A few years back a great friend of mine was talking about his son and in that conversation he said, “He is a real problem sometimes, but he is just being a boy.” I thought to myself, “so that is a valid excuse for not changing his behavior?” If that were true, we all would be doing whatever we wanted, wrong or right, and at the end saying, “Oh I am just being a sinner.” Paul wrote to the church in Rome telling them that our old sin nature died with Jesus on the cross. You may ask, “How can that be?” Christ, who was perfect and blameless, died to pay the price for our sins. We are guilty in every area when it comes to sin and we are not blameless. His death made it possible for redemption for all who come to Him and our old self (without salvation) was crucified on the cross with Him. That old self, with it’s guilt and destination to go to hell, was taken care of by Jesus on the cross. Verse 6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;
This forgiveness and destination heaven that we get when we accept Jesus results not only in eternity with Jesus in glory forever, but also results in huge life change. The old self that might live according to the sin nature is replaced with a new life that has changed to a life of victory and freedom. That freedom doesn’t free us to sin more but causes us to stay away from sin in a whole new life that is birthed from the new life in Christ. The old self is buried and is not to be in control anymore and the new nature causes us to distance ourself from the old person before Christ. Our thinking is mistaken if we think that the old nature has a place in this new life shell. That old life is dead and cannot rule in us anymore. You may say, “Then why do I fall back into the old way of living that is supposed to be dead.” It is very clear why that happens. You hold back the new life from being seen by trying to control it and not letting God control it. Our old way of thinking and living, which is sin based, cannot, and should not ever have a place of residence in our life. But sometimes it does….. Paul continued on in verse 11 saying, 11 Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
As you can see it is all about control. If you have received Christ this new life is cranked up and ready to go, but you may fear what God may do and how it may “cramp your style.” God in sending Jesus and killing the old self did not do this to be a “cosmic killjoy” but in burying the old self opens up a whole new world that is what the Bible calls the abundant life.
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. When we talk about someone dying we might use the words, “he passed away.” The old things passing away in this scripture denotes that the old self, or old ways are DEAD. In fact, dead and buried. So don’t be a “grave robber” trying to resurrect the old self from the grave. You might think like the Michael Jackson song that it is a “thriller” when actually it is a “killer.” Look at what Paul says in verse 12: 12 Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, The only way sin can get back at you is by you holding back the Holy Spirit from ruling in every area of your life. Ephesians 5:18 is a classic example of trying to pursue happiness from the wrong source and Paul says, 18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, The desire to find happiness by numbing reality is a sure sign that you are not living by the power of the Holy Spirt and Paul says to “be filled with the Spirit.”
So the old self is dead and buried and the new self that has a righteous result that comes from God is now to be in control. You can be assured that God’s perspective on life will be much different than the one the world presents. Don’t be surprised when God’s Word calls for you to be selfless and think differently than others. That is the new life and your faith allows that life to come forth in beautiful Godliness with fruit that looks like Galatians 5: 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. That old life is DEAD AND BURIED. Don’t go grave robbing. Stay out of the graveyard and live as the living. Our life in Christ is real life!!
The Pilgrimage continues…..