A Living Sacrifice

Romans 12:1
"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."

Paul has explained the gospel, the mercies of God, in the first 11 chpaters. He now urges the Romans because of those mercies to offer themselves to God. But he borrows sacrificial language. Bodies were presented for sacrifice at the temple for several reasons. One was to atone for sins. Another was to devote yourself to God. Another was to celebrate God’s peace with you. The idea here is devotion, consecration, an expected response to God’s grace.

Notice two things. First, we present our bodies. This isn’t just about our heart or our soul, our service to God involves our bodies. The first and great commandment is to love God with all your heart, soul, yes, but go on, and with all your strength. Your bodies can be holy and acceptable to God. What have you done with your body this week that pleased or displeased God?

Second, this is your reasonable service. Thanksgiving and living the holy life He saved you for. We are called into service, drafted if you will, into the most just war you can imagine. Will you serve or dodge? Have you been aiding and abetting the enemy by living contrary to the kingdom of God?


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