Friday, 31 May 2013
For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. Romans 6:20
This is a simple truth which was looked at in 6:19 and which continues in 6:20. A slave has one master and therefore the ruling authority of that master is absolute. Before we received Christ as Lord, we were slaves to sin and we were free from the master-ship of righteousness. But when we moved to Him, we were freed from sin. Error in the mind of man is easily introduced during an evaluation of these verses though. There are people who are not Christians who do really great stuff for others, for their community, for the sake of animals or the environment, etc.
And of course there are Christians who fail at any or all of these things. Their lives actually changed little after coming to Christ. This sets up a false belief in people that Christ doesn’t really make anyone holy. The problem with this is that it is dealing with the slave in regard to the master, not the master’s authority over the slave. The example from 6:19 was that a slave went from his previous owner, Stevius Romanus, to a new owner, Sergious Maximus. Regardless of how the slave acts, he has become the legal property of Sergious Maximus.
This is what Paul is speaking about here. Slavery to Stevius Romanus is synonymous with freedom from Sergious Maximus; slavery to Sergious Maximus is synonymous with freedom from Stevius Romanus. Now simply change the ownership titles and say the sentence again –
“Slavery to the devil is synonymous with freedom from Christ; slavery to Christ is synonymous with freedom from the devil.”
It is the ownership which has changed. The slave now has a responsibility to change his life and habits to the new owner. If he fails to do so, it in no way changes the ownership. The title to deed to our slave has transferred.
Life application: Who are we going to please, our Master who loved us so much that He gave His life to have authority over us, or our old master who cares so little about us that he desired our destruction? Think it through – everything the devil had to offer was pleasing on the outside and yet rotten on the inside. Why would we want such fruits when the life Christ offers is pure and good, from the inside out?
Lord, as I sit with my thoughts, I realize that everything around me is so perfectly placed and organized. I get thirsty and there is water, I get hungry and there is food, I get tired and there is sleep. New things come out of the ground to replace that which was pulled up. It rains and everything turns vibrant green. It’s all so perfectly arranged. You are great, O God. Amen.