Blogging the Bible Day 36: Romans 11 & 12

In chapters 1-11 Paul has been expounding on our need for and the mercies of God and now Romans 12:1 is a transition statement into the practical response to The Lord’s mercies,

“Therefore (or in light of God’s mercies) I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.”

Paul in verse 2a tells us how to do the previous,

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,”

and to what end 2b,

“so that you may prove (discern) what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.”

And then beginning in verse 3 Paul lays out the implications of “being right” with God, but please note, the implications of “being right” with God are not to be played out in private or I should say their ultimate value comes not in isolation, but within the context of the “Body of Christ” the church (vv. 4 & 5).

Verses 6-8 then paint a beautiful picture of the gifts that are to be exhibited and lived out within the body of the church.

Something jumped out at me when I read this list I realized it describes most churches expectations of a “singular pastor.”

Biblically though one individual does not likely possess all these gifts, they’re more likely distributed amongst many.

Could this be the problem…or rather I would state this is the problem I believe in many churches. The teacher and exhorter is also expected to be the manager and the merciful one.

When building a team a church or the lead pastor should think to fill in his or her gaps. If we have the opportunity to hire another individual at the current church I serve at I will be looking for someone with the gifts of nurturing and mercy (a flat side for me). I brought in someone “who leads with diligence” (the word “leads” is slightly deceiving for our modern culture as the true translation would be better served as “gives aid to” or “manages.”) another semi-flat side in my ministry. We as pastors must see our weak sides and build a team accordingly…sorry for this ramble…remember this is my response to my devotional along with hopefully a blessing to you. Anyway, back to my point churches I believe suffer when they hire a pastor thinking he or she should possess an abundance of all these gifts, they should be patient knowing that the pastor will always have a flat side or maybe more than one, and hopefully that pastor will acknowledge that flat side and put a team around them to fill the gaps or if there are not the resources for a paid team then a group of elders around them that can fulfill this gift listing in Romans 12.

And while we should all serve primarily in the area(s) of our giftedness sometimes we must be willing to move out more broadly and verses 9-13 tell us how.

And then finally verses 14-21 tell us how to live in relation to the secular world beyond the confines of the Body of Christ. We are to still live and serve and witness in this world and so we must know how to be outside of those most like us.

Romans 12 is a practical chapter that I believe all of us as Christians should read and apply on a regular basis.

Oh and can I go back once more to the listing of the gifts…

Will you pause and ask yourself which one of those gifts most aligns with me (maybe check out also the lists in 1 Corinthians 12 or Ephesians 4), and would others agree. And then ask yourself are you stepping up to use those gifts as God has given you in the context of your local church?

Happy Sabbath!

Tomorrow’s Reading: Genesis 20-23



Pin It on Pinterest

Share This