PROVING GOD’S WILL
“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. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” - Romans 12:1-2.
God’s will for us is also His good will toward us, and always good for us. We are not to be ignorant of Satan’s devices, but we also are to know in experience God’s perfect will.
“Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is” Eph. 5:17. In fact, Paul prayed that the saints be “filled with the (exact) knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God” Col. 1:9-10.
We are beseeched, pleaded with, implored by the mercies of God to that which will prove in experience the will of God. In other words, we are to come to know the reality of God’s will far beyond theory – human logic.
It seems evident that the perfect will of God is occupied far more with what we become, than with what we are able to accomplish, or how we appear to others. What difference will it make who all we please, or what all we do, if we miss the will of God for our life?
“The mercies of God:” of all that is expressed in the preceding chapters of this book of Romans (Rom. 11), the mercies of God are spelled out in clear detail. As the inspired writer comes to the close of the eleventh chapter, dealing with those marvelous facts concerning God’s ways of dealing with Jew and Gentile, he seems to get carried away in a spirit of praise, beside himself unto the Lord. Those verses, thirty-three through thirty-six, make up quite a song of praise. Now here in Romans twelve, those “mercies” are pointed to as Divine leverage to move believers to a willing response to the will of God.
“Present your bodies:” He is speaking of the believer’s entire devotion to God. In such devotion we may find the sweet display of the life of Christ, a demonstration of the power of an endless life, and especially in the presenting believer, the discovery of God’s perfect will.
In such “presenting” we totally commit, turning the controls over to the Lord. Submitting to His choice we let Him have His way, making a determination to be Available for His will. “”Not my will but thine be done.”
I remember a time in my youth, going up for prayer with the request and earnest desire that the Lord’s will be done in my life. One of the brethren, praying for those that came up for prayer, said, “It will be.” As I thought about it later there seemed to be some wisdom in that statement, yet at the time, it made me feel somewhat foolish in asking. May the Lord help us to never be flippant about His will, nor with the young that ask.
I cannot say like Jesus said, “I do always the things that please the Father.” But praise God, we are so blessed to have in us the very life of Him that did, and still does, the perfect will of the Father. It is our sweet privilege, and to our glorious benefit, to absolutely yield to that victorious life within.
Thank God, as we get a heart grasp of the tender mercies and loving kindness of our God and Father, or rather as these get hold on us, we more readily give up the control of our life. I don’t believe that we actually do what we want when we go against the sweet will of God for our lives, but rather what our adversary wants. If we truly know what is good for us, we find we will want what He wants for us.
“A living sacrifice:” It is God’s will that we live, and that our sacrifice be living; our worshipful service be of those raised from the dead. It is those that are alive that are manifesting His life. “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” Gal. 2:20.
“But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body” II Cor. 4:7-10.
As we present our bodies a living sacrifice, not only is the life of Christ manifested, but also may be magnified.
“According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing shall I be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” Phil. 1:20-21. Letting Him do the living in us demonstrates the will, wisdom and power of God.
“Your reasonable service:” is such too much to ask, in view of Eph. 5:1-2? Is not this a logical service, by the reasoning of His abundant mercy? Realizing such mercy we earnestly desire Him to have the greatest possible return on His costly investment. Legal service… – His will in the whole matter is that it all comes from a loving heart.
“For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause. For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again” II Cor. 5:13-15.
“And be not conformed:” it is not His will that we fit the style, nor follow the course of this age. Thank God, we are different, and we are enabled to act differently. Not conforming to this world is indeed a very real part of how we present our bodies a living sacrifice. We are not obliged to give ourselves to the dead, and yet deadly forms it follows. Don’t allow it to squeeze you into its mold, especially the religious forms. II Tim. 3:1-5.
“Be ye transformed:” Faith in the power of the Word to work effectually, build us up, and give us an unsearchable inheritance, powerfully transforms us from within. As Christ is being formed in us, we are being conformed to the image of God’s dear Son. What a privilege we have of beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, and of being changed into the same image from glory to glory, II Cor. 3:18.
“By the renewing of your mind:” Thus as we meditate, ruminate and assimilate His Word; He regenerates our thinking to Him and His - powerfully proving the will of God.