Summary: Romans Chapter 12 in the Series of Sermons on Romans
THE PROOF IS IN THE PUDDING
Romans 12:1-2, 9-21
We’re accustomed to thinking of worship as the prayers, songs, Bible reading, preaching, offering taking and communion on Sunday. It is true; a lot of genuine worship happens that way. And God is pleased with that. It really matters to Him. And it is important for us. It adjusts our perspective on reality, on right and wrong, on the permanent and the temporary—it puts us in helpful rather than hurtful company.
But, Paul says, “Here is your spiritual worship.”
• Do not be conformed to the pattern of this world.
• Be transformed; and that starts in your mind.
• And that transformation works itself out in a body offered as a living sacrifice.
Paul was not one to leave things in the category of hazy generality. “Here’s what I mean. Love like you are supposed to. Exercise the kind of grace that you have received. Live as a living sacrifice.”
I. Exercise Extremely Active Grace in the Church Family.
A. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.
1. Gayle Sayers (star football player) wrote a book entitled I Am Third. That’s the idea.
2. The single issue that assaults our country more than any other is probably this: “I am devoted to me. My rights! To thunder with you.”
3. Most likely it is the single issue that causes the most pain in the church. “I need the attention. I want it this way. Me-my-I-mine!”
B. Share with God’s people who are in need.
1. Be alert, and do it before they ask.
2. Do it even if the need comes from their own carelessness.
C. Practice hospitality. It’s not just for the needy. It is also to keep others from becoming emotionally needy.
D. Rejoice with those who rejoice, even if they have more successes than you do. And mourn with those who mourn, even if you have not been treated that way yourself.
E. Be willing to associate yourself with those in low position.
1. We’re quite ready to associate “up.”
2. How about finding a way to meet on common ground with people who may be looking at themselves as inferior?
II. Exercise a Focused Grace Toward Those from Whom You Are Separated.
A. Be faithful in prayer, about those you don’t care for, and even toward those who seem to have been enemies.
B. Live in harmony with one another.
1. We each sing our note. It is often a different note. It may mean adjusting my note a little bit in order that our notes sound good together.
2. We don’t have to sing in unison. We just have to appreciate the other person’s note. Let’s put our notes together and sing to Jesus, without insisting, “Now, if you were really spiritual, you would sing my note.”
III. Exercise a Genuinely Active Grace Toward Everybody.
A. Bless those who persecute you. There are dual doors between the rooms of our lives, like there are in some hotels. Leave your side open.
B. As much as you can, live at peace with everybody. If collisions occur, the initiation must not come from a Christian.
C. Do not take revenge. That’s God’s job.
D. Overcome evil with good.
IV. Display Grace with a Spirit That Shows That You Know That You Are Graced.
A. Don’t lack zeal. Keep your fervor. Serve the Lord. Don’t give up.
B. Be patient in affliction. This is not the last chapter.
C. Be joyful in hope.
Read 1 Corinthians 15. Since you have hope, act like it.