26 July 2020 (Trinity Seventh Sunday Morning Prayer) Romans 6:22
Updated: Jul 28
In the last few weeks, we have meditated about the kingdom of heaven, sufferings, eternal glory, transformation of the fishermen to disciples and God’s expectation on our righteousness. Paul wrote the epistle of Romans to introduce himself to them before he went to Rome. St. Paul wrote about sin and salvation and grace of our saviour Jesus Christ to the early Christian believers in Rome.
In chapter 5, Paul speaks about the sin that came through the first Adam and the grace that we received through the second Adam. Today’s meditation is based on today’s reading from St. Paul’s epistle to Romans, chapter 6, verse 22. The verse says, “But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life”.
First, what will happen if we are not free from sin?
God created angels to praise and worship Him. Lucifer, the son of dawn and the day star, was created with special talents but he thought he was above God and exalted himself above God. We read about this in Isaiah 14:12-15. This was the first sin in the world and Bible. The whole world was destroyed with water. We can read this in 2 Peter chapter 3 verses 5 and 6. The earth was covered with God’s anger and was out of light and was frozen. God’s wrath covered the whole earth and the earth was dark and frozen. It became shapeless. In Job 38:9 we read, “When I made the cloud the garment thereof, and thick darkness a swaddling band for it”.
In Genesis 1, God renovated the earth with his words. He created Adam and Eve in His own image and gave them His breath to live. The fallen angel was not happy about God creating humans because they were created in God’s own image. He wanted to separate Adam and Eve from the presence of God. As he knew that the sin could separate humans from God, he tempted Adam and Eve to commit sin. Adam and Eve were separated from the presence of God and were sent out of the garden of Eden. This early sin continued through all generations in the world. In Psalm 51, King David says that his mother conceived him in sin. The early sin polluted the whole earth and God again destroyed the earth with water in Noah’s period. Even then the sin did not stop. God separated Abraham and chosen his grandson, Jacob as Israel. God gave commandments and laws to Israelites through Moses. But the sin continued throughout generation and the Old Testament Laws could not save people from sin and the consequences.
God the Father wanted to save the whole world from judgement. We read in John 3:16 that “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life”. Jesus came into this world as our Saviour and Christ, he died for the sins of the whole world and rose again from the dead. He will come again to judge the whole world. The fallen angel knows that his time is limited and that sin is the only thing that can separate humans from God. So his target is to separate maximum number of people from the presence of God.
When Jesus comes sits as a judge during the white throne judgement, we will be on Lucifer’s side if we are not free from sin. Those on Lucifer’s side will be cast into the lake of fire.
Second, why should we be free from sin?
We should be free from sin, that is receive salvation, so that we are not condemned. John 3:18 says, “He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God”.
We need salvation to inherit everlasting life in the kingdom of heaven. John 5:24 says, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life”. We need salvation to escape second death or everlasting death in hell.
1 Thessalonians 1:10 says, “And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come”. In this verse we read that Jesus delivered us from the ‘wrath to come’. The wrath is being cast into the lake of fire. Only salvation through Jesus can save us from this wrath.
The Old Testament Laws and commandments could not save people from sin. Jesus died on the cross as the Passover lamb. He shed His precious blood to save us from our sin. He made a new covenant with us. The Old Testament saints did not have the grace and salvation through Jesus Christ. But we have received the salvation through the grace and the blood of the lamb of God. Salvation is the first step to inherit the eternal life in the kingdom of God with Jesus.
Third, what should we do to receive the salvation?
First step is to believe and put our trust on Jesus. In John 3:16 we read that whosoever believeth in Jesus will not perish but have everlasting life. Believing in Jesus is the first step to our transformation and to salvation.
Second, we must rend our hearts and turn to God. Joel 2:13 says, “rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.” We must be purged with the blood of Christ. Hebrews 9:14 says that the blood of Christ purges our conscience from dead works to serve the living God. Our robes should be washed by the blood of the lamb of God. In Revelation chapter 7, we see people wearing white clothes and verse 14 says that they came out of great tribulation and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb. When we rend our hearts and turn to Jesus, His blood purges our conscience so our garments are washed by the blood of the lamb of God. We will then receive a new heart as said in Ezekiel 26:36. “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh”. We will receive a new heart and we will be a new creature.
Fourth, how do we have fruit unto holiness and the end everlasting life?
Salvation is being delivered or rescued from sin and its consequences. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” Once we are a new creature, we should sustain in our holiness to inherit eternal life in the kingdom of heaven with Jesus. Sin separated Adam and Eve from the presence of God. When Jesus bore the sins of the whole world on the Cross, He was separated from the Almighty Father. In Isaiah 59:2 we read that sin separates us from God’s presence. Romans 6:23 says, “the wages of sin is death”. Here the verse refers to the eternal death of our souls. When we commit sin after our salvation, we must come back to God to receive forgiveness so that we are not separated from God’s presence. If we do not, we will receive death as the wages. Proverbs 24:16 says, “For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief”.
Jesus lived in a world of sin but lived a holy life. Hebrews 4:15 says, “we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” Similarly, He expects us also to be holy following His example. So, we are asked to “come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.” Matthew 10:22 says that the one who endureth to the end shall be saved.
In addition to enduring to the end and sustaining in holiness, we are to bear fruits. Matthew 3:10 says that the trees which are not giving good fruit will be cast into fire. If we do not yield fruits of the Spirit, we will be cast into the lake of fire on Judgement day. Matthew 5:13 says we are the salt of the earth. We should not lose our savour. Based on Matthew 13:20,21 we should not be offended when we face tribulation or persecution. Based on Jesus’s warning in John 15:6, we must abide in Jesus. If not, we will be cast into the fire and burned. We are called to be holy as our Heavenly Father is holy and bear fruits for Him. We will then inherit everlasting life.
Jesus came into this world to die for our sins and redeemed us with His precious blood. We can be saved only by dying for our sins and being washed by His blood. We need salvation so that we are not condemned and cast into the lake of fire. If we are not saved, we will not inherit everlasting life on the day of judgement. To receive salvation, we must believe in Jesus. We must rend our hearts and turn to Him. We must be purged with the blood of Christ. We must receive a new heart and the Holy Spirit to guide us. Once we have received salvation, we have to sustain our holiness. When we fall into sin, we must rend our hearts and receive forgiveness of our sins. Only then we will not be separated from God’s presence. We have Jesus’s life to follow as our example and live a fruitful life. We must endure to the end to inherit eternal life with Jesus.
Romans 6:1 says, “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?” It is true that we have received grace and salvation from Jesus. God’s grace is not given to us so that we can continue in sin. One-time salvation is not enough for the life that we are called to live in Christ. We cannot continue in our old life after accepting Jesus as our personal saviour and being born again. Before ascension, in John 16:8, Jesus promised to send us the Holy Spirit. The role of the Holy Spirit is to reprove us of sin, righteousness and judgment. The comforter Holy Spirit cautions and guides us in the right path and leads us to inherit eternal life. Proverbs 29:1 warns us: “He, that being often reproved hardeneth his neck, shall suddenly be destroyed, and that without remedy.” We must be cautious to listen to the Holy Spirit when we are reproved, rend our hearts and receive forgiveness so that we are not separated from God’s presence and salvation.
I pray our Heavenly Father strengthens us to endure unto the end and be saved. Amen!