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.
True and Proper Worship
After many months, Sunday morning Bible class was finally meeting again, and Ginny couldn’t wait. Pastor Schroeder wasn’t surprised to see her hand shoot up when he asked if there were any questions.
“Pastor,” she said, though muffled by her mask, “while we were all stuck at home, I watched streamed worship services from a few other churches. It struck me how many different styles and ways of worshiping there are. But it also made me wonder if there is a right way to worship?”
Pastor Schroeder interrupted her, “Well, that might take longer to answer than we have time for this morning.”
Ginny continued anyway, “So I did what you always tell us to do. I looked in the Bible for answers. One verse I found was Romans 12:1 where the apostle Paul talks about ‘your true and proper worship.’ But what does that verse mean?”
“Great catch, Ginny!” said her pastor. “In the first eleven chapters of Paul’s letter to the Romans, he writes at length about God’s grace for sinners and how we are saved only by what Christ has done for us, not by anything we do. Then, before he gets into describing the way that Christians should live, Paul reminds them of what God has already done. ‘In view of God’s mercy…’ That motivates us to dedicate every part of our lives—body and soul—to serving him. When every moment and every choice in life flows from gratitude to God for his mercy, our bodies are like living sacrifices, made holy and acceptable through Jesus’ perfect sacrifice for us on the cross.”
Ginny’s eyebrows raised above her mask. “So, ‘true and proper worship’ means not just going through the motions—either in life or in church?”
Pastor Schroeder nodded. “Yes. It means always keeping before our eyes everything that God has done for us and then letting our words and actions flow from that.”
Dear God, thank you for your many blessings to me, though I haven’t deserved them. Let me never forget your love for me. Help me to live in a way that pleases you. In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.