31 Aug Utter Surrender
Read: Romans 12:1-2
Last Sunday, Pastor Ken preached from Philippians 2:12-18 on how God empowers us to work out our salvation for his glory. This Sunday, we will begin our fourth and final part of Romans in chapters 12-16. Pastor Ken will begin with Romans 12:1-2, where we will see that all of life is worship. As you prepare your heart for our corporate gathering, let these words from Tim Keller help you to avoid spiritual stagnation and keep growing as a worshipper of God.
Romans 12:1-2 shows us the way to overcome spiritual stagnation or ongoing disobedience; the way to bring our hearts joyfully to offer ourselves wholly:
1. View the mercies of God. (KJV and ESV have “mercies” instead of “mercy”; we are not to think of God’s mercy in general, but his specific acts and deeds—supremely, to look back at the cross.) If we lack a passion or interest in being holy, it comes from a failure to contemplate God’s mercies toward us. There is no way to sustain a pattern of holiness in Christian living without a kindling of our hearts by deep meditation on God’s mercy and grace; we need to begin reflecting on the mercies of God.
2. Remind ourselves that the only rational response to Christ giving us all of himself is to give all of ourselves to him. To fail to give ourselves in complete obedience to God is not only offensive morally, it is a failure to think clearly. We come to grips with the One who surrendered himself utterly for us only to the extent that we surrender ourselves utterly to him. It is the only sensible thing to do!
3. Remember that our minds need renewing; we are not to be conformed (either to the world, or to a new, external moral standard), but rather, transformed from the inside out. Again, this requires us to make time regularly to meditate on who Jesus is and what he has done, and to reflect on what his will for us is in the circumstances he sends our way— how he would have us behave, and how he may be changing us.
“Excerpt from Romans 8-16 for You,” by Timothy Keller
Song List for Sunday
1. “God is Able,” by Hillsong Live
2. “Man of Sorrows,” by Hillsong Live
3. “What Mercy Did for Me,” by People and Songs
4. “At the Cross (Love Ran Red),” Arr. by Shane & Shane