02 August 2020 (Trinity Eighth Sunday Morning Prayer) Romans 8:15
In the past few weeks, we meditated about salvation, God’s expectation on us as His disciples and inheriting eternal life with Jesus in the kingdom of heaven. In continuation, today let us meditate based on our epistle reading, Romans 8:15 which reads, “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”. Paul talks abouts two spirits in this verse. One is the spirit of bondage and the other is the spirit of adoption. In the entire chapter of Romans 8, Paul talks about living our life in flesh and spirit, bondage, adoption and condemnation.
Last week, we looked at how Lucifer exalted himself and was pushed to the depths of the pit. God destroyed the earth in His anger. He re-created the earth and created the first humans, Adam and Eve. But Lucifer separated them from God’s presence and sin continued to multiply though generations. Again, God destroyed the world during Noah’s time, but sin did not stop.
Bondage is the state of being a slave. When a person is in bondage or slavery or captivity, the person is dependant or controlled by something. Humans continued to live in the bondage of sin and faced eternal death. They were controlled by their sins. The commandments and laws did not free humans from bondage of sin or save them from death. So the Almighty Father sent His only begotten Son to save the world. Jesus Christ died on the cross and shed His sinless blood to save us all from the bondage of sin.
This bondage of sin is what Paul speaks about in Romans 8:15. When we are in the bondage of sin, we are controlled by the sin and are not able to be free of it. Those who live in sin live in bondage because of their sins. We should know the reason for the fear of the bondage.
FIRST, Spirit of bondage with fear
When we are in the bondage of sin, we are held captive by sin. After we yield to temptation and commit sin, we are filled with guilt. When we feel guilty because of the sin we have committed, we are filled with fear. We fear people around us will find out what we have been doing. We fear facing the consequences. When we feel guilt and are in fear, we again commit sin and the cycle continues. We lose our peace because of this continuous cycle.
1 Corinthians 15:56 says, “The sting of death is sin”. James 1:15 says, “Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death”. We know from Romans 6:23 that the wages of sin is death. Those in the bondage of sin fear the death that awaits them. It may be physical death in this world. But Paul talks about the second death or the eternal death that awaits on Judgement day. Those in bondage of sin live in constant fear because of their sinful life.
SECOND, We have not received the spirit of bondage
When we have accepted Jesus as our personal Saviour, the comforter Holy Spirit will reprove us of sin, righteousness and judgment. When the comforter reminds us that the wages of sin is eternal death, we will have fear.
When we receive the gift of salvation and give heed to the Holy Spirit, we will be the sons of God. Romans 8:14 says “as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” When we are the children of God, there is no need for us to live in fear. This is because our sins are forgiven and we are washed in the precious blood of Jesus. Once we have received the Holy Spirit, we do not have the spirit of bondage. It is our personal relationship and growth in Jesus that will keep this spirit of fear and bondage away. When we continue to grow in our relationship with Jesus with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we can be free from the bondage of sin and fear.
THIRD, free from fear and call Him Abba Father
Hebrews 9:22 says, “almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission”. When we are purged with the blood of Jesus, we are free from sin. When we are free from sin and have the Holy Spirit to guide us, we will be free from fear. 2 Timothy 1:7 says, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind”. When we are free from the spirit of fear, we receive the spirit of adoption.
John 1:12 says when we have received Him, we become the sons of God. Galatians 4:6 says, “because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father.” We become His children by His will and not ours. When we have received the spirit of adoption and are His children, we have the right to call Him Abba Father.
Because it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins, God gave his only begotten Son. Whosoever believes in Jesus should not perish but have everlasting life. We must rend our hearts and seek forgiveness of our sins to receive salvation. We should not allow sin to separate us from God. We should bear fruit unto holiness with the Holy Spirit’s guidance. We are called to endure until the end to inherit eternal life. When we are free from sin, we are free from bondage. When we are free from bondage, we are free from fear of eternal death.
Let us self-examine ourselves. Are we living in fear? If we are, let us look up to our Lord. Psalm 34: 4 says “I sought the Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.” Are we free or are we living under bondage? John 8:36 says, “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” If we are in bondage, let us come to our Almighty Father who can set us free. When we are confident that we are free from bondage and fear, we can call Him Abba Father.
I pray we pay heed to the guidance of the Comforter Holy Spirit and walk in the path of righteousness. I pray we are set free from our bondage and fear and escape the eternal fire and condemnation. I pray we confidently call Him Abba Father and inherit eternal life. Amen!