August 9, 2022     2:24 pm
344. Week of Twenty Second Sunday after Trinity - Sunday
Present your bodies a living sacrifice
          I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.   Romans 12:1
          Note this, O note this, my dear Christian! When desiring to admonish us Christians through the Holy Spirit to sanctify ourselves and to serve God, the Apostle Paul does not say: "You shall!" as the Law does, but he beseeches us "by the mercies of God." Believing and remembering that one great deed of mercy and the thousand mercies of God in Christ Jesus which we have experienced, we should be willing to consecrate both body and soul to God and to serve Him. The compulsion exercised by the Law produces no results within us that are acceptable and well pleasing to God. But when the Holy Spirit beseeches us by the mercies of God, and thus admonishes us to serve God henceforth, then we really do so, provided we do not belie the name we bear: children of God; and God will graciously accept what we then do.- But how should we serve God? What should we do? We should offer praises glorifying the merciful God. What kind of praise-offerings? Fruits of the field? Tithes of all we possess? Something much better than that! We should present our bodies a sacrifice to God; we should place our whole life, whatever we may do and purpose to do, at God's service. Would you make an exception with regard to anything? Is there anything you would not place at God's service? Surely not! Such praise-offerings we should bring in true faith, through the Holy Spirit, actuated by a fervent love to our merciful God. This, then, will be a living sacrifice; holy, acceptable to God, though it may have many, yes, a thousand imperfections. This should be our reasonable service, the proper service of the heart and mind, but a service, too, that determines and regulates our every action. Permit yourself, my dear Christian, to be thus urgently implored and entreated by the mercies of God.
          PRAYER: - Indeed, O Lord, most merciful God, I, too, will do what is well pleasing to You; I, too, will place my whole life at Your service, and bring myself, both body and soul, as a praise-offering to You. But since it is not in my power to do this, I humbly beseech You to grant me Your Holy Spirit that through the Gospel He may enlighten my heart to see the magnitude of Your grace; and beseech and persuade me inwardly, through the glad tidings of Your grace, to dearly love You. And graciously accept these praise-offerings of a poor sinner, for Jesus' sake. Amen

Third Part : The Christian's Life and Death
August 9, 2022     2:24 pm