Rom 6:12-13ESV
12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. 13 Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness.

For those who have been around me much this question will not stump you but for those who haven’t, I want you to stop for just a moment and ask yourself the question: “What is your greatest need today?”

Your answer to this question will define your response to our memory verse.  Do you have it yet?  What is your greatest need?  Your answer will not only define how you respond to our memory verse, it will reveal the control of the Holy Spirit in your life.  As always to develop the thrust of our verse we first must have the context. A text without a context is a pretext.  We want to accurately know the Word of God, so we know how to respond to it.  Paul in his letter to the Romans has established his introduction in 1:1-15, the gospel 1:16-17, the condemnation all deserve in 1:18-3:20, how we are justified in 3:21-5:21 and in 6:1-8:39 he explains how those who are justified will be sanctified.  Within this context we will see Him explain the efficacy of those who have responded to the gospel and have been born again, given the Holy Spirit and are responding today to their greatest need…forgiveness.  As one who is justified your sin has been covered past present and future but the fact that you have been justified means you are white as snow before the Father, but unfortunately you still live in a sinful body in a fallen world until glory and as the Apostle John would conclude in 1 John 1:8 “Anyone who claims to be without sin (right here right now), is a liar and the truth is not in him.”  Our sensitivity to sin reveals the Holy Spirits influence in His goal of conforming us to Christlikeness (see Rom 8:29).  There are so many patterns of us being set free from the control of sin in our life that I do not have enough time today to list them all but Paul is explaining in our memory verse this week that we are not to let sin reign or control our mortal body, that we should not obey its lusts.  I would be quick to add Paul states in the imperative tense to “not let sin reign” and to not “present your members as instruments for sin”.  This means you only have one of two options: a) you obey and are glorifying God or b) you disobey and you are NOT glorifying God.   

Now positionally we are free from the power of sin, but from a sanctification standpoint since we are still in the flesh, the law of sin as Paul explains is still at work.  We are to live as those who have been brought from death to life.  In our attempt to die to the flesh, the apostle John gives us insight as to 2 other avenues the enemy uses in his deceptions.  The desires of the flesh, the desires of the eyes and the pride of life will allow ample opportunity for us to be drawn away from God’s design for those who love Him.  You see in Paul’s verse today he is merely stating a maxim (commands actually) that we are not to be controlled by sin in our mortal bodies but we are to present our bodies as those who have been brought from death to life, as those who are being used as instruments of righteousness.  This will be a lifelong pursuit until glory, as the closer you walk with the Lord the more your sin will be present as light always reveals darkness (see Rom 7:15-25).  Do not be shocked in your relationship to Jesus if you are feeling more overwhelmed at the existence of sin in your life because Jesus is so Holy (remember He dwells in unapproachable light 1Tim 6:16 and without Holiness, no one will see the Lord Heb 12:14).  Think about it this way, the less you are concerned about your sin, the less Holy you think the Lord is.  The more you are concerned about your sin (not meaning at all that it is not covered in totality on the cross) the more you see God as Holy.  This is Paul’s point in our memory verse.  Live like you get that God is Holy, live like you have passed from death to life, live like you are being set free from the power of sin by the Holy Spirit.  Notice I said “you are being set free”, you have been set free but the Spirits influence in your life will be revealed in your sanctification and your view of the resident sin in the life of a believer.  I hope you are encouraged to live a life pleasing to the Lord!

If this seems confusing post a question and I will respond.  Thanks!