Summary: You can have Victory: Over sin!
The Secret to Victory
Englewood Baptist Church
Sunday morning, April 20, 2008
For those of you who were here last Sunday, you know that we have entered into a challenging portion of Romans. I warned you last week that we are now swimming in the deep end of the pool. And while today’s lesson may be easier to grasp than last week’s, I want to encourage you to be disciplined this morning and be extra attentive as we study together. You need to hear and understand these 14 verses in the Bible, Romans 6:1-14. The title of my message: The Secret to Victory.
Well, the warm weather is upon us and spring training is over. Baseball season is in full swing. As a boy, I loved Little League baseball. I remember one game in particular. It was an especially frustrating game and let me explain why. We were playing in the end-of-the-season tournament and I was out in centerfield. The scoreboard said that we were winning by several runs. And a boy from the opposing team had come to the plate. He looked at the 3rd base coach, received a signal, and it was clear that he was to lay down a bunt.
Well, as this boy held his bat out, our pitcher got frazzled and threw a wild pitch. And the runners advanced. So the boy showed a bunt again, and this time, the pitcher threw a ball that was about 6 ft. high. And this went on and on and on. Four batters later, we were still playing this same ridiculous game. And I was now standing in the outfield with my mitt tucked under my arm. There was nothing I could do. This team had figured out the secret to victory. And we were going home losers that day.
Now, I believe that there are many Christians on the planet today that have received eternal life, but they do not live in the abundant life. They are winners through the cross, but they go home feeling like losers every day. They have been raised to walk in the newness of life but they still have the same old struggles. And they wonder, is there kind of secret to victory?
How do I avoid the depression of defeat? How do I stop feeling like a loser? Maybe you are here today and you feel defeated.
You feel defeated by:
• an addiction that controls your life
• a marriage that has crumbled
• a critical spirit that brings you and others down
• your tongue and your inability to control it under pressure
• an old habit that lingers on in secret. Nobody knows you still do that.
In all these areas, you want to have victory, but it has come to the point where you have just tucked your mitt under your arm and accepted a mediocre walk with Jesus. You have given up.
The Apostle Paul is about to explain the secret of victorious living.
Read Romans 6:1-14.
Christian, you can have victory over every single sin in your life. You don’t have to live in defeat. You can stop beating yourself up. Here’s how. According to this passage, there are three instructions for victory over the flesh.
How To Have Victory Over Sin
1. Know the facts. (Vv.1-10)
It has been said that if Satan can keep you ignorant, then he can keep you impotent. You are powerless outside of the truth. Jesus said that it is the truth that will set you free! There are some things you must know. Notice how many times Paul uses the word “know” in this chapter. Look at v.3, 6, 9, and 16…
Over and over again, Paul says, “You need to know who you are in Christ.”
Warren Wiersbe says this:
Satan wants to keep us in the dark when it comes to the spiritual truths we should know, and this is why many Christians are living beneath their privileged station. –Warren Wiersbe
If you are here this morning and you feel like sin is beating you down like a prize fighter, then Paul says, “You ought to know better.” So in these verses, Paul is going to focus in on the knowledge that you must have in order to win. Now, if you notice in v.1, this chapter begins with an interesting question. Shall we go on sinning so that grace might increase? Look how Paul responds, “By no means!” The KJV says, “God forbid.” Today, Paul might say it this way, “Are you NUTS? Have you lost your mind?”
Do you actually think that God is honored by your sin? Do you really believe that God wants you to berate your wife, and curse your son, and steal from your boss just so that He can spread more grace around the world? Do you think that God smiles upon your gossip, your laziness, your temper problem, your dirty movies? By no means! God forbid. You ought to know better.