Hidden Treasures

The Bible is much more than a book of religion.

#16 Whose Servant Are You?

In Romans 6  Paul teaches truths of Sanctification  by posing questions we might ask about sin and righteousness, and then answering those questions.

 

The first question in verse 1  is this.  Since we’re saved by grace and not by our works and since sin  gives God greater opportunity to reveal His grace, shall we just go on sinning, since it is so natural to sin and so difficult to do what is right?

 

Paul answers that carnal reasoning in verse 2.  He shouts back, “God forbid! Don’t even think that way. We are dead to sin. 

 

The second question is found in verse 2.  What do you mean, Paul, that we are dead to sin?  How are we dead to sin?

 

With those questions Paul in Romans 6:3-10  launches into an explanation of our relationship with two races of people:   our natural relationship with Adam our first father and our super-natural relationship as Christians  with Christ, the second Adam.

 

 

AS CHILDREN OF ADAM

 

 

Here are some of those facts as recorded in Roman 6 and I Corinthians 12.

 

We all, as children of Adam and Eve,  fell into sin with Adam, who was the federal head of the human race.  In falling we inherited God’s curse on Adam and his descendants.

 

 

CHRIST, THE SECOND ADAM

 

 

By trusting in the efficacy  of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ, the second Adam, we can be saved from the penalty,  power and ultimately from the presence  of sin.

 

Those who have put their trust in Christ for salvation  have His  resurrection life. Just as a caterpillar has the resurrection life of a butterfly in it, so we have the resurrection life of Christ in us.   That’s Paul’s message to us in Galatians 2:20.   That life is the fruit of Christ’s Spirit being lived out in us, as described in Galatians 5:22-23

 

 

“GOD FORBID!” PAUL CRIES OUT IN HORROR.

 

 

This wonderful truth of Christ living through us makes the thought of living  in known, premeditated, planned sin, repugnant and unthinkable to us as Christians.  That’s why Paul cries out in horror in Romans 6:1-2  “God forbid such thinking!”    If you are a Spirit-led Christian, you don’t plan, prepare and pay to commit sin by visiting prostitutes or by going to  view sin-glorifying movies in theatres or in your living room watching television or porn on the internet.  Nor do you engage in the innumerable other sins Satan offers to satisfy you.

 

Instead, Paul’s desire and our desire as Christians  is described in Philippians 3:10.  ” That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death.”  

 

 

WE’RE NOT SINLESSLY PERFECT

 

But then he adds quickly in Philippians 3:12-15. (Let me summarize it for you)  It’s not that I have attained the perfection of Christ, but that’s my desire, to be like Jesus.  And so I press on to that goal of perfect Christ-likeness. If we are mature Christians, this is the way we should be thinking.

 

Most Christians are well aware that I John 1 teaches us that no Christian is sinlessly perfect.  It we think we are, “we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us.”

 

 

DOES CHRIST’S  SACRIFICE ON CALVARY MATTER TO YOU?

 

 

I fear many Christians live lives defeated by sin, simply because they are not aware nor do they care about the resources God has given us to live victoriously over sin. Those resources include:

 

1. His shed blood as the sacrifice for our sins,

 

2 His Word and

 

3. His Holy Spirit living within us to empower us to live victoriously over sin.

 

 We live like the  poor beggar who has had  $100,000 deposited in his bank account by a benefactor, but He refuses to  believe it and continues to exist in his poverty.

 

Before we move on to the next step in understanding sanctification, let’s review what we know.

 

 

I  We KNOW the Truth  Romans 6:3-10

 

 

We know the truth of substitution in regards to justification; that Jesus bore the penalty for our sins by shedding His blood on the cross as the full atonement for our sins

 

We know and are beginning to understand the truth of our identification with Christ in regards to our sanctification.

 

Read Romans 6:6  and  Galatians2:20again. In these verses we are reminded that we have been crucified with Christ and raised with Him to walk a new life.  These events have already taken place in our lives as believers. 

 

Now to the second step.

 

 

 

II  We RECKON or count on what we know as true.  Read Romans 6:11.

 

 

 

If a poor, destitute man knows that $100,000 has been deposited into his bank account, it will do him no good until he reckons or counts on this fact as true by going to the bank and drawing on what he needs to live.

 

So when tempted to sin, I must reckon that I was crucified in the person of Christ who died for me.  Furthermore, I must reckon, or count on the truth that I was buried with Christ and that on the third day I rose with Christ to walk in Christ’s resurrection power over sin.

 

The only time I sin is when my heart grows cold towards God and I choose to sin or when in a spiritually-weakened condition I am deceived by the devil.  No Christian who longs for victory over sin need be denied that victory.  God promises that victory in Romans 6:14.

 

 Now to the third step towards victory over sin.

 

 

 

III. We YIELD  to Christ  Romans 6:13-15

 

 

 

We yield our body, our emotions and our desires to His control and experience victory over sin.   God’s promise of victory in Romans 6:14 is there for you and me to claim. Walking purposely into known sin should be unthinkable.   When we come to Romans 12 we will delve further into this step.

 

 

 

IV. We REST in Him.

 

 

Jesus, in Matthew 11:28-30 invites us to come to Him for rest, even as we serve Him.  He likens our relationship with Him to  two oxen yoked together to work in the field.  Christ is the strong, wise ox.  We are the young, inexperienced, weak ox. 

 

Christ invites us to yoke with Him and He will help us pull our load.  He will guide us as we walk together. we must follow His leadership and not try to go our own way, or we will find the yoke rubbing our necks raw and making life miserable for us.

 

What a joy it has been to me these past 55 years in the ministry to walk along beside Him as I submitted to His Lordship.  How painful it has been for me, when I tried to go my own way and ignore His Lordship.

 

Again I remind you that the victorious Christian life is a life of rest.  Hebrew 4:9-11 speaks to us about this rest of victory over sin.  Yielding to Christ is just the opposite of struggle in our own efforts to conquer sin.  Such struggles end in defeat.  Some Christians go throughout their lives  living in constant defeat to sin.  Hebrews 3:7-19 give sober warning to Christians who settle for that defeat.

 

We dealt with the first two questions concerning our sanctification at the beginning of this message.  Let’s move now to the third question. It is found in Romans 6:15.  Actually, it is a duplication of the first question found in verse 1.

 

 

The third question.   Shall we sin because we are no longer under Law, but under Grace?   Whose slave are you, anyway?   Are you still a slave to sin and Satan  or are you now a bond slave to Christ ?  Read Romans 6:16-23  to determine your answer.  To answer this question consider these Biblical issues and questions.

 

 

1.  Salvation is simple.  Trust Christ’s provision for your sins. He died for you on the cross and rose again for your justification.  John 3:16

 

2.  Does salvation result in a changed life?  II Corinthians5:17clearly answers that question, “If any man, (anyone) be in Christ,  he is a new creation.  Old things are passing away.  Behold, all things are becoming new.”  

 

3.  Whose slave are you?  Christ’s or Satan’s?  It’s one or the other.

 

 

Consider these Biblical facts in review.

 

 

Salvation is by faith and faith alone; but by a faith that does not remain alone, but results in a changed heart and a changed life bringing glory to God.

 

Faith in Christ results in justification.

 

Justification results in sanctification.

 

Sanctification results in a choice to live for Christ and serve Him instead of Satan.

 

We can’t be half saved and half lost.  We can’t serve two Masters.  Matthew 6:24  We love one and hate the other.  Who is your master?  Christ or Satan?   Lordship is  a love and hate matter. We either love ‘Christ and hate sin and Satan; or else we hate and reject Christ’s lordship and love going our own way, which, by the way, is always Satan’s way for us.

 

Loving and living for Christ is the best evidence of genuine salvation.  See the solemn warning in  I Cor.16:22   There we are warned that if we do not love Jesus we will be cursed when Jesus returns for us.  Do you love Him enough to trust Him with your life and follow Him?

 

Jesus in John 10:10 offers abundant, life that overcomes sin.  Do you have that life?   I’m not saying and you had better not boast that you are living in sinless perfection. I  John 1:8-10 warns against that deception. Sinless perfection won’t happen until you are in Heaven.  But in the meantime you can live a life of consistent victory if you are resting in Him.

 

If you fail Him, just get up out of the muck,  confess to Him that you sinned and ask His forgiveness and keep on resting in Him for victory. “He’ll not cast you out” is His promise in John 6:37.

 

 

 

 

 

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September 10, 2011 - Posted by | Romans

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