Have you grown weary in your fight against sin? Do you feel entangled or bound by it, even? I have a truth for you today from God’s Word, and it’s one that has changed my life as a Christian.
If you are in Christ, you are no longer a slave to sin.
Grace and Our Sin
If you claim to be a follower of Christ, yet your relationship to sin hasn’t changed, you may not be a true convert. Harsh? Maybe. True? Probably. True believers have hearts that love God and His commandments more than their sin (John 14:15). If a person’s reaction to the truth that “where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,” is to keep basking in their sin, they don’t show evidence of new life in Christ.
“What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?” Romans 6:1-2
Grace is never an excuse to sin, nor should taking advantage of it in that way have a place in the life of a believer. Grace surely covers us when we fall, but it is of no use to the one who tramples the Son with their life.
“For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries…How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has trampled underfoot the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace?” Hebrews 10:26-27, 29
No Longer a Slave
Truly, this is good news for the Christian who is struggling against sin. The struggle alone shows that grace has touched your life, if indeed you want to be free.
Romans 6 declares to us that we are united with Christ in His death and His resurrection (v. 5). We have died to sin and are now alive in Christ (v. 11). One of my favorite verses says,
“We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.” Romans 6:6
Because of our new life in Christ, we can now say no to sin. In our previous unregenerate state, we were helpless to do so; we could only choose sin. But we have been set free and equipped with the Holy Spirit and the Word of God so we now have a choice. This is why Paul cautions us against letting sin reign in our bodies:
“Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.” Romans 6:12-14
Oh, what a glorious truth! Not convinced yet? Think about this: the same Spirit who empowered Jesus to crush temptation and to endure the cross lives in you. It is by the power of that same Spirit that you can refuse temptation–all temptation, whether it’s envy, lust, anxiety, or any other sin known to man.
Slaves to Righteousness
Friends, let us take hold of the freedom of being a slave of Christ. Sin is a cruel master; Jesus is gracious and kind to us. He bears with us and prays for us in our battle against sin (Romans 8:34).
This is where true freedom is found.
“But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.” Romans 6:17-19