Romans 6:12-14 — No Longer Enslaved To Sin (Bible study notes)

For the video teaching to these notes, click here: Romans Bible Study – week 14 – No Longer Enslaved To Sin!

I. Don’t let sin reign
Romans 6:12: Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts
Passion Translation: Sin is a dethroned monarch; so you must no longer give it an opportunity to rule over your life, controlling how you live and compelling you to obey its desires and cravings.
  • verse 12 starts with the word therefore – referring to the previous verses
    • remember verses 1-11 Paul is talking about a nature change – no longer in Adam (the sin) but in Christ – he is not talking about behavior as in “sins” plural
      • sin when it is a noun accompanied with an article (“the”) becomes an articular noun and refers to an identity or it reveals an identity
      • the sin — refers to the sin nature; aka the nature of Adam, the law of sin and death, and the old man;
  • we aren’t to let sin reign in your mortal body because we know these things:
    • knowing this – Adam died – the sin nature died
    • knowing that – as Christ is dead to sin and alive to God so am I
      • we are to see ourselves in the same light — death has no dominion over me!
  • Verse 11 said after knowing these things, we are to consider
    • consider is to take inventory, to estimate, to conclude and to confess
      • inventory – to take into consideration all of the finished work of the Cross
      • estimate – determine the true value of it.. e.g., sickness; I learn the value of it is Jesus bore it for me
      • conclude – that we are as dead to sin as He is; alive to God as He is; and as free from death’s dominion as He is.
      • confess – to agree with and say the same thing as another; agree with God and say that you are dead to sin and alive to God.
  • consider is a passive command meaning it’s a command, but it happens to you; you have no part in doing it! That’s grace in action!
    • Eph 1:17 says that He gives us the spirit of wisdom and revelation in our knowledge of Him and He enlightens the eyes of our heart — this is what a passive imperative looks like.
      • Dead to sin and alive to God is who you are; this is what defines you —
    • Dead to “the sin” – the nature of Adam
    • and alive to God IN CHRIST
      • There is nothing else we need to consider — just those two things!
      • Sin is no longer an issue
    • it no longer has dominion over us – no longer are we enslaved to it
  • So, having reached that logical conclusion by His grace that I am dead to sin and alive to God, we come to verse 12 where we find another imperative verb
    • but this one we are commanded to do
  • Don’t let reign — an imperative verb (a command) in present tense (continual, habitual, lifestyle) and an active mood (subject acts)
    • In this verse the implied subject is you.
      • You are commanded not to let “the sin” reign in your mortal body
    • Religion thinks that’s referring to the things that you do, the behavioral traits of your life
  • But what’s Paul talking about?
    • We already know from the previous verses that we are dead to the sin — that our nature changed at the cross.
      • We are no longer in Adam but in Christ
      • We know from verse 6 that we are no longer slaves to the sin (the identity of Adam)
    • So how can the sin reign over someone who is no longer enslaved to it?
  • Before we talk about how that applies to us, it would be good to remember here who Paul is talking to — a transitional generation.
    • These people had been in Adam
      • We never were – because ALL of Adam died on the Cross
    • These people are now in Christ
      • But at one time (just 20 years prior) had been walking in the identity of Adam
    • They had been walking in the Law and obeying it’s commands — walking in the works of the Law
    • After the cross, sin was 100% dethroned — they were no longer slaves to that nature!
  • So how can a dethroned sin reign in their life?
    • More than likely they were probably still walking in a lot of the same mindsets they had while in Adam.
    • Still learning how to live solely IN CHRIST
    • Some of their mindset was still rooted in works of the law and having a “sin consciousness.”
      • For example… if I do (obey), then God will bless me; if I don’t do (disobey), then God will curse me.
    • We know from chapter 14 that some of the Jews were still in bondage to some of the Mosaic laws – dietary laws and celebration of feasts and days
  • Sin can reign if we are yielding to the Law
    • It is the Law that gives sin it’s power
    • and sin would need that power to be able to reign in your life
      • 1 Cor 15:56 –Now the sting of death is (the) sin, and the power of (the) sin is the Law..
      • sting – poison
      • the poison of the sin is death – or death’s destructions, i.e., sickness, disease, lack, poverty, fear, etc.
    • The law empowers the sin or gives it, it’s ability, strength and might (old man thinking – Adamic mindset)
  • For us, we were never born with an Adamic nature because it was crucified at the cross
    • Jesus was the last Adam – His resurrection raised up a new creation that was IN HIM – made in His image and likeness
    • After the cross, there was no reason for mankind to walk in the mindset of an Adamic nature (the old man) because that had never been our nature.
  • But somehow, we’ve been taught some things in error:
    1. we don’t lose the nature of Adam until we put our faith in Jesus
      • and that after we accept Christ, we still have old man and a new man.
      • and so consequently we’re always have to learn how to put off the old man and put on the new man
    2. some were taught that they still have two natures after being born again – a sin nature and God’s nature
      • and so there is always a struggle between the two on the inside
    3. we were taught that we were still subject to the law
      • that it is our instructions on how to live godly – it keeps our behavior in check
    4. and the language we were taught was not grace but rather “do and God will bless” “don’t do, and God will not bless.”
      • instead of “done because of Jesus’ finished work.”
  • Since the strength of sin is in the law — a system of works and doing to become
    • our law based (legalistic) minds allowed sin consciousness to reign in our lives.
  • What is sin consciousness?
    • the idea or mindset that the sin nature is still a relevant condition or issue
    • it becomes what we are aware of or what we put our focus on instead of Christ.
  • Paul is saying here in verse 12 —
    • don’t let that (the awareness of the sin nature) rule or reign in your mortal body
      • because you have died to sin (to its nature) and are now alive to God (IN CHRIST – with His nature)!
    • don’t let the sin nature consciousness dominating your mortal existence – your physical life
      • It no longer enslaves you— it has no power in your life
  • Why?
    • So you won’t obey its lusts or evil desires
      • obey – hupokouo which is two words, hupo- under and akouo – hear; meaning to listen, to hearken to.
      • lusts/desires – epithumia which is two words epi – focused on and thymos – passionate desires; meaning to long for or desire very much; to covet or set the heart on;
  • Let’s go back to Adam – where the sin nature originated
    • He didn’t obey
      • didn’t hear right; rather than hearing from above, listening to His Father
      • he listened to his wife who listened to the serpent.
    • What was their desire
      • to be like God
      • but they were already just like God!
    • So they believed a lie
      • and the result was Adam passed his nature onto all mankind until the cross
  • So, what is the desire of (the) sin nature consciousness?
    • To steal from you your identity consciousness
      • your identity = made in the image and likeness of God; that you are righteous, holy, blameless, complete IN CHRIST
  • But identity consciousness will alleviate sin consciousness
    • When you become familiar in and confident in who you are in Christ, you will understand without a shadow of a doubt that sin is not an issue with God and it won’t be for you either
    • Because Jesus entirely dealt with sin, it’s condition, your behavior, and the guilt
  • Which leads to verse 13……
II. The command to yield
Romans 6:13: and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.
  • Verse 13 gives us another imperative command to do — YIELD (twice)
    • The first one is a command with a negative
      • meaning to STOP an action that is going on, to cease an act that is in progress.
    • The second-word yield is an aorist imperative active
      • Meaning it calls for your SPECIFIC, DEFINITE, DECISIVE choice, “DO THIS NOW, AT ONCE, and in one quick action.
      • it’s in contrast to present imperative which commands a habitual activity.
      • expressing a note of URGENCY.
    • But while they are commands, they must be done from a position of rest — rest in the finished work of Christ.
  • If we focus on who we are — Romans 6:11 dead to sin and alive to God
    • knowing that at the cross, Adam died — the sin nature died
    • and knowing that as Christ is dead to sin and alive to God so am I
      • see ourselves in the same light — death has no dominion over me!
    • if we do that we won’t have any desire to sin — it won’t be a struggle because we are walking in the light of our true identity — IN CHRIST.
  • But without a proper understanding of what Paul is saying from Romans 5:18 until now — about a nature change that took place (at the cross) we will get hung up on the word sin in these verses
    • thinking that we are being commanded to manage our wrong behavior (sin)
  • When really Paul is talking about choosing to walk in our identity – dead to sin and alive to God
    • and as a result, the appropriate behavior will follow.
III. Identity or Behavior?
  • There is a difference between sin (singular) and sins (plural).
    • Sin singular is referred to in the Greek as “the sin” – it is a condition, an identity — the Adamic nature
    • Sins plural is referring to behavior that stems from a mistaken identity (in Adam)
  • Romans 6 has been about a complete nature change for ALL mankind at the Cross — about the condition/identity of sin
  • Before Paul has given us a command to do (here in chapter 6), he has spent time telling us who we are IN CHRIST and what the finished work of Christ meant for us
    • verse 1-2 he told us we (mankind) died to sin — it is a past tense fact
      • “Died” is not a present tense–“We are dying to sin”–or a future tense–“We will die to sin”–or an imperative–“Die to sin!” Nor is it an appeal –“You should die to sin.”
      • we died (past tense) to the sin – the identity of the sin nature – no longer in Adam
    • verses 3-4 he told us we (mankind) were baptized with Christ
      • baptized is an aorist indicative passive — past tense fact that happened to us — we didn’t make it happen by anything we did -even our believing didn’t make it happen
      • Jesus’ burial was our burial. God buried us along with Jesus Christ! We were co buried!
    • verse 4 also told us that we were raised to newness of life IN HIM – co resurrected
      • Our new nature, our (mankind’s) new identification is solely in Christ
    • verse 5 he told us we (mankind) have been united with Him — co-union with Him – also a past tense fact
    • verse 6 says that the old man (man is mankind referring to old mankind in Adam) was crucified with Him and the body of sin done away with
    • verse 7 he told us that because we (mankind) died to sin (to the nature of sin), we are free from sin
      • free is to be justified
      • justified is judged righteous; not only forgiven of sin but placed in a position just like Jesus as one who has never sinned;
    • and verse 8-10 tells us that we now know that Jesus died to sin once for all and death no longer has dominion over Him
  • For these Jews, Paul is talking to (the transitional generation), the good news is —
    • your association/identity is no longer connected to Moses and the Law
    • you are no longer in Adam — at the cross you died to the Adamic sin nature and to the authority/dominion of death
    • Jesus’ finished work was 100% complete and successful
    • you died with Him and were co-buried with Him, and now your new nature is Christ! 100% Christ!
  • For us (born after the cross) the good news is —
    • You’ve always been IN CHRIST
    • you never had an Adamic sin nature
    • you have never been under the dominion of death!
IV. Identity!
Romans 6:14: For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace.
  • Paul sums up these verses by declaring that “the sin” (identity/condition of the sin nature) will not rule over us
    • rule is to have authority; to lord over; to exercise rights over you as an owner with full dominion over you; exercising absolute ownership rights
    • Paul is telling them — the sin identity of being in Adam no longer has ownership rights over you! It has no authority in your life!
  • Then he goes on to tell them why —
    • because you are not under law but under grace.
      • hupo – under the authority of another;
      • law is not the law here (as in the Mosaic Law) it doesn’t have the article “the” before it
      • it is just “law” – referring to a performance system of doing to become
  • This is such a beautiful identity verse.
    • After the cross, our identity is no longer the sin identity of being in Adam — of the performance system of law – having to do to become
    • Grace now defines us!
    • We died with Him and were raised to a new life together with Him… IN HIM
    • We no longer have any association/identity with sin, law, death or Adam
  • It’s time to believe what God says about us and say what He says — IT IS FINISHED!
    • An entire generation of Israelites died in the wilderness because they couldn’t believe what God said about who they were and what He had given them
      • they were trapped in a slave mentality – in who they used to be – in their old life
    • In dying our death Jesus brought closure to the “old things”
      • and then in Him, God co-quickened and co-raised us! Behold ALL things are new!!
  • Col 1:13-14 (Mirror): He rescued us from the dominion of darkness (from the sense-ruled world, dominated by the law of performance) and relocated us into the kingdom where the love of his son rules. (14) In God’s mind mankind is associated in Christ; in his blood sacrifice we were ransomed; our redemption was secured; our sins were completely done away with.
  • You are brand new IN CHRIST — ALL mankind is brand new IN CHRIST!
    • Hosea 6:2: He will raise us up on the third day, and we shall live before Him face to face (received and accepted; favored).

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