“For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6.20-23 ESV)
Yesterday and today’s devotions are a two part special looking at this powerful Scripture.
Today we focus on the Gospel in one sentence. The foundation was put down for this yesterday, the fact that we were purchased from slavery to sin and became slaves of God. Today we use the fullness of that illustration to bring forth a beautiful summation, not only of the illustration, but also of the Gospel itself.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6.23)
The fact is that we sinned. Over the past week and a half that point has been driven home time after time. We, as sinners, deserve to pay the price of our sin. That price is made clear here. The price for our sin is death. The underpinnings to this half of the verse are that the death we require is a spotless life to be sacrificed for us. The “type” of this sacrifice (see September 8th’s devotion for more on what a “type” is) was the lambs killed to cover the sins of the Jews under the Law.
A lamb is not enough to pay for our sins and bring us spotless before God in Heaven. Our sin rightly brings death and death brings the lost sinner to Hell. Please do not misunderstand: Hell is not a myth. The Watchtower Society (a.k.a.: Jehovah’s Witnesses) claim that no one goes to Hell, only enters “soul sleep”- no longer exists upon death. This false teaching (meant to lead people to Hell itself) is called Annihilationism. Sin will lead the sinner to hell. There is no other option. There is no Purgatory: that is another deception; the Papacy (Roman catholic) uses it to scare and guilt people out of their money.
So, the bad news is the price for sin is death and according to Romans 3.23 (see September 5th’s devotion), we have all sinned.
However, the GOOD NEWS is that God saw fit to offer a superior sacrifice than that of the lambs, namely the Lamb of God: Jesus. The gift of God is freely given. It is the sacrifice of God the Son on the cross. Because He lived a pure and sinless life, Jesus could make a proper payment for our sin. AND, because He is God the Son, Jesus’ payment could be applied to all who receive Him!
That payment for our sin gives us eternal life with God. Slaves, in submission to Him, adopted into His family as His children. “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’” (Romans 8.15 ESV)
To let y’all in on a secret, behind the scenes of writing this devotion right now, it is 1:34am and I decided to write because I could not sleep. My family is asleep. My dog is asleep. I am awake and feel like shouting! This is such a great passage to study!
Thank God for His grace and mercy today, think on His goodness toward you today!