SELF RULE OR GOD’S RULE?

Wednesday, 12 August 2020 Romans 6:1-23



“Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?” -Romans 6:16


Submitting to God will aid us in resisting the lure of the evil one and help us to flee from temptations, so that we can chose to obey God which leads to right living. Everyone is slave to something in our natural state; a slave has to obey his master.  They are literally in bondage to their master because they belong to them. They cannot exercise their own will. The writer uses the analogy of a slave and his master to show us the bondage we can get into if we allow ourselves to be ruled by sin. In John 8:34, Jesus tells the unbelieving Pharisees, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin.”


How to become an overcomer: First step is understanding that Sin is (nothing but) not allowing God to rule over every area of our life and not acknowledging that we are guilty. Second Step is to acknowledge that as long as we are on this earth we will always have the tendency to sin and we will never be perfectly victorious over sin by ourselves. 1 John 1:8: “If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.” Third Step is to acknowledge that we need help to get rid of this spiritual illness. Acknowledging these three steps will help us to seek and find the solution in the Word of God.


Since God wants us to be made into the image and likeness of Christ, we must always strive to achieve it. 2 Corinthians 3:18: “So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.” With God’s help through His Holy Spirt and by following the principles of His Word, we can progressively overcome and become more and more like Christ (Sanctification).  We who have been redeemed from bondage by the blood of Christ Jesus have been set free from sin to become slaves to righteousness (Romans 6:18). We who have received forgiveness for sin through repentance, are empowered by the Holy Spirit who lives within us. It is by His power that we are able to resist sinning and become slaves of righteousness. The difference the Holy Spirit can bring is seen in the life of Apostle Peter.  He had declared that he would follow Christ to the death, but soon after he denied Jesus three times. But later being filled with the Holy Spirit, he openly and strongly declared Christ to the Jews at Pentecost and then to many others!


We too can check ourselves our daily walk by contrasting the deeds of the flesh with the fruit of the Spirit as given in Galatians 5: 16-25. It involves putting off of the old self and putting on the new self.  This is called denying oneself. No one else can do it for you; you have to do it yourself. Jesus has instructed us on how to do this in Luke 9:23: ‘And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.”  As seen here it is a daily undertaking…not just on occasions or when it is convenient.   To deny oneself is to deny what we want, desire and even sometimes what we need.


Think on it: One of the classic Christian paradoxes is that freedom leads to slavery and slavery leads to freedom – Murray J. Harris

Good Shepherd Ministry International