Living Free

All of us serve something, the question is what. Some are slaves to their work. Some are slaves to their things, possessions, temporal stuff. Perhaps the most pathetic and increasingly common slaves are those who are enslaved to the god of self. Narcissists serve themselves, even when they appear selfless.
We all serve something, it’s just a matter of what.

Paul asks his second rhetorical question in the chapter when he says, “Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace?”
The apostle reminds his readers that a man is a slave to the one he commits himself to obey. To be a slave of something is to become an instrument in serving its interests. The old master, sin, is dedicated to the destruction of those who serve it. The new master, obedience, seeks righteousness, those things that please Christ and give life to those who serve Him.

Slavery in Roman culture had 2 variations:
1. The against my will, forced slavery
2. The voluntary, servitude type of slavery

Paul is trying to get you to think, why would you choose a master whose dedicated purpose is to keep you enslaved and, ultimately, kill you? We have a choice between two masters, one who promises life and the other death.
This prompts Paul in verses 17-18 to break into a song. Thanks be to God for the ongoing and eternal implications of the gospel! But something happens immediately when a person receives the grace of Christ through faith.

Present Day Implications of the Gospel
The moment you receive the grace of Christ through faith, you receive a new heart and a new nature that hates sin and desires to serve Christ. Humankind was never as free as when they lived in harmony with their created purpose or, as Paul chooses to put it, as slaves to righteousness.
When we serve righteousness, we not only please Christ, we do what is best for ourselves. That’s how the Lord created the world to work before it was corrupted through disobedience. But humanity exchanged the truth for a lie and looked to sin rather than their Creator to meet their needs.

The grace of God changed all of that as Christ’s sacrificial death creates the potential to recapture some of the innocence and freedom of Eden. Just as service to sin binds us closer to sin, service to righteousness frees us to live in harmony with our created purpose, which is to live in limitless communion with Christ. Paul called this sanctification.
As a believer, you have been freed from the bondage of sin, released form your addiction to sin, so that you may now look to Jesus for fulfillment. Rather than leading to death, slavery to Jesus ultimately leads to life.

In Romans 6 Paul has shown that those who place their trust in Christ and receive God’s grace through faith are baptized into Him.
The “in Christ” concept becomes the key to understanding everything Paul tells us in the following chapters. The believer’s life derives from being in Christ, our joy must be found in Christ, and have fellowship with others who are in Christ.
If you are in Christ you have a daily question to consider and answer: whose slave are you? Paul declares that we are no longer compelled to serve sin or accomplish its purposes. There are two problems that can result from this.

1. It is possible to think you’re free and be a slave to something.
This is the issue of the lost.
2. It is possible to be free and think you are enslaved.
This is almost as tragic as the first. The fix for both is truth. Not doing something wrong isn’t enough, I need something else to which I can submit my body.


1. Run from temptation
Change your circumstances, physically move from where you are!

2. Do something that brings glory to Christ
Prayer is good but I suggest something more tangible. Systematically answer the urge to sin with a Christ-honor activity.

3. Pray
Thank Jesus for His Spirit who helps you choose Christ over sin.

4. Think about what triggered the temptation
Take steps to prevent the same scenario in the future.
Pastor Chris Williams
To learn more about Pastor Chris and his teaching, visit us on the web at  and make sure you subscribe to receive these biweekly encouragements in your inbox.




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