Friday, May 8, 2020

May 8 - Romans 12

Today's reading in our daily plan is Romans 12. Take a moment to pray, asking God to speak to you from this passage. Then read, using the following notes and questions to help you get everything out of the passage.

SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
  • After spending 12 chapters on theology, Paul's writing makes a dramatic turn. Now, the final few chapters of Romans focus on living by faith.
  • Paul begins by encouraging us to offer our bodies as living sacrifices. A sacrifice in ancient times was an animal that was killed to please the gods. So, what Paul is saying to the reader is to consider themselves dead to their old way of life and live only to please God. 
  • The next verse offers a promise if we obey. Have you ever wanted to know what God's will for your life was? Well, Paul explains that IF we are not conformed to the world and transformed by the renewing of our minds, THEN we will know God's will. 
  • Paul then reminds us of very practical issues:
    • Humility: do not think too highly of yourself. 
    • Love sincerely, hate evil, do good, be devoted, serve God, and honor others. 
  • The body of Christ is just like our real body. It is one body with many parts and organs! We each have different roles and we each have different gifts. Whether you serve coffee at Verve on Sunday morning, give good hugs to a hurting friend, preach from the stage, or are financially able to give to the needy, they are all important and unique ways of sharing God's love.
  • It can be difficult to live at peace with everyone around us. We all have enemies. But, Romans says we are to live in harmony, not take revenge on them, AND meet their needs. Wow. Easier said than done, right? Maybe so, but the only way to overcome evil is with kindness. Let God take care of the situation and settle the score they way he sees fit.
    SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
    • The way of life Paul describes here is radically different from what the world tells us. We’re not just talking about being a considerate person, but going way beyond that and blessing those that persecute us, being friends with people of low position, and being willing to serve others. This is the lifestyle of a guerrilla lover: someone who loves others because God loves them.
    NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
    • Who is someone in your life you can do a better job of showing love to? Is there a difficult coworker you try to avoid, or a friendship you need to invest more meaningful time in? Send a text or make a phone call today to begin taking that step.