The following is a daily devotional written by my father-in-law, Robert Maynard (no, not the former mayor of Oakland, CA). He calls it “Verse of the Day” and he sends it some co-workers and family, though he tells me he’s probably going to make it a blog soon.
I hope he does. This one is from February 8, day before yesterday. All the words and emphases are his, and this is used with permission. Once he makes his devotional a blog, I’ll give you a link:
Romans 6:6 NASB knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;
Daily Background reading: Romans 6:4-7
1. knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him: What do you know? How did you learn it? We know from the things we learn. We learn from experience, others experience or from just the plain facts of life. You can have book learning or life experiences learning (work knowledge). You know and I know that intelligence is not determined by either book knowledge or by life knowledge. Your intelligence is given to you by the Lord. There have been many, many people that have wanted to increase their IQ but have not been able. Why? That’s because only God can give you intelligence. But there is one area of intelligence that you can increase, your “faith intelligence.” You see it goes something like this. You come to faith in Christ. The Holy Spirit comes to live in you to guide and direct your life and to give you understanding in God’s ways. As you pray, read God’s holy word and place more of your faith in Him, you gain “faith intelligence” on what is right and wrong. You start to understand more and more how to please the Lord and to turn away from evil. That is why we call the men and women of Hebrews chapter 11 the “Heroes of Faith.” They are the wise ones of faith, the ones who have grown in their “faith intelligence” to the point of pleasing the Lord with their lives. And that is why the Bible says to us and God wants us to know:
Galatians 5:16 NASB But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.
2. in order that our body of sin might be done away with: Just because you know something doesn’t mean you will do it. Some things are dangerous but we take the “chance” and do them. We “weigh the odds” and place our bets, that we will beat the odds at whatever we want to do. What we often fail to do is properly assess the outcome if we “fail” to beat the odds. Let’s take the simple example of driving over the speed limit in your car. We say to ourselves “It’s ok because everyone is doing it” or we justify it by saying “I am late, and I must get there on time.” Whatever the reason or excuse, we choose to “take the chance” and speed. We calculate how fast we can go, for how long and what the chances are that no policeman will be up ahead of us. We even calculate “what are the odds” that if we do get stopped, we will get by with just a warning because we weren’t going that much over the speed limit. Remember one simple fact: Sin will cost you more than you want to pay, keep you longer than you expected to stay, and take more from you than you than you want to give. You see this verse teaches us that Sin is NOT automatically taken away from us. Paul uses the term might be in verse 4 and 6 to strengthen his point. He is writing under the inspiration of Almighty God and he is trying to let us know that the choice is ours. You have been crucified with Him so that the sin in your life might be done away with. We need to be just like Joshua when he says:
Joshua 24:15 NASB “If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”
3. so that we would no longer be slaves to sin: Think about a slave for just a moment. He has no choice. He must do what he is told. But Praise the Lord, we are no longer slaves to sin. What does that mean? We now have a choice. We can choose whom we will serve in any and every situation. We can choose to serve ourselves and do the things that the flesh craves. That way is always the wrong way or the way of Sin. Or we can choose to serve the Lord and do things that the Spirit of God leads us to do. Notice that I say “leads us” not “forces us.” You “lead a horse” to water but you can’t “force him to drink.” So it is with us. God “leads us” in the path of righteousness not “forces us” in the path of righteousness. You my friend are a “freed slave.” Only do not use your freedom to sin but turn away from sin by the power of the Holy Spirit that is in you to guide you into the path of righteousness.
Lord, I want to practice what I say. I want to turn away from sin and do what is right in your sight. The only way I know to do that is to seek your guidance in every situation. As I pray unceasingly, enable me to know you will in every circumstance and situation. Help me to trust you more and more. Let me have spiritual eyes that can see and know what you see and know. I know that there are many deceivers out there and that the evil one often disguises himself as a child of light. Lord, help me to see through the deception and to be able to say to him “be gone Satan” “as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”