As the move gets closer, we want to communicate more of what is in our hearts these days…what the Lord has taught over the last 7 years of craziness and how that affects what we dream of Him doing in Tennessee.
(*If you’d rather hear my lovely voice, here’s me teaching this in more detail at a great church in Colorado: Dead and Alive.)
I learned something seven years ago that broke a sin cycle in my life. You know what a sin cycle is, right? You sin…feel guilty…grovel…vow to never do it again…do it again. Then it all starts over.
The key to breaking that cycle is in Romans 6.
And the key is not about “how-to” but “already.”
Paul takes Romans 1-3 to tell us we’re all in a pickle. We’ve all sinned and none are good. Rats.
Then he tells us of God’s grace through believing in Christ and that no matter the sin there is grace to cover it. Seeing someone may take advantage of this, Paul starts Romans 6:
“What shall we say then? Shall we keep sinning so grace can keep coming?”
“God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer in it?”
(I know I’ll leave room for questions here, but I want to keep this short.)
In short, Paul asks how in the world we who are dead to sin could continue sinning.
But, what do you mean, we are dead?
Well, he says that when we came to Christ, in God’s sight, we became one with Christ. If we are one with Christ, then what He experienced, we experienced.
Christ was crucified, we were crucified. Christ died, we died. Christ was buried, we were buried. Christ was resurrected, we were resurrected.
See, since we’re one with Christ, all that He did becomes our story, too.
In God’s sight, we are already dead, buried, and resurrected.
Then, in Romans 6:11, Paul gives us our first thing to do: reckon. He says to reckon (or believe or count on) ourselves to be as Christ is: dead to sin, alive to God.
Can a dead man sin? Nope. He’s dead. Dead alcoholics can’t drink too much. Dead gossips can’t get an adrenaline rush from slandering someone. Dead husbands who looked at porn can’t click trashy internet links.
Dead to sin, we are.
And alive to God.
When we are resurrected with a new body, will we sin? Nope. Our flesh is gone and there is nothing between us and God.
So, we are to see ourselves as God does: dead to sin & alive to God.
This is not a how-to. The key is in what Christ has already done. We are ALREADY dead to sin, ALREADY alive to God.
Do NOT ask God to make you dead to sin. You ALREADY are.
Do NOT ask God to make you alive to Him. You ALREADY are.
Just believe it. Believe you are ALREADY who God says you are: dead to sin and alive to God.
And if you find yourself tripping again on the same sin, don’t lay there and grovel like I used to do. Remember: you are dead to sin and alive to God. Get up and go on with Him.
This truth broke the sin cycle in my life and for the first time I understood what “freedom in Christ” meant. And I love it!