Text: Romans 7:1-6
Theme: We’re no longer a slave to sin but free to serve and live.
Key verses: “…you who are familiar with the law–don’t you know that the law applies only while a person is living?” (v. 1). “So…this is the point: You died to the power of the law when you died with Christ. And now you are united with the one who was raised from the dead. As a result, we can produce a harvest of good deeds for God” (v. 4). “But now we have been released from the law, for we died to it and are no longer captive to its power. Now we can serve God, not in the old way of obeying the letter of the law, but in the new way of living in the Spirit” (v. 6).
What God said to me: Good morning Dwayne. I love you unconditionally. I sent my Son to die for your sins. I have proven over and over that you are worth dying for. You have been set free from the letter of the law, from trying to live a sin-free life on your own, from worrying if you’ll be good enough or measure up to my glory. You couldn’t and still can’t. I have placed my Spirit within you as a deposit that guarantees your admittance into heaven. It also assures you have life and peace and joy during your earthly sojourn. It was for the first century saints a “new way of living in the Spirit.” For centuries all the Jews knew was to try to try up to my lawful standards. They did not have my Spirit living inside them to guide them and counsel and comfort them day by day. When I sent my Spirit on the day of Pentecost it was a new paradigm, a new dispensation of reality and experience. It felt and was in fact “new” for them. What about for you though, Dwayne? Does it feel new to you? Or have you been released from sin’s bondage so long that you take for granted my Spirit’s abiding within you, walking and talking with you each day? Has our relationship grown stale and your enthusiasm for serving me grown old and common-place? You have the underserved privilege to know me on an intimate level and to have life more abundantly. Will you take that for granted or will you submit to my authority in your life and humble yourself in grateful service to me today?
What I said to God: Thank You, my Lord and my God. You are Adonai, the Lord over all. I do not always submit to you. Again you have seen through my facade and peeled away the layers of my “spirituality” to reveal my old, cold heart. Please forgive me. I fall on Your grace and trust Your unfailing love. “But what can be done for an old heart like mine? Soften it up with oil and wine. The oil is You, Your Spirit of love. Please wash me anew in the wine of Your Blood.”