Romans – Week 5 – Chapter 12
1 And so, dear brothers and sisters,[a] I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.[b]
2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
- The Jews are still making animal sacrifices even though the ultimate sacrifice, Jesus Christ, had been made on the cross.
- Believers are to present their own bodies as a living sacrifice -But how??
- Verse 2 says this is done when we stop conforming to the world and let the transforming power of the Holy Spirit direct our lifestyle
- When Paul says in verse 2, “and be not conformed,” he’s talking about a continuing relationship with God as a living sacrifice which sustains a continuing attitude towards our world order from God’s perspective.
- Just remember the contrast: Observant Jews killed a sacrifice as an offering to God; committed Christians present THEMSELVES to God as LIVING SACRIFICES.
3 Because of the privilege and authority[a] God has given me, I give each of you this warning: Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us.[b]
4 Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function,
5 so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.
6 In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you.
7 If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well.
8 If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.
- Paul’s main point: different believers exercise their faith through service in many different ways.
- These gifts are not equivalent to personalities or temperaments
- These are gifts rendered by a believer when full of the Holy Spirit and led by the Holy Spirit.
9 Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good.
10 Love each other with genuine affection,[a] and take delight in honoring each other.
11 Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.[b]
12 Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.
13 When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you. Don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them.
15 Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.
16 Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!
17 Never pay back evil with more evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable.
18 Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.
19 Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,”[c says the Lord.
20 Instead, “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.”[d]
21 Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.
- What do you look for to identify a Spirit led believer?
- Galatians 5:22-23 Galatians 5:22-23 (see notes) says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”
- If a believer is struggling with some of the attributes in the above scripture, what can we assume about that believer?
- How can a believer stay strong in the attributes described in Galatians? (Spiritual Hygiene! Reading your bible, Praying, Fellowship with other believers, sharing your faith through ministry)
- Verses 9-21 will all come naturally when you practice sound Spiritual Hygiene and remain led by the Holy Spirit.