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Consecration

04/05/2017

Text Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

A Christian will be CONSECRATED!  Consecration is the solemn dedication to a special purpose or service, usually religious.   So, since consecration is our proper resonse to Christ, let’s see what paul teaches us about it here.

  1. The Cost of Consecration.

 Matthew 16:24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.

To take up the cross had great weight of meaning to the Jews. It was a final act of degradation, a horrible, painful, emotional experience, and Jesus is telling his disciples that if they are going to follow him they must take up their cross, they must deny themselves, they must have such a depth of commitment that it will be to give up their own life for him.  Look at the text:

  • Consecration affects our BODY! that ye present your bodies All of it! Body, soul, will, emotions.  Paul wrote, 1 Corinthians 6:20  For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
  • Consecration is LIFELONG – a continuous experience. a living sacrificeWhat use is a dead sacrifice?  You couldn’t bring a dead animal to be sacrificed!  It was a one-off acrifice, so more and more animals were needed, every single day.  But our consecrated lives will be a lifelong experience, as long as we live, every minute of every hour of every day, we will be offering ourselves as a sacrifice to the Lord. Luke 9:23  
  • Consecration is THOUGHTFUL and WORSHIPFUL. which is your reasonable service  There’s some very interesting translations of this part of the verse.  Av is ‘reasonable service,  ESV ‘spiritual worship’  NIV, ‘true and proper worship’ NLT, ‘This is truly the way to worship him.’  All of them are to some extent correct!  The Greek here is logikhn – root word Logos – ‘word or reason or logic.  On this one single occasion, I like the AMP, your rational (logical, intelligent) act of worship.  Our consecrated service to God is to be rational thought out, intelligent and respectful.       A well-reasoned service.

So, you can see that consecration is not a minor issue, not a flippant light matter, it is a service to God that will cost us dearly.

 

  1. The Cause of Conscration.

So, why then should we put ourselves to so much inconvenience and cost? Paul explains to us here: I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God.  It is because of the mercies of God!  There are two senses in which we understand this…

  • The mercies of God is our MOTIVE for consecration.   When we think of the mercies of God toward us, we have the motive for our consecration.  Here is why Paul beseeches us to offer up our loves as a living sacrifice to the Lord.   The subjective effect of God’s mercy upon our lives and concsiences will motivate us to yield our lives to him.  We love him, because he first loved us!
  • The mercies of God is our METHOD for consecration. There is of course an objective result of the redemptive work of Christ upon the cross.  It is that we are given forgiveness, and a home in heaven – but more than that, we are given a new status, a new relationship to God We have a new heart within us.  All things are made new!  We deserve none of these great blessings, they are ours through the act of God’s mercy ALONE!   Because we have a new life within us, we have the means by which we are able to offer ourselved to the Lord, as a sacrifice to him.

So when we consider the mercy which God has had upon us, in saving us from sin and misery, we see that objectively God’s mercy has both transformed us, making us new and enabling us to live for him, and has motivated us, through a true appreciation of his saving work for us.

 

  1. The Challenge of Consecration. holy, acceptable unto God,

HOW can my sacrifice be acceptable to God?  After all, everything I do is so far short of what it ought to be.  See Luke 17:10  By the standard of Luke 17:10, we may have successful ministries in the eyes of men, but in God’s eyes we have only done what we ought to have done.  So how can my personal sacrifice, my consecration, ever be acceptable to God?

  • Not if I am an unrepentant sinner! The good works, the religion of an unregenerate person will NEVER be acceptable to God!  Hebrews 11:6    
  • Only if I am in Christ! There only was one person who was ever acceptable to God, and that One is Jesus!  If we attempt to please God in our own strength, or boasting of our own holiness or abilities we will surely fail, – we can never please God by our works, even our works of religion and charity.  But notice again how this verse is rendered, ‘acceptable’ in some other translations is often translated as ‘well pleasing!’  (Amp: holy and well-pleasing to God).  Now, with whom was God ‘well pleased?’
    • At his baptism.  ?   Matthew 3:17  
    • At the Mount of Transfiguration. Matthew 17:5
    • In the sight of God! 2 Peter 1:17

My consecration will never be perfect on this side of eternity, but it can be well pleasing to God, if it is offered to him in Christ, trusting him with childlike faith.

 

So, my consecration is costly, involving every part of my life, my body, my will, my emotions, must all be surrendered to God, and I will WANT to surrender to him, because of what he has done for me, and His redeeming work also ENABLES me to surrender.  My challenge is to place all my trust in him, and live a humble, repentant life, trusting everyday in the Lord Jesus Christ who perfectly satisfied God for me.

Bob McEvoy 7th May 2017

From → Bible Study, Romans

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