Summary: The Christian life begins with a death to sin.
1. Nicodemus was troubled. We meet him in John CH 3
• All of his religious upbringing. All of his religious training. All of his personal studies has been challenged by this man Jesus.
• Am I obeying God? Do I really understand?
AND… Who is this man Jesus? Is what He is saying really true?
• So he comes to Jesus at night… Look at John 3:1ff
• Nick you must be born again! That’s the only way to be saved.
• You need a new life that is given by God through His Spirit!
“BORN AGAIN”… now that’s a term that has seemed to have lost it’s meaning over the years.
• It’s like a cliché now. Yup, ‘I’m born again.’
• I had a born again experience up in the mountains or after that movie or after chewing those leaves… whatever else…
• But Jesus defines the term very NARROWLY & SPECIFICALLY
• It refers to the new spiritual birth a human being receives when they place their faith in Him!
It’s funny sometimes talking to people & hearing the question, “You’re not one of those BORN AGAINERS are you?”
• There are no other kinds of Christians. A Christian is born again!
2 Cor. 5.17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.
NOTE: The Christian life begins with a death… a death to sin.
• In repentance, we have turned from sin and turned to God.
• That’s one of the most powerful choices you can ever make!
• It’s not that now today we are perfect and sinless. (We’re not)
• But we will grow in obedience and SIN LESS.
• And so once we were in Adam, lost in sin & death.
• But now we’re in Jesus, full of life and hope!
Romans 6:1 opens up with a common question.
• It’s one of many Paul will answer as he anticipates the questions on the minds of those reading through his letter to the Romans.
Romans 6:1-2 (NKJV) 1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?
THEN in v3-5 Paul showed us how in water baptism, we identified with the work of Jesus Christ. His death, burial, & Resurrection.
• We weren’t saved by baptism. It was an act of obedience.
• And as we went down & came up, we were declaring to all who watched that we have a new life in Jesus! We pick up in v5
1. (6:5-7) No Longer Slaves of Sin.
a. Our old man was done away with, crucified with Jesus.
b. Next to that word crucified you can circle it & write the words, “rendered inoperative”.
c. We are under new ownership now in Jesus Christ.
Notice the word that begins v6. KNOWING.
• This is a truth Paul wants us to know and believe.
• As we understand & believe these truths, our lives change.
• Christian living depends upon Christian learning & growing.
• Flip over to 2 Peter 1:3-8 Key is v8 fruitful & abounding living
NOTE: Sin is a terrible master & finds a willing servant in our flesh.
• We’ll see when we get to CH7 that even Paul the apostle battled with sin…
Galatians 5:17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
• NASB – SETS It’s DESIRE… there is a constant battle going on.
BUT the work of God in our lives is that we should no longer be slaves of sin. We have a new master now Jesus Christ!
V7 – Reminds us that we have been freed from sin!
APP: That’s one of the greatest freedoms a Christian has.
• Paul writes often from the perspective of his own life.
• You know, Paul was imprisoned a lot, literally.
• In his own testimony he writes…
2 Corinthians 11:23 Are they ministers of Christ?—I speak as a fool—I am more: in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often.
• One of those times he wrote a letter to the church in Ephesus:
Ephesians 3:1 For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles—
NOTE: What reason is Paul referring to? Why is he a prisoner?
NOTE: As Paul writes to the Ephesians, he is prisoner of the Roman Empire. He is in a deep, dark, and horrid prison.
• He’s in prison because of the church. Because of God’s great work of bringing both Jew and Gentile together in Jesus.