PRESENT YOUR BODY
“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.”
OUR RESPONSE IN LOVE TO GOD
A. Paul "beseeches" or "exhorts" his readers to a response. He uses the conjunction "therefore" to call us to a natural consequence of all that he has already taught us in this letter. He calls them "brethren" , indicating that they have believed on Jesus and are joined to Him with all other believers. This teaches us that we cannot read Romans, believe what it says, and then remain the same. We must be changed by the truth we've learned.
B. The basis of what Paul is about to tell us is "the mercies of God"; which have been shown us in Christ and have been explained to us in chapters 3-11. The wording can suggest the means (that is, "through the mercies of God"); but the phrase will allow for causal sense (that is, "because of the mercies of God"), and this fits the context better. This means that the mercies of God is what obligates us to this response.
C. We are to "present" (or dedicate, or devote) our bodies to God (Rom. 6:13, 19). This is a figure of speech that gives a 'part' of something to describe the giving of the whole person.
1. A 'living' sacrifice - that is, one still useful and operative. It is one that lives a new life and that is freely available to God (Gal. 2:20).
2. A 'holy' sacrifice - that is, one that is seeking to be in accord with God's own character.
3. An 'acceptable' sacrifice - that is, one that is desired by God and that He will receive (see Rom. 14:18; 2 Cor. 5:9; Eph. 5:10; Phil. 4:18; Col. 3:20; Titus 2:9; Heb. 12:28, 13:21; 1 Pet. 2:5).
D. This is described as a "reasonable service". The word "service" (lateria - from which we get the English word 'latergical') means religious service of worship (John 16:2; Rom. 9:4; Heb. 9:1,6). It is called "reasonable" (logicos - from which we get our English word 'logical'), because it is consistent with the fact of Jesus' wonderful sacrifice for us.