Different: heightened pressure to fit in spiritually
Message Magazine’s Online Devotional for Tuesday, March 10, 2015
Based Upon Romans 12
(Click here to listen to previous entries http://goo.gl/SlsVnS )
The term, “non-conformist” has an interesting history. The Act of Uniformity 1662, an act of the Parliament of England, required clergy by oath to use of all the rites and ceremonies in the Book of Common Prayer in church services in order to hold any office in government or the church. In protest (or non-conformity) to this act, as many as 2,000 clergy refused to take the oath and were consequently ousted from the Church of England. And, a large cross-section of English people were excluded from public office and affairs due to non-conformity. So much could be said about the dangers of the church attempting to compel non-biblical mandates in order to qualify for office. A lot could also be said about the strong arm of the State doing the same for civic inclusion. A lot more could be said about the two forces combining to overrun society with unholy requirements, but we will stay on task here.
There is an overwhelming influence, though not instituted by law, in every society in the world, which seems to compel all to be squeezed into its mold–worldliness. The drive for accumulating excess, immorality, drunkenness, murder, injustice, corruption in government, hatred, malice, manipulation of economics to serve a privileged few, have all combined to place pressure on those who are being transformed by the reception of the mind of Christ into our daily lives. The media, whose powers can well be used for good, and sometimes are, often facilitate evil. The same is true for the entertainment industry. The majority of what is available today is evil, with a tiny minority of films, games, and music, being of any good civic or moral value.
Our theme chapter gives us a wonderful list of instructions to follow, if we are serious about spiritual non-conformity. Interestingly, most of the instructions have to do with how we treat people. So, by all means let the Lord transform your life and relationships, so the outside pressures of evil, do not overwhelm the work that the Holy Spirit would like to do on the inside. With all that the Lord has done for us, this is a more than reasonable response. Let the power of God prevail in your life today. Amen.