Many of us who go to church every week still live our lives like the world does. We sin like everyone else and have the same struggles. There is really no difference in our lives. There is a big difference between conversion (getting saved) and sanctification (growth in likeness to Christ). To grow into the likeness of Christ, we must read the Word of God frequently so that we will “be transformed by the renewing of our minds, so that we may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”(Rom 12:2, Eph 4:23)You see, sanctification truly begins when conversion ends and is a daily work in progress where we grow into the image of God and develop the mind of God.
Consider this: Our brains are big computers (CPU), and our believe systems are the Operating System which makes the computer work. Before we are born again, our believe systems are worldly belief systems. By reading the Bible frequently, we help to renew our minds and belief systems so that they are transformed into the likeness of Christ–into a godly worldview.When we spend time in the word of God, we experience transformation in our minds and develop the ability to think the thoughts of God, speak the words of God, and do God’s will.
That is what the bible means by renewing our minds which is also what sanctification is all about. That is how we pursue holiness because holiness basically means being of one mind with God, it means have the same belief system as God! When you read and study the Word of God, you rub your thoughts against God’s thoughts and your thoughts are transformed by that “osmosis”. Your mind is connected with God’s mind which is revealed in the word of God that you read and study. You see, God “has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires” (2 Pet 1:3-4 NIV) This knowledge and promises are no use for us if we don’t know that we have them. The only way to know them is to read and study God’s word. Then the Holy Spirit can use them to help us live godly lives. “Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God.” (2 Cor. 7:1) Start reading and studying God’s word, it’ll change your life!