12:1 The doxology at the end of ch. 11 and the nature of the opening verses of ch. 12 signal a new stage in Paul’s exposition. From now until the conclusion of the letter he is concerned to apply his teaching.
mercies of God. Love for the poor and needy, and support for those who cannot support themselves in a sinful world (cf. Luke 10:36, 37). The doctrine of grace in chs. 3–11 leads to a life motivated by gratitude.
present your bodies as a living sacrifice. Jew and Gentile now belong together as the people of God for whom the final blood sacrifice has been made (3:25). The sacrifice that remains is that of thankful response (cf. 6:17). “Bodies” means whole persons as embodied individuals (6:12, 13, 19; 8:13).
spiritual worship. The worship that is appropriate for redeemed creatures to offer (see text note).