Romans Section 3

Romans 6-8, The Christian way of life, sanctification, is possible—now what?

Romans 6, Theme, Argument, Outline, Select Doctrines, Some Applications

Tod Kennedy, December 28, 2014

Romans 6 Chapter Title, Union with Christ makes the Christian way of life possible

Theme of Romans 6-8

Since we have died with Christ to sin and to the law we are able to serve God and righteousness (Romans 6), yet sin attempts to take back the rule by working through our flesh and every time we allow deposed King Sin to rule we will fail in the Christian life (Romans 7). We are not condemned to this failure because the Holy Spirit lives in each believer and the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus (walking by the Holy Spirit) has set us free from necessary rule by the law of sin and death (Romans 8).

Argument of Romans 6

Paul, having dealt with God’s righteousness and man’s unrighteousness in relation to sin, condemnation, and justification by faith now turns to the justified ones living as slaves of righteousness for God. Believers are not to continue to sin just because they are under grace. Believers died with Christ to sin (sinful nature and personal sin) and now live with him in this new kind of life. Believers know that their old self was crucified with Christ and that Christ died to sin, so they should consider by faith that they are dead to sin and alive to God. Therefore, just as believers used to be slaves of sin, they are to present themselves to God as slaves for righteousness. Being slaves of sin had no benefit—sin brought death. As slaves of God believers do benefit—righteousness in life now, progressive sanctification, and eternal life in the future.

Short Outline of Romans 6

  1. The believer’s union with Christ makes it possible and practical to live the CWL now (6:1-11).
  2. Believers should not allow sin to rule them because they are now alive with God and under grace (6.12-14).
  3. Romans 6:15-23. Believers are now slaves of God and righteousness, no longer slaves of sin, and this new slavery will result in righteousness, sanctification, and eternal life.

Expanded Outline of Romans 6

  1. Romans 6:1-5. The believer’s union with Christ makes it possible and practical to live the Christian way of life right now. When we first believed in Christ as savior, we were baptized—identified—into his death and were in that very moment joined to Christ (“in Christ,” position or absolute family status). This baptism is the baptism by the Holy Spirit. We became a new creation or new man, and our old self (the unregenerate Adam man) died with Christ to sin and we are able to live with Christ in newness of life, Jesus’ resurrection kind of life.
  2. Romans 6.6-14. The result was that sin’s legal and practical hold ceased to have authority over us, so that we are no longer slaves to sin. We can think of sin as a king master who no longer has the right to control us. In Adam we could only act under sin’s control. Sin was built in to our humanity since we descended from Adam. Now at faith in Christ the old self, our unregenerate self, died to sin and sin has nothing to control. But sin in some way still remains a part of humanity (Romans 6.6). We are now able to live the Christian way of life in the power of the Holy Spirit (the story of Romans 8) by knowing this doctrine (knowing this, Romans 6.6,9), by faith acceptance of the doctrinal truth (consider, Romans 6.11), and by presenting (παριστημι paristemi aorist imperative, Romans 6.13) ourselves to God for righteousness—making the right decisions which are in accordance with God’s will as it is revealed in Scripture. The aorist tense is used for conduct in a specific case—choosing to serve God whenever the choice comes up, not to serve sin. This will happen many times; it is not a once and done forever meaning here. We no longer present (παριστημι paristemi, present imperative for the habit) ourselves to (king) sin. We now live this new grace life and do not need to sin (Romans 6.1,14).
  3. Romans 6.15-23. Believers are now slaves of God and righteousness, no longer slaves of sin, and this new slavery will result in righteousness, sanctification, and eternal life. We are God’s slaves to produce his righteousness (Romans 6.17,18,22). We gain great benefit from this new slavery: righteousness in life now, progressive sanctification, and eternal life in the future. So, what should we do about this? In everyday life we should know the truth of our new kind of life, believe that truth, and apply that truth by presenting ourselves to God for righteousness, not to sin resulting in Christian life death (carnality and walking in darkness) and possibly physical death.

Select Doctrines Romans 6

  1. In Christ—Positional truth (Romans 6.2-5, 8, 11).
  2. Baptism (Romans 6.3-4).
  3. Walk in newness of life (Romans 6.4).
  4. Sin (Romans 6.1-2, 6-7, 10-18, 20, 22-23).
  5. Old man (Romans 6.6).
  6. Freed from sin (Romans 6.7)
  7. Grace (Romans 6.1, 14, 15, 17, 23).
  8. Know-believe-apply, know-consider-present (Romans 6.6, 11, 13).
  9. Present to God παριστημι paristemi (Romans 6.13,16)
  10. Slaves of God (Romans 6.22)
  11. Slaves of sin or righteousness (Romans 6.6,16-20)
  12. Sanctification (Romans 6.19, 22).
  13. Eternal life (Romans 6.23)

Some applications or So What?

  1. Because I am related to the resurrected Christ I am able to live his new resurrection kind of life.
  2. I do not have to obey sin when it tries to order me to disobey God because I have been set free from sin.
  3. I need to believe what God has done for me and in me so I can now actually live for God. This means to confidently accept as true and rely on what God has said.
  4. To whom am I presenting myself to for service, to sin or to God and righteousness?
  5. My personal righteousness and sanctification increase when I served God and do not serve sin.
  6. Other
  7. Other

Commentary Exposition

  1. The believer’s union with Christ makes it possible and practical to live the Christian life now (6.1-11).
    1. Romans 6:1-2, believers have died with Christ with reference to sin in all categories, have been buried with him, and have been raised with him with the result that we now can live in a new resurrection kind of life. This is the doctrine of positional truth. This new life is one in which sin—think of sin as a master who has been removed from right to rule—has no legal control and so in practice we can live under grace (Romans 6:14), serve righteousness (Romans 6:16, 18), and experience progressive sanctification (Romans 6:19, 22). Grace triumphs over sin, but this is no reason to continue to live in the sphere of sin—to live under the control of the sinful nature and practice sin. We, believers in Christ, died to sin. Sin’s legal hold was removed by the believer’s union with Christ (Romans 6:1-2, 18, 22).
  • continue (epimeno̅, επιμενω to remain in a place, to persist, to continue, present active subjunctive)
  • died (apothe̅sko̅, αποθησκω aorist active indicative, the point of the action)
    1. Romans 6:3-4, teach that every believer has been baptized into Christ and therefore baptized into his death, burial, and resurrection. To baptize (baptizo̅, βαπτιζω) means submerge, to dip and then to identify with something. This baptism is the baptism of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:13) which identifies each believer with Jesus Christ and his spiritual body, the church. The Holy Spirit indwells the new believer from then on. This makes the supernatural change, not water baptism. Baptized and buried in Romans 6:3-4 are aorist passive indicatives. Paul views them as finished. Because these happened we might walk in a new kind of life—a resurrection kind of life right now.
  • walk (peripateo̅, περιπατεω aorist active subjunctive)
  • new (kainote̅s, καινοτης new, fresh, a new kind, novel)
    1. Romans 6:5 affirms this. “If” is first class (true or assumed true) to point out that if verses 2-4 are true, then we shall also be united (sumphutos, συμφυτος to be associated in a like experience) with Christ in his resurrection—have the blessings and power of his resurrection life now.
    2. Romans 6:6-14, contain three important words: knowing (Romans 6:6, 9), consider (Romans 6:11), and present (Romans 6:13). We need to know (verse 6); to see (verse 9) in the sense of understand or appreciate, and to consider or reckon something as true (verse 11). Then we need to present ourselves to God, not to sin (verse 13).
  • know (verse 6, gino̅sko̅, γινωσκω present active participle, to have the knowledge of something
  • see (verse 9, oida, οιδα perfect participle used in the present meaning, to see in the sense of understand or appreciate)
  • consider or reckon(verse 11, logizomai, λογιζομαι present middle imperative, to calculate, reason, consider)
  • present (verse 13 pariste̅mi, παριστημι present active imperative, to present, to place beside, to put at one’s disposal)
    1. Romans 6:6 “in order” that our body of sin (characterized by sin, genitive of attribute) might be done away with. Our sinful body was made powerless because our old man (Adam man) was crucified with Christ (positional truth). Our old self—the Adam man—was crucified so sin does not have legal control. Sin must work through the Adam man, not the new man—the Christ man—and use our bodies to sin.
  • in order (hina,`ινα purpose-result)
  • done away with (katargeo̅, καταργεω aorist passive subjunctive, to cause something to be unproductive, to make powerless, to make idle, to hinder, to abolish)
    1. In Romans 6:9-11. We know that Christ died to sin once for all and now he lives for God. In Romans 6:11 we accept by faith that because we are in Christ we are dead to sin and alive to God.
      1. Expand
  1. Romans 6.12-14. Believers should not allow sin to rule them because they are now alive with God and under grace, and because of this they should present themselves to God for righteousness.
    1. Romans 6:12-13. We apply the truths of Romans 6:1-11. In Romans 6:12 we should not allow king sin to rule us, and in Romans 6:13 we present ourselves to God—we make the right decisions to live alive and righteous for God, and in Romans 6:14 Paul concludes with repeating that king sin is not to rule us (kurieuo̅, κυριευω future active indicative, imperatival future) because we are under grace, not law which provokes us to sin.
  2. Romans 6.15-23. Believers are now slaves of God and righteousness, no longer slaves of sin, and this new slavery will result in righteousness, sanctification, and eternal life (6:15-23).
    1. Romans 6:15-18, the Roman believers and all believers live under grace and should not abuse grace by continuing to sin. See Romans 6:1. This closes the circle begun by Romans 6:1-2. Romans 6:16 teaches that a person is a slave to whomever he presents (paristemi, παριστημι) himself. Romans 6:17-18 say that we changed masters going from being slaves to sin, to being slaves to righteousness. When we were slaves (doulos, δουλος) to sin we, by faith, made a change. We obeyed the doctrine of positional truth which was entrusted to us and so we experienced freedom from sin’s legal hold and became enslaved to righteousness.
  • were (eimi, ειμι imperfect active indicative, continuous or repeated action in past time)
  • obeyed (hupakouo̅,`υπακουω aorist active indicative)
  • entrusted (paradido̅mi, παραδιδωμι aorist passive indicative, to hand over, to entrust)
  • freedom (eleutheroo̅, ελευθεροω aorist passive participle)
  • enslaved (douloo̅, δουλοω aorist passive indicative, enslaved, subservient).
    1. In Romans 6:19-20, Paul challenges them to now present (pariste̅mi, παριστημι aorist active imperative) their members to righteousness so they will experience progressive sanctification (eis hagiasmon, εις `αγιασμον). The present Christian life has sanctification as a goal. Here sanctification means one has grown in the faith to the point that he serves God and not sin and so is Christ like.
    2. Romans 6:21, the old kind of life living under king sin resulted in death, not benefit.
    3. Romans 6:22, the benefit of changing rulers from sin to God is sanctification in life now and eternal life in the future. Both words, freed and enslaved, are aorist passive participles. These actions happen before the benefit, “you derive” (echo, εχω present active indicative, to have, to possess).
    4. Romans 6:23. Paul concludes this section with a general statement that applies to all of life. Sin pays wages of death. God’s gift through Jesus Christ is eternal life.
  1. Select doctrines from Romans 6.
    1. In Christ—Positional truth (Romans 6.2-5, 8, 11).
    2. Baptism (Romans 6.3-4).
    3. Walk in newness of life (Romans 6.4).
    4. Sin (Romans 6.1-2, 6-7, 10-18, 20, 22-23).
    5. Old man (Romans 6.6).
    6. Freed from sin (Romans 6.7)
    7. Grace (Romans 6.1, 14, 15, 17, 23).
    8. Know-believe-apply, know-consider-present (Romans 6.6, 11, 13).
    9. Present to God παριστημι paristemi (Romans 6.13,16)
    10. Slaves of God (Romans 6.22)
    11. Slaves of sin or righteousness (Romans 6.6,16-20)
    12. Sanctification (Romans 6.19, 22).
    13. Eternal life (Romans 6.23)
  2. Application So What?