I begin this letter to a bother, because what the Lord has put on my heart to say today is not for the unbeliever, but it is solely for the one who has been born again, redeemed by the blood of Christ Jesus through faith in Him alone. So if you have not been born of God, if today you have pleasure in your sin; do not read this letter. Instead repent of your sins and put your faith in Jesus Christ alone. But if you have been born again, if the Lord has given you a new heart, a heart that hates your sin, a heart that desires God, to please Him and you have put your faith in Christ Jesus alone as the propitiation for your sins then this letter is for you.
Brother I have some good news for you and this is beyond good news, it is amazing. You being a believer in Christ Jesus know and understand that by the blood of Christ Jesus through faith in Him alone we have been redeemed, reconciled to God and that by the grace of God alone. (See Romans 3:21-28) Knowing this we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation (Romans 5:11). Yet many of us while knowing this walk through this life defeated, believing that the abundant life that Christ promised us will come at a later date. We walk about this life in anticipation of the glory that is to come. We think that while we have been saved from the penalty of sin by the blood of Christ Jesus through faith, that salvation from the dominion or rule of sin is something that is yet to come. Jesus said, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:31-32 NASB) Then when they scoffed at Him for saying this He said; “Truly, truly I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son does remain forever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:34-36 NASB)
Have you ever seen a person that is trapped; they are struggling to be set free, they are panicked, and they are fear stricken; then after being released from what was holding them they remain panicked and fear stricken until someone tells them, “You’re ok! You’re free from that burden that was holding you”.
I was telling a brother just the other day what the Christian’s standing is before God and he had to pause for a moment to take it in. The Christian’s standing before God is one of perfection. The Christian’s standing is one of righteousness, even the righteousness of God (Romans 3:21-22). Yes, I understand brother that this standing that we have been given by the grace of God is hard to wrap your mind around, but it is true. In order for us to come into the presence of God we must be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect. So then, the Christian’s standing can be nothing less than the perfect righteousness of God. Effectually, through faith in Christ Jesus we died with Christ and have been raised to walk in newness of life. “For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 6:10-11 NASB) Brother, did you see that? Because of what Christ has done consider yourself dead to sin!
Now what does that mean, that we are dead to sin? “For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace.” (Romans 6:14 NASB) “But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.” (Romans 7:6 NASB)
Brother, this is the good news; we are not under Law but under grace. Because Christ Jesus died once to sin for all, we who put our faith in Him alone effectually died to sin. Because Christ Jesus is raised, He lives to God forevermore; we who put our faith in Him alone are effectually alive to God forevermore. Sin has no dominion over us because in Christ Jesus we died to sin and are alive to God forevermore. We are not in any way under Law but under grace. If you are not under Law then you cannot break the Law. The Christian has been released from the Law. He cannot be condemned by the Law nor is bound by the Law as a means of righteousness. Effectually his state is that of one who cannot sin. His sin is not imputed to him but was imputed to Christ on the cross. If your faith is in Christ alone, because he died to sin once for all, the Christian cannot sin because he cannot break that which he is not bound too. Now make no mistake, I am not talking about the presence of sin in the Christian’s life. We will not be saved from the presence of sin until we take off this tent of corruption and are clothed with our dwelling from heaven, but in this present time we are saved from the dominion of sin, because our state before God is that of one who cannot sin, perfect before God, even the righteousness of God.
So why talk about this? “ The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 5:20-21 NASB). “For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death” (Romans 7:5 NASB). If you believe that you are in some way under the Law, and you are focused on the Law as the means to resist sin you will be defeated by sin. That is the effect of the Law on sin, so that the transgression would increase. But if you understand that you are dead to sin, and are not under Law, but under grace, sin has no dominion over you; “so that we serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter. We have been set free brothers and sisters from the burden of sin and death. We can now live the abundant life in Christ Jesus not concerning ourselves with the letter of the Law, but to walk in newness of life, loving God and loving our neighbor. “It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1 NASB).
“So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous. The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.…..” Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.”
The proceeding passage is of Romans 5:18-21 & Romans 8:1-2 put together, which shows the purpose for which Romans 6 & 7 have been given to us. The apostle Paul could have ended with Romans 5:21 and picked up with Romans 8:1 and not missed a beat, the truth of our standing before God; that is, perfect righteousness, even the righteousness of God has been imparted. But inevitably when this truth is made known these questions will be asked:
1. Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?
2. Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace?
3. Is the Law sin?
4. Therefore did that which is good become a cause of death for me?
The apostle Paul asked these questions rhetorically then answered each time with a resounding; “May it never be!” Then gave a thorough exposition to each, and that is the purpose for which Romans 6 & 7 have been given to us. Dear brother, don’t miss the purpose!
A slave of Jesus Christ