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Expound: Romans 12 - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig
The Truth Network Radio
July 7, 2022 6:00 am

Expound: Romans 12 - Part A

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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July 7, 2022 6:00 am

We don't have to better ourselves before coming to Christ—He takes us as we are. In this message, Skip shares how God can use you mightily when you live in total surrender to Him.

Matt Slick Live!
Matt Slick
Matt Slick Live!
Matt Slick
Renewing Your Mind
R.C. Sproul
Chosen Generation
Pastor Greg Young

I do think it's good from time to time to review the mercies of God in your own life. To stop and think of how God has taken the moments, the relationships, the decisions, the mistakes, and woven them together in perfection to bring you to where you are.

When we give our lives to God, that's all He wants, just us as we are and open to His Spirit. Today on Connect with Skip Heitzig, Skip shares how the Lord works in you in a powerful way when you wholly devote yourself to Him. Now we want to tell you about a resource that will help you discover the Bible's extraordinary relevance and transforming power. Is your personal Bible study time frustrating? Do you need direction? You can study the Bible with a plan and see progress.

Listen to this from Skip Heitzig. All of us, we have trouble with certain parts of the Bible. Sometimes it's tough. But exposure to the Bible, a consistent exposure to the Bible, and I would add on a daily basis, with the consistent desire to obey it, will do more for you than any other thing that I can think of in your Christian walk. Take the mystery out of studying Scripture with Pastor Skip's book, How to Study the Bible and Enjoy It.

Our thanks to you when you give $25 or more to help connect more people with this Bible teaching ministry. Get the tips and tools you need to open your eyes, mind, and heart to God's truth. You don't have to be afraid of the Bible. Get your copy of How to Study the Bible and Enjoy It by Skip Heitzig today when you give online securely at slash offer or call 800-922-1888. Okay, we're in Romans chapter 12 as we join Skip Heitzig for today's study. Remember I gave you four sections that this book is divided into? And you know them, you've memorized them, you are a Roman expert at this point. You know that it talks about the wrath of God, the grace of God, the plan of God, and now the will of God.

See, I knew you knew it. So it's the graduation chapter because he says, I beseech you therefore. And the Christian life always has a therefore. That is, it leads you somewhere.

It brings you to a place of once you know something, now you do something with what you know. That's the therefore. Now, Paul does use this term quite a bit, but in the book of Romans, there are four transitional therefores.

And I just thought it would be appropriate if you kind of looked at them with me. So go back to chapter three and let's look at this first one. Romans chapter three. In verse 19, now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law that every mouth may be stopped and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore, by the deeds of the law, no flesh will be justified in his sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin. The first therefore is the therefore of condemnation. The gavel goes down, the judge says, Jew, Gentile, every person guilty before God. That's the first one.

The second one is in chapter five. So turn the page to chapter five, verse one. Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. The second therefore is the therefore of justification. Even though the gavel goes down and pronounces the world guilty because you've trusted in Christ, the gavel goes down on your behalf whereby God treats you as though you have never sinned.

Even though you have. Even though you're not perfect. He regards you, he treats you as though you were as righteous as his son. You have been justified by faith. So that's the that's the therefore of justification.

The third one is in chapter eight, verse one. There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the spirit. This is the therefore of exoneration. You are not condemned and nothing and no one can make you condemned. Again, the gavel has gone down on your behalf, pronouncing you as though you have not sinned, justified, and there is no condemnation and no one can bring condemnation against you.

You have been exonerated. And then in chapter 12, verse 1, is the fourth one. This is the therefore of consecration.

Because all of these are true, therefore I'm going to do something with myself, my body, my life. So he begins, I beseech you, I urge you, I beg you, I beseech you that 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. Notice that he says, I urge you or I beseech you by the mercies of God. In view of the mercies of God.

The J.B. Phillips translation, one that I'm going to refer to a few times tonight, the J.B. Phillips translation puts it this way, with eyes wide open to the mercies of God. Think of what God has done as recorded by Paul the Apostle. Guilty, all mankind, but God has declared you not guilty. He's forgiven you. He's justified you.

He's adopted you. He's promised you heaven after this life. He has promised to walk with you during the hardest times and make sense out of the trials of life.

In view of all of those things that we would call, and Paul sums up as the mercies of God, I beseech you therefore that you would present your bodies to God. I do think it's good from time to time to review the mercies of God in your own life. To stop and think of how God has taken the moments, the relationships, the decisions, the mistakes, and woven them together in perfection to bring you to where you are. My mind goes back to a young teenager who was aimless, often on drugs, unsure, insecure, no real future, but how that God in 1973 got ahold of his heart and saved me and gave me purpose. And then I think of not only that which is a great mercy of God, but that I was bouncing around to a few churches, but by the mercy of God, he let me reside finally at a Bible teaching church under a great mentor pastor who fed the word of God and gave a good role model of pastoral ministry. And then I think about feeling alone and wondering where the Lord would lead me after that, only to meet a beautiful young girl by the name of Lenya, and how in 1981 we got married and then the Lord put it on our hearts to go east, to go back to the place where we are now.

Way far away back east, and just let's just see what'll happen. Let's just give it a shot and see if the Lord's in it, only to discover by his mercy the Lord was in it. So it's good to stop, put the pause button on, and just review the mercies of God and how he has patched together your life for his purpose. So I beseech you, I urge you, therefore, because of all that God has done by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice.

Now that happens to be technical language. The word present yourself is a technical term often used in the Bible to refer to the Levitical priests who would offer their animal sacrifices on the altar. And you know, it says in the book of Peter, we are a holy priesthood, and we offer up spiritual sacrifices. The first sacrifice is ourself. We as a priest offer ourselves to God. We offer ourselves is ourself. We as a priest offer ourselves to God.

We do this every day, Lord, I'm yours, take my body, take my will, take my affections, take my passions, take my time and use me. You and I are priests. Imagine my mother who raised me as a Roman Catholic. The day I came to her and she said, as she looked at me, she goes, oh, I had always hoped that you would be a priest. And I smiled and said, Mom, your prayer's been answered.

I am one. And she gave me that quizzical look and I went on to explain how the Bible says we are a holy priesthood. And I offer these sacrifices to God, as do you, every day.

So here's the problem, though. When you have a dead sacrifice, it can't go anywhere. You take an animal, you kill it, slit its throat, bleed it out, put it on the altar. It is a burnt offering to the Lord. It's totally consumed, it is totally sacrificed. Because it has no life, it has no will, it doesn't go anywhere, it's dead. The problem is with the living sacrifices. Living sacrifices, that is a sacrifice to God, not dead, but while you live, your life is lived in sacrificial ministry to the Lord.

But because it's a living sacrifice, living sacrifices have a tendency to want to squirm off the altar. Ever do that? Lord, I give you my life. Well, I'm going to take it back right now. I'll give it to you later.

Right? Or, Lord, I recommit. Why are you recommitting? Because you had taken it back.

You had gone the other direction. The only reason we make prayers of recommitment is because the sacrifice has squirmed off the altar. But we are to be a living sacrifice, that is, our life lived for the glory of God. Present your body. Why the body? What's the big deal about the body? Now, the reason I'm asking the question is because some Christians, I have discovered, have what I would only describe as a philosophical dualism in life.

Let me explain. They would say, well, the spirit is important, and that which is spiritual is important, but that which is physical is not all that important. My body isn't all that important.

You know, I can kind of do what I want with my body. And I'm bringing that up because that was the exact same philosophy of Gnostic heretic heresy in the early church. They had a philosophical dualism. They believed that the spirit was important, the body was not. Therefore, they could sort of live however they wanted with their body as long as their spirit was dedicated to God. That was Gnosticism. It's not quite the same, but some Christians today just think their body isn't all that important.

They don't take care of it. They don't see it as a vessel, as a temple of God. Why would God be so interested in you giving your body to Him? Because your body can become a base of operations for the Holy Spirit to work in, to move in, to operate from, to do His work in the world. Put in the parlance of 1 Corinthians, you are the temple of the Holy Spirit, the place where God resides, the place where worship is conducted, the place, the base of operations from which God moves among His people. How about if you were to see your body as a base of operations from which God could work with your family, with your neighbors, with your friends, at your work? If you saw yourself as that, then you could live a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable, which is your reasonable service.

So your body is important. God does want it to become a base of operations for Him to work through. Think of the Bible. Think of people in the Scripture who dedicated their lives, their bodies, to the Lord. Think of, for example, the womb of Sarah, barren, an older woman, but eventually, though it took God some time with her, she surrendered her life, her body, to the Lord, and her womb conceived Isaac.

And the plan of God, the salvation of Israel and the world through Jesus Christ, eventually came through that lineage. Think of the mouth of Moses. Moses said, I can't talk. I'm a man of uncircumcised lips.

I really can't do this. But surrendered to God, he became a very powerful spokesperson before Pharaoh, before the children of Israel. Think of the hands of David, this little shepherd boy, but the Holy Spirit governing, controlling those hands. He was able to slay Goliath.

He was able to lead his people, and he became a very important king in Israel's history. So your bodies are important. Present your bodies to God, a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable, which is your reasonable service. It's the smartest thing you could do.

It's the wisest move you could make. Some translations say, your spiritual act of worship. That's okay, too. That's a good translation. I prefer reasonable service.

The Greek word is logikos, logical. Think of it this way. When you think of the mercies of God, when you think of all that God has done for you, when you think of the plan of God and how God was able to let that gavel go down and declare you justified and not guilty and all the plan that God has for you, when you understand those mercies, the most logical thing you could ever do, the smartest move you could ever make is to say, Lord, I'm presenting my body to you. That's why I think this is a superior translation. It is your reasonable service. Okay, all of that for verse one.

Let's mosey on. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed, totally changed, a complete alteration, transformed by the renewing of your mind that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will for you. Acceptable and perfect will of God. So the presentation of your body leads to the transformation of your mind and your life. One leads to the other. Do not be conformed to this world, but transformed. Now in verse two, there's a couple of different parts. There's the negative and there's the positive.

Do you see it? Here's the negative. Do not be conformed. Do you know that God calls you and I to be non-conformists? You don't have to conform to the thinking, the attitudes, the values of this worldly system. Be a non-conformist. Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount, in speaking of the pagan world, he said, do not be like them.

Be a non-conformist. Do not be conformed to this world. Now I mentioned the J.B. Phillips translation, right? So I was going to quote a few times from it.

In the J.B. Phillips translation, verse two is rendered this way. Don't let the world squeeze you into its own mold. Isn't that good? Don't let the world squeeze you into its own mold. Oh, it will try. It wants you to parrot its weird value system and say all the right things and be all woke and be all spoke and be all that they say you ought to be. Don't be conformed to this world. Be a non-conformist. Don't let the world squeeze you into its own mold. Why is it that we conform, by the way?

Why do we conform to the world? Fear. Nobody likes to be rejected by a peer group. Everybody fears not fitting in. Everybody's afraid of what other people are going to think of them. Everybody's afraid of the backlash if they take a stand, what somebody's going to write on their Instagram or what they're going to tweet back or an email they're going to get or somebody gossiping behind their backs.

It's fear of the crowd that makes us conform to the values of this world. But he says, don't be conformed. That's the negative.

Here's the positive. But be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Just like your body matters, your mind matters. Too many Christian institutions have an unwritten rule when you enter them, and that is please check your brain at the door. No more thinking critically after this point. Now you just swallow everything we give you.

No, your mind matters, and you should think critically, and if need be, question necessarily. Even Paul the Apostle congratulated the Bereans because they were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word of God with all readiness of mind, but they searched the Scriptures daily to see if these things be so. Be a Berean.

Do that. Can you imagine listening to Paul the Apostle and even having the thought, well, I don't know if that's true. And somebody go, what do you mean that's not true? That's Paul the Apostle, man. So I want to make sure that that is in line with the Scripture. I'm going to say, with this Scripture, I'm going to search the Scriptures daily to see if what Paul just said is true. And Paul said, I like that.

They're more noble than those in Thessalonica because they did that. So your mind matters to God. You are to love the Lord your God with all of your heart, mind, soul, and strength. To think true things intelligently, clearly, critically. Be transformed by the renewing of your mind. That you may prove.

Now we've gone through the negative and the positive. Here's the practical. The practical part is this is where it will lead you when you do that. When you don't conform but you are transformed, you will prove, the result will be, you'll discover what is the good, acceptable, and perfect will of God. I don't think I've ever met a Christian who doesn't want to know the will of God. A person comes to know Christ, they're all excited that their sins are forgiven, they have heaven waiting for them, they have purpose for life, but they quickly come to the place where they say, I wonder what God wants from my life, what He wants me to do, what area He'd be leading me into, what is the will of God, how do I discover the perfect will of God? And then, unfortunately, some think, well, it must be difficult or it must be strange, weird, in discovering the will of God, maybe God will give me a sign, maybe I'll hear a voice from heaven, I'll see lights line up, somebody will speak a word of prophecy to me, that's how I'll discover the will of God.

God could use any of those means, but I've discovered that usually God moves supernaturally naturally, not supernaturally weirdly, not supernaturally strangely, but just naturally, you will just discover it, you'll walk in it, the Lord will put you in the right place, and you will discover, you will prove what is that good, good, acceptable, and perfect will of God. That's Skip Heitig with a message from the series Expound Romans. Now, we want to let you know about a special opportunity you have to pursue biblical studies in a way that works with your schedule. If you're ready to study God's word beyond going to church and personal Bible study, you're ready for Calvary College.

Take your learning and your life's purpose to the next level with an education in biblical studies. Registration for the 2022 fall term is open right now. Classes happen on site at Calvary Church Albuquerque and online. Classes like Old Testament survey, worldviews, apologetics, and theology, plus book specific courses like Daniel, Romans, and Revelation. Calvary College partners with Veritas International University and Calvary Chapel University, so you can earn an accredited undergraduate or graduate degree, or simply increase your knowledge of God and His word.

Your application for the 2022 fall term is available now, and classes start August 15th. Apply today at That's God's word is changing lives in many different parts of the world, and it's thanks to you. Listen to this letter one person sent in. Even though I don't live in your state, your ministry blesses me daily.

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Again, that's 800-922-1888. Thank you. Tune in tomorrow as Skip Heitzig shares how God can empower you with spiritual gifts to shine Jesus light in the world. You don't want to miss that. Make a connection, make a connection at the foot of the cross and cast all burdens on his word. Make a connection, a connection. Connect with Skip Heitzig is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never changing truth in ever-changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-03-27 04:05:16 / 2023-03-27 04:14:00 / 9

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