From Today in God’s Word
1 Samuel 14; Romans 12
Paul makes a radical shift in his letter to the Romans today as we read chapter 12. Up to this point Paul has argued for our need of redemption and the means of redemption God has provided but now he is shifting to our call to live in light of this redemption. The first verse is one of the first imperatives found in Paul’s letter and he presents a picture of transformed lives, changed by the renewal of our minds. He describes a genuineness and a humility that will under-gird the attitude and behavior of his people.
Notice how it is that Paul assumes we will be moved by God’s mercy and experience this kind of life. It is by the renewal of our thinking…the renewal of our minds. How is this done? In Rom 12:2 he speaks of knowing the will of God, what is perfect, and it reminds me of something similar that Paul said earlier in his letter…
“17 But if you call yourself a Jew and rely on the law and boast in God 18 and know his will and approve what is excellent, because you are instructed from the law;” (Romans 2:17–18, ESV)
I believe Paul intends us to conclude that by studying the Scriptures we will know his will and renew our thinking such that we would not be mindlessly conformed to the world around us.
What is the result of this renewal? Are we just filling our heads with information and Bible trivia? May it never be! It is the mercy of God that he has given us his word that we may know him and commune with him. Our lives become a wonderful and pleasing offering to God when we are transformed in the inner man by the work of his Spirit through his word. When we know this heart level transformation we are empowered to walk in his ways (Psalm 119:2-3) and we can live in accord with Paul’s description in this chapter.
Life of Worship
In this way may we become living sacrifices unto God that we would seek him with all our heart and, with humility, invest ourselves in his body, which we are a vital part of. Let us ponder vv 3-14 of this chapter and may we trust God, seeking his renewal each day, that we would walk accordingly.
Soli Deo Gloria!