“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.” (Romans 12:2)
Paul is telling everyone to be a non-conformist. He makes it crystal clear not to be conformed to this world. Why? Because this world is home for the devil and becoming “worldly” just means becoming more like Satan.
But emphasis must be placed on, “be not conformed” to this world. It implies being forced to comply with the rules and standards of this world. It is as if we are being shaped and molded into a worldly creature against our will.
In reality the situation is more like a seashell on a beach. The waves and the grit of the sand slowly and over much time forms and shapes the seashell into the condition we discover them in. The world does the same thing to each of us. We get knocked over by the force of life in to the sandy grit of its ways. At first we get back up on our own free will only to find that life just knocks us back down again. Over time we tire of the ordeal and simply conform to the world.
But we are not to be conformed to this world but transformed. We are literally to change from one to another. How do we do this? By the renewing of our mind. A more accurate translation would be to renovate your mind. When we renovate a house we tear down the old and rotten but leave the “bones” or the structure of the house intact. We then rebuild with new walls, paint, flooring, etc. This is what we are to do with our minds. We are to tear down the old and rotten ideas and “stinkin’ thinkin’” of our past and build a new with the word of God.
Only through this transformation can we prove or recognize as genuine the word of God. And only after remodeling ourselves after Christ can we discover “what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
And be not conformed to this world