Theodor Zahn Picture

Robert Candlish


Studies in Romans 12:
The Christian's Sacrifice and Service of Praise

Scottish Preacher and Theologian

Why Read This Paper




Paul wrote this in Romans 12:1

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God--this is your true and proper worship.

On a practical level, how does one do what Paul commands here? How are our actions related to the concept of sacrifices, as in the Old Testament? What is the connection between this act on our part and worship?

Here is an in-depth discussion of these issues by one of the greatest preachers Scotland produced.

After several shorter pastorates, Robert Candlish became minister of the important parish of St. Georges, Edinburgh. According the Wikipedia article,

Here he at once took the place he so long held as one of the ablest preachers in Scotland. Destitute of natural oratorical gifts and somewhat ungainly in his manner, he attracted and even riveted the attention of his audience by a rare combination of intellectual keenness, emotional fervour, spiritual insight and power of dramatic representation of character and life.

In 1841 he received the D.D. from Princeton in New Jersey. He later became one of the leaders in the formation of the the Free Church of Scotland in 1843 after withdrawing from the Church of Scotland. Theologically, of course, Candlish was a Calvinist.

Studies in Romans 12: The Christian's Sacrifice and Service of Praise is a full-length book of over 360 pages. In 1989 it was reprinted in paperback form by Kregel Publishers in Grand Rapids, Michigan. This edition is still readily available.

We present two versions of chatper one, dealing with the nature of the sacrifice: the complete original text by Candlish (taken from and a condensation and simplification of the language by Carol.

Complete, Original Text

  • The Sacrifice: Its Nature
  • The Sacrifice: Its Conditions
  • The Sacrifice: Its Qualities
  • The Sacrifice: Its Matter
  • The Sacrifice: Its Motive


The same material condensed and simplified.

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