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Category Archives: Easter

Jesus to the Rescue

21So I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies close at hand. 22For I delight in the law of God in my inmost self, 23but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind, making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with my mind I am a slave to the law of God, but with my flesh I am a slave to the law of sin. (Romans 7:21-25, NRSV)

Who will rescue me from myself?

Who will save me from the evil that I do?

Because when I want to do good, evil is close at hand and I know there is a war inside of me.

Jesus is the one who can lead us out of our darkness and into his light.

 

This reminds me of one of my favorite songs. Todd Agnew’s War Inside. A song that talks about how we battle ourselves every day with the decisions we make.

 

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Sin Dwells in Me

13Did what is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, working death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. 14For we know that the law is spiritual; but I am of the flesh, sold into slavery under sin. 15I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. 17But in fact it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it.19For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. 20Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin that dwells within me.  (Romans 7:13-20, NRSV)

I do not understand my own actions, I do the things I don’t want to do and I don’t do the things I know I should do.

I don’t do the wrong I do, but it is the sin that dwells in me. My flesh is weak and though I have been washed by the waters of baptism and the Holy Spirit dwells in me sin still is in me. It dwells in my body until the day of physical death.

I fight to do what is right but my flesh has the way of sin.

We must cling to Christ and follow after what is right.

 

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The Law Shows Us Our Sin

7What then should we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet, if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.”8But sin, seizing an opportunity in the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. Apart from the law sin lies dead. 9I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived 10and I died, and the very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. 11For sin, seizing an opportunity in the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. 12So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and just and good.  (Romans 7:7-12, NRSV)

The law is not sin, but the law does help us know when we have sinned.

The law can not earn me grace, but it can show me how I fall short.

I died to the commandments and live in the grace that God gives me. The law does not hold me captive but helps me to live a life that is freed to share the love of God with all people.

 

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Dead to the Law

Do you not know, brothers and sisters—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law is binding on a person only during that person’s lifetime? 2Thus a married woman is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives; but if her husband dies, she is discharged from the law concerning the husband. 3Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she lives with another man while her husband is alive. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man, she is not an adulteress. 4In the same way, my friends, you have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead in order that we may bear fruit for God. 5While we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death.6But now we are discharged from the law, dead to that which held us captive, so that we are slaves not under the old written code but in the new life of the Spirit. (Romans 7:1-6, NRSV)

Interesting thought. We have died to the law and are joined to the life we have in Christ.

The only way you can not be married anymore is if your spouse dies. Otherwise, you are committing adultery.

We are freed from our life of sin and shame because in Christ we have died and been raised to new life.

Live in that love and show that to the world!

 

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Freed for Eternal Life

20When you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.21So what advantage did you then get from the things of which you now are ashamed? The end of those things is death. 22But now that you have been freed from sin and enslaved to God, the advantage you get is sanctification. The end is eternal life. 23For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:20-23, NRSV)

When we are slaves to God and follow the life that God has planned for us, we are free from sin and death and the gift that we get is eternal life.

This is all because of Jesus and God and nothing we can boast in.

But the advantage of being a slave of God is eternal life.

We are gifted life and freed to live eternally with God!

 

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Slaves to Sin No More

15What then? Should we sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! 16Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? 17But thanks be to God that you, having once been slaves of sin, have become obedient from the heart to the form of teaching to which you were entrusted, 18and that you, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. 19I am speaking in human terms because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to greater and greater iniquity, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness for sanctification. (Romans 6:15-19, NRSV)

When we follow after something or someone and submit to them then we are a slave to them.

Christ has set us free to live the life God has for us. And whenever we follow another we are leaving freedom behind and becoming a slave to another.

So we must be a slave of God and follow after his plan for our lives and make ourselves slaves to righteousness for sanctification!

 

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Freedom from Sin

What then are we to say? Should we continue in sin in order that grace may abound? 2By no means! How can we who died to sin go on living in it? 3Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4Therefore we have been buried with him by baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. 5For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin. 7For whoever has died is freed from sin. 8But if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. 10The death he died, he died to sin, once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. 11So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12Therefore, do not let sin exercise dominion in your mortal bodies, to make you obey their passions. 13No longer present your members to sin as instruments of wickedness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and present your members to God as instruments of righteousness. 14For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace. (Romans 6:1-14, NRSV)

If we have been baptized we have been baptized into Christ’s death and if we have joined him in his death then we will also join him in his resurrection. We are dead to our old self.

Does that mean we no longer sin? No, it doesn’t. but it means we have the power to resist sin because we are no longer held slave to sin. We are not under the law but under grace, that doesn’t mean we can do whatever we want. as verses 1 and 2 remind us, we shouldn’t sin more so that we get more grace. We can not run after that which we are dead to.

You have been set free to live a life of love to others so that they will see how much God loves them. Live in your freedom and share the grace you have been given with all of the world!

 
 

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