"Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God..."
Text: Romans 12:1
A TREMENDOUS GOSPEL
The apostle Paul devoted much time to explain “the gospel of God” to the believers who made up the Church in Rome. And what a powerful and unique Gospel he presented (Romans 1-12). The Gospel Paul proclaimed featured wondrous attributes of God. His abundant grace, mercy and love stand out above many other glorious attributes!
AN APPROPRIATE RESPONSE
One can write endlessly about the Lord. But there must also come a time when you must consider making an appropriate response to this great God and Saviour.
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God,
that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable
to God, which is your reasonable service.”
1. “I beseech you”
Paul was consistent with what he had written earlier about “the law”. He would not subject his readers to “another law”. Instead, he sought to “beseech” or “plead” with his readers to consider making an appropriate response to all that God had done in making salvation possible at all!
2. “By the mercies of God”
The word “mercies” encompasses other thoughts like “grace and love”. Only a great and merciful God can offer such a plan of salvation through the death of His own Son, Jesus Christ. A genuine believer cannot but be deeply moved as he comprehends and experiences the mercies of God.
3. “Present your bodies a living sacrifice”
Paul was steeped in the old ways of Israel. The sacrificial system of worship taught by Moses offered rich spiritual lessons.
a) Making a sacrifice to God in worship was a deeply meaningful experience.
b) Great care must be taken that every sacrifice made would be “holy and acceptable to God”.
c) What if these concepts were transferred and applied to the Christian believer?
d) What a wonderful and acceptable offering it would be- to offer oneself, in totality, as “a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God”.
4. “Which is your reasonable service”
And would we have much to boast about if we were to hearken to Paul’s words? Hardly, for to give of ourselves wholly to God, would only be “reasonable service”.