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What God expects from believers – Part 1

By Pastor W. F. Kumuyi
24 July 2016   |   3:41 am
All parts of the Bible are deeply essential for believers to understand God, know His will and endeavour to follow and obey Him implicitly and explicitly. In particular, the epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans ...
 Pastor W. F. Kumuyi

Pastor W. F. Kumuyi

All parts of the Bible are deeply essential for believers to understand God, know His will and endeavour to follow and obey Him implicitly and explicitly. In particular, the epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans is indispensable to the Christian faith. It highlights the way of salvation for the Jews and Gentiles through Christ’s death, burial and resurrection.

People who have obtained salvation and transformation through this divine plan and provision are referred to as “brethren”. In recognising these brethren as called, cleansed, converted and faithful, Paul the apostle revealed that entire consecration to God was required of believers. “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1,2).

These believers were required to consecrate to God in acknowledgment of the “mercies” enjoyed and still being enjoyed. Since Christ had presented Himself as the saving, substitutionary and paschal Lamb, a feat no one else in all of human race could accomplish, the believer is required to recognise, respond and reciprocate by presenting his entire life as a “living sacrifice” to the Lord. A dead, defiled, desecrated, rejected, reproachable or substandard sacrifice is unreasonable and unacceptable to God. A believer, who is entirely given to God, will be a non-conformist with the world and its god. Transformed, reformed and separated from the world unto the Lord, he does not fit or allow himself to be reshaped into the mould of the world, but he is committed to doing only the will of God.

No believer is excluded from entire consecration. It is expected, desired, demanded and commanded by the Lord of everyone, who claims to be His child. By creation and redemption, we belong to God; hence, He has the right to demand consecration from us. To rob Him of entire and wholehearted consecration is to deny Him of His right. Refusal to consecrate entirely to Him is akin to the rebellion of a purchased slave, who previously had no liberty and control of his life, but after his gracious redemption, refused to render thanksgiving, obedience, honour and praise to his master.

Nothing less than a completely yielded, surrendered, submissive, committed and consecrated life befits Christ, Who died to redeem us and has gone to prepare heaven for us. Consecration must normally and naturally follow conversion. Redeemed, the believer’s body, spirit, mind, talent, treasure and time belong to God. “For ye are bought with a price: therefore, glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” God’s demand in both the Old and New Testaments from everyone redeemed by Him is to be entirely consecrated and live solely for His glory, praise and honour.

Paul the apostle used the word “brethren” to acknowledge the spiritual transformation that had already taken place in the recipients of this epistle. Having tasted of salvation by the mercies of God, he proceeded to exhort them on the requisite consecration that must follow. Since Christ sacrificed His life for us, it is now the turn of all beneficiaries to make sacrifices for Him. Having left all the glory of heaven for our salvation, the natural thing is for us to forgo some conveniences for the sake of bringing other souls to Him. Thus, we are called to separate completely from the world to avoid re-assimilation and the contradiction of double loyalty to the world and the Lord.

The Lord’s message to those that have received His mercy and are expecting more of His blessings is, “come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you” (2 Corinthians 6:17). Separation from the pollutions of the world must be preceded by conversion. But repentance must take place before conversion, which is different from being born by Christian parents or joining a church. Christ died for the purpose of converting or simply “turning away every one of you from his iniquities”.

Conversion is required of everyone without exception and the converted will unarguably turn away from his or her idolatrous rituals, sacrifices, ceremonies and occult practices and “abstain” from things that defile. Obviously, Christ “gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil [sinful, dark, wicked, occult, hell-bound] world” (Galatians 1:4). We are called out of the world because it will defile, desecrate, destroy and damn the soul. Every believer is expected to keep himself “unspotted from the world,” as “friendship with the world is enmity with God”.

Further Reading (King James Version): Romans 12:1,2; 1 Corinthians 6:19,20; Isaiah 43:7,21; 1 Peter 2:9; Romans 12:1,2; 2 Corinthians 6:17; Acts 3:19,26; 15:3,28,29; Galatians 1:3,4; 6:14; James 1:27; 4:4; 2 Timothy 4:10; Ephesians 4: 17-20,30-32; Romans 6:18,22; 1 Peter 1:14-16; Romans 12:1,2; Revelation 4:11; Colossians 2:6,7; 1:13-17; Romans 6:6,11,12; Ephesians 5:25-27; 1 Thessalonians 5:22-24; Hebrews 2:11; 10:10; 13:12-14; Romans 12:1,2; John 14:30; Acts 13:22; 2 Samuel 15:15; 24:24; Matthew 10:37,38; Mark 8:34-38; Revelation 2:4,5, 25,26; Proverbs 23:26.