GO ON, GIVE IT UP, YOU’VE GOT NOTHING TO LOSE.

GO ON, GIVE IT UP, YOU’VE GOT NOTHING TO LOSE.

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1

Sacrifice. We don’t like sacrifice; and we don’t like to make sacrifices. We just don’t like to give things up. What’s ours is ours. We worked hard for it. And even if we stole it, we spent years honing our craft of thievery. So by that token of effort, we deserve what we have. That is why, when we are asked to give things up, when we are asked to make sacrifices, aversion is to be expected.

In fact, sacrifice has destroyed many marriages. Once the ‘honeymoon’ is over, once the routine of the daily grind sets in, we realize that sacrifices are inevitable. Spending time with another person takes effort, planning and resources. And while we may be more than willing to make temporary sacrifices for another, doing that on a permanent basis is a whole different ball game. And when the children come, that’s a whole new Pandora’s box of change and a whole new set of sacrifice.

It is little wonder then that when people read Romans 12:1, their skin begins to crawl, and they start to see God as a demanding tyrant who relates to us on a transactional level. They start to think that God will take as much as, or even more than, He gives and in order for us to benefit from His ‘so called’ love, we need to make huge sacrifices, even giving up our lives, as Paul seems to suggest.

But beloved, this could not be further from the truth. Instead, giving it all up right now and presenting your bodies as a living sacrifice will be the best thing you could ever do. Let us find out why.

In order for us to accurately understand our Father’s perspective on sacrifice, we need to see what sacrifice mean to Him. Does He really want what we’ve got?

“I will not take a bull from your house,
Nor goats out of your folds.
For every beast of the forest is Mine,
And the cattle on a thousand hills.
I know all the birds of the mountains,
And the wild beasts of the field are Mine.
If I were hungry, I would not tell you;
For the world is Mine, and all its fullness.” Psalm 50:9-12

I love these verses because it makes God sound so Chinese. The Chinese like to say things like, ‘even if I was hungry, I wouldn’t bother telling you about it, because what can you possibly do about it?’. Yet, the superficial condescension belies our Father’s deep love for us. I mean think about it. Even before the world, as we know it, began,

“In the beginning God (prepared, formed, fashioned, and) created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1 [AMPC]

Our Father prepared everything, formed every item, fashioned all creation; so you really think He needs your labor? You really think He wants your donations? Seriously, if He really was hungry, what could you do about it?

No beloved, He doesn’t want your sacrifice because He needs the resource. He doesn’t want your sacrifice because He is short-handed. He asks for your sacrifice so that He can multiply it back to you.

“Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this,”
Says the Lord of hosts,
“If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.” Malachi 3:10

You see, at the time He said this, Israel had stopped giving to God. Back in the day, God had instituted a ‘God sustaining’ system for that society, in which God would give to His people through the produce of the land and the growth of their livestock. But because every society requires members to serve in a myriad of functions, that meant that there will be those who were called to a different office from farming. Hence, God purposed that these people would receive their sustenance from those who were directly receiving God’s benefits and blessings through their fields.

So when Israel stopped bringing offerings of food and resource into the temple, the priests, who were called to service away from the fields, did not receive the blessings of God and that upset God because it upset His system and disadvantaged those whom He called and set apart for His work.

And that is why He said,

“Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this,”
Says the Lord of hosts,
“If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.” Malachi 3:10

Because, why do you think Israel stopped bringing their tithes into the storehouse? What would make anyone stop giving? That’s right. They started to believe that they would stop receiving.

A national agency recently ran a public service campaign on saving water. Yes, they do things like that over here. In that TV commercial, they had an old grandpa tell stories of the time when the nation had to undergo water rationing exercises because there was just not enough water to go around. And at the end of the story, the grandchild goes and turns off the tap for his father who had left it running while brushing his teeth. Why was the old man so concerned with using water? And why was his son able to be so ‘generous’ with his use of water? The answer is obvious, isn’t it? When we no longer trust that the supply is coming, we stop giving.

So why does God ask that we bring our tithes into the storehouse? That’s right, so that He can prove to us that His supply will never end, that His supply is always greater than what we can ever muster to give, so that we will have the right perspective on His supply for our lives and be at rest in every circumstance, never ever needing to worry that His supply for us will ever run out.

Not only that, we are called to be living sacrifices.

“Therefore I urge you, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies [dedicating all of yourselves, set apart] as a living sacrifice, holy and well-pleasing to God, which is your rational (logical, intelligent) act of worship.” Romans 12:1 [AMP]

Now, that goes against the very definition of sacrifice. When animals are sacrificed, they are killed. Yet, we are called to be living sacrifices. Yes, alright, so that means that God does not want us to go around killing one another, the way the Aztecs did. But there’s more to that. Because not only does He want you alive and breathing, He does not want your spirit to be dead or your emotions to be dulled. He doesn’t want a robot, who has the lights on but no one is home. He wants you alive and enjoying your life for remember that He said,

““Do I have any pleasure at all that the wicked should die?” says the Lord God, “and not that he should turn from his ways and live?”” Ezekiel 18:23

“‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live.’” Ezekiel 33:11

And He doesn’t just mean that He wants you breathing. Jesus said,

“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 10:10

He wants you to live your life and live it more abundantly.

So how do we get our head around it all? What does God really mean?

“Therefore I urge you, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies [dedicating all of yourselves, set apart] as a living sacrifice, holy and well-pleasing to God, which is your rational (logical, intelligent) act of worship.” Romans 12:1 [AMP]

Our Father wants us to set ourselves apart, put our lives in His hand, tell Him that we are giving Him full control over all that we say and do, and wherever we go, trusting that He will lead us. He wants us to realize that hey, you know what, He’s knows life better than we do so let’s just let The One who created it all take over. For what is our reality as children of God? Our reality is this,

“I’ve been carrying you on my back
from the day you were born,
And I’ll keep on carrying you when you’re old.
I’ll be there, bearing you when you’re old and gray.
I’ve done it and will keep on doing it,
carrying you on my back, saving you.” Isaiah 46:3-4 [MSG]

Whether you realize it or not, you have been on our Father’s back. But when you don’t realize it, when you forget, and you struggle to have your way, it gets difficult for Him to carry you. Those of us who have carried our children will appreciate this.

So when He calls us to be a living sacrifice, that is just fancy talk for ‘hey, stop struggling’; because just think about it,

“Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?” Matthew 6:27

Indeed, which of us, by any other means apart from God, add one cubit to his stature or an hour to his life? This proverb is indeed true.

“Many plans are in a man’s mind,
But it is the Lord’s purpose for him that will stand (be carried out).” Proverbs 19:21 [AMP]

Beloved child of God, being a living sacrifice is not about killing off your hopes, dreams and ambitions. Instead, it is recognizing that you are needlessly struggling to achieve them, because in reality all you need to do is hand them all over to God.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declared the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 [NIV]

He doesn’t want to subjugate you. He wants to bring you to a future that is even better than what you had planned for yourself. When you set yourself apart, you are really not sacrificing anything. Instead you are gaining more than you could ever imagine. And that is why the most rational, logical and intelligent thing you could ever do with your life is set it apart and place it in His control.

So I urge you brethren, because our Father loves you, stop struggling and make a decisive decision to commit your hopes, your dreams and your ambitions to our Father. Truly, He loves you and when you do, He will see to it that He opens for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you such blessing that there will not be room enough to receive it.

Like our messages?

Sign up to get our messages delivered daily.

Social Media Policy Privacy Policy Disclaimer Terms of Use