“Do not be conformed…but be transformed.” Ro 12:2 NKJV
What does it mean to give yourself fully to God? (1) It’s an act of worship. “Offer your bodies…this is your spiritual act of worship” (v.1 NIV). Worship isn’t just attending Sunday service, singing praises and saying prayers. “This people…honor Me with their lip service, but they remove their hearts far from Me” (Isa 29:13 NAS). It calls for surrendering your heart to God twenty-four hours of every day; whether you’re alone or in a crowd, at work, enjoying recreation, spending family time, at school, on a date, or just walking the dog. If your heart isn’t moving you, your behaviors will only be an act of reluctant compliance rather than one of joyful commitment. Surrendering to God isn’t a part-time thing done for your own benefit; it’s a full-time act of worship done for God’s benefit. (2) It’s a response to God’s generosity. “In view of God’s mercy…offer your bodies” (Ro 12:1 NIV). God doesn’t say, “If you don’t surrender I will punish you.” There’s no arm twisting. You don’t submit through clenched teeth because of fear; no, it’s a response to a debt. Everything God asks is initiated by His giving. Your repentance is a response to His love. Your tithe is a response to His blessing. Your obedience is a response to His promises. God’s grace is never “a deal,” it’s the “free gift” of His love to the undeserving (See Ro 5:18). Therefore “in view of” (NIV)—as a rational response to—His mercy, “offer your bodies as living sacrifices.” It’s your “reasonable service” and it will be “acceptable to God.”
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