Churches today teach that Sanctification is a lifelong process of “becoming Holy” and this process will never actually be complete until we “die and go to heaven.” Nothing could be further from the TRUTH. The Bible says that Sanctification is a Person. Christ Jesus “became for us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification and redemption,” (1 Corinthians 1:30)
God always deals with us humans in the same way: He takes us out of the way and substitutes Jesus Christ in our place.
There are TWO separate substitutions we can notice in the Word: Jesus shed His Blood and died in our stead for the forgiveness of our sins and destruction of the “body of sin”<—that is substitution #1
Jesus NOW lives HIS LIFE in our stead to fulfill God’s righteous requirements “IN us”. That is substitution #2
“For I consider myself as dead, and I am enjoying a new existence, which is simply Jesus Christ using my body”(Gal2:20DB) Jesus is perfectly sanctified and if you have been made ONE with HIM how sanctified are you?
Biblical Sanctification is this: as you AGREE with God and take steps in obedience to Jesus, He manifests His righteousness through your life. He manifests His humility, His Faith, His love through you, extending to the very thoughts and desires of the heart. “That the righteous requirement of the law be fulfilled “in us” (Rom 8:4) “I am the vine, you are the branches: without me you can do nothing “(John 15:5)
Every form of holiness that is not God manifesting HIS NATURE THROUGH YOU is false holiness and is sure to be filled with a bunch of striving and frustration that will never be the pure enjoyment of God Himself that Jesus Christ purchased with his own Blood.
The method of getting Jesus Christ in you so that HE can live his life through you is SIMPLE. Jesus prayed you into himself and HIMSELF INTO YOU right before he went to the Cross. He prayed in John 17 that “just as you are in me, Father, and I am in you, MAY THEY BE IN US” and “I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one. I AM IN THEM and you are in me.” (v 22-23) And then He went to the Cross and Paul explains in Romans exactly what happened when YOU went to the Cross IN HIM.
“In the first eight chapters of Romans two aspects of salvation are presented to us: firstly, the forgiveness of our sins, and secondly, our deliverance from sin.
In the first part of Romans 1 to 8, we twice have reference to the Blood of the Lord Jesus, in chapters 3&5. In the second, a new idea is introduced in chapter 6. Where we are said to have been “crucified” with Christ.
The argument of the first part gathers round that aspect of the work of the Lord Jesus which is represented by ‘the Blood’ shed for our justification through “the remission of sins” (what we are used to hearing in church)
This terminology is however not carried on into the second section, where the argument centers now in the aspect of His work represented by ‘the Cross’, that is to say, by our union with Christ in His death, burial and resurrection.
This distinction is a valuable one. We shall see that the Blood deals with what we have done, whereas the Cross deals with what we are. The Blood disposes of our sins, while the Cross strikes at the root of our capacity for sin.” (NTS 1938)
Mankind before Jesus Christ sinned because they were made (constituted) sinners by the rebellion of Adam in the Garden of Eden. Adam was the federal head and representative of the entire human race and what He did passed on to all of his descendants. “When Adam sinned, sin entered the entire human race. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned.” [Rom 5:12 NLT] The nature that we inherited from our parents by birth is like a sin factory. We are born as a factory that produces sins in thought, word and deed continuously.
This nature became ours involuntarily as we don’t do anything to get it. We simply inherited it. A fallen creature does not have to make up his mind to be selfish, lose his temper or have impure thoughts. A fallen creature does not have to decide to be afraid, to hate or to lust; these things happen despite his best efforts. They are “natural” for fallen man.
The sinful nature is so bad that it “cannot” do anything pleasing to God and it is so evil that it cannot be made right in any way. “For the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will.” [Rom 8:7 NLT] The only way to fix it is to kill it. This is EXACTLY what Jesus did on the Cross.
Did you know “that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death?” For WE DIED and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives.” (Rom 6:3-4 nkj,nlt)
Jesus Christ did much MORE than just forgive us for the actions of our sinful nature. He put to death/destroyed/REMOVED our entire sin factory on the Cross “so that we would no longer be slaves to sin”
“Knowing this: that our old man was put to death on the cross with him, so that the body of sin has been utterly destroyed, and we are no longer servants to sin. Because anyone who has died is free from sin.” (Rom 6:6-7)
The “Body of sins” is that sin principle from which our sinful actions proceed. The Greek word for body is “soma” and the definition is “that which casts a shadow as distinguished from the shadow itself”. That which casts the “shadow” is our sinful nature and the shadow itself is our sinful actions in thought, word and deed. For his death was a death to sin, but his life now is a life which he is living from and to God. (Rom 6:10) “Who Himself took on our sin (sin factory) IN His own body on the tree, that we may cease from sinning and live righteously (1 Peter 2:24)
Just as Joshua [who was a type of Yeshua] personally circumcised all of Israel before entering into the promised land [Joshua 5:3] Jesus personally circumcised every single person at the Cross. “IN Him YOU were also circumcised. It was not a circumcision performed by human hands. But it was a removal of the corrupt nature in the circumcision performed by Christ.” [Col 2:11 Gods Word]
“The sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over us, but all who receive God’s wonderful, gracious gift of righteousness will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ.” [Rom 5:17 NLT] This is the reason God came to the earth “that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death” [Heb 2:14 NKJV] Just as Adam was the federal head and representative of the entire human race so is Jesus Christ a representative.
Jesus is called the “Last Adam” because he put your sinful nature to death in His Own body and separated you from the race that you were born into. He is the “Second Man” because he is the head of a new resurrected race. (1 Cor 15: 45, 47,48) “For as by one mans disobedience many were made sinners (evil factories) so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous (holy factories)” (Rom 5:19)
In the same way that we inherited a sinful nature and all of its consequences from the first Adam by being born; when we are born again we receive His nature without any effort on our part.
“For in Him (Christ Jesus) dwelleth the fullness of the Godhead bodily and you are filled (totally filled) with Him, who is the head of all principality and power: In whom also you were circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, by removing the body of sin, the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ: [you were also] Buried with him in baptism, wherein also you have been raised with him through faith, which is the superhuman power of God. (Col 2:10-13)
“According to his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue: Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye have been made partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world [that is] produced by evil desires.”(2Peter 1:3-4)
“Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey it in the desires” Now if you read this verse too fast you might think it says to “resist your evil desires” But actually it does not say that at all. Paul is saying that the Cross of Christ strikes at the very ROOT of sin: the desires. Do not obey it IN the desires. Do not desire! You should not even have a desire for evil things because your old man is dead. (Romans 6:12) (James 1:15) “When desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full–grown, brings forth death.
“But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, TO the desires [all the way down to the desires]” (Rom 13:14) Because our sinful nature has been “crucified with its passions and desires” (Gal 5:24) “For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God….Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which amounts to idolatry. For because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, and in them you also once walked, when you were living with them, but now you also get rid of these things: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old man with its evil practices, and have been clothed with the new man who is being renewed in knowledge according to the image of God” (Col 3:3-8)
“For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea; They went through the waters, in a baptism like ours, as Moses led them from enslaving death to salvation life. They all ate the same spiritual food and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them, and their bodies were strewn in the wilderness. Now these things occurred as examples for us, so that we might not DESIRE evil as they did. (1 Corinthians 10:1-6)
Christianity is NOT about resisting evil desires from a sinful nature that has been removed. It is about being and acting completely NEW all the way down to the desires.
The Salvation that Jesus Christ purchased with his own Blood is nothing less than complete Justification AND complete Sanctification. There is a positive and a negative side to it.
The “negative” side is our literal “CO-CRUCIFIXION” with Jesus. The old sinful nature is UTTERLY DESTROYED AND REMOVED.
The POSITIVE side is we are given the LIFE OF JESUS CHRIST. We “have been given all things which pertain to LIFE AND GODLINESS” (Eph).
Just as no-one is saved from hell and not admitted to heaven, so everyone that undergoes the “circumcision made without hands in the putting off of the Body of sins” receives the life of Jesus Christ. That “surgery” has already taken place on you even if you do not believe it. But it becomes real and has eternal consequences when you agree with it and ACT ON IT.
God always deals with us humans in the same way. He takes us out of the way and substitutes Christ in our place.
And there are two separate substitutions we can notice in the Scriptures. Jesus shed His Blood and died in our stead for forgiveness of our sins and destruction of the “body of sin”. Jesus now lives his life in our stead (in our bodies) to fulfill Gods righteous requirements “IN us”. Grace is the fullness of the Law written on our hearts and the power to obey God perfectly.
That is Biblical Sanctification: as you take steps in obedience to Jesus, He manifests His righteousness through your life. He manifests His humility, His Faith, His love and His power through us, extending to the very thoughts and desires of the heart. “That the righteous requirement of the law be fulfilled “in us”, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit” (Rom 8:4) “I am the vine, you are the branches: without me you can do nothing “(John 15:5)
“Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh?” (Gal3:3) “Jesus is the Author and Perfector of our faith” (Heb 12:2) For “It is God that worketh in us both to will and to do” “For the One bringing forth the desire and the effort…is God” (Phil 2:13) We “have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, called saints” [ separated as a most holy people] (1Cor1:2)
Sanctification is not a process. It is a Person. Christ Jesus “became for us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification and redemption,” (1Cor 1:30) “For I consider myself as dead, and I am enjoying a new existence, which is simply Jesus Christ using my body” (Galatians2:20 Distilled Bible)
“If we get included in Christ’s sin-conquering death, we also get included in his life-saving resurrection. We know that when Jesus was raised from the dead it was a signal of the end of death-as-the-end. Never again will death have the last word.” “When Jesus died, he took sin down with him, but alive he brings God down to us. From now on, think of it this way: Sin speaks a dead language that means nothing to you; God speaks your mother tongue, and you hang on every word. You are dead to sin and alive to God. That’s what Jesus did. [Rom 6:8-11 msg]
You are included in this “so great salvation” that was finished By Jesus Christ the Sinless Son of God and now your agreement with God is all that is required to access this reality.
When you agree with the whole Truth of the Gospel you will find that there is absolutely nothing stopping you from obeying God all the time.
The Key is Identity. Who are you? You are NOT a sinner AT ALL. You are a Saint 100%.
On one side of the Cross Jesus is the “only begotten son” but on this side of the Cross Jesus is “the firstborn among MANY brothers” [Rom 8:29] If you are a Christian you are a Christlike one. You are a Christ-person. You have His nature. You have been made ONE with HIM who has promised to live HIS life through us. When you read about Jesus in the Gospel you are reading about who YOU really are. That is YOU. The sermon on the Mount is your brand new nature in ACTION.
“Therefore be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” (Matthew 5:48) This is the conclusion of the beatitudes in the Sermon on the Mount and is both a promise and a command.
“Many stagger at the term perfection in Christianity; because they think that what is implied in it is inconsistent with a state of probation, and savors of pride and presumption: but we must take good heed how we stagger at any word of God; and much more how we deny or fritter away the meaning of any of His sayings, lest he reprove us, and we be found liars before him.
The word “perfection,” in reference to any person or thing signifies that such person or thing is complete or finished; that it has nothing redundant, and is in nothing defective. … “We count those things perfect which want nothing requisite for the end whereto they were instituted.” And to be perfect often signifies “to be blameless, clear, irreproachable;” and according to the above definition, a man may be said to be perfect who answers the end for which God made him;
And as God requires every man to love him with all his heart, soul, mind, and strength, and his neighbor as himself; then he is a perfect man that does so; he answers the end for which God made him; and this is more evident from the nature of that love which fills his heart: for as love is the principle of obedience, so he that loves his God with all his powers, will obey him with all his powers; and he who loves his neighbor as himself will not only do no injury to him, but, on the contrary, labor to promote his best interests.
The whole design of God was to restore man to his image, and raise him from the ruins of his fall; in a word, to make him perfect; to blot out all his sins, purify his soul, and fill him with holiness; so that no unholy temper, evil desire, or impure affection or passion shall either lodge or have any being within him. When St. Paul says he “warns every man, and teaches every man in all wisdom, that he may present every man PERFECT in Christ Jesus,” he must mean something. What then is this something? It must mean “that holiness without which none shall see the Lord.” (Adam Clarke)
“For the temple of God is holy, which you are.” (1 Cor3) “As He [Jesus] is, so are we in this world” (1John 4:17) Jesus is Holy, and we are Holy “in this world.” “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners (evil factories), so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous (holy factories)” (Rom 5:19)
God says “as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct” (1Pet 1:15). How holy should we be again? “As holy as The One who called us”. Not 98% holy, but the same Holiness as his because it is His holiness that manifests through us as a consequence of being UNITED TO CHRIST. We are “in Christ” and He is “in us”, and not just a little bit, but we are “filled to the brim with him” (Col 2).
“God is holy; and this is the eternal reason why all his people should be holy–should be purified from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God. No faith in any particular creed, no religious observance, no acts of benevolence and charity, no mortification, attrition, or contrition can be a substitute for this. We must be made partakers of the divine nature. We must be saved from our sins–from the corruption that is in the world, and be holy within and righteous without, or never see God. For this very purpose Jesus Christ lived, died, and revived, that he might purify us unto himself; that through faith in his blood our sins might be blotted out, and our souls restored to the image of God.” (Adam Clarke)
“By his will we have been made holy through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. Under the old covenant, the priest stands before the altar day after day, offering sacrifices that can never take away sins (noun). But when Jesus had made one offering for sins for ever, he took his place at the right hand of God; For by one offering he has perfected for all time those who are made holy. The Holy Spirit confirms this: “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put my laws (a rule producing a state approved of God) in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds,” He concludes, I’ll forever wipe the slate clean of their sins (noun). Once sins (noun) are taken care of for good, there’s no longer any need to offer sacrifices for them. And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven’s Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus This is the new, life–giving way that Christ has opened up for us through the sacred curtain his flesh –[he condemned sin in the flesh Rom 8:3], by means of his death for us. (Hebrews 10:10-20)(net, bbe, nlt, msg)
The Sacrifice of Jesus Christ provides a perfect/complete salvation to as many as would take Him at his word with childlike assurance and ACT on it. “And so I insist–and God backs me up on this–that there be no going along with the crowd, the empty-headed, mindless crowd. They’ve refused for so long to deal with God that they’ve lost touch not only with God but with reality itself. They can’t think straight anymore. Feeling no pain, they let themselves go in sexual obsession, addicted to every sort of perversion. But that’s no life for you. You learned Christ! My assumption is that you have paid careful attention to him, been well instructed in the truth precisely as we have it in Jesus. Since, then, we do not have the excuse of ignorance, everything–and I do mean everything–connected with that old way of life has to go. It’s rotten through and through. Get rid of it! And then take on an entirely new way of life–a God-fashioned life, a life renewed from the inside and working itself into your conduct as God accurately reproduces his character in you.” (Eph 4:17-24msg)
Faith without action is not faith at all but presumption. “it is a message to obey, not just to listen to. If you don’t obey, you are only fooling yourself.” [James 1:22] “Everyone who comes to Me and hears My words and acts on them, I will show you whom he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid a foundation on the rock; and when a flood occurred, the torrent burst against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built.” [Luke 6:47-48nasb]
“You must display a new nature because you are a new person, created in God’s likeness––righteous, holy, and true.” (Eph 4:24nlt) You are a New Creation with a completely New Life! There are two words for “new” in greek. One is Neos and one is Kainos. Neos means new in time but of the same kind and quality, but Kainos means completely new, unprecedented, never before seen or experienced, of superior quality AND replacing the old. We are Kainos creations.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a kainos creation; old things have passed away, behold, all things have become kainos (2Cor 5:17) You “have been clothed with the kainos man” (Col 3:10) “not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and anakainosis of the Holy Spirit” (Tit 3:5) All things have become new. “For neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything; the only thing that matters is a kainos creation” (Gal 6:15)
Each and every individual thing has become completely new! If your life is not completely new then you need to REPENT [agree ONLY with God] and TURN from even the appearance of evil.
“Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him. So, my dear children, don’t let anyone divert you from the truth. It’s the person who [acts] right who [is] right, just as we see it lived out in our righteous Messiah. He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil. Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God. In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother.” [1 John 3:6-10 nkjv, msg] The “black darkness” has been reserved for those people who cannot “cease from sinning”. (2Peter 2:14:17)
SALVATION IS FROM SIN! From the Love OF sin, the Power OF sin, the Presence OF sin and the Penalty OF Sin.
“You shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people FROM THEIR SINS.” [Matt 1:21] Hell is merely the penalty of sin. If you are habitually sinning YOU ARE NOT SAVED! Jesus Christ purchased Heaven for us RIGHT NOW and heaven continues on IF you die.
God commands you in His Word: “Be Holy even as I am Holy” (How Holy is that again? As Holy as the Father! Because it is God who is LIVING IN YOU. We do not have our own righteousness, we have HIS.
The New Covenant is being possessed By JESUS CHRIST. All you have to do is agree ONLY with the Truth and COME to him. You come by leaving even the appearance of evil and choosing to obey. “He gave his life to free us from every kind of sin [internal and external] to cleanse and purify us, and to make us his very own people, totally committed to doing what is right.” [Titus 2:14 NLT]
“If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?” (Hebrews 10:26-29)
Did you catch that? There is NO SUCH THING as sinning from a sinful nature in the New Covenant. In the New Covenant, if you are choosing to sin, you are “trampling under foot the son of God and despising the Blood the of Covenant that MADE YOU HOLY [past tense] You have been made a brand new Holy creation already. You are perfect perfection already! Agree ONLY with that and you will find there are no limits to obedience.
The Scriptures declare that there will be “Many” who see miracles do many mighty works in His name and still Jesus will say “depart from me ye that work iniquity [lawlessness -those who do whatever they want)” [Matt 7:23] “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age.”[Titus 2:12]
Grace is the power to Obey God. “Those who claim they belong to the Lord must turn away from all wickedness. If you keep yourself pure, you will be a utensil God can use for his purpose. Your life will be clean, and you will be ready for the Master to use you for every good work.” [2Tim2:20-21]
Do not reject God’s invitation. Agree with His assessment of you through the Cross and TURN from even the appearance of evil. You must act NOW. Tomorrow is not promised. If you are not saved from sin NOW, you may not be saved from the penalty of sin if you die!
ACT NOW depending on nothing but Jesus and HE WILL SURELY MEET YOU. “Come near to God and he will come near to you. Make your hands clean, you evil-doers; put away deceit from your hearts, you false in mind.” [James 4:8bbe] “TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS.” (Hebrews 4:7) That is something YOU have to do, not the Devil. God says “harden not your heart!”
Any impure thoughts or evil desires, no matter how familiar they are, are NOT your thoughts. They are the thoughts of demonic spirits mimicking the sinful nature which was present and ruled over you before your conversion to Christ! Evil thoughts and desires are NO LONGER YOU they are the “lying desires” mimicking something that has been REMOVED by Jesus Christ Himself (Eph 4:22)
THE MOMENT YOU CONFESSED JESUS AS LORD, YOU BECAME A NEW CREATION! THIS IS NOT A THEORY BUT REALITY.
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
“He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son. But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.” ~Revelation
“Without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.”
“Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the LORD, “Though your sins are as scarlet, They will be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They will be like wool.”
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”~ 2 Corinthians 5:17~
If you are thinking this is a process YOU ARE DECEIVED. IT IS A DECISION!
Sanctification is NOT a process; it is a DECISION TO OBEY.
The “gifts and calling of God are irrevocable” but obedience to Him is totally optional. You MUST CHOOSE IT.
The first step is Agreeing that you are dead to and free from the Law and then choosing to leave habitual sin. And you must decide to do it immediately and totally. Throw it out, smash it, cut relationships built around it and DO IT NOW. Jesus made all provision for you to make a clean break, if you will decide and DO IT, depending on nothing but Jesus Christ and His Grace then you will SUCCEED. Choose the biggest sin FIRST and get rid of it.
Jesus has done everything for us to experience heaven all the time, and if you are not experiencing it the reason is simple, YOU are rejecting Him. I used to be really confused about what it meant to “come to Jesus” or “surrender to Jesus” but it so simple; it means OBEY. Jesus is already here, heaven is here right now. If you will leave everything contrary to God you will find this is true. Here is a simple formula. Repent [change what you believe and turn from sin until you are in the constant abiding presence of God, then stay there by taking every baby step in obedience to what you know he is telling you]
“We know that when Jesus was raised from the dead it was a signal of the end of death-as-the-end. Never again will death have the last word.” “When Jesus died, he took sin down with him, but alive he brings God down to us. From now on, think of it this way: Sin speaks a dead language that means nothing to you; God speaks your mother tongue, and you hang on every word. You are dead to sin and alive to God. That’s what Jesus did.
That means you must not give sin a vote in the way you conduct your lives. Don’t give it the time of day. Don’t even run little errands that are connected with that old way of life. Throw yourselves wholeheartedly and full-time–remember, you’ve been raised from the dead!–into God’s way of doing things. Sin can’t tell you how to live.
After all, you’re not living under that old tyranny any longer. You’re living in the freedom of God. So, since we’re out from under the old tyranny, does that mean we can live any old way we want? Since we’re free in the freedom of God, can we do anything that comes to mind? Hardly. You know well enough from your own experience that there are some acts of so-called freedom that destroy freedom.
Offer yourselves to sin, for instance, and it’s your last free act. But offer yourselves to the ways of God and the freedom never quits. All your lives you’ve let sin tell you what to do. But thank God you’ve started listening to a new master, one whose commands set you free to live openly in [his] freedom! I’m using this freedom language because it’s easy to picture. You can readily recall, can’t you, how at one time the more you did just what you felt like doing–not caring about others, not caring about God–the worse your life became and the less freedom you had?
And how much different is it now as you live in God’s freedom, your lives healed and expansive in holiness? As long as you did what you felt like doing, ignoring God, you didn’t have to bother with right thinking or right living, or right [anything] for that matter. But do you call that a free life? What did you get out of it? Nothing you’re proud of now. Where did it get you? A dead end.
But now that you’ve found you don’t have to listen to sin tell you what to do, and have discovered the delight of listening to God telling you, what a surprise! A whole, healed, put-together life right now, with more and more of life on the way! Work hard for sin your whole life and your pension is death. But God’s gift is [real life], eternal life, delivered by Jesus, our Master. [Rom 6:9-23 MSG]
You will NEVER be free from sin as long as you agree that Romans 7 is talking about a born again Christian! Romans 6-8 is all the same subject. Paul is explaining our relationship to sin, the law and our CO-death and resurrection with Jesus.
Very many Christians have been deceived into thinking that Romans 7 is the “Normal Christian Life” They say: “See even Paul did the things he didn’t want to do, but my friends it is obvious, that when taken in context, Romans 7 was an aside to explain life under the law WITHOUT JESUS…”
Or do you not know, brethren (for I speak to those who know the law) that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives?” [v1] You however are a corpse because you were united to Christs death.
“Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life …..knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. For he who has died has been freed from sin.”
In the course of explaining WHAT JESUS PURCHASED FOR US, he stops to prove a point. He is saying “look Jesus did not ONLY shed his blood for the forgiveness of your sins, there is something else he did. HE KILLED SIN ITSELF” so he starts to prove, in a practical way, that there is something more than just sinful actions, there is a source of those sinful actions, and and that thing [the sinful nature] has a particular relationship to the Law.
Paul says that because of the sin-nature our relationship to the law is like a relationship between a man and wife. He says the law is like a cruel husband and you are the wife. The law makes hundreds of demands of you, just barking orders all day. There is nothing wrong with any of the demands really, they are reasonable but there are alot of them and he does not lift one finger to help you with them. Your lover (Jesus) makes thousands and thousands of demands but he Himself also fulfills those demands through you with his own life and his own power.
The wife wants to leave her harsh husband [Law] and go be with the lover of her soul (Jesus) but she is bound to her husband [because of the sinful nature] until he passes away. But we know that the law will never pass away, so the only option is for the wife to die! And that is exactly what happens “you also died to the law through the body of Christ” [Rom 7:4]
“Now, dear brothers and sisters ––you who are familiar with the law––don’t you know that the law applies only to a person who is still living? Let me illustrate. When a woman marries, the law binds her to her husband as long as he is alive. But if he dies, the laws of marriage no longer apply to her.
So while her husband is alive, she would be committing adultery if she married another man. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law and does not commit adultery when she remarries. So this is the point: The law no longer holds you in its power, because you died to its power when you died with Christ on the cross. And now you are united with the one who was raised from the dead. As a result, you can produce good fruit, that is, good deeds for God.” Rom 7:1-4
If you try to leave sin without the death of your old man annulling the marriage to the law then you will be considered an adulteress, and it will come back and take possession of you. “The power of sin is the Law” [1Cor 15:56] Agreeing with what the Bible says about our co-death and resurrection with Jesus is a MAJOR Key because he who has died is free! FREE to OBEY.
“For when we were in the flesh, the evil passions which came into being through the law were working in our bodies to give the fruit of death. But now we are free from the law, having been made dead to that which had power over us; so that we are servants in the new way of the spirit, not in the old way of the letter. [v6] But now that we’re no longer shackled to that domineering mate of sin, and out from under all those oppressive regulations and fine print, we’re free to live a new life in the freedom of God.[v6] But now we have been released from the law, for we died with Christ, and we are no longer captive to its power. Now we can really serve God, not in the old way by obeying the letter of the law, but in the new way, by the Spirit.”[v6]
In short Romans 7 is NOT the experience of a born again Christian, it is the experience of someone who is UNDER THE LAW and BOUND BY SIN. Because of Jesus Sacrifice “sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.” [Rom 6:14] You cannot be under the Law if You DIED IN JESUS 2000 YEARS AGO!
So continuing on in context if you will read Romans 6,7 & 8 you will see Paul says that he was delivered from all that “under the law bound to sin hell existence” BY JESUS!
“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh [HIS OWN FLESH]. That the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled IN us [that is all the way down to the thoughts and intents of the heart] who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. [Romans 8:2-3]
“There is therefore no condemnation for those who are IN Christ. Very many people try to interpret this stuff in a vacuum, but this has to be interpreted in context and especially in the Context of Jesus own words in John 8: “I do not condemn you either. Go, and from now on do not sin any more.”
“Does a fountain send out from the same opening both fresh and bitter water? Can a fig tree, my brethren, produce olives, or a vine produce figs? Nor can salt water produce fresh.” You cannot drink from the cup of the Lord and from the cup of demons. You cannot eat at the Lord’s Table and at the table of demons. – 1 Corinthians 10:21