Summary: Many professing Christians TALK about serving God and some even DO THINGS in service to the Lord, but how many of these Christians GIVE their lives to the Lord, actually sacrificing their will for the Lord’s?
The Christian’s Reasonable Service to God
Theme: That Christians understand their lives to be a living sacrifice unto the Lord.
A. Because we live in the flesh many strive to understand man’s relationship with God from a fleshly
1. Thus, “the mind of man plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.” Prov. 16:9
2. So, we learn from divine authority that “it is not in man who walks to direct his own steps.” Jer.
B. Until we learn from God His ways and thoughts (Isa. 55:8-9) the gospel way of living will confound
us in seemingly endless contradictions.
3. To be made alive in Christ we must die to sin.
4. To be first in the kingdom you must be last.
5. For us to have peace with God we must fight against Satan.
6. We are saved by grace but must still live by faith.
C. With this understanding in mind Christians are taught to be living sacrifices. Rom. 12:1-2
7. From our fleshly vantage point – taking things literally – “living sacrifices” is impossible.
8. He wants the dead in their sins to made alive by His grace.
9. Being raised in Christ Jesus, you now belong to God and His holy nation.
10. As such, your reasonable service to Him is a life-long sacrifice that is holy and acceptable.
I. A LIVING SACRIFICE
A. History behind the concept of sacrifice.
11. The word first used of Jacob’s sacrifice to the Lord as a covenant was made between him and
Laban. Gen. 31:54 (also Gen. 46:1)
12. We then see the word used of the congregation of Israel going out to sacrifice to God.
13. From there we see the word used regarding the tabernacle and how these sacrifices were to be
done – via the priests – in a manner acceptable before God. Exo. 20:24; 29:28; 30:20
B. The concept of a sacrifice.
14. When an animal was slaughtered as a sacrifice it was the shedding of blood that served as a
principle: without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins. Lev. 17:11 (Heb. 9:22)
15. Through the shedding of blood and forgiveness of sins – man is now made holy and acceptable
before God just as the sacrifice that has been sanctified for an offering to God. cp. Exo. 29:37
C. Thus, to be a living sacrifice seems physically contradictory to the very core of the term sacrifice.
16. Yet, when understanding the concept of a sacrifice and learning the “mind of God” (cp. 1 Cor.
2:9) Christians can ascertain all that is involved in a living sacrifice.
17. We learn the paradox of dying daily in service to the Lord.
18. We learn that we are set apart – holy – as we give our lives in service to the Lord.
19. Finally, we learn that this type of sacrifice is the way of faith – thus acceptable/pleasing to our
God. Cp. Heb. 11:6
II. A HOLY SACRIFICE
A. A simple study of the word holy reveals its meaning: to be set apart; sanctified and also means pure.
20. God expected that the people he set apart would live set apart lives. Exo. 19:4-6; 28:2
21. Thus, sacrifices offered for the atonement of men (who would sin) needed to be holy as well.
B. Furthering the concept of a sacrifice.
22. The varied sacrifices under the Law of Moses were explicitly detailed: burnt, grain, peace, sin,
and guilt offerings/sacrifices. Lev. 1-5
23. For the sacrifice to be holy both the offerer and its sacrifice needed to be holy. Exo. 29:1
C. In like manner our service to God must be set part; to be pure.
24. We need to “walk worthy” (Eph. 4:1) of God’s calling by being holy. 1 Pet. 1:13-16
25. Our set apart lives are in polar contrast to the ways of the world. cp. Eph. 5:15-21
III. AN ACCEPTABLE SACRIFICE
A. Before we can live a life of daily dying (living sacrifice) our minds must be transformed.
26. We cannot minimize the importance of our sacrifices before God: as Nadab and Abihu were
guilty of doing. Cp. Lev. 10:1-2
27. Instead we need to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. Rom. 12:2
B. What makes our lives acceptable before God is that it is lived by faith. Heb. 11:6
28. We learn the mind of God. 1 Cor. 2:9-11
29. We accept His pure and holy way of living. Rom. 6:17
30. We live according to His good pleasure. Eph. 2:10
A. Our reasonable service to God is simple: live by dying daily.
B. Doing so will make us holy and acceptable before our God.