Let's turn to Romans 12 and read verses 1 and 2
Ro 12:1 "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."
The first thing we see here is that God wants our bodies to be surrendered. Not only that, but it is a CHALLENGE! Beseech/Begging .. God knows that this is a struggle so He beseeches us; Ladies God could FORCE us to be surrendered yet He doesn't. He backs us into corners - however, we still have a free will. I want to encourage you today to NOT give your body to the world. The only way you can serve the LORD is with your BODY - because of this, the WORLD wants it amen. So, let's look at a few ways we can accomplish living in a surrendered body.
It Is A Matter of Will
Let's look at Isaac in Gen. chapter 22. God tells him "offer your son", ladies Abraham had NO reluctance, and he was 100 years old when this happened. He had been waiting 25 years for this child (a promised son). Another thing to notice is the response Isaac gave. Realize that he was 33 years old here, there was NO fight, and he was just as SURRENDURED to do God's will. Ladies he DELIGHTED in it!
This should be an example to us!! Let's look at:
John 4:24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
John 5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.
John 6:38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
John 8:26 I have many things to say and to judge of you: but he that sent me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I have heard of him.
John 8:28 Then said Jesus unto them, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.
John 8:29 And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.
John 8:50 And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.
Let's move on, again referring to our text in Romans
WE ARE TO BE A LIVING SACRIFICE IF ASKED
We cannot think for a minute that the days of dying a martyr are over. I think of Jim Elliot, the 3 missionary hostages in Panama, and the list goes on and on. We need to be prepared to be a living sacrifice also.
How about the Hebrew children in Daniel 3? Did you ever wonder if they were standing together or alone? Hmmmm (2 Cor 6:17)
Da 3:17 "If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. 18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up."
These verses tell us that they didn't know IF God would, but it was enough to know that he COULD. So as Nebuchadnezzar said they YIELDED their BODIES.
Da 3:28 "Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king's word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God."
We cannot do this 'on the spot' as they say; it is a LIFE LONG COMMITMENT. We have to ".... bring it unto subjection..." We have to discipline ourselves to DO RIGHT. It does not come naturally; we have to learn it, to STRIVE for it. I think of manners, praying, Bible reading, witnessing, testifying, modesty, the list goes on and on. Bringing our lives unto subjection according to the Word of God.
Unless we our bodies are unto subjection, surrendered, we will not be doing this with the thought of results. WE need to take time to pray, plan and prepare before acting.
Pr 19:2 Also, that the soul be without knowledge, it is not good; and he that hasteth with his feet sinneth.
DEDICATED TO THE GLORY OF GOD
It is not about US, we need to be dedicated to reaching the lost. Paul said, "To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some." 1Co 9:22 He used everything and everyway he could to win the lost and encourage the saved.
WE NEED TO BE WILLING TO SACRIFICE
In 2 Cor. 8:2 we find, "How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality." They gave to others worse off, and we find in chapter 9 and verse 2 that it provoked others to give. "For I know the forwardness of your mind, for which I boast of you to them of Macedonia, that Achaia was ready a year ago; and your zeal hath provoked very many." Wow huh? We are instructed to endure hardships. We are to be separated and as mentioned earlier, it is NOT about us! "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." 1Jo 2:15
DENYING SOME THINGS
Let's look at Proverbs 9:6, "Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding." We need to deny some things, are you convicted of anything or anyone in your life that is foolish and you are hanging on to? Christians we have a choice today!!!
The body is to be a HOLY thing. Look at 2 Cor.6:19,20,"What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."
We have the person of the Holy Ghost in us, from the day and at the second of Salvation. Think of this, you have company coming, you go about your home getting it ready, you are careful of what you eat, how each room appears, and so on. Ladies, Jesus is coming .. PREPARE YOUR BODIES. An even better PUSH would be to consider that your body was worth the BLOOD OF CHRIST. Our text also tells us:
IN THE PERFECT WILL OF GOD
We find the statement "for this is the will of God.. " several times in the Scriptures. Our joy, prayer, compassion, considerations, sights, giving, church attendance, SALVATION and more are mentioned. Are we surrendering our musical ears, lustful eyes, lazy hands, wandering feet and minds, our prayer life,? Etc? Our Body is to be SEPARATED not CONFORMED. This means to get away as much as you can, it doesn't mean however you are to hide, it simply means WORDLY things. We are not to consider things that go against the Bible .. Things like: fast moneymaking, disrespect to family, disrespect of sex, etc. We need to purpose to let God lead in our lives.. He challenges us to do so.
SERVING GOD IN OUR LIVES
We need to do this with a changed mind. Paul wasn't doing this before Salvation amen? He TURNED to God. We need to take a NEW direction amen. And from there on stay the course. We need to have a NEW DISPOSITION - putting others first. We need to put on a LOVE for the church, this means ALL the time, whenever the doors are opened, this is not just for the pastors/deacons and families this means ALL of us. We ought to have a NEW APPRECIATION for Bible Believers - wanting to learn from them! We ought to have NEW SYMPATHIES - concern for others not just yourself, you pray, help, encourage. How do we serve with changed minds and purpose? We YIELD YIELD YIELD.
Sure there will be the trials, but keep going your next step just may be where the blessing is!