Romans 12:1 (NIV)
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.
Several years ago I read the book “They Found the Secret” by V. Raymond Edman. His purpose in his book was to show in the actual lives of Christian people how the power of Christ was the source of every believer’s strength. One story in particular caught my attention and has never left me.
In January 1914, Dr. James M. Gray, who later would become the President of Moody Bible Institute, was speaking in Kansas City on Romans 12:1.
As part of his message, he said, “Have you noticed that this verse does not tell us to whom we should give our bodies? It is not the Lord Jesus Who asks for it. He has His own body. It is not the Father who asks for it. He remains upon His throne. Another has come to earth without a body. God could have made a body for Him as He did for Jesus, but He did not do so. God gives you the privilege and the indescribable honour of presenting your bodies to the Holy Spirit, to be his dwelling place on earth. If you have been washed in the Blood of the Lamb, then yours is a holy body, washed whiter than snow, and will be accepted by the Spirit when you give it. Will you do so now?”
Even though I had read Romans 12 many times, when I read those words I felt like something went through my body. It was like I was realizing something new.
Wow! God, the Holy Spirit, God, the third person of the Trinity, wants to live in our bodies!
It made 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 become even more alive to me. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
But at the same time I needed to ask myself some tough questions.
Have I offered myself as a living sacrifice to God?
Am I honouring God with my body?
Is what I am thinking, saying and doing glorifying Him?
Let Him not be the forgotten God in our lives. The Holy Spirit is fully God as the Father is God and as Jesus the Son of God and He wants to live in us. He chose our bodies to make his dwelling place. What an honour! What a privilege!
We’ve found the secret. Let us present our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God. We are temples of the Holy Spirit. He is the power of our new lives.
He will transform our lives as the revelation of being His eyes, His ears, His mouth, His hands and His feet on this earth becomes more and more real and as we become fully engaged in what God is doing today. Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost. That is our mission as well.
Romans 12:1 (NIV)