The pattern of the Christian life follows the way of Christ: dying then rising.
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Read Romans 6:1-11
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Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 88
Q. What is involved
in genuine repentance or conversion?
A. Two things:
the dying-away of the old self,
and the coming-to-life of the new.
In the letter to the Romans, Paul argues that grace is more incredible and more abundant than the sin that it covers and forgives (cf. Rom. 5:12–21). Yet he faced opposition claiming that his gospel message would cause people to sin all the more. You may have heard the misguided phrase, “I like to sin, and God likes to forgive; so it’s a perfect relationship.” But in Romans 6, he goes on to argue that this type of thinking doesn’t align with the gospel message of Jesus Christ at all.
Jesus put the power and reign of sin to death on the cross. He likens sin to an old version of yourself, which has been crucified with Christ. This means that if you're in Christ, sin has been put to death and is no longer the ruling party. Sin became the master after the Fall of Adam and Eve in the garden. But Christ has slayed the sin master, so anyone united to Him by faith has been set free. As Jesus conquered the grave and rose again, so too, Christians are raised to new life. The life enslaved by sin is the former life. The converted life now lives freely for God.
Weeds can get out of control around the yard and in the garden at this point each summer. If you did not address them earlier in the year, they're probably taking over the more beautiful plants and flowers and choking them out of precious sunlight and nutrients in the soil. Weeds seem like a constant battle: They must be uprooted, killed, and not left around to spawn another round of weeds.
The Christian life consists of putting-to-death weed like sin, and instead promoting the growth of new life. Like weeds, sin chokes out the good life and can become a tyrant in your life. But the good news, as Paul speaks of in Romans 6, includes ending the reign of sin.
The pattern of the Christian life follows the way of Christ’s life: first dying, then rising. Each day you are called to put sin to death, and to be reminded that it has been nailed to the cross. Your old self - tied to human nature corrupted by sin - is done for and instead must be exchanged for a new life connected to Christ’s resurrection. The battle may rage daily, but the final victory is won when you are baptized and united in Christ’s death and resurrection. You need to be constantly reminded of this new reality.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: The source of new life in Christ;
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Consider your sins nailed and put to death on the cross, and ask God to free you from them so you can live for Him.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:
Read the New Testament in a year, a chapter a day - 1 Corinthians 10