Being A Disciple
“and be not fashioned according to this world”. Romans 12:2. When we read this passage, we are brought to the realization that changes must be made if we are to be found acceptable to God. Thus, “be not conformed according to this world”.
Conforming to the world is to make friendship with the world. James said, “know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God”. James 4:4. Jesus one told his brethren in the flesh, “the world cannot hate you. But me it hateth, because I Testify of it, that its works are evil”. John 7:7. This hatred of the world, toward the Lord, would extend through his apostles, as Jesus said concerning them, “I have given them thy word. And the world hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world”. John 17:14. The reason the world hated the Lord and his apostles was due to the fact that, “the light is come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light. For their works are evil. For everyone that doeth evil hateth the light, and cometh not to the light, lest his works should be reproved”. John 3:19, 20.
Jesus said, “a disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his lord. It is enough for the disciple that he be as his teacher, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more them of his household”. Matthew 10:24, 25. Just as the world hated Jesus and his apostles, so we also understand that, “all that would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution”. II Timothy 3:12
Not being, “fashioned according to this world” brings in persecutions. Evil people do not like the light of the gospel to shine upon their lives, “lest his works should be reproved”. Persecution was not only seen in how the prophets of God were treated, but is was also a part of the message of Jesus Christ. The Apostle Paul said to the Thessalonians, “for verily, when we were with you, we told you beforehand that we are to suffer affliction. Even as it came to pass, and ye know it”. I Thes. 3:4.
For those who do not conform to this world, persecutions will follow, but to this, Jesus says, “what I tell you in the darkness, speak ye in the light. And what ye hear in ear, proclaim upon the housetops. And be not afraid of them that kill the body, but are not able to kill soul. But rather fear him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell”. Matthew 10:27,28. Remember the words of the Lord saying, “woe unto them, when all men shall speak well of you, for in the same manner did their fathers to the false prophets”. Luke 6:26
- CL Bruner