Romans 12:1-2 (NLT)
1 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice�the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2 Don�t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God�s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
In these verses the apostle leads us to our duty to God. We surrender ourselves to God. We must be willing to give up who we are in the world and allow Christ to work through us to transform us into a living and holy sacrifice. We allow God to work in our lives to bring a close and intimate fellowship with Him. Allowing Christ to work in our lives we learn from Him instead of copying behaviors and customs from the world.
In the New Living Translation version of The Bible, it says in Mark 2:15, �Later, Levi invited Jesus and his disciples to his home as dinner guests, along with many tax collectors and other disreputable sinners. (There were many people of this kind among Jesus� followers.) � From this verse we know Jesus did not separate himself from the sinners of the world. Jesus was around many people who the Jewish leaders considered to be very immoral. However, we also know Jesus was without sin so even though Jesus was in a setting with many immoral people, Jesus was Himself, behaving as He would and not committing sin. He was there to minister to sinners and where else could He minister if He was not right in their midst. As Christians we are called to minister to sinners. We cannot separate ourselves from them, but we can keep from following behaviors of the world. Some of us are at different points in our Christian walk. Some have matured and can restrain from sin. Other may be weak and may need to keep a distance from certain situations. For instance I met a man whose internet company filters out adult material as a service. It is his job to review a website and decide if the site needs to be blocked by the service. There are some people who may not be able to do that job. In the same way there are some Christians who may not be ready to minister to certain people. But as Christ matures us and transforms us we gain the confidence to minister without being a part of the world. Pray God would continue to transform you away from the behaviors of the world and you more towards being like Christ. Minister to those in need and do not look down on sinners, but instead graciously see their need to be removed from the sin they live in.