I am grateful that I am free from sin.
For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace. Romans 6:14
Me: Good afternoon Holy Spirit!
Holy Spirit: Good afternoon Jon!
Me: This third statement on Christy Mitropoulous’ artwork is one that my natural mind resists as presumptuous. It says, “Hey, wait a minute! I (insert reference to last bad attitude or hurtful thing I did here) and I clearly miss the mark of God’s best regularly.” I therefore have to get hold of those thoughts and compare them closely against the message of the gospel to bring them into subjection to the truth.
Holy Spirit: That is certainly one aspect of the necessary work of correcting things you have come to believe that are just not true. 2 Corinthians 10:3-6 says, For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever your obedience is complete.
Notice some things about this passage:
Every thought matters.
- The notion that only what you do outwardly matters is as false as false can be. (See Matthew 15:19 or Mark 7:21)
Men’s ideas are one of the things that stand against true
knowledge of God.
- Men are proud of these ideas.
Getting your thinking straightened out is a war.
- It is a desperate struggle.
- Life and death are at stake.
I Am providing the power you need to break the strongholds of wrong
- It is My power, the power that created the cosmos and all its mechanisms.
Correction takes time.
- Not because I have yet to provide a way, but because of your ability to apply yourself to the process, to do battle in your spirit and reconcile yourself to the truth.
Me: I remember that word “master” also came up with regard to sin in the early chapters of Genesis.
Holy Spirit: Yes. Cain had some trouble with his thinking. He did not master it, and he killed his brother Able while he was still operating in self-centered anger.
Genesis 4:7 “If you do well, will not your countenance be lifted up? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.”
The point of Romans 6:14 is that those who are in Christ because they have accepted the salvation purchased by His death for their sin are free from the power of sin. That is, sin’s power over them is broken. There are many passages of scripture that attest to this. Before we look at some of those, note the difference in the message to Cain and the one to believers (after the cross).
- To Cain – “you must master it.”
- To believers – “sin shall not be master over you”
This is the grace that has been extended to you.
John 1:29 — The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
John 8:34 — Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin.
Romans 6:23 — For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:6-8 — For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
Romans 10:10 — for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.
Philippians 2:12-13 — So then, my beloved, just as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.
Work out your salvation with fear and trembling. Take this work seriously. Think of a demolition expert working to diffuse a bomb; he wants to get it right. Your life is at stake too. This passage does not mean that the basis of your salvation is your works. The basis of your salvation is the completed work of Christ. The work this passage is referring to is the same work as 2 Corinthians 10:5; the work of aligning your beliefs, and therefore your thoughts, and then therefore your actions to the Truth, which is Christ. Neither are you to attempt this on your own. I Am here to help you.
Me: Thank You Holy Spirit! I love You!
Holy Spirit: You are welcome! I love you! Here is some more help:
Hebrews 4:12 — For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
Meditate on how I Am providing guidance to sort out what you believe and how that affects what you end up doing.