January 20 - Romans 6:15-18

Monday, January 20, 2014

Romans 6:15-18 – Slaves to Righteousness

When we think of slavery, we see images in our minds of people in chains, hauling heavy blocks of stone for the Egyptians, or African men, women and children in lower holds of ships being hauled away from everything they know to work the fields of plantation owners in America or young boys and girls stolen from the streets and made to work as prostitutes around the world. The word is a horrible word and it isn't easy to read what Paul has to say without those images affecting us.

We'd like to think that we would never willingly accept slavery of any type as an acceptable lifestyle … for anyone. It is no way for a person to live.

The thing is, Paul knows exactly what he is saying and he understands the concept of slavery better than any of us. There are those who have been conscripted into slavery, but in his world, there are also those who offered themselves into that life as an escape from starvation or something much worse. They had offered themselves to someone else.

He immediately links that to the manner in which we offer ourselves to sin. We made the choice to become a slave to sin, to let it control us and make our decisions for us. We obey sin's call on our lives.

Paul says, though that "You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness" (Romans 8:18). Why? Because we have obeyed the teaching which came to us … from Jesus, from the disciples and now from Paul.

Freedom is at hand.