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Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Why Won't I Let God Take Control?

In review of Romans 6:12-13 it says, “Do no let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires... Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God” (NLT).

Today’s verses come from Romans 6:6-14. In it Paul tells me that since I have been united with Jesus in his death, I will also be raised to life as he was. I know that my sinful self was crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in my life. I am no longer a slave to sin. For when I died with Christ I was set free from the power of sin. And since I died with Christ, I know I will also live with him. I am sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. When he died, he died once to break the power of sin. But now that he lives, he lives for the glory of God. So I also should consider myself to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus.

I should not let sin control the way I live; not let myself give in to sinful desires. Do not let any part of my body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, I need to give myself completely to God, for I was dead, but now I have new life. So use my whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God. Sin is no longer my master, for I no longer live under the requirements of the law. Instead, I live under the freedom of God's grace.

Because I am united with Christ in his death, my evil desires and slavery to sin died with him. Now, united by faith with him in his resurrection life, I have unbroken fellowship with God and freedom from sin's hold on me.

The power of sin over me died with Christ on the cross. My "old sinful self," my sinful nature, died once and for all, so I am freed from its power. The "power of sin" refers to my rebellious sin loving nature inherited from Adam. Though I often willingly cooperate with my sinful nature, it is not me but the sin in me that is evil. And it is this power of sin at work in my life that is defeated. Paul reminds me that through faith in Christ I stand acquitted, "not guilty" before God. I no longer need to live under sin's power. God does not take me out of this world or make me a robot; I still feel like sinning, and sometimes I do. The difference is that before I was saved I was a slave to my sinful nature, but now I can choose to live for Christ.

Because of Christ's death and resurrection, I will never need to fear death. That assurance frees me to enjoy fellowship with him and to do his will. This affects my activities; work, worship, play, study, quiet ties, and times of caring for others. Knowing this helps me to experience a new vigor in life.

So how can I keep this command to not let sin control the way I live, to not give in to its desires?
(1) Identify my personal weaknesses
(2) Recognize the things that tempt me
(3) Stay away from sources of temptation
(4) Practice self-restraint
(5) Consciously invest my time in good habits and service
(6) lean on God's strength and grace.

My skills, capabilities, and body can serve many purposes, good and bad. In sin, every part of my body is vulnerable. In Christ, every part can be an instrument for service. It is the one to whom I offer my service that makes the difference. Am I giving myself completely to God, asking him to put me to good use for his glory?

Every day I’m controlled by something. At times I’m controlled by my ego or by the expectations of others. I can also be controlled by fear, guilt, resentment or bitterness. Also I may be controlled by a habit. But I am controlled by something every day.

Freedom comes when I choose what’s going to control me. When I choose Jesus Christ to be in control of my life, when I’m mastered by the Master, I can master everything else. If God is not number one in my life, something else is, and it will control me to a negative degree. When Christ is in control, he will always moves me in the right direction.

Romans 6:12-13 says, “Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires. . . . Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God” (NLT).

What are the steps in the choice to let Christ have control?

Admit that you’ve been trying to play God.
Admit that you can’t change on your own.
Humbly ask God to change you.
Be honest with someone else about the things that need to change in your life.
Give Jesus Christ total ownership of your life.

If I really want to change, stop trying. Instead, start trusting. God gives me the option to either depend on him or depend on myself. The result is either freedom or frustration.

Bottom Line:
Don’t let sin control you. Don’t give in to sinful desire. Give yourself to God, as you now have a new life. Use your body and life to do what is right to the glory of God.

What this means to me:
I should no longer let sin control the way I live, nor give in to sinful desires. Rather I need to give myself to God. For once I was dead, but now I have a new life. So use my body to do what is right for the glory of God.

In summary, I should not let sin control the way I live or give into its sinful desires. Rather I should give myself completely to God and use my life as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God. After all, the power of sin over me died with Christ on the cross. Through my faith in Christ I stand acquitted. Before I was saved I was a slave to my sinful nature, but now I can choose to live for Christ. I must remember that every day I’m going to be controlled by something. Real freedom comes when I choose what I'm going to let control me. Therefore If God isn't number one in my life, something else will end up being. If I really want to change, stop trying and instead start trusting. So what character traits or circumstances will affect my willingness to give control of my life to God?

This morning as I pray, “I want to give you thanks for your word that speaks to me life and helps me make course corrections. My desire is to bring glory and honor to you with my life. I ask you for wisdom in handling the tasks in front of me any my team. Help me to communicate clearly and encourage those who work for me. Give me the ability to love others and respond correctly to them. In your Jesus name I pray.”

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