Romans 1:12 - It is imperative to our growth and maturity that we believe God’s truth about who we are in Christ. God is looking at our identification with his son and at what his energizing power from on high is producing in us, because that is where our life is as far as God is concerned. We cannot use experience to prove the validity of our doctrinal position, we must always use doctrine to prove the validity of our experience.
Our brains are an engine of understanding, our transformation process that is taking place in our lives as we take in the Word of God and apply it to the details of our lives, it is only when we come to properly understand God from his perspective concerning ourselves. The battle is taking place between the ears, between fleshy thinking and divine thinking. Trust that God knows what he is doing, and he is going to do it whether we pray or not. God knows precisely what he is going to do.
Paul doesn’t tell us that we are filled with God’s energizing power from on high, but instead, Paul is telling us that we should be filled with God’s energizing power from on high. In other words, we should allow God’s energizing power from on high to be in control of our lives. God’s energizing power from on high works in us, but only to the degree that we are willing to yield ourselves to God’s use in our ministry of reconciliation.
The most dangerous and harmful detriments to our growth is passivity, putting our mind in neutral and coasting, sitting back and waiting for God to do everything is not God’s way to maturity. Our old pattern for thinking and responding to our sin-trained flesh must be transformed by the renewing of our mind, it is our responsibility to change our behavior by putting to death the deeds of the body.
Romans 1:13 - We cannot base our self-worth or our personal success on our desires, no matter how godly they may be, because we cannot control their fulfillment. When a desire is wrongly elevated to a goal, and that goal is frustrated, we must deal with all the anger, anxiety, and depression which may accompany that failure. Dealing with the disappointments of unmet desires is a lot easier then dealing with the anger, anxiety, and depression of goals, we would do well to distinguish goals from desires.
When we begin to align our goals with God’s goals for our ambassadorship, and our desires with his desires, we will rid our life of a lot of anger, anxiety, and depression. We can know on a moment-by-moment basis if our ambassadorship is properly aligned with his truth. God has established a feedback system which is designed to grab our attention, so we can examine the validity of our goal. That system is our emotions. When an experience leaves us feeling angry, anxious, or depressed, those emotional signposts are there to alert us that we may be cherishing a faulty goal.
Any goal which can be blocked by forces we cannot control (other then God’s goal) is not a healthy goal, because our success in that arena is out of our hands. When we feel anxious in a task, our anxiety may be signaling the uncertainty of a goal we have chosen. We are wishing something will happen, but we have no guarantee that it will. We can control some of the factors, but not all of them.
When we base our future success on something that can never happen, we have an impossible goal. Our depression is a signal that our goal, no matter how noble, may never be reached. Depression often signals that we are desperately clinging to a goal we have little or no chance of achieving, and that is not a healthy goal. Feelings of anger should prompt us to reexamine our ambassadorship, and the mental goals we have formulated to accomplish God’s message of reconciliation.
Romans 1:14 - The Bema has to do with the building project. The building is the Body of Christ. We as members of the Body of Christ, are co-labors with God in the building project. The Chief Architect for the building project, the master builder is the apostle Paul. The blueprint for the proper construction of this building has been given to apostle Paul for the work crew of which we are apart.
Paul’s ministry was distinct, because Paul was the chief, the head architect for the Age of Grace for the building called the Body of Christ. The Bema of Christ, issues with which we need to be concerned, understand God does not want us to be unaware of the evaluation we will face.
The Bema has to do with the building project, remember whenever we see those words “labour or work” in Paul’s epistle, they are always in direct connection to the Bema of Christ. What is this blueprint? Paul’s epistles are laid out in the manner of Doctrine, Reproof, Correction, issues.
Paul tells us what those issues are in those epistles, and when it comes to our reward worthiness or not being worthy of reward, Faith, Hope, Love, are the maturity of the believer is all about, and the maturity of the believer is what the evaluation at the Bema of Christ is all about.