Summary: The sermon explains a simple process of life change as taught by Apostle Paul
Technology for life change
Romans 6:1-13 (KJV)
[What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?] 2[God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?] 3[Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?] 4[Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.] 5[For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also ] in the likeness[ of ] his[ resurrection:] 6[Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with ] him[, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.] 7[For he that is dead is freed from sin.] 8[Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:] 9[Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.] 10[For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.] 11[Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.] 12[Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.] 13[Neither yield ye your members ] as[ instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members ] as[ instruments of righteousness unto God.]
Our text is a long one. But it is important to get the full context of what Paul is discussing. Paul is here talking about how to experience change in the area of living a life of victory over sin and that is the primary focus of my message today but as we will see, that same process can be used to create real change in every area of our life.
Proverbs 4:18-19 (KJV) says
18But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. 19[The way of the wicked ] is[ as darkness: they know not at what they stumble.]
God's plan for the Christian life is of that which continually changes and increase. It is the wicked that stumbles through life never knowing where they are going or how they will get there.
When we get stuck in a rut and are not making progress, there's is usually a gap in either our knowledge or our actions. Change isn't automatic because you attend church. There are a set of specific things you must know and do to experience a life of ever increasing glory.
Before we delve into the text, let me quickly outline the process that Paul describes here
1. There is something to know.
Romans 6:6 (KJV)
6[Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with ] him[, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.]
2. There is a believing to arrive at based on what you know, a conviction to stand on.
Romans 6:8 (KJV)
8Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:
3. There is a negative job of resistance
Romans 6:12-13 (KJV)
12[Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof.] 13[Neither yield ye your members ] as[ instruments of unrighteousness unto sin:
4. There is a positive action of yielding or pursuing righteousness
.....but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members ] as[ instruments of righteousness unto God.]
First thing to note: transformation is an inside job. God's method is not to take people out of poverty, he takes poverty out of people. He takes foolishness out of people, he takes failure out of people.
There you have it. Change begins with knowledge, the knowledge must produce faith or a conviction, the conviction must lead to the exercise of the will in resisting evil and in pursuing the right. The first two parts of these process we can describe as the generation of potential energy. The second part is when we engage the gear and the stationary vehicle with a lot of power under the hood gains kinetic energy.
One of the most powerful truths in the bible is the " behold and become" principle. All change begins with a revelation. If you can see it you can become it. Began with Abraham. Jacob used it with animals. Elisha got a double portion through this principle and we are changed into the image of The Lord as we behold his glory.