The Body

5 Nov

Romans 12:1 “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship.”

I’ve spent a good part of the morning praying this verse over a group of women I get the privilege of leading in worship this weekend. It’s a verse I want my life to be characterized by. A verse and chapter that’s beaten me up on numerous occasions as well. But this morning I got curious…what does it mean by “bodies?” The original Greek word, I discovered, is ‘sóma,’ which is used for the physical body, but is also used figuratively of The Body of Christ-The Church.

Oh what a whole new meaning that brings to this passage! One commentary I read explained the sacrifice being described in this passage as this, “to be as wholly the Lord’s property as the whole burnt offering was. (The atonement for sin) No part being devoted to any other use.” Now what if we applied that to The Church? Not the building you meet in, or the denomination you claim to be a part of, but the Body of Christ as a whole.

“NO part being devoted to any other use.” Simply His…ALL His. For His purpose. The moment I devote my time to things that don’t matter, give money to causes that misuse the money God has entrusted to me, and refuse to love people and have real relationships with them, because I’d rather not do what His Word commands, I am no longer living my life as a sacrifice. And therefore I am not worshipping Him the way He desires. And if we look at this passage with The Church in mind, how many parts are being devoted to other, frivolous uses? Are we feeding the poor? Are we clothing the needy? Or are we still pushing for that bigger building? Are we still missing out on real, authentic relationships with others who need to see Jesus in us because we are so afraid of “this day and age?” Just because times have changed, doesn’t mean the truth of the Gospel or Jesus Himself have. And neither has the fact that people need Christ and we need each other. Our lives, The Body of Christ must be devoted to no other use, but His. And I wonder how many times we CHOOSE other things over Him. Other things that aren’t pleasing to Him. We get wrapped up in the number of seats being filled as opposed to the number of lives being changed. Wrapped up in reputations that build our egos, all the while tearing down a dying world outside and members of the family inside.

I hope and pray that my body, who I am and hope to be, is a living sacrifice. Dying to myself daily to be used for His purpose, His glory, no matter the cost or what others say…including those in “the family.” If it began with us individually, I can’t help but think The Church as a whole would transform and become all He intended it to be: Devoted to His use, His name, and nothing else.

Be The Church,

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