The title of today’s article gives a hint of the battle we face when we plan to grow in grace and knowledge as we are commanded. I often talk with men, and some women, who complain that they are giving living for Jesus their best shot, but they feel so constricted they sometimes have trouble breathing. Others suffer losing the ability to concentrate on what they are supposed to be doing. Still others feel the “squeeze” from co-workers or other associates to participate in their lifestyle. The list goes on but I think you are getting the idea. Having the “Squeeze” put on you in some form is common to us all.
Paul dealt with this conflict in his Epistle to the Saints at Rome:
Romans 12:1, 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. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
You will notice I have underlined two words in verse 2. Take a look at the Greek for each one as this is the only time in the Bible these Greek words are used.
suschematizo soos-khay-mat-id'-zo from 4862 and a derivative of 4976; to fashion alike, i.e. conform to the same pattern (figuratively):--conform to, fashion self according to.
metamorphoo met-am-or-fo'-o from 3326 and 3445; to transform (literally or figuratively, "metamorphose"):--change, transfigure, transform.
The first word, translated conformed, literally means to be squeezed into conformity, and in this case the wrong kind of conformity. This is one reason that high powered pressure on people to do “Christian” things often fails, for the same pressure principle used by the secular is operating.
The second word, transformed, used one time, means as with a butterfly, changing from one form to another. In true salvation in Christ we are changed by miracle from the form of Adam to the inner form of Jesus. In Adam all die. In Christ all are made alive. You cannot fake transformation. It happens from something deep within.
Harry Blamires wrote: “The modern Christian has succumbed to secularization. He accepts religion-its morality, its worship, it spiritual culture; but he rejects the religious view of life, the view which sets all earthly issues within the context of the eternal.”
So, are you being “squeezed” into conformation or are you undergoing transformation?
Copyright © 2015 Larry Lilly