Bible Study 1 – A TRANSFORMED LIFE
But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2Cor 3:18
It is an open truth today that we have many churches scattered all over the world but we have little impact of life and community transformation to support this statistics. This is largely because the churches are filled with mostly converts and when churches are filled and remain full of converts, our effects and impact will be majorly within. It was said of the early apostles that they turned the world upside down. (Acts 17:6). What does that mean? It means they emptied the world at their time and fill it with Christ. Take for example, when you turn a container upside down, all its content will be poured out easily. They were able to greatly affect their world. How? It was by transforming men to disciples. They don’t glory in seeing crowds clambering around them. Their joy and glory are to see Christ formed in them. (2 Cor 3:1-6)
Discipleship in a simple language is bringing converts to become like Christ. All that process of changing and transforming a convert or an infant in Christ to a level of a disciple of Christ or maturity in Christ or following Christ is what is known as discipleship. This is the plan of God from the beginning. This is what we want to pursue in this retreat again and it will continue to be our pursuit to be transformed into His image and thereby becoming a transformation agent in the world so we also can have a testimony and a name among men that can be said has turned the system of this world – the system of corruption, system of lust of the eyes, lust of the flesh and pride of life upside down – I John 2:14-17. And lift the system of Christ right side up – The system of Love, Truth, Righteousness, Peace and Joy, – 1 John 2:8-11, 29 ; Romans 14:16
THE GOAL OF TRANSFORMATION
The goal is to be like Christ – Rm 8:29
We should be his vessel – Rm 9:21-24; 2 Cor 4:7
And that God should manifest through us – 2 Cor 4:3-7
PROCESS OF TRANSFORMATION
Turning To The Lord – When It Turned to the Lord (2 Cor 3:13-16
There cannot be any meaningful and lasting transformation without personal and genuine encounter with the Lord at first. Every vail, every covering, every disguise, shall be removed only when we turn to Christ.
Not As Moses…
The first major issue I want to strongly impress in your heart is that it is not men we must turn to. This has badly affected our transformation into disciples of Christ. The encounter with Moses will leave indelible mark of fear and not freedom. It is only encounter with Christ that can be true freedom. John 8:32.
Discussion Questions A
Discuss men or people that can be consider as the Moses of our day
Is it correct or not to be transform to these ‘Moses’
iii. What do you understand by turning or what it means to turn?
According to the bible passages below; From what are we to turn from?
a . Ephesians 4:22 b. Phil 3:3-8 ; c. 1 Pet 1:14; 18
Examples of Men That Turn To The Lord
Though the bible is full of many men and women that had personal transforming encounter with God. But time and space of this meeting will not allow us to study several of them. Space will fail us to study fully men like Abraham, Moses, Elisha, Woman at the well of Samaria, Paul, Peter and many others. But we are going to be studying here the encounter of Zacchaeus and if time permit, reference or study some others.
Example of Zacchaeus – Luke 19:1-10. Lets discuss the following about Zacchaeus turning to the Lord.
Divine opportunity – Luke 19:3 -4 –
Lifestyle before the encounter – Luke 19: 2, 7-8 .
Hindrances to his transformation – Luke 19: 3
Overcoming Hindrance. – Lk 19: 4
His Encounter – Luke 19:5-6
Removing The Vail Upon The Heart
But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. 16 Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. 2 Cor 3:15-16
We can see that the heart of the matter is the heart. The veil is not upon their head, not upon their mouth, not upon their eyes. The encounter we are trusting God for is the encounter with our heart.
Discussion Question B
From the scripture below, Outline and discuss what the bible says
about the heart? (You can read from different bible versions)
Prov 4:23; II. Jer 17:9;
III. Matt 5:8; iv. Matt 15:16-20
Parts Of The Heart
For us to know the parts of the heart properly, we need to understand the parts of man, so we can know fully what the heart consists.
Man is made up of three parts – 1Thess 5:23, Zech 12:1; Jer 38:16; Gen 2:7
The body, the soul and the Spirit are different and are distinct. – 1Thess 5:23; Heb 4:12
We have three realms in the world – Physical, Psychological and Spiritual
Understanding the Body
This is the part that is visible among the three parts of man. We use our body to contact the physical world through our five senses
Eyes – Seeing
Ears – Hearing
iii. Nose – Smelling
Mouth – Tasting
Skin – Feeling
The soul is made up of three parts. The soul is the part of man that engage the psychologic world.
The soul is made up of three parts
Emotion – Deut 14:26; Matt 26:38 – It is with the emotion that we love and hate. Mention other things we do with Emotion?
Mind – Josh 23:14; Psalm 139:14 – We conceived, think, consider with our mind
iii. Will – Job 7:15; 1 Chr 22:19 – This is the seat of decision making.
Understanding The Spirit
The spirit is the part that relates to the Spirit realm. The Spirit is also made of three parts
The Conscience – To perceive right or wrong, condemn or justify – Rm 8:16; 9:1; 1Cor 5:3; Psalm 51:10; 34:18; Deut 2:30.
The Fellowship – Communion with God, – John 4:24; Rm 1:9, Rm 7:6; Luke 1:47;Rm 8:16; 1Cor 6:17.
iii. The Intuition – Sense, direct knowledge – 1 Cor 2:11; Mark 2:8; Mk 8:12; John 11:33
Understanding Heart Parts.
The heart is not a separate part of our body. These are the four parts made up the Heart. The Heart consists of our soul and one part of the spirit (Conscience)
Mind – Thoughts of the heart – Gen 6:5; Think ye In your heart – Matt 9:4; The thoughts – Heb 4:12;
Will – Purpose of Heart – Acts 11:23; Intents of the heart – Heb 4:12
iii. Emotion – John 16:22 – rejoice in the heart; Sorrow filled the heart- John 16:6
Conscience – Heart sprinkled from evil conscience – Heb 10:22; Heart condemn – John 3:20, the heart is use to condemn.
The gateway to the heart is the conscience .
The conscience is the most important part of the heart – This is why our heart has to be dealt with first to ensure proper relationship with God. So when we say the heart must be turn to the Lord, we are saying our Mind, Emotion, Will and Conscience must be turn to the Lord.
How Heart Becomes Transformed
Turn to the Lord –
Exercise Faith – . Rm 10:9-10.
iii. Sprinkled – Heb 10:22
Renewed – Ezek 36:26
LIVE IN THE SPIRIT
Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Cor 3:17-18
When the veil of the flesh (Soul – mind, Will, Emotion) is removed, it will give opportunity for our spirit man to be unveiled. Our transformation is by the Spirit. God is a Spirit, and we need to relate with Him at that level for us to experience divine transformation. Encountering Christ is great but that is just the beginning and forestate of the riches embedded in Christ. For us to experience continue transformation into His Image in all things and enjoy the fullness of His riches, we must relate with Him in the Spirit. Gal 5:16-18.
From all the parts of the body that we studied above, the only part that can relate with God and contact God is our spirit because God is Spirit. 1 Cor 15:45; 2 Cor 3:17; John 14:16-20; John 4:24
It is our spirit that is born again or regenerated first and foremost. John 3:6. It is transformation of our Spirit man that will lead to transformation of our body. When our spirit is regenerated, it gives opportunity for Holy Spirit to dwell, Ephe 3:17. Christ came to quicken our spirit. Rom 8:26; 2Tim 4:22; 1 Cor 6:17.
Before we were saved, we have been living in our soul. So for us to be transformed into His Image, we must always turn to that image (Christ) that is in our spirit and live by that divine life in the Spirit. Our instructions must come from the Spirit.
God put two trees in the garden to show us two principles to live. Tree of life and tree of knowledge of good and evil (what is right and wrong). Gen 2:9. So it is either we choose to live by life (Christ), Col 3:4 or by what is right and what is wrong (This is what many men choose and religion is based on). But for us to live and be alive, we must embrace the tree of life. Gen 2:16-17.
The Spirit of God came into our spirit to quicken it or awake it. Col 2:13; Ephe 2:1,5. This is the miracle of our salvation. That’s why there is great joy in heaven. See how joyful we are when we see a dead man raised back to life. So the heaven rejoice when a dead spirit came back to life . Luke 15:7;10; 24. Our spirit and the Spirit of God are now joined together – 1 Cor 6:17
Exercise your Spirit
Over our years, we have been concentrating on exercising our body and soul. But when we exercise our spirit, the Holy Spirit is free to move and flow. But this is the battle, Gal 5:17, because satan knows that if we release our spirit, he will be defeated continuously. So we must learn to release our spirit at all time.
Lets study these scriptures and mention how our spirit man can be developed.
iii. Luke 9:23-25
vii. 1 Pet 3:3-4
A time With The Lord.
1 Pet 2:1-2; Luke 5:16; 6:12
As one who has God living in us, we must set some time each day to meet with Him.
Time to feed upon the word, meditate and mingle with prayer.
A time of at least 30 minutes daily is recommended for this spiritual communion.
iii. This time of communion is for reading, meditating on the word
A time to pray with the word that is revealed, that is, pray what you read. It is the word that brings life. John 6:63; 2 Tim 3:16. This is what brings nourishment and transformation. It is not primarily time of intercession for others, not your physical needs, not for show but for your spirit man, for your transformation.
If we do this for a period consistently, there will be a great transformation in us, our experience of Christ will be deepened and our outward lifestyle will be godly. Matt 4:4; Jer 15:16; Psalm 119:103; 1Pet 2:2-3; 1 Tim 4:6
God’s plan is to have all of us like Christ His son. So that Christ is the first born and we all are brethren. For our world to experience the change that will bring glory to God, we must be transformed and continuously looked upon Jesus to become more and more like Him.