(015)Thesis: Being free from slavery to The Sin requires a specific reality and a working knowledge of its details.
Introduction: In Romans 6:4 Paul declared that the purpose of our baptism into Christ Jesus was to empower us to walk in "newness of Life". This result was to be rooted in our understanding of our "burial together with Him". This "burial" is the pivot point of confidence in the prior issue of our "baptism into His death" and the following issue of our "resurrection together with Him". Our identification with His death means that we view God no longer as a Judge, and our identification with His resurrection means that we actively experience a newness of Life. But all of this "identification with" reality pivots on whether, or not, we grasp our "burial together with Him". "Burial" simply sweeps away all doubt that both "death" and "resurrection" are really true and really apply to us.
This evening we are going to go over this same ground from the perspective of a different set of words. Romans 6:5-6 simply repeat the concepts of 6:3-4 by using a different set of words to draw the pictures we are supposed to see. Verses 3 and 5 both begin with a focus upon the death of Christ Jesus, and verses 4 and 6 both end with living a different kind of life. And all four of these verses come after Paul's declaration in verse 2 that we have died to The Sin and before verse 7 where those who are dead are free.
I. The Intended Outcome.
A. Romans 6:4 said "that we should walk in newness of Life".
B. Romans 6:6 says "that we are no longer to serve The Sin".
C. The stated requirements as Paul gives them in 6:5-6.
1. Backing up one step, we see that "the body of The Sin" has to be effectively blocked.
2. Then backing up one more step, we see that we have to "know that our old man was crucified together with Him".
3. One further step backward compels us to understand that "we shall be [in the likeness of] His resurrection".
4. And that requires one further issue as we back up to the beginning of 6:5: we have become united together in the likeness of His death.
II. The Actual Reality.
A. We have become "united/planted together" in the likeness of His death.
1. This is simply another way of saying we have been baptized into Him.
a. The focus is upon our unity with Him in death.
b. But the reality is that we have been united with Him in everything.
2. The picture, however, is from a different realm; that of agriculture.
a. The verb involved is used in the New Testament to refer to the sprouting of seed so that a shoot springs up.
b. The prefix simply adds the concept of a kind of hybrid seed where what was once a pure base is effectively "mixed together with" a secondary base to form a new version of the seed so that the sprout announces a plant that has been altered.
c. But the metaphor is more specific in that it presents the modified seed as it is identified with its "falling into the ground to die".
1) Thus, the critical issue is the "death" that brings forth a new sprout just as Jesus said in John 12:24.
2) But, even more to the point is the fact that His death was rooted in its association with The Sin.
a) Jesus' association with The Sin is that He took on its character so that His death fully addressed the divine reaction to it: the Justice of God was satisfied.
b) This is ThePoint: Justice has been both satisfied and, consequently, set aside.
B. We shall be likewise associated with The Resurrection.
1. Paul does not say "we are"; he says "we shall be".
2. Paul is not claiming that "we are" now totally new, but that we do have that destiny.
3. The point is that the way we view our good destiny directly affects how we currently live [one who sees his/her destiny as being a medical doctor deliberately chooses all of those issues that are involved in "making it happen"].
III. The Requirement of The Objective: Entering into the Knowing.
A. Knowing that "our old man" was crucified together with Christ.
1. This is the beginning of Paul's complex explanation of the nature of our inner being.
a. There is a "me" that is the essential me.
b. Then there is "my old man" that is something in addition to the essential me.
c. This is the beginning of the reality to which Paul appeals in chapter seven when he says "I sin, yet not I".
1) There is a composite "I" that sins.
2) There is an essential "I" that does not sin.
3) The bottom line here is critical: it is "our old man" that sponsors and produces "sins", not that which is "the essential me".
2. But we must understand the identity of "our old man".
a. It cannot be "Adam" because Paul uses the exact terminology in Ephesians 4:22-24 and declares that the old man isbeing corrupted, a progressive reality not applicable to Adam.
b. It must be some kind of inner reality that can suffer an on-going corruption and keep us in "slavery" to The Sin.
c. And because it is cast in terms of a "man" with its overtones of responsible headship, I take it to be the "male" aspect of the composite "I" that is capable of continuing in sin.
d. Thus, the "old man" must be "the spirit that now works in the sons of The Disbelief" as stated in Ephesians 2:2.
3. And it was "this old man" that was crucified together with Christ in both being Sin as well as being the sufficient satisfaction of Justice.
a. The co-crucifixion of "our old man" is not some theoretical possibility; it is a fact against which "he" rages as he attempts to manipulate to destroy our confidence.
b. This effectively identifies "me" as the composite "I" with the death of Christ so that the essential "me" as the singularity of "I" is now separate from "my old man" so that nothing he manages to do or not do has any effect upon me in respect to the Judgment of God.
b. This is complex, but real.
B. The body of The Sin has been reduced to an ineffectual entity.
1. The "body" is our body, but it is called "the body of The Sin" because it is only out of a "body" that the "old man" can make himself known and effective.
2. As long as the effective element ("faith") is involved, my "old man" is stymied in terms of his ability to use the members of my body to express himself.
C. Bottom Line: "my old man" is the spirit in me that is directly linked to the prince of the power of the air and the Holy Spirit in me is the Spirit that is directly linked to Christ Jesus Who imparted This Spirit after His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension.
1. This giving of a new spirit to render the "old man" ineffectual in expression through the body is rooted in the death, burial, resurrection, and ascension of Christ Jesus.
2. The very first "act" of this new spirit is to "baptize" the believer into Christ Jesus so that He is free from the requirements of Justice so that He may be gracious in His treatment of the "me" that is joined to Christ.