What are we to do with sin that remains in us?

Posted: May 30, 2012 by doulos tou Theou in Christianity, Discipleship, The Christian Life, Uncategorized

from a great chapter in a book I recommend to you,

How the Gospel Brings Us All the Way Home.

The author is dealing with Romans 8:12-13 in this chapter.

What are we to do with sin that remains in us? The answer is simple: kill it. Killing sin, however, is never simple.

Mortification, or as the ESV correctly translate it “[putting] to death the deeds of the body” Rom 8:13, means what it says: we are not to show sin mercy; sin is to be killed –outright.

There is to be no “peace” with sin. WE dare not baptize our sins with benedictions. It is imperative that sin be destroyed. Its life is not to be spared. There must be a radical destruction of sin. Kill it; strangle it; starve it of oxygen until it cannot breathe again.

There is no other way.

It is not just Paul who shows intolerance for sin. Do you remember Jesus’ words in the Sermon on the Mount?

“If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. 30  And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.” Matt 5:29-30

“Tear it out.” “Cut it off!” Without such radical action on our part, there can be no progress in Christian discipleship.

Paul makes a similar exhortation in his letter to the Colossians, where he gets specific about the sins he has in mind: ” Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry”(Col.3.5).    It is fascinating, isn’t it that in Paul’s day, as in our own, the most prevalent sin has to do with sex.

We are in the midst of a war in which the enemy is sin — not just sin in general, but particular sins with names such as lust, envy, pessimism, laziness, greed, and gossip. We must show these enemies no quarter.

Can sins really be killed?

Has cynicism rendered us content with a certain level of sanctification — one that lives at peace with occasional bouts of indulgence in sin — knowing that there is forgiveness in the atoning blood of Jesus Christ?

…….assurance of forgiveness should never make us complacent and indifferent about sin. This complacency is what Paul anticipates in Rom 6 when he asks, ” Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?” (Rom 6.1) The answer is decisive and precise: ” By no means!” The spirit of antinomianism, whether derived from laziness in compliance with the law’s demands or resignation because of our constant failure, is to be resisted.

…Owen brought his discourse to a close with these words:

” Set faith at work on Christ for the killing of thy sin. His blood is the great sovereign remedy for the sin-sick souls. Live in this, and thou wilt die a conqueror; yea, thou wilt, through the good providence of God, live to see thy lust dead at thy feet.”

…There can be only one eventual victor. We either set about killing sin or sin kills us.

  1. kim/nannykim says:

    This sounds a lot like John Owen’s book called The Mortification of Sin—is it similar?

  2. doulos tou Theou says:

    Just this chapter. The book covers all of Romans 8. This section was really good

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