Romans 6: 1 - 4, What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. NKJV
Romans 6: 11 - 13: Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. NKJV
What does it mean to be a disciple of the teachings of Christ? Does it mean that we have salvation, and we're just waiting on the return of Jesus to take us out of this body of sin? Paul taught Timothy on the importance of rightly dividing the Word of God so that, as a minister, he wouldn't be put to shame. Anyone can twist the Word to fit just about any belief out there in the world. If someone should alter the Word of God to accommodate a lifestyle that isn't consistent with the entire gospel of Christ, then it ceases being truth and has no power to save a soul or change a person's heart.
Paul didn't mince words when it came to establishing the principles that God, through Christ, has set in His Word for the believer. Our old sin nature that was given to us by the sins of Adam cannot inherit the promise of eternal life. Therefore, God had to offer up a spotless Lamb to pay the price for man's sin debt so that we can be bought (or ransomed) from the rule of Satan over mankind's soul. When Jesus died on the cross, He stripped principalities and powers of their authority and made an open spectacle of them through the cross. He descended into hell and took back the keys of authority over hell and the grave. Now that Christ has ascended into heaven and shown Himself as the Lamb and the High Priest to the Father, we all have been given the opportunity to leave the domination of sin and die to our flesh nature and live a holy and righteous life before God.
Since Christ has died for all humans and redeemed us all from the curse of the law of sin and death, we no longer have to live our lives in bondage to Satan or sin. The key to living free from the sin nature, or the Adamic nature, is to surrender our hearts to Christ and make Him our Lord and Savior. If this is true, and the Word declares to us that it is, then why do so many Christians choose to live in sin and not walk in righteousness and holiness? The answer is found in Romans 6: 11 - 13: Likewise, you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore, do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. As long as we choose to walk by faith in obedience to the voice of God and the Word of God, we won't fulfill the lusts of the flesh. If we die to our flesh through obedience to God's divine will, we will no longer be ruled by sin through the lusts of our flesh nature. So if we die to the flesh nature, we won't sin. The flesh nature gives place for sin to rule our hearts and ultimately, our lives. However, this does not have to occur in a believer's life.
As Christ's disciples, we must not live this new life according to the old lusts of the carnal or flesh nature. We must submit to God, resist the Devil, and he will flee from us, just as he did with Jesus, who was submitted to God in the wilderness. If you find that today's word demands more than you're able to offer, then today can be the first day of the rest of your walk. Begin practicing your faith by obeying God and allowing Him to set you free from any habit, addiction, or relationships that might be holding you in bondage to the flesh nature. As you obey daily and seek God with your whole heart, He will do the work of setting you free from the old man and renewing you to become the person in Christ that He ordained from the foundation of the world. You can do it, and these devotions can help you succeed. Now place one foot in front of the other and begin to walk out your salvation. You can do all things through Christ, who strengthens you.
Walking It Out by Faith,
Pastor Asa Dockery