Romans 12

12:1 Therefore, I urge [to beg or beseech] you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer [give, yield, present, to put at one’s disposal] your bodies [represent the total person; cf. Rom. 6:13] as living sacrifices [requires that we lay aside our own desires, make ourselves totally available to Him, and trust Him to guide us], holy [that which is set apart for God] and pleasing [acceptable, approved, satisfactory] to God—this is your spiritual [reasonable] act of worship [Gr. “latreian” refers to any act done for God].

12:2 Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world [“Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mould…” (J.B. Phillips)], but be transformed by the renewing of your mind [our thoughts control our attitudes, actions, and feelings]. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

12:3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly [inflated pride] than you ought [cf. Phil. 2:3-4], but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.

12:4 Just as each of us has one body with many members [or parts], and these members [each part is important; all parts are interdependent] do not all have the same function,

12:5 so in Christ we who are many [there is diversity in the church] form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.

12:6 We have different [suggests that no two persons will function exactly alike] gifts [Gr. “charisma”; spiritual gifts come from God and are a matter of grace (Gr. “charis”); cf. 1 Cor.12:4-10; 28-30; Eph. 4:11; 1 Pet. 4:10-11], according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift [Paul listed seven gifts] is [1] prophesying [one who speaks forth God’s Word in an understandable and clear way], let him use it in proportion to [“in accord with”] his faith.

Note: How to discover your spiritual gift or gifts:
• Bible study
• Prayer
• Experience
• The counsel of others

12:7 If it is [2] serving [refers to any act of genuine service; cf. Mk. 10:35-45], let him serve; if it is [3] teaching [the orderly presentation of truth (the Scriptures, doctrine, Christian living)], let him teach;

12:8 if it is [4] encouraging [doing whatever is necessary to help someone mature spiritually; exhorting others to faithfully do God’s will], let him encourage; if it is [5] contributing to the needs of others [purposeful giving; giving related to specific needs], let him give generously [without expecting anything in return]; if it is [6] leadership [from term meaning “stand in front”; administration], let him govern diligently; if it is [7] showing mercy [showing godly compassion to hurting people (those who have faltered or fallen) in a practical way], let him do it cheerfully.

12:9 Love [Gr. “agape” refers to God’s kind of love] must be sincere [without hypocrisy]. Hate [detest] what is evil [that which works against the will and purposes of God]; cling [be glued to] to what is good.

12:10 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor [to give weight or consideration to] one another above yourselves [cf. Phil. 2:3-4].

12:11 Never be lacking in zeal [diligence; never quit; do not be lazy], but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.

12:12 Be joyful in hope [confident trust in God and His faithfulness to keep His promises], patient [to be steadfast] in affliction [pressure from variety of sources (including political, social, religious)], faithful [persistent] in prayer.

12:13 Share [Gr. “koinoneo”] with God’s people who are in need. Practice [pursue; look for ways to do it] hospitality.

12:14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

12:15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.

12:16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

12:17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.

12:18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

12:19 Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.

12:20 On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

12:21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

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