That You May Discern the Will of God

Romans 12:1 ESV

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.”

What are the mercies of God? They are God’s graces to us – his compassion, his kindness, his willingness to forgive us our sins and to empower us to live holy and godly lives, pleasing to him, and his dying on a cross for our sins so that we can be made righteous in him via God-given faith in him. For Jesus died on that cross that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. By his grace we are saved.

So, by God’s mercies we are able to be saved from our slavery (addiction) to sin so that we can walk in holiness and righteousness, in the power and wisdom of God. We are able by faith in him to be set free from our captivity to sin so that sin no longer has control over our lives. Now Jesus can be master of our lives and we can live for him and no longer as captives to sin, and that is GOOD NEWS!

For Jesus Christ did not give his life up for us on that cross so that we would remain addicted to sin. These groups which tell you that you will always be an addict are lying to you. Now you may always be an addict, by choice, if you choose to be, but if you have genuinely put your faith and trust in Jesus Christ, and you have turned away from your sins to follow the Lord, then the Bible declares you free from addiction to sin, but you have to live in it.

Therefore, because God’s mercies to us provided a way for us to be delivered from our enslavement to sin so that we can now be slaves of God and of his righteousness, in the power of God, we are to give our lives over to our Lord as living sacrifices. We are to submit to his authority over our lives, and we are to surrender our lives to Jesus Christ to now live for him in his ways, in accord with his truth and righteousness, by his power.

Our bodies are to be given over to the Lord as living sacrifices to him, holy and acceptable to God. And “holy” means to be separate (unlike, different) from the world because we are being conformed to the likeness of Christ. And a sacrifice is something we willingly surrender to God and it no longer belongs to us to do with it what we want. And this is our spiritual worship of God to have our lives surrendered to the Lord Jesus to do his will.

So, although singing songs of praise to our Lord, and to encourage the body of Christ in our walks of faith, is part of our worship of God, singing praise and worship songs alone does not constitute true worship of God. For if our lives are not surrendered to the Lord Jesus, and if we are not living holy lives unto God, separate from this sinful world, then we can’t worship God in spirit and in truth because we aren’t in fellowship with him.

Romans 12:2 ESV

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

When we are conformed to something we have taken on its character, we have given it our allegiance and our obedience. We are following it and we are letting it determine our steps and how we should live. We have adapted to its ways, which is then evident in the words that we speak and in the things that we do, as well as in our attitudes and thinking and believing. So being conformed to the world is being like the world in thought and deed.

But if we are to be followers of Jesus, and if our lives are to be presented to him as living sacrifices, and if we are to live holy lives separate from the world, then we can’t be conformed to the ways and thinking of this world. For we are either being conformed to the likeness of Christ or we are conformed to the ways of this sinful world, but we can’t do both. We can’t have one foot in the world and one foot in heaven. We have to choose!

In today’s modern flesh-driven and market-driven “churches” here in America there are so many people professing faith in Jesus Christ who are not living much different from the people of the world. It is indistinguishable now between the church and the world for they just blend in together, although this is not true of every Christian or of every church congregation. But sadly it is an overall picture of the American church today.

But we are instructed in Scripture to flee Babylon and to come out from among her, and to come out from the world and to be separate, and to not be unequally yoked together with the people of this sinful world. Now this does not say that we should not associate at all with the people of the world. We should. But we should not be in intimate fellowship with them, doing the same things they do, thinking the same thoughts they think.

Rather we are to be becoming like Jesus Christ in character and mind and heart, and our lives should be dedicated to doing his will and to walking in his truth and righteousness, and to sharing the truth of the gospel with people so that they may be saved from their sins and have the hope of eternal life with God. But we need to make certain we are teaching the truth of the gospel and not these man-created gospels which tickle itching ears.

For, it is the will of God that we should die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. It is his will that we be crucified with him in death to sin and resurrected with him to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. And it is his will that we should no longer be addicted to sin but that we should be slaves of God and of his righteousness, for this is the reason why Jesus died on that cross.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-10; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Ac 26:18; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

You are Loving and Forgiving

An Original Work / February 19, 2012
Based off Psalm 86

You are loving and forgiving,
Jesus, Savior, King of kings.
You provided our redemption.
By Your blood You set us free.
You are gracious; full of mercy.
No deeds can compare with Yours.
Great are You; there is none like You.
Glory be to Your name.

Teach me Your way, and I’ll walk in it.
O Lord, I will walk in Your truth.
May I not have a heart divided,
That Your name I give honor to.
I will praise You, O Lord, my Savior,
For great is Your love toward me.
You have delivered me from my sins.
Your grace has pardoned me.

You, O Lord, are full of compassion,
Slow to anger, bounteous in love;
Faithful to fulfill all You promise;
Glory be to Your name above.
Hear, O Lord, and answer Your servant.
You are my God. I trust in You.
Turn to me and grant Your strength to me.
You are my comforter.

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