“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.” Romans 12:1
In view of the great “mercies of God” in the first eleven chapters of Romans…
– Deliverance from sin’s penalty through faith in Christ’s death 1:1-5:10a).
– Deliverance from sin’s power through faith in Christ’s life (5:10b-8:39).
– Deliverance of Israel from God’s wrath through faith in Christ’s death and life (9:1-11:36).
…the apostle Paul challenges his readers to live a life of surrender (“present your bodies a living sacrifice”) to God (12:1) by being “transformed” from the inside out “by the renewing of” their minds through the Word of God and the Holy Spirit (12:2a; 8:9-11; 15:4) so they may please God by doing His “will” (12:2b). This spiritual transformation will enable them to serve God through the loving use of their spiritual gifts in the body of Christ (12:3-21).
God’s mercy does not minimize service. God’s mercy maximizes service! When we understand and experience the depths of God’s mercy toward us, we will want to surrender our entires lives to Him as a way of saying, “Thank You, Lord, for being so merciful to me when You saved me from sin’s penalty the moment I believed in Your Son, Jesus Christ (Romans 1:1-5:10a; cf. Titus 3:5-7). Thank You for showing mercy to me when You gave me Your Holy Spirit Who raised You from the dead to empower me to be saved from the power of sin in my Christian life (Romans 6:1-8:39). Even though I do not understand Your wisdom and ways (Romans 9:1-11:36), I do want to surrender my entire being to You for Your use and glory (12:1). I no longer want to be conformed to this wicked world, but I want You to transform me into the likeness of Your Son as I learn to yield to the Holy Spirit and to the holy Scriptures (12:2). Use me in any way You choose to lovingly build up Your church for Your glory (12:3-21).”