout the Near East in the form of letters written to individual congregations.”
“These letters (also known as ‘epistles’) contain both general Christian teaching and specific instructions for the congregation to which they were addressed,” that site adds.
Known as the “Pauline epistles,” these letters written by the apostle Paul are particularly central to Christian belief, the site also points out.
One faith leader said that we can reach our destiny through discerning not what we want — but what God wants.
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“In this passage, the root word for ‘transformed’ is the term from which we get our word ‘metamorphosis,’” Jeff Myers, PhD, president of Summit Ministries in Manitou Springs, Colorado, told Fox News Digital by email.
“A metamorphosis is an organism’s complete and permanent change into what it was designed to be,” he added.
“Think of a caterpillar transforming into a butterfly,” Myers continued. “We were made for something more than just doing what others want us to do.”
“In times like these, we must avoid both cynicism and gullibility.”
Through Jesus, Myers said, we may experience the kind of change “that we were made for all along.”
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It’s important to note that the apostle Paul is not “telling his readers to force others to change,” he said.
He also said, “As the theologian Richard John Neuhaus put it, ‘If we make a difference in any of these things, we must come to them and to the people involved in them with love, with a vision of a more excellent way, with a proposal — imposing nothing, only proposing.’”
Myers said that “in times like these,” we must avoid both “cynicism and gullibility.”
“Both are forms of conformity,” he said. “Neither brings transformation. As [theologian] C.S. Lewis drily noted, ‘A hard heart is no infallible protection against a soft head.’”
Myers added, “Resisting conformity requires open-hearted awareness of our circumstances, and a desire to rise above them.”
Stay tuned for more Bible verses of the day during the Advent season. To see yesterday’s Bible verse, click here.
Source: Fox News