Romans 6–Under Grace

As we move along, we begin to grasp what it really means to live a life under grace with God. Paul is pushing us from the mystical insight that we have been saved and are being saved by grace alone. Christians are to live close to Christ all our lives are to be lived in him. This I suspect is what Paul means by his phrase ‘In Christ’.  Christianity is a way of life. Christians are not to bathe in an experience no matter how wondrous; we are to go out and do likewise to live the kind of life that doesn’t hunker down in pews of a dusty old building, but faces life’s harsh realities head-on.

Do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.  (Romans 6:12-13)

Since the reign of sin has been broken, all attempts on sin’s part to recover dominion can and must be resisted. The body once ruled by sinful desires, must no longer be yielded to them. We must resist living as we once did and move towards the kind of life we know we should be living. Growing into our commitment to Christ means putting away the childish ways. Paul sees the secret of sanctification to lie in giving the whole person to God, from which follows the offering of the body to Him. We are to offer not just our body, but also our life and self to God as worship to the holy one. All this is done in full awareness, and intentional expression of our new life in Christ.

Do not let sin establish the way you conduct your lives. Ignore sin. Don’t even let it in even a little way. Don’t connect with that old way of life. It is dead and buried, over done with and don’t return to that way. Throw yourselves fully into the way God is leading you. Push yourself to live the life God is making for you. The past is gone. The present is now, live here and now moving steadily towards heaven that is assured to us In Christ.

Now, we come to a powerful verse that almost hits a crescendo.

For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace. (Romans 6:14)

The letter of Romans began with the good news than moved to the bad news. The letter has been a movement from good to bad back to good. Here in this passage we are looking at today, began with the bad news with sin and the hard part not letting sin take hold of one’s life and ends with the good news. We are not under the law, but under grace. The law that we could not keep and merely pointed out our sin to us no longer has power over us and we are saved and live under grace. Grace that God loves us as we are, but way too much to leave us that way. The controlling power in our life is grace that sets us free from the reign of sin and transforms into the likeness of Christ. We are now living in the freedom of God.

Living by grace is a deep trust in the redeeming work of Jesus Christ in our lives, knowing that we are a beloved child of God, and that God is present and at work in the world at all times. Trusting God is to stand in child-like awe and openness in the mysterious and gracious love and acceptance. The Father sent the Son, so that we might live fully and radically and love wastefully.

Grace is more than fair. Grace is too good to be true, but the good news is that it is true. We don’t deserve God’s unconditional and limitless love and grace. We could never earn it, yet it is still ours free of charge. God loves us as we are, but way too much to leave us that way.

Amen

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