" And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. "
Similar to the phases in the life cycle of a butterfly, we go through phases in our Christian journey.
The word transform is translated from the Greek word "metamorphoÅ" from which we get the English word "metamorphosis," which means to change into another form.
In an insect, metamorphosis is the process of transformation from an immature form to an adult form in two or more distinct stages.
In a Christian's life, it is the process of transformation from the immature Christian to the mature Christian.
A butterfly starts its life as an egg. Butterfly eggs come in many colors and shapes. A Christian starts his life born of the incorruptible seed by the Word of God. (1 Peter 1:23). Christians come in many colors and shapes.
The larva (caterpillar) hatches from an egg and eats leaves or flowers almost constantly. The caterpillar molts (loses its old skin) many times as it grows. As the Christian constantly feeds on the Word of God, old thoughts and habits (inconsistent with God’s Will) fall away.
The Word of God is referred to as food.
- “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:" (1 Peter 2:2)
- ”How sweet are thy words unto my taste! Yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Psalm119:103)
- Jesus gives living water. (John 4:10)
- Jesus is the Bread of Life. (John 6:35)
- “But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.” (Hebrews 5:14)
The caterpillar spins a cocoon around its body and fastens itself to a plant. From the outside it looks as if it is resting. But on the inside, every part of the caterpillar is changing. This phase lasts from a few days to many months.
When the Christian wraps himself in the Word of God, by reading, studying, meditating and being a doer of the Word, He is transformed from the inside out.
The adult butterfly will continue the cycle and reproduce.
A mature Christian will continue the cycle and make disciples.
Jesus said in Matthew 28:19, "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, . . . teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you . . ."NIV
“And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others ” (2 Timothy 2:2) NIV
Following Paul’s principle of training others would initiate a chain reaction of multiplication that would cause the gospel to spread quickly.