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Summary: THIS IS THE SECOND OF A TWO-PART SERMON ON PAUL'S TEACHING ON SANCTIFICATION. HE USES BAPTISM TO TEACH THAT AS CHRISTIANS WE ARE NO LONGER UNDER THE DOMINION OF SIN BECAUSE WE UNITE WITH CHRIST, NOT JUST IDENTIFY WITH HIM, IN HIS DEATH, THROUGH BAPTISM.

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FROM DEATH TO LIFE

WE NEED TO REMEMBER AS WE START TODAY, THAT THE BOOK OF ROMANS IS A LETTER THAT ORIGINALLY HAD NO CHAPTER OR VERSE BREAKS. WHEN WE GET TO THE END OF CHAPTER FIVE, IT DOES NOT MEAN WE’VE REACHED THE END OF PAULS THOUGHT ON THIS ISSUE. LISTEN WHEN I READ THE LAST TWO VERSES OF CHAPTER FIVE, WITH THE FIRST TWO VERSES OF CHAPTER SIX AND SEE HOW THEY PRODUCE ONE THOUGHT.

ROMANS 5:20-6:2:

THE LAW WAS BROUGHT IN SO THAT THE TRESPASS MIGHT INCREASE. BUT WHERE SIN INCREASED, GRACE INCREASED ALL THE MORE, 21 SO THAT, JUST AS SIN REIGNED IN DEATH, SO ALSO GRACE MIGHT REIGN THROUGH RIGHTEOUSNESS TO BRING ETERNAL LIFE THROUGH JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD. 6:1 WHAT SHALL WE SAY, THEN? SHALL WE GO ON SINNING SO THAT GRACE MAY INCREASE? 2 BY NO MEANS! WE ARE THOSE WHO HAVE DIED TO SIN; HOW CAN WE LIVE IN IT ANY LONGER?

CHAPTER FIVE WAS A TRANSITION CHAPTER FOR PAUL WHERE HE CHANGES HIS FOCUS FROM JUSTIFICATION, TO SANCTIFICATION. SANCTIFICATION IS HOW WE LIVE AND MATURE AFTER WE MAKE A DECISION FOR CHRIST.

PAUL USES THESE FIVE CONTRASTS BETWEEN THE FIRST AND THE LAST ADAM, TO SHOW US THAT THERE IS NO LIMIT TO THE LOVE OF GOD THROUGH HIS SON JESUS CHRIST. HE ALSO POINTS OUT TO US AN EVEN MORE IMPORTANT POINT THAT WE SEE AS WE ENTER CHAPTER SIX.

WE NEED TO UNDERSTAND THAT AS WE ACCEPT THE GRACE AND LOVE OF THE SECOND ADAM, IT SHOULD NATURALLY LEAD TO THE REACTION OF A TRANSFORMED AND SANCTIFIED LIFE. THIS IS HIS MESSAGE TO US IN CHAPTER SIX.

PAUL CONTINUES HIS DEBATE WITH HIS IMAGINARY FOE, ANSWERING THIS QUESTION FOUND IN 6:1. SHALL WE CONTINUE SINNING THAT GRACE MAY ABOUND? YOU AND I MAY LOOK AT THIS AND SAY HOW FOOLISH TO ASK SUCH A QUESTION, BUT IN REALITY WE OFTEN FACE THIS SAME ISSUE IN OUR DAILY LIVES.

WHEN I WAS YOUNGER IF I DID SOMETHING WRONG I WOULD RECEIVE A WARNING FROM MY FATHER. HE WOULD TELL ME NOT TO DO THAT AGAIN OR ELSE. NOW IF I DID WHAT I WAS NOT SUPPOSED TO DO AGAIN, I HAD FELLOWSHIP WITH MY FATHER AGAIN. INTENSE FELLOWSHIP TO THE SEAT OF MY PANTS. IN SHORT, IF I CONTINUED IN SIN, GRACE DIDN’T ABOUND, DISCIPLINE AND PUNISHMENT DID.

IS THIS IDEA, TO CONTINUE SINNING SO THAT GRACE MAY ABOUND, NOT THE ROOT OF THE “BIGGER IS BETTER” THEORY OF LIFE. WE GO INTO OUR FAVORITE RESTAURANT AND ORDER A COMBO. HOW MANY TIMES TO WE UPGRADE THE FRIES BECAUSE WE LIKE THEM SO MUCH, AT THE SAME TIME KNOWING THEY ARE NOT GOOD FOR US.

WE SET OUR EYES ON A BIGGER OR NEWER MODEL OF CAR, ONE THAT HAS ALL THE BELLS AND WHISTLES AND BUY IT KNOWING THAT IT WILL PLACE A GREAT FINANCIAL STRAIN ON US. WE DO THIS TO KEEP UP OUR IMAGE OR IT JUST FEELS A LITTLE BETTER.

OUR FINANCIAL AND HEALTH ISSUES WE FACE AS A RESULT PROVIDE A CONSTANT REMINDER OF THE MANY WAYS IS WHICH WE CAN PUT OURSELVES IN THE SAME POSITION AS PAUL’S IMAGINARY DEBATER HERE AND WE DON’T REALIZE IT.

HOW DOES PAUL RESPOND TO THE ISSUE? HE STRONGLY REJECTS IT “BY NO MEANS!!!!’. HE ASKS IF WE DO NOT REALIZE THAT WHEN WE ACCEPTED CHRIST WE DIED TO SIN.

DEATH OF SOME FORM WILL BE PRESENT IN OUR LIVES. PAUL TELLS US IN EPHESIANS 2 THAT BEFORE WE ACCEPT CHRIST WE ARE SPIRITUALLY DEAD IN OUR SINS.


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