SanLo Community, an update for the week of July 28, 2019…
"Freedom!!!" Romans 8:1-17 -- Pastor Eric
We can find freedom from penalty of sin, the power of sin, and the presence of sin. We can be liberated from sin and it’s deadly consequences to be free with God both now and forever. By the grace of God, we are blessed to become sons and daughters of God rather than slaves to sin.
(1) We can have freedom from the penalty of sin. We are declared right by God and with God. We no longer are condemned by our sin, but we are set free from the condemnation of our sin. This is the beautiful and glorious doctrine of justification. This means we are declared right by Christ’s work on the cross, not ours. We are released from the penalty of sin, because Christ took our penalty for us. (Romans 8:1-4)
A person in Christ was previously held down by the law. This means before conversion, you were condemned by the law of God, because you couldn’t fulfill the law. But you are no longer condemned by the law, but you are liberated to obey the law because of Christ. Before Christ, dead by the law, after Christ, alive by the law of the Spirit. We can live free by the Spirit to work and to serve God without obligation, but out of love.
(2) Freedom from the power of sin. We are given the Holy Spirit to be empowered not to sin. We are strengthened by the Spirit to live a holy, pleasing, and glorious life. This is the beautiful and glorious doctrine of sanctification. This means that we are all in process. We are sanctified or set apart for God’s good and holy ways. We are forgiven saints, liberated servants, and free men and women to enjoy our God. (Romans 8:5-11)
Paul explains because of salvation in Christ, you have been given a new mindset and a changed mind. You don’t think the way that you used to as an unbeliever, but now as a believer in Christ, you have a new set of desires, beliefs, and behaviors. Never to be the same.
Thus, the Spirit of God dwells, lives, and breathes inside of every believer. This is the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and the powerful regeneration of the Spirit to give you a new heart, new desires, and a new mind. You have been set free to live for the glory and goodness of God.
How does the Spirit work in our new found freedom? Here are few ways.
Conflict over sin. Power over sin. The Spirit comes into our minds to change how we view sin even though we will continue to struggle and wrestle with sin. A battle goes on in the life of the believer to choose sin or not to choose sin.
Conviction from the Word. Power in the Word. The Spirit comes into our hearts to change how we view truth, and the Spirit works in our hearts to convict us.
Compassion for others. Power to love. The Spirit comes into our minds and hearts to change how we view others. The Spirit challenges us to love people that might seem unlovable or hard to love.
This is how the Spirit works in our sanctification, in our growth process. This is how the Spirit frees us to think differently, to act differently, and to love differently. So, how might the Spirit be working in your life to live differently?
(3) Freedom from the presence of sin. The Spirit comes into our lives to give us a new relationship with God. The Spirit encourages and enlivens us to His presence within our lives both now and for eternity. This points to the beautiful and glorious doctrine of glorification. This is when we will experience the fullness of God in Heaven, when we will no longer experience sin, death, pain, or suffering. We will receive a new, sinless, and glorious body with the Lord.
Before Heaven, we do get a taste of God’s presence on earth right now. There is an eschatological sense of “the already not yet.” We can know and experience the presence of God now. (Romans 8:12-17)
By God’s grace, we are adopted sons and daughters into the family of God, who will reap blessing upon blessing from the Lord. They will be transformed from a slave of sin to saint of the Son into a relationship with the Heavenly Father and His imitate love.
Not only are we children of God, but we are heirs with God. Paul uses the word inheritance to speak of the future blessings and goodies in Heaven. This is the future glory that we have to look forward to. We will experience the endless delight and joy in the full presence of the Lord forever and forever.
This is the glorious hope of the church that we look forward to a perfect future beyond the presence, the power, and the penalty of sin so that we can sit victoriously with God in the heavenly realms free forever and forever. This is the anchor of hope to steady us beyond life’s worst moments.
Praise God that Christ set us free from our wave of sin into His glorious and wonderful presence. Christ made us free to be alive again so that we might experience the wonders of His love and grace. Free from the power of sin, and free to live in the power of the Spirit.
Who You Say I Am, Anthem, Whole Heart (Hold Me Now), Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone), Doxology
Thank you to the Eric, Lynne and Stephanie Kishi for giving us the Children's Message. When we see various street signs such as STOP, NO U TURN, or YIELD. We are to obey them. Just as laws and signs are there to protect us, so is God's instructions. The Bible tells us to obey our parents, so just as parents strive to yield to God, children are to yield to their parents and to God.