April 30, 2011
Read: Romans 6:1-14
Do not let sin reign in your mortal body. —Romans 6:12
Paul said in Romans 5:20, “Where sin abounded, grace abounded much more.” But that radical concept opens a theological floodgate. The biblical writer Jude warned that it is possible to “change the grace of our God into a license for immorality” (Jude 4 NIV). Why be good if you know you will be forgiven? Not even an emphasis on repentance erases this danger completely.
In Romans 6, Paul spoke directly to the point. “Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?” He gave a short, explosive answer: “Certainly not!” (vv.1-2) and used an analogy that starkly contrasts death and life. “How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?” (v.2). No Christian resurrected to new life should be pining for sin.
Yet wickedness does not always seem to have the stench of death about it. Sin can be downright appealing.
Paul recognized this, so he advised: “Reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord,” and “Do not let sin reign in your mortal body” (vv.11-12).
If we truly grasped the wonder of God’s love for us, we would spend our days trying to fathom and share, not exploit, His grace.
I am unworthy to take of His grace,
Wonderful grace so free;
Yet Jesus suffered and died in my place
Even for a soul like me. —Roth
God does not save us by grace so that we may live in disgrace. —Faber