When I think of slavery, horrific scenes from movies come up in my mind. I remember the beginning scene of The Butler. A child’s mother is taken into a shed by the slaveowner and brutally raped. When the slaveowner comes out, the child, who is maybe 9 years old, says, “Dad?” He wanted his father to do something in defense of what had just happened to his mother. His dad was torn filled with anger for what this man had just done to his wife, wanting to do the right thing for his son, but knowing if he said anything, it could mean the worst. And that is what happened. The man said something. The slaveowner said nothing but pulled out a gun and shot the man. A slave in America during those times had no say over their own lives and their owners ran them into the ground without a care.
We are born to sin and a slave to it.
Sin is the sting of death and it is killing us. And, unlike the mother in the scene of The Butler, we do not resist. We are willing participants in the very things that destroy our life. We are selfish and seek after good things with sinful motives and sinful ways. And we don’t have a choice.
But then grace appeared.
For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.
When Jesus gave His life on Calvary, for those who have accepted by faith that He received our punishment, then our sins have been forgiven. This is grace. But more than our sins being forgiven, grace releases the power to restore us back to our Creator. Sin had stolen us away and enslaved us in the Garden of Eden, but grace has not only released us from our old master but has reunited us in spirit with Christ.
Grace released us from the power of sin and united us with the power of God
Grace has made us slaves to God (Romans 6:22), but we are not forced slaves, but bondservants (1 Corinthians 7:22). A bondservant is a slave who has been set free but recognizes their master to be so wonderful in love and caring for their needs, they choose to stay and serve that master. Grace is the power that erases the chasm between us and God when we choose to put our faith in Christ. Just as sin separates us from the power of God so grace separates us from the power of sin. It is not that we no longer sin, but grace gives us power of wisdom to know what is from God and what is not. Grace gives us power to resist the temptations of this world and our own flesh. Grace gives us power to choose the pathway of the righteous. Grace has given us power to choose God and reject sin. We are no longer slaves to sin.
Now, the question is what are we doing with this power. With every temptation to do what displeases God, we have power to resist. Are we using this power? The Apostle Paul warns us not to take for granted our forgiveness in Christ by continuing to sin but to use the power of grace to do the right thing-to live holy lives according to the Scriptures. Sin can no longer deceive you. It can’t trick you. It can’t manipulate you. It can’t force you. Sin can only tempt you, but you no longer belong to this wicked master. You are free. Free to not take another drink. Free to discipline your children in love. Free to forgive yourself. Free to love one another. Free to sacrifice your time for the Lord. Free to go the extra mile at work. Free to bless those who persecute you and pray for those who hate you. You are free not get drunk on wine but to be high in the Spirit. You are free.
What would your life look like if you began to live in this power?
How wonderful! We have to remember this power does not flow from us. It flows from our Master and Lord, Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit. When temptations come, simply say, “Holy Spirit, help me to resist.” You will be amazed by the sudden release of power to give you self-control and do what is best in God’s eyes. Now…go live free!
Live Blessed and Be a Blessing!