Summary: A scholar once said: "Matthew through John gives us the Gospel (good news) of Jesus Christ¨ The Acts of the Apostles give us the Gospel of the Holy Spirit¨ But it is in Romans that we are given the Gospel of God¡¨
INTRODUCTION: What we have been learning so far in this series is mainly on the subject of church doctrine
(A highly oversimplified look at the last few weeks would be this)
„X The Doctrine of Sin is that we are all guilty of sin, all in need of a Savior
„X The Doctrine of Righteousness is that it is imputed unto the believer when he becomes justified of sin by the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ
„X The Doctrine of Sanctification is the process by which the Holy Spirit molds and shapes us to be more and more like Christ
Last week you will notice that Romans reared from discussing church doctrine to talking about the Jews
In fact many have said that you could leave out Romans 9-11 altogether and the book would never miss a beat because chapter eight is actually the segue into chapter twelve
The reason Paul so pointedly changes from doctrine to speaking of the Jews specifically is because the doctrines discussed in the first eight chapters were being disputed by the Jewish people
***Now he returns to his original premise of Christian doctrine and begins to give the believers in Rome practical ways to apply these doctrines
He tells us to offer ourselves as a ¡§living sacrifice¡¨
Illustration: ¡§Pictures in instructions¡¨ Years ago instruction booklets only came with just the words. Little by little they began adding pictures to the words and now whenever you buy something with ¡¥assembly required¡¦, it comes with a full color diagram and very little words. My computer came with no words, just a poster with color coded cords to stick into the slots.
The point is this, ¡¥It is much easier to apply something we can see than something we just read¡¦
Jesus knew this, which is why He spoke in word pictures rather than just teaching doctrine all the time
Paul understood this too and that is why we he now takes the time to explain the application in the form of a word picture
He begins by bringing the word picture of the sacrifices given in the Temple
People would bring animals and sacrifice them to the Lord
This act of worship was no longer needed because Jesus, the Lamb of God, had been slain to take away the sin of the world
So now a totally new act of sacrifice is required
No longer were we being required to bring an offering for death
But now we are called to bring our lives as a living offering
Romans 12 gives us application about what it means to be a ¡§living sacrifice¡¨
I. A living sacrifice does not conform this world
a. Romans 12:2 ¡§And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,¡¨
b. Did you know that Christians are supposed to be peculiar?
i. Some of us don¡¦t have to try too hard (Ha Ha)
ii. We are called to be different from the world
c. Why would God call us to pattern our lives different than the world?
i. Look around us, are the world¡¦s values God¡¦s values?
ii. Not at all; the world values:
1. Outer beauty, while God values inner beauty
2. Monetary wealth, while God values spiritual wealth
3. Power, while God says blessed are the meek