The Deliverer from Sin Part 1 of 2
by John Lowe
Title: The Deliverer from Sin
Bible Reading: (Romans 8:31-39)
31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?
33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth.
34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 7, pictures the tragic failure and disappointment of a believer who tries to find peace of mind through his own efforts, by keeping the holy law of God. But Paul declares that the person, who seeks to overcome sin by willpower and human effort alone, will fail. There are two powers, which are working to claim the right to rule in the heart of men and women. Paul described those powers as “flesh” and “Spirit.” By the term flesh, he is referring to our human nature, which is tainted by sin. It is that portion of ourselves that remains unregenerate and does not experience the new birth. It is that part of our human nature that provides a bridgehead for sin. It is the inward tendency that we all have to drift downward rather than to move upward.
Romans 7, describes pain and disappointment. It describes the failure and despair of the person who tries to live the Christian life without a conscious dependence on the living Christ and the filling of the Holy Spirit. When we yield to our unregenerate nature, what Paul calls the “flesh,” we are on the road to ruin. But recognizing and responding to “the Spirit” is the road to life and peace.
Romans 8, begins with “no condemnation” and closes with “no separation.” The contents of Romans 8 declare that there need be no defeat in the Christian life. However, it should be understood that a Christian’s victory over sin is not automatic or inevitable. We must accept responsibility for our spiritual response to the indwelling Holy Spirit. Romans 8, contains twenty references to the person and work of the Holy Spirit in the life of the believer. It is only through the power of the Holy Spirit living within us that we are delivered from the tyranny of sin.
From Romans 7 into Romans 8, we move from the miserableness of defeat to the promise of victory. We move from spiritual depression to spiritual delight. We move from a sigh to a song. The indwelling Holy Spirit makes possible spiritual victory and high ethical conduct that reflects the grace and glory of God. The Holy Spirit is present and active in the life of all faithful believers. I want to show you from Romans 8, seven ways in which He (the Holy Spirit) is at work for us and in us.
First, THE INDWELLING SPIRIT SETS US FREE FROM THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH.
The first four verses testify regarding this truth, “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: that the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
Even a casual reading of Romans 8 will leave us with the impression that the Spirit of God and the absence of an attitude of defeat go hand in hand. Life in the Spirit enables us to live free from the law or principle of sin and death. This does not mean that the believer is free from sin or free from the prospect of death, but that the principle of sin and death does not have power over him. It is possible for those for whom there is no condemnation to live a life that is not inundated with sin, a life which will not end in death. And that is only possible, because when sin threatens us, the Holy Spirit comes with a strength that is the power of God and delivers us from the desire to sin.
Secondly, THE INDWELLING SPIRIT DELIVERS US FROM THE WEAKNESS OF THE FLESH.
This is the point that Paul makes in verses 5-13. He says, “For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man has not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.”
Even after we have come to know Jesus Christ as Savior, we are still plagued by an inward tendency to sin. This is where the devil seeks to do his work in the hearts and lives of believers. Here, Paul is saying that through the power of the Holy Spirit we can have victory. In his letter to the Galatians, he said that instead of living for the flesh, we can reap the harvest of the Spirit, if we will trust in Him, and walk in Him, and obey Him. My friends, the Spirit of God permanently indwells every believer at the moment that individual believes in Jesus Christ. The presence or absence of the Holy Spirit within determines whether or not one has experienced salvation.
As children of God, Christians are debtors. They are obligated not to live according to the sinful, selfish desires of the flesh. Paul said, “The Spirit mortifies (or puts down) the deeds of the body.” The “deeds of the body” is another designation for fleshly or carnal desires. Those who are led by God’s Spirit are indeed God’s children. Obedience is the true test of a personal relationship with the Lord.
Another work of the INDWELLING SPIRIT IS TO PROVIDE LEADERSHIP FOR GOD’S CHILDREN.
In Romans 8:14 Paul said, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” There is one quality that can be found in all those who are truly born again. That quality is that in their thoughts, behavior, and lifestyles they are constantly and habitually led by the Spirit of God. Folks, the Holy Spirit wants to lead us in thought, and word, and deed. We are to receive His leading by faith, and then we are to obey the divine impulses that could have no other source than the heart of a loving God. The Holy Spirit works to create a quality of life within us that loves the will of God, and accepts His will, and obeys His will.
A fourth work of the Holy Spirit IS TO GIVE TESTIMONY TO OUR DIVINE SONSHIP.
That’s what Paul said in verses 15-17. “For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: and if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” The Holy Spirit communicates with the believer to let him know that he is a child of God and a member of the family of God.
When Satan tries to defeat us by tempting us to commit some sin, we need to firmly grasp our new relationship with God so that we might overcome his evil with good. So, how can we be sure that we are the children of God? Because we take God at His Word and we have the ever-present Spirit of God dwelling within us to give assurance that we are indeed the sons and daughters of God.