Paul in Romans 12:1 exhorts us to offer up our bodies as a living sacrifice which is our reasonable service. In the Old Testament the bodies of animals were offered as a dead sacrifice for a sin offering. Jesus offered up His body as a living sacrifice on the Cross for our sins. He did not die for His sins for He was sinless. God’s righteous anger was satisfied through Jesus offering Himself as a sinless sacrifice. We now are called to offer up our bodies as a living sacrifice which is reasonable in light of what was done for us through His sacrifice. Why our body and not our soul or spirit?
Our body is a vessel which contains our soul and our spirit. Therefore when we offer up our bodies we are in effect offering up our soul and spirit. Paul goes on to say that we are to be transformed by the renewal of our minds. Therefore the sacrifice is accomplished through the renewal of our minds. This is why we are a living sacrifice because our minds are still alive and working. However our minds can be conformed to the world or be renewed by God’s word and be transformed. This transformation can only occur if we surrender our bodies to Him. Many try to live their lives in two worlds and this is not possible. We either live a heavenly life or an earthly life. We either walk according to the flesh or according to the Spirit.
There is power in living a surrendered life. Jesus surrendered all to His Father even to the death on a Cross. We are called to take up our cross and follow Him. Taking up our cross is to live daily as a living sacrifice. The cross is a symbol of death to self. No death, no life. Jesus died but rose again. We die that we may rise with Him and live in resurrection power. Let us die daily so that we may live the abundant life here on earth and for eternity. There is no conflict in this. Our flesh will fight against our spirit. However if we are dead to our flesh then we live in the spirit. I choose to take up my cross and be led by His Spirit. What about you?