We will very briefly survey this last section of Paul’s argument here, for we will consider it in detail later in our series. The righteousness which men lacked in chapters 1-3a, which God imputed to believers in chapters 3b-5, and which He has required and empowered in chapters 6-8, is now described in more practical terms. The righteousness of God is to be reflected (partially and imperfectly) in His children. The broad forms this righteousness should take are outlined by Paul in chapters 12-15. Romans 12:1-2 1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.  2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

  • Paul begins by taking up the sacrificial imagery and terminology of the Old Testament. The Christian’s righteousness should not be viewed as a reluctant compliance with what God has demanded, but as a grateful response to all that God has bestowed upon us in His mercy. Gratitude is the basis of the service of which Paul speaks here.
  • Rather than presenting animals and other items as a sacrifice, we are to present ourselves (much like Paul called us to do in Romans 6). We are to serve God by setting aside those attitudes and practices of the world in which we live, and to be renewed in our minds with the knowledge of that which is the will of God, which is both good and pleasing to Him (Romans 12:1-2).
  • The first area of sacrificial service is in using the spiritual gifts and enablements which God has given us for service. Every gift is to be employed in a way that will serve God and benefit others. The pitfalls of exercising our gifts are also suggested (12:3-8). Chapter 12 ends with more general principles which are to guide us in our conduct and in our relationships with others (12:9-21).

  Romans 12:3-8 3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.  4 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office:  5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.  6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;  7 Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching;  8 Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness. Romans 12:9-21 9 Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.  10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;  11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord;  12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;  13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.  14 Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not.  15 Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep.  16 Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.  17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.  18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.  19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.  20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.  21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.  







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