In Romans 12 the Apostle Paul gives us characteristics that we can live by and become a better person living in the light of Christ. Paul first begins by encouraging us in Romans 12 on how to present ourselves acceptable to Christ in serving Him and to use our gifts to the benefit of helping one another in sharing our faith.
Romans 12:2 “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” ESV
The Apostle Paul then takes us into the how we, as Christians, are to behave in our hearts and act toward one another which is presented in the following fourteen traits taken from Romans 12: 9-21
- Let love be without hypocrisy. Love must be genuine and sincere from the heart, not fake, phony and false. Love goes way beyond just a feeling and is best described in 1 Corinthians 1:13:13, where we learn that without love, we are nothing. We learn love bears all things, endures all things and that love never fails. Love is God’s greatest commandment Matthew 22:37-40.
- Hate what is evil. We learn that the fear of the Lord is to hate evil, along with pride arrogance, evil ways and a perverse mouth, as found in Proverbs 8:13. also (Prov. 3:7; 16:6; 16:17; 4:24)
- Cling to what is good. We learn that by doing good we will not lack any good thing Psalm 34:10. (Also Rom. 8:28; 2 Tim 2:15, Matt. 12:35)
- Be kind to one another. Kindness comes from the heart and has no room for rudeness indifference or insensitivity. Kindness is a product, the fruit of the Holy Spirit in Galatians 5:22. Next to Godliness, we see in; 2 Peter 1:7, is brotherly kindness and brotherly love. The sacrifice of our Lord and Savior is the epitome of His loving kindness to all of humanity.
- Give one another honor and respect. We learn to live by the Golden rule as found in Matthew 7:12. We respect those in authority, and before honor is humility as in Proverbs 15:33. We follow what Jesus spoke in John 5:23 that all shall honor the Father and the Son above all else.
- Be diligent, loyal and fervent in spirit in serving the Lord. Never lose our energy in speaking our faith and the love of the Lord to others. God is a rewarder of those who seek him out with all diligence Hebrew 11:6 also Prov. 4:23; 11:27
- Rejoice always in Hope. Our greatest hope is living with our Lord forever. Psalm 23:6 those who believe are sealed with the Holy Spirt that has been poured out into our hearts Romans 5:5; also Rom.15:13: 2 Thess.5:16; Ps 119:162
- Be patient in times of trouble. When the word of God is planted deep within your heart, good things will follow, Luke 8:15. God is with us always Matthew 28:20
- Be steadfast in prayer. Prayer is the lifeblood of communion with God as is the air we breathe. Pray often and always, 2 Thessalonians 5:16. The Lord’s prayer Matthew 6:9-13; Psalm 23 the Lord is my shepherd. Distribute to the poor and the infirmed with hospitality. Giving from the heart and having compassion for others with less is the hallmark of a Christian. A willingness to share not only money, but our home, abilities, talents and time.
- Bless those who curse you. This is patience and forgiveness, along with praying that one day they will see the light in Jesus Christ. (See Matthew 5:44) Forgiveness of those who have hurt you, or wronged you releases you from the bitterness, resentment and anger in your own heart. It’s good to forgive best to forget and move on with your life.
- Do not be wise in your own eyes. Fear the Lord and depart from evil. (Proverbs 3:7) The lord searches the heart. (Proverbs 21:2) Be humble (James 4:10; Prov. 3:34) Be swift to hear slow to speak. (James 1:19)
- Repay no evil for evil. The Son of God, Jesus Christ, sacrificed His life because of His love for us and said shortly before His death in Luke 23:34 “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.” Let us always remember these words in our heart and follow this glorious act of grace.
- Live peacefully with all men. One of God’s desires is that we all live in peace and in harmony with our fellow man. Isaiah 9:6-7 calls the coming of Christ Jesus “The Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” At the birth of Christ in Luke 2:14 “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace, goodwill toward men! “Jesus himself said in John 16:33 “In Me you shall have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.
Do, be, and live by these traits and the Lord will be with you in all that you do. Above all else do nothing without love and all in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus.
Start today – Don’t delay and change your life - Let the power of God’s words speak to you and be filled with a peace and joy beyond measure.
Content of this blog taken from the book “Heart and Soul” which is available either going to Amazon directly or hitting the home page at the top of this blog and scrolling down to books.