The Yoke of Bondage
“That henceforth we should not serve sin.” Romans 6:6
Slavery is a stain on the history of humanity. To be removed by force from your home and family and exiled and treated as chattel would be a terrible existence. Human trafficking is not only a crime against humanity but a sin against God.
To be enslaved is appalling but to be willingly enslaved is a choice many people make. The Bible makes this observation about being enslaved to sin:
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” (Gal 5:1)
Before the work of grace and mercy takes place in our lives we are “under the yoke of bondage.” The image the words “yoke of bondage” makes is clearly a slave bound for delivery to the service of his master. The work of the Gospel of Jesus liberates us from the power of Satan and sin.
The word of God expounds on this power of Satan:
“Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods.” (Gal 4:8)
Void of the knowledge of the Gospel; a lost sinner is a slave to sin and does “service unto them.”
We are warned by the Apostle Paul not to willfully submit to be enslaved again to sin once we are liberated from the powers of evil after “Christ hath made us free.”
How does the gospel set us free from our enslavement to sin? The Apostle Paul explains this to the church in Rome. The Apostle said:
“Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin.” (Rom 6:6-7)
When Jesus died for our sins the power of sin to enslave was destroyed. For us to experience this liberty we must be “crucified with him.” What does this mean to be “crucified with him?” Jesus’ death on the cross released Jesus from the flesh. His spirit was eternal and His body was mortal.
When Jesus died the scripture states:
“Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.” (Heb 2:14)
When we follow in repentance we experience not death but life. The bible is clear on this matter. Not only is “the wages of sin is death” Rom 6:23, but the gospel brings life. The scripture states, “And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins.” (Eph 2:1)
The word “quickened” is understood as to make alive. How does God make you alive through the Gospel of Jesus? What does God’s grace do to make you pass from death into life; from a slave to a freeman? In Paul’s letter to the followers of Jesus in Corinth he delineates what happens with we are saved by grace and filled with God’s Spirit:
“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” (2 Co 5:17)
The Saviour not only ended the power of death and the power of your master Satan, He destroys the work that your servitude to Satan had created. Jesus makes you a “new creature.” Jesus Himself has the power to make all, “old things” your slavery to sin and what your sin has structured in your life, pass away.
This is not just a renewal or renovation of your life. Just as when Jesus died on the cross, the power of sin and Satan was broken by His death and you are now alive as a new creation, “all things are become new.” You have been “born-again” as a free man from sin but a servant to the Saviour.
We are warned that to leave the service of Jesus is to be again enslaved to our former master Satan. The Apostle Paul offers these words of advice:
“Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God. For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” (Rom 6:12-14)
Have you been born-again? If so, you have been bought with a price – the death of Jesus. By His death, you have been liberated from your master, Satan. Are you living a life serving the Saviour who gave you life or have you willingly “yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness?”
You can live a life of victory in Jesus or you can live a life enslaved by your sin. The choice is yours. Jesus died to set you free. Will you choose to serve your Saviour or enslave yourself to Satan?
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