In Romans 6:11-12 it says, “Consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts.”
How many times have you said, “Lord, I promise I will never do that again”—yet you find yourself within days, if not hours, repeating the very same mistake? We tend to wander from God due to our fallen nature.
A fellow church member once told me, “teaching that Christians still have a sin nature just leads to a defeated life.” The Bible says if you’re a Christian, you no longer have a sin nature—you only have your God-given nature.” Now, where would he get such an idea? To be honest, the Bible does teach that we have a new master once we become a Christian. In Romans 6:6–7, Paul says, “Our old self-was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; for he who has died is freed from sin.” I admit this church member was right in one sense. It’s wrong to tell Christians that you will always be a slave to the old nature until you see Jesus one day. That defeatist teaching is responsible for a lot of the disobedience among Christians. Paul said, “If you are a Christian, your old nature has been crucified. You don’t have to be a slave to sin. Sin has no more power over your life than you choose to allow it to have.”
The Bible says within every Christian is a civil war between our new set of desires that comes when we become a Christian and that old set of desires that wants to disobey God. But here’s the liberating truth: your new nature doesn’t have to win just some of the time; it can win every time. You don’t have to obey sin any longer. Sin has no more power over your life than you choose to allow it to have. That’s why Paul goes on to say, “Consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts” (vv. 6:11–12). God has given you His Holy Spirit to give you victory over any and every sin in your life.
Before you become a Christian, you have no power over sin whatsoever. You can try all you want to say no to sin. You are a slave to sin. But once you trust in Christ as your Savior, God not only provides you forgiveness from your sins, but He also gives you power over your sins. He gives you the Holy Spirit, who can grant you victory over every sin in your life. Paul says you no longer have to be a slave to sin. Live as if sin were dead in you. We need to do everything we can to kill the old nature, to refuse to feed it, and to choose to have victory over it.
Understanding this truth will protect you against wandering away from God. But the message I want you to hear more than anything else is this: no matter how far you’ve wandered, you can come back again to the Father who loves you. No matter how far you’ve wandered away from God, never forget: you have a loving heavenly Father who stands with arms outstretched saying, “Come home to the Father who loves you.”
By the time you read this Column you will have already enjoyed your memorial day. I pray that each of us have taken time to reflect on our Confederate ancestors who also fought bravely for our freedoms. We owe much to all our fighting armed forces and their sacrifice given.
Please remember everyone that is on our prayer list.