Loving God, a spiritual act of worship
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:1-3
From the text, it is interesting to note that the apostle Paul used of the term in Greek “parakaleo” translated in English “urge” has the same root word with the Greek word the Lord Jesus Christ used to refer to the coming of the Holy Spirit, “parakletos” in John 14:16-17. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth.” The implication of what Paul is saying is that as the Holy Spirit leads Christians to know the truth of God’s word, they are now to manifest in their lives the truth they learned. They’re lives are guided by the truth they have learned for they are founded upon the truth revealed by the Holy Spirit. This is God’s perfect will for every follower of God. So what then would lead us to be outside His perfect will? When we allow our lives to be influenced by worldliness and start to walk away from godly principles, we will missed to live out God’s will for our lives. Deliberate sin can also hinder us from the prodding of the Spirit within. All these are results of insisting to follow our will rather than God’s will. As promised by the Lord Jesus Christ to His disciples, “the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you” (John 14:26). He will let you know what the Lord wants. So when you refuse to follow and you continue to allow “self” to seat on the throne of your heart, you are in open rebellion towards God. As if you are saying to Him, “Lord, no matter what You, the Holy Spirit and Your Word say, I will still do what I want.” The key to Paul’s admonition is when we “offer” ourselves to God. And we offer ourselves to God because we love Him. We obey His word and submit to the leading of the Holy Spirit because we love God. “Jesus replied, ‘Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching’” (John 14:23-24). Loving God is the proper reasonable response because of His mercy that we received removing the punishment of sin. When we offer ourselves to God, this becomes the expression of our spiritual worship. “Offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness” (Romans 6:13).
Noel De Guzman
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