Daily Reading: Roman 6:1-14
“…present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.”Romans 6:13b (NASB)
I’ve lost count how many times as a pastor I’ve sat down with someone, struggling with a particular sin or sins in their life, and been asked the question: “How do I get through this? How do I stop sinning?” In my early years, I’d whip open my Bible and start preaching at them. This, was poor counseling. Rest assured, using the Bible is the absolute best source for counseling. The problem, was in the delivery – the pastor method. It’s always a good idea to listen to people. After all many people have been hearing the truth from God’s Word in the pews for years, and sometimes just need a little nudge to act on what they’ve heard.
From time to time, there comes a new believer or someone who has not heard the Word taught. This is an individual who simply needs the basic truths of the Christian walk. These are the very truths we’ve been discussing in this first section of Romans six. They can be summarized into three words, if you use the King James – which I am inclined to do from time to time as I study you will discover three key words in Romans 6: know, reckon, and yield. The translators correctly use three action words to describe the basics of the Christian life. This is not a formula and certainly not something you can do by yourself. This will be of no help to the unbeliever or the one who has professed Christ yet believes in a type of augmented fatalism. It will also be of little help to the one who is unwilling to trust God and be led by His Spirit. Moreover, the Christian life, and these three principles take time learn. This is something extremely difficult for you and I, because we want these sinful desires taken away now. Oh that we could not be bothered by the lust of the flesh anymore, right now!
This journey begins with knowledge, about the old life and the new man we have been discussing. We must ‘know’ (Romans 6:6), and believe, that we are dead to sin – that we are baptized into Jesus’s death; also into His resurrection. Know this and believe it. If you are still trying to do or die to self, you’ll never move past this first point. Next we are to ‘reckon’ (Romans 6:11) it (these truths) to be “real for us”. Reckon is not the word ‘consider’, it’s an action word. We are to let our minds be permeated with this truth. We should wrap every action, thought and intention around these truths. There is no room for half-hearted belief in this word. The truths of Scripture should be like water to the body – essential in every way!
Finally, we are to ‘yield’ (Romans 6:13). This is a purposeful action. While driving, some people may come to a yield sign and pay no attention. Bless their hearts – they should stop that. Yielding involves an intentional act and consideration of the events which are around us. For the believer, you are to take the time and consider the life choice you make, the things you do with all the resources God has given – especially your time.