“Sin is no longer your master, for you no longer live under the requirements of the law. Instead, you live under the freedom of God’s grace.” – Romans 6:14
According to Apostle Paul, sin does not control when we die, nor does it have to control what we do when we live. Once we place our faith in Christ, the old “us” is dead and we become a whole new person. No longer do we have to live the way we used to live.
As we previously discussed, we all know what it’s like to have to deal with the urge to sin. Yes, this includes the good people who regularly attend evangelical church in Dubai. There are times when we do the wrong thing because of the sin in us. Apostle Paul explains that there is no fundamentally good person because we were all born in sin. He also explains that the solution is simply to be placed in Christ, so what is true of Christ becomes true of us and we become forgiven.
For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. – Romans 6:9
Because Christ already died when he was crucified on the cross, and he was raised from the dead, he cannot die again. Jesus Christ did not just die to life, he also died to sin. Because Jesus was able to conquer death, he also conquered the power of sin.
In the same way, we who are in Christ must also consider ourselves dead to sin but alive to God. We must believe, accept, and declare that sin is no longer our master. In the previous sermon, Andy Stanley encourages us to whisper “Sin is not my master.” in an effort to overcome temptation before we give in to it. Declare your freedom.
But as we all know, this isn’t the easiest thing.
Apostle Paul reminds us to think of sin as an intangible personification of evil. And each time we give in to sin, we are letting it reign our mortal body. After all, it cannot overcome us if we do not let it!
Notice that right before we do something we know is wrong, we experience internal conflict. You realize there are two sides of you: one who encourages and justifies the sin you want to commit, and another that tries to prevent you from doing it.
Here’s a question to ask yourself: each time you wrestle with sin or temptation, which side of the argument do you identify with?
If you wrestle from the standpoint of Adam, do you justify the sin? Do you just shrug it off and say “Eh, no one’s perfect.”, “This is normal.”, or “Well this is who I’ve always been, everyone knows that.”? This is arguing from the standpoint of sin.
If you wrestle from the standpoint from who you are as placed in Christ, your thought process is more likely to go like this: “Sin is trying to conquer me.”, “That sin is trying to rule my life.”, or “Why should I do something that I know will hurt me or anyone around me?”.
Again we ask, do you wrestle from the standpoint of being born in Adam, or placed in Christ?
We have a choice. We are capable of saying ‘No’ to sin, because the power of sin has already been broken.
Remember that sin doesn’t even have to take over our whole body to cause havoc! Paul reminds us never to loan or offer any member of our physical bodies. Our eyes, hands, feet, mind, and other individual parts of our body are so easily overcome by sin. However, we can’t let sin borrow even just bits and parts of us. We have the opportunity to offer every part of our physical bodies to our Heavenly Father as an instrument of righteousness.
In light of this, we are further encouraged to devote ourselves to God. Andy says that every morning he prays “God, today I offer my hands, feet, eyes, ears, and mind to you.” as a way of devoting his whole physical self. It is so easy, does not take up much of our time, but can make all the difference in the world in keeping us from sinning.
You are capable of overcoming sin and declaring, deciding, and devoting yourself to God. How can you stay dead to sin? What can you do each day in an effort to devote yourself to God?