Romans 12:1, 2

romans12Therefore, 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. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
     
Pastor Tim Keller says Chapter 12: 1-2 are a summary of the whole of the Christian life! If someone asked you what is your motivation for Christian living? What would you say? When I was younger, my motivation was based on fear. Specifically, to avoid the fires of hell. In these two short verses, Paul explains the motivation for Christian living. It can be summed up in two words. “Therefore,” and “in view of God’s mercy."

"Thus says the Lord: 'Keep justice, and do righteousness, for soon my salvation will come, and my righteousness be revealed'" (Isa 56:1). “For this is what the high and exalted One says—he who lives forever, whose name is holy: 'I live in a high and holy place, but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit, to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite'" (Isa 57:15).

Theme"Keep justice and do righteousness" (Isa 56:1) is the theme for the rest of the book of Isaiah (chapters 56-66). Revival happens when people seek the Lord through repentance (Isa 55:6-7) and righteousness is practiced and lived out among us. Without righteousness being objectively evident among God's people, God's name is blasphemed among the nations (Isa 52:5).

Righteousness Revives Our Hearts (Isaiah 56-57): The Good, the Bad and the ...

  1. The Good (56:1-8): God’s people as they should be
  2. The Bad (56:9 – 57:13): God’s people as they should not be
  3. The Contrite (57:14-21): The people God dwells with

"Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts" (Isa 55:6-7a).

What happens after the shocking salvation of Isaiah 53? There is a time (for God) to be found. Don't miss it.

"Isaiah 54 - 55 constitute one of the most beautiful pieces of literature in the entire Bible." John Oswalt, Isaiah, The NIV Application Commentary.

"Try and suck all the sweetness that you can out of (Isaiah 54) while we read it. The personal application of a promise to the heart by the Holy Spirit is that which is wanted. This chapter is ... drip with virgin honey. Sip: taste, and be satisfied." Charles Spurgeon.