Where the first Adam failed and brought the tyranny of false worship to the race, the obedient worship of the second Adam would lead a new humanity to the liberating glory of the worship for which it was created.
—Noel Due, Created For Worship: From Genesis to Revelation to You, 20
The beginning of the second ‘half’ of Romans [12:1] amounts to a call to participate in the reversal of the downward spiral described at the beginning of the first ‘half.’
—Michael B. Thompson, “Romans 12.1–2 and Paul’s vision for Worship” in A Vision for the Church, 124
Worship terminology is reintroduced at this key point in Paul’s argument [Romans 12:1] to demonstrate how the problems created by humanity’s failure to worship and serve God appropriately (Romans 1–2) have been dealt with by God himself.
—David Peterson, “Worship and Ethics in Romans 12,” Tyndale Bulletin 44.2 (1993):278
Foundational to the apostle’s thinking about worship is his teaching about humanity’s refusal to glorify and serve God acceptably (1:18–2:29). Here Paul reflects the OT perspective that the knowledge of God should lead to appropriate worship (1:25). Associated with the failure to acknowledge and glorify God is a futility of thinking and a darkening of ‘their foolish hearts’ [1:21]. Humanity is fundamentally impaired at the level of understanding and judgement because of the rejection of the true knowledge of God. It is significant, therefore, that Paul later links the renewing of the mind with the notion of right worship being restored through the work of Christ (12:1-2; cf. 1:28; 2:18).
—David Peterson, “Worship and Ethics in Romans 12,” Tyndale Bulletin 44.2 (1993):276
Romans 1:18-32 is a foundational passage for understanding all of Paul’s theology. . . . [It] centres on the nature of worship. Human beings are clearly portrayed as creatures who must worship, and whose sin lies in the fact that they do not choose to worship as they should. . . . The real goal and scope of redemption [is] the restoration of true worship and the destruction of the false.
—Noel Due, Created for Worship, 29
The error described in Romans 1:18ff., is not the neglect of worship, but the exchange of worship. Men and women are inveterate worshipers. Worship belongs to their essential structure. The expression of human sin is that the worship for which they were created is exchanged for idolatrous worship. They sin, not by not worshiping, but by worshiping wrongly.
—Noel Due, Created for Worship: From Genesis to Revelation to You, 27
The theological counterpoint to the opening chapter of Romans, with its emphasis on illicit worship and the moral degradation brought about by idolatry, is Romans 12. Whereas in Romans 1 we are given a picture of illegitimate worship that leads to the moral breakdown of every kind of social relationship, in Romans 12 we are given a picture of the integrating effects of true worship, in which the whole of the new covenant community delivered from the power of the idols and brought out from under the wrath of God which such idolatry merits – expresses its worship through love. p. 185
—Noel Due, Created For Worship: From Genesis to Revelation to You, 185