We are dead to sin!
Let us continue our journey through the book of Romans. I want to thank you for the significant and positive response to our study. I pray that these emails are beneficial to your walk with the Lord and help you on your journey.
Read: Romans 6
Let me begin by saying once again that I am not attempting to write a commentary. If you are looking for excellent commentaries on this book, I have them; rather, I hope to help you get a basic grasp of what Paul is writing. To help you formulate a robust theological understanding that will be with you through the good times and the bad. Your theology matters, your view of God matters, and Romans has a strong bearing on many aspects of God and humanity. Before you just into Romans 6, take a moment to pray. Ask God to open up His Word to you. Pray that the Holy Spirit would illuminate God’s Word to you.
1. What shall we do? (V. 1-2). Often when many read, “What shall we say then?” they reply, “say about what?” The answer is written in the closing of chapter 5. Paul writes where sin increased; grace abounded all the more. Knowing that some would take this as a license to grow in their sin, Paul heads them off at the pass. In my experience as a pastor, I still find some that believe that God wants them to continue in their sin. That their body is going to be destroyed, and they are going to get a new body, so why wouldn’t God just want them to dive into sin so grace may abound? For those that have adopted this theological understanding, I have found that their view of what God’s purpose in salvation to be lacking. Yes, God is indeed saving you from sin and eternal punishment. Yes, this is entirely apart from any work of your own. Yet God has saved you to set you free from sin. God has saved you to conform you into the image of Christ. Your salvation is so much more than your sin being forgiven; you serve a grander purpose. Paul goes on to say gloriously, by no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Your sinful nature has been crucified with Christ! You are dead to your sin nature! Amen!
Application: Repent of your sin. It is so easy for some to think so haphazardly, well God will forgive me. Your sin is wretched, put it to death!
2. Sharing in Christ baptism. (3-4) The keywords in chapter three are that we died to sin. This is something that you and I can never take too lightly. When you have given your life to Christ, your identity is in Christ; you belong to Him! You take part in His baptism. Now before you begin to think of plunging in the water, Paul is not talking about the ordinance of baptism. The Greek word for baptism is baptizo. It means to “immerse.” You have been identified with Christ; you belong to Him. This is much more than a symbol; this is saying that your identity is found in Christ and Christ alone. It is not found in what you do, what you’ve done; rather, it is found in what Christ did! What He did was die that you may be made new and was raised from the grave to bring ultimate glory to God!
3. Live with Christ. (5-11). In this section, we see some beautiful and assuring passages that we must cling to for great hope! I want you to think about the ramifications of what Paul is saying in these few verses.
A. Old Self Crucified. Paul is saying that upon that cross where Christ paid for your sin. That old rugged cross where our savior’s hands and feet were nailed, your old self was nailed as well. Your old sinful self was nailed to that cross, and it is dead, it is gone! Your old self was crucified that it may no longer live and that you may no longer be a slave to sin. When Satan tries to accuse you, remember that your old self is dead! You are no longer slaves! AMEN!!!
B. We still struggle. I know what you are thinking. Aaron, this sounds wonderful, but I know that I still struggle with sin. I still do things that I wish I didn’t do, how does this verse mean anything in my life? Here’s the reality of your life, your sin nature, your old self is crucified with Christ. Your body will still experience sin. You live in a broken world. Our bodies that we are currently residing in, still experience sinful desires. Yet we are to no longer be slaves to sin. We are to continually be at war with sin because sin is not our identity; Christ is.
4. God’s Instrument. (12-14). We see these verses, and we can grasp some understanding of what Paul is trying to get us to understand and to do. Let us take some great encouragement from these few verses.
A. Sin is still present. Paul says, do not let sin reign in your mortal body. This means that sin will still be present in your mortal body. That no matter how old or how young you are, you will still struggle with sin. Sin will want to take over your mind and body. Sin will reign and can dominate your body. You know this, there are times where sin takes over, and you do things that you can’t believe that you would ever allow yourself to do. You think thoughts; you say things, etc. But there is good news.
B. Sin doesn’t have to. Just because you have sin trying to creep up on you, doesn’t mean that it has to reign in you. It is possible for us to overcome sin and to offer ourselves up to Christ. As believers in Christ, we are to offer up our bodies to God as instruments of righteousness. The very same body that is being tempted to sin can be offered to God for righteousness.
5. Slave to sin or righteousness? (15-19). Paul again heads them off before they can make assertions. There will be some to say that we are no longer accountable to the Law, and now we are under grace. Paul knew that this type of ideology would lead one down the path to sinful living says that when you choose to sin, you choose to submit yourself to sin as your slave master. You’ve been set free from sin, and yet you choose to go back to that wretched master over and over again. You know what this is like and dealing with people who do this. You see that their life is a mess, and yet they keep running back to it. You do the same thing! Paul says that you choose who your master is.
Application: What sin do you continuously run back to and call master? Repent of it!
6. What will you do? (20-23) At the end of the chapter, we see that we have a decision that we will have to make. We often don’t want to believe that we are subject to our sin and that it has dominion over us. Paul asks, what fruit comes from it? What good from your sin? None! It brings pain, suffering, and death. To choose to be a slave to righteousness is to choose life. Look at the final verse.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
The choice is ours. Sin=Death. Christ=Life. I pray that you choose to be obedient to Christ, follow Him!