Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Romans 6:1-18

Terry Virgo preached on this at Forum. I was blown away. In an attempt to process what i learnt and wrote down, i'm going to try and 'write up my notes'. Before i start, i just want to make it clear that what The Virg said was gold, and anything that is other than that, is entirely my own fault!

Shall we carry on sinning? (v1-2)
'By no means' as Paul puts it. Or, as JB Preistly says, 'what a ghastly thought!' We died to sin. This is not an exhortation, or a promise. This is an event that happened. As we were baptised with Jesus in His death, and as we rose out of the water, we were a new creation. Our dying to sin is an event that has happened, not a process. The Gospel is good news not good advice. Here is the deliverance. This is our red sea moment. When the Jewish people were fleeing from Egypt, they would have been terrified. Faithful hopefully, but definately terrified. As they came up against the Red Sea, they would have seen their old slave masters, and feared that they would ever really escape. But then the sea opened. And for us, our old self is dead. You can scream at a corpse all day long, and it won't do anything...

Do you not know?
All of us have died to sin. Our sin, our old sinful lives, are behind us. Elsewhere in Romans Paul says that we, along with Adam committed that first sin in Eden. We were in Adam. But now, Yes!! We're in Jesus! This is objective truth and we need to live in it. There are hours, days, even weeks and months where we don't feel that we are dead to our sins, that our sinful bodies are alive and well. What then? Well, lets look at Abraham. He trusted God when it would have been easy not to, he had faith in his heart, when his head was trying to convince him otherwise. We need to believe this truth. To press on inot it, and to remember it each and every day. We, most of us, believe that two men were crucufued with Christ. Why do we believethis? Because it says so in the Bible! Guess what else it says in the Bible? That one who has died has been set free from sins! Believe it and live it!

We need to consider, reckon or account it true because God says it's true.
In Romans 6:11, we come across the first command in Romans. And what is it? That we must consider ourselves dead to sin and alive in Christ. Following on from the last point, we must MUST remember and consider the truth in this. We must believe it. It's not a case of if we think it long enough, we will believe it. No no no! It is true, so we must think it. We must line up with the new time, with the new age in our lives. With our new lives full stop!! It says in Hebrews that i have been 'perfected for this time'. Its time we all (myself included) started living in this. Started pressing into it.

Responsible action.
Romans 6:12 tells us not to let sin reign in our mortal bodies. It tells us in short, to stop it! It is time to take responsibility and respond to what God has done for us. If watching TV late at night causes you problems, stop watchin TV late at night! If boredom on the internet gets you into trouble, get off the net before you get bored! If you struggle with alchohol, stop drinking! Let him who steals steal no longer. Sin doesn't happen in a vacuum, our bodies are its vehicle. We must, in view of this, take responsibility for what we do. We must let God reign. C'mon, our old selves had died!

Slaves to a new master.
We are under grace so that sin maybe overcome. Sin has no answer to grace. None. Sin can not and will not defeat God's greatest gift to man. Once we were slaves to sin. We unquestioningly followed the sinful desires that our slavery demanded of us. We were blinded to God's love by our sin. Blinded to His power. Now, we are slaves of righteousness. Slaves of Christ. Called to do His will where and whenever. What a transformation. And the best thing? Our old desires were destroying us, and condeming us to an eternity of fire and misery. But our new master. Wow! The riches and joy and goodness He brings are beyond comprehansion, incomparable, and without end. We need to commit and devote ourselves to our new Master, to our new Lord and live our lives for Him, and in view of His sacrifice. Here is our joy, here is our life, here is our meaning. Jesus is all these things. The great God eternal, who one day we will be with forever.
Shall we continue to sin in view of these things?


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