Thursday, December 8, 2011

In Christ - I am dead to sin

I am dead to sin...

Romans 6:1-4,17,18  What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?  By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?  We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness. 

Joni and Friends Daily Devotional/May 23, 2011

"What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? By no means? We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?"  Romans 6:1-2

“I can hear you saying, ‘But that's impossible.  We may be Christians, but we're still human beings and sin is a fact of life.’ Yes, I agree that sin is a fact of life. We are free of its power, but sin's presence is still everywhere, tempting and enticing us. But does sin have to be our master? No! Never!

“Romans 6:14 is your emancipation proclamation: ‘For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.’

“Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones shares a wonderful illustration of this in one of his commentaries. He describes the kingdom of Satan and the kingdom of God as two fields.  When we become Christians, Jesus rescues us out of the Devil's dry, rocky pasture and places us in His green fields. But that old master, the Devil, yells at us from his side of the fence. We hear him cracking his whip and telling us to get back into his field where we belong. Fear and intimidation make us listen to his lies, and before you know it, we climb back over the fence. What's amazing is that we don't have to! The Devil is not our master!

"’You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness’ (Romans 6:18).

“Close your ears to the Devil's lies.  Understand that fear and intimidation are a part of his strategy to force you back into his territory. You died to sin and it is no longer your master. Grace is all you need to say, ‘No, Satan, my master is Jesus, and I wouldn't dare set a foot outside His kingdom.’

“Free at last, free at last!  In Jesus, I am free from the power of sin over my life!”

There are some days when it’s REALLY hard to believe that I’m dead to sin – I find myself struggling with a bad attitude or impure thoughts – and it seems like sin is alive and well in my life.  At those times I have to remind myself that I am no longer in bondage to sin – and that in the strength and power of Jesus Christ, I am not only an over comer – I am DEAD to sin!  That doesn’t happen without effort on my part – I have to “reckon” myself dead to sin – I have to SEE myself as dead to sin – and I have to ACT in a way that says I’m dead to sin.  When I feel myself failing I can either give in – or cry out to God for the strength I need to live this truth.  On this side of heaven I will NEVER be perfect – but I CAN live in victory over those areas of sin in my life that keep me from experiencing the fullness of life promised to me by God.  And – when I fail – I know it’s not the end of the world – or the end of my relationship with Christ. I can pick myself up – repent – and ask God for the strength not to fail in that way again!  Are you faced with temptation that feels overwhelming?  KNOW that He is able to keep you from falling – and that “in Him” you can overcome!  Sharon

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