Wednesday, April 30, 2014
“But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you” (Romans 6:17 KJV).
Today’s Scripture is the key to being delivered from and guarded against today’s apostate Christendom.
When he wrote Romans (circa Acts chapter 20), Paul had never visited the saints in Rome (he was imprisoned there years later in Acts chapter 28). One or more of his ministry coworkers, perhaps Aquila and his wife Priscilla (Acts 18:2; cf. Romans 16:3-5), had shared the Gospel of the Grace of God with these pagan Romans.
Paul rejoiced when he heard about the Romans’ salvation, their trusting in the finished crosswork of Jesus Christ as sufficient payment for their sins, their forsaking of worthless idols and vain religion. He yearned to visit them but was hindered; he was forced to write this epistle to them instead (Romans 1:8-15). Thank God He had Paul write to the Romans instead, or we would not have this wonderful, simple book of grace doctrine to study today!
After discussing our new identity in Christ (Romans chapters 1-5), Paul proceeded to ask in Romans 6:1,2: “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” Our position in Christ has permanently made us dead to sin, that nature we inherited from Adam. Saints, sin is not who we are anymore. “Likewise reckon [conclude] ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord” (verse 11).
In today’s Scripture, Paul reminded the Romans how they were saved unto eternal life, received forgiveness of sins, had a home reserved in heaven. They heard some sound Bible doctrine—the Gospel of God’s Grace, everything that God did for them in Christ at Calvary’s cross—and they believed it in their hearts. The Apostle made it clear that their salvation from daily sins (the context of Romans chapters 6-8) would operate in the same manner. It would be Jesus Christ’s resurrection life, His power, His righteousness, His strength, His faith, His work. Him, Him, Him, not them, them, them!
NOTE: We will briefly suspend this devotionals arc. Stay turned!