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. For one who has died has been set free from sin.
For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions.
We know that everyone who has been born of God does not keep on sinning, but he who was born of God protects him, and the evil one does not touch him. We know that we are from God, and the whole world lies in the power of the evil one.
Prior to being born of God, we were all under the power of the evil one; we were enslaved to sin. Through repentance and faith (chapter 16) we are born of God, and set free from sin!
Forgiveness of sin is primarily associated with Jesus’ shed blood (per the previous chapter). However, deliverance from the power of sin is primarily associated with Jesus’ death and resurrection. We especially focus on the death of Jesus in this chapter, and how understanding the death of Jesus to be our own death sets us free from sin’s power.
Freedom from sin is primarily part of God’s grace. Through Jesus, God has set his people free from sin’s dominion. The power of sin has been broken. However, we must still learn how and choose to live as servants of God rather than servants of sin, as scripture emphasizes in Romans 6:15-23.
Identifying ourselves with Jesus’ death and resurrection solves the problem of sin’s dominion over us. We know that our old self was crucified with him (Romans 6:6). His death is our own death, setting us free from the dominion of sin:
For one who has died has been set free from sin. (Romans 6:7)
Paul’s letter to the Romans indicates some key points to make freedom from sin’s dominion a practical reality:
- We must know these things (per Romans 6:6-7 above).
- We must identify ourselves with Jesus’ death and resurrection:
So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. (Romans 6:11)
- We are to present ourselves to God:
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. (Romans 6:13)
- We are to walk in newness of life:
We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. (Romans 6:4)
(If you need additional help to live free from sin’s power, please refer to the books referenced below.)
Thank you, God, for setting us free from sin through Jesus!
For Further Reflection
John 8:34-36: Everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin.
Romans chapters 5 to 8: Sin and righteousness.
Galatians 5:1-4: Christ has set us free.
Colossians 3:1-10: For you have died.
Book Reference: “The Bondage Breaker” by Neil Anderson.
Book Reference: “The Secret of the Cross” by Andrew Murray; a 32-day devotional; available free on the internet.
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