Set Free From the Life of Sin by the New Life in Us
Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was. We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin.
There was a time when we sinned without a care. Or maybe it was more like sinning without hope. Not fully admitting that what we did was wrong, but knowing it probably wasn’t the best way, we did things that were not the full desire of God. That life was a life submitted to the world. That life was submitted to following our own desires – no matter how altruistic or benevolent! – and serving our own goals in some sort of way.
That type of life always leads to death. It isn’t sustainable from one generation to the next. Even engraved tombstones wear smooth. That type of life is also not in union with God and His work. Life apart from God dies with the person and doesn’t join God for eternity.
But if that life dies when it is joined to Christ, it is resurrected as a new life. When we believe in Christ, His death on the cross wraps around our should-be/would-be death and it dies too. His resurrection life then fills up our new life and enables us to live in union with Christ. Filled with His Holy Spirit and renewed, we are no longer submissive to the sin in the world, but to the Holy Spirit that is saving the world.
Sin still has power in our lives, but it no longer rules us or defines us. We still have habits that we voluntarily give in to, but they aren’t ruling our lives. Through the Holy Spirit inside us, the fellowship of the Church, the guidance of the scripture, and the unending grace of God, we can walk free of those repetitive sins we used to fall into.
Temptation might still have power to woo us, but sin can no longer condemn or separate us from God. Sin can no longer rule like it used to. Instead of our natural inclination, it is now more like that high school jersey that doesn’t quite fit right. It takes more trouble than it used to for us to get around the Holy Spirit’s encouragement, accountability of our fellowship, and the promises of scripture.