Summary: The joy and satisfaction which so many Christian lack can be received only by surrendering back to the Lord what He has already given to us. When we surrender our body, mind and will to God as a living sacrifice, then we can truly render spiritual worshi
ROMANS 12: 1-2
A tearful distraught young woman approached a pastor who had been speaking on worship at a conference and told him that she could not live the Christian life the way she should. She said, "I'm frustrated. My worship experience is not meaningful and fulfilling as I know it should be. I don't have spiritual victory or a sense of accomplishment in my daily life either. I struggle with everyday obedience and am constantly defeated. Can you help me?"
He asked her how she had attempted to solve the problem. She responded, "I've tried everything. I've attended churches where they speak in tongues and have healings. I've tried speaking in tongues, been slain in the spirit, been prophesied over, but nothing helps. I'm not satisfied, I need God to do more for me."
The pastor replied that he thought he could see the problem. The key to true worship, spiritual victory and true happiness is not in trying to get all we can from God, but in giving all that we are and have to God. So many people come to God, come to worship, praying, hoping for personal benefit. But the proper focus is not only what we want to receive but on what we should give.
The Christian is called to serve God with his whole being. This sacrificial service occurs in and becomes worship. True worship includes many things such as prayer, praise, thanksgiving, and serving God by serving others. But above all else, our supreme act of worship is to offer ourselves wholly and continually to the Lord as living sacrifices. Till we give our body, mind and will as a living sacrifice to God, our worship will not satisfy as it should, because we have not given as we should. Remember, it is in giving that we receive.
The joy and satisfaction which so many Christian lack can be received only by surrendering back to the Lord what He has already given to us. When we surrender our body, mind and will to God as a living sacrifice, then we can truly render spiritual worship (CIT).
I. THE BASIS OF SURRENDER, 1a.
II. THE ACT OF SURRENDER, 1b.
III. THE TRANSFORMATION OF SURRENDER, 2a.
IV. THE PROOF OF SURRENDER, 2b.
The grace of obedience is urged upon us by God's mercy in the begin of verse 1. "I urge you therefore brethren by the mercies of God,"
Paul begins to convey by the verb urge (parakaleo) a mixture of entreaty and authority. The meaning of urge is "calling alongside," here in a context of exhorting, admonishing or encouraging. The people he was loving exhorting were the brethren. The brethren are those who have received a new heart and a new inner desire. The gentle command, conveyed by urge can only be obeyed by brethren, by those who already belong to God's family. The unbeliever cannot dedicate themselves without reservation to the Lord.
Therefore refers back to the previous four verses and is even based on all that has come before. Therefore, because "for Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen"(11:36).
Therefore, because of the mercies of God discussed in the first eleven chapters of Romans. The motivation and reason we can do what God is urging us to do is because of and by the mercies. What are some of those mercies Romans mentions? We have received grace, Jesus died in our place, we received been forgiven, justified freely by faith, been reconciled by Christ, given eternal life, given His life giving Spirit, being conformed to the image of His dear Son, have Christ interceding for us, have His love poured out into our hearts, have all things working for good, and possess His love that can not be separated from us. We have received faith, peace, hope, share in Christ's righteousness and His glory, and can call God Father because we are His children. What great mercies the child of God has received!
The most compelling motivation for faithful obedient living should not be the threat of discipline or the receiving of rewards but overflowing and unceasing gratitude for the marvelous mercies of God. Such mercies should motivate and empower believers to complete surrender and commitment to the Lord
II. THE ACT OF SURRENDER, (1b).
Verse 1 also commands an act of surrender for the mercies of God that urge and empower us to fully surrender our life to God. "Therefore, I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship."
Believers are here called upon to present or surrender their body as a living and holy sacrifice. This is the only proper, logical and appropriate response for one who has received God's fathomless mercies.