Weekly Devotional 11-20-17
Oh, That We (That I) Live According to Romans 12
“1I 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. 2And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. 3For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. 4For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.
6Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness. 9Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 11not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.
14Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. 16Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion. 17Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. 19Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, ‘Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,’ says the Lord. 20Therefore ‘If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.’ 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12 NKJV).
The apostle Paul wrote this because of all that God had done for them as recorded in chapters 1-11. The Christians of the Roman Church, both Jew and Gentile, were to present their bodies as living sacrifices for the Lord’s glorification and for the edifying of the church. There were jealousies in the Roman church between Gentile and Jewish believers that was causing friction and dissention. These frictions and dissentions did not glorify the Lord and it did not edify the church. It was also a terrible witness to those of the area who were not Christian. It was a condition of the heart, a spiritual matter, as the performances of one’s body is directed by his inner man, by his spirit (soul). In another letter, his letter to Galatians, Paul wrote that Christians are to be surrendered to the leading of the Holy Spirit. He would produce Godly fruit in them. If the Roman Christians lived by those fruits, what a testimony they would have been. Such fruit as love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentle-ness, and self-control. (See Galatians 5:22-26). Such fruit pushes out conceit and envy. It provokes peace, not hostility between persons. Paul wrote that for the Roman Christians to be successful they were to continue being transformed by the renewing of their minds.
Looking to the Bible Knowledge Commentary, edited by John Walvoord and Roy Zuck; SP publication 1983, for the Greek meaning of the word “transformed” we read; “The Greek verb translated ‘transformed’ (GRK: metamorphousthe) is seen in the English word ‘metamorphosis,’ a total change from inside out (cf. 2 Cor. 3:18). The key to this change is the ‘mind’ (GRK: noos), the control center of one’s attitudes, thoughts, feelings, and actions (cf. Eph. 4:22-23). As one’s mind keeps on being made new by the spiritual input of God’s Word, prayer, and Christian fellowship, his lifestyle keeps on being transformed.”
Thus, in essence Paul was admonishing the Roman Christians and the Galatian Christians to live Godly lives by continuously renewing their minds, living surrendered lives, and being filled with the Holy Spirit. Their conduct of life was to be conditioned by this renewing and filling. It is the same with us who are Christians today. If we are to be fruitful Christians, we must be filled with the Holy Spirit, and we must continuously renew our minds. Fruitful in the eyes of the Lord, not our own. He is walking in the midst of the Church, He sees what is going on. (See Reve-lation, chapter 1, 2 & 3). We should desire to be commended for the way we live our lives. We should desire that at the end of our sojourning, He says of us, “well done my faithful servant, enter into My rest.”
Transforming Power; The Work of God on Behalf of Man