Act On The Fact!
Are you repeatedly triumphant and rarely trounced in your spiritual life? Or, are you repeatedly trounced and rarely triumphant? If you are one who has found a consistent “abundant life” to be a bit elusive, but still believe it is possible, then this series of articles may be helpful to you. To enforce the full victory of Calvary we must understand and implement the entire gospel message. Freeman Tomlin wrote, “Jesus gave His life for us, and then took our old life from us, so that He could give His life to us, in order that He could live His life through us.” This wonderful sentence summarizes the concept of the full gospel.
You must Act on the Fact! Romans chapter six repeats the proposition that we are “dead to sin” (vv. 2, 6, 7, 8, 11). This bold assertion is reiterated throughout the passage. The work of Christ on the Cross has broken the power of cancelled sin. Verses like the ones mentioned above clearly state that Christ’s finished work has dealt with the power of indwelling sin as well as the penalty. Effective faith is factbased, not feeling-based.
By virtue of our union with Him in His death, burial, and resurrection we are “freed from sin” (v. 7). We are told to account ourselves “to be dead indeed unto sin” (v. 11). This is not a trek into a spiritual fantasy land of make-believe. To the contrary, it is entering into the reality of all God has provided through Christ. You do not reckon yourself “dead” in order to become dead, you reckon yourself dead because you are dead! It is an accomplished fact that occurred when Christ was crucified. This is not something you have to do; it is something you must recognize.
Most of us are very familiar with the substitutionary side of Calvary in that Christ died for our sins. But the representative side of Calvary is little known. “Knowing this that our old man is crucified with him” (Rom. 6:6). You see, Jesus not only died for me, He died as me! His death was my death to sin in order that His life might be made manifest through my mortal flesh. And what is “victory” other than the victorious life of Jesus being made real in my experience? Ian Thomas put it this way, “The death of Jesus for you makes possible the life of Jesus in you.”
We all know about the Romans Road to salvation, but after we are saved we need to discover the Romans Road for the saint. That which is primary in redemption can never be secondary in sanctification. Watchman Nee, in his book, The Normal Christian Life, lays out the important principles, Know?Reckon?Yield, found in Romans chapter six. “Know” has to do with the fact of our co-crucifixion with Christ, while “reckon” and “yield” are actions that the believer takes to live above sin. The term “reckon” is an accounting term which means “to account it to be so.” The fact (knowing) when followed by faith (reckoning) leads to filling (yielding). Only the fullness of God can meet the deep needs of the human heart. The old hymn sums it up:
Dying with Jesus, His death reckoned mine,
Living with Jesus, a new life divine.
Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine
Moment by moment, oh Lord, I am thine.
When the Bible speaks of being dead to sin and alive to God we must “side with” God instead of “walking by sight.” We must operate like a thing is so even when it seems it is not so, in order for it to be so. “Faith is the evidence of things not seen.” Your besetting sin, whatever it may be, was dealt with by God at the Cross. Your liberation is a completed reality. Your part is simply to act on the fact that through Christ you are indeed dead to sin. The path to victory is not a secret which only a select few can ever embrace. It is stated clear as crystal in the Scripture. This Christ centered, cross-centered corridor is the only way to conquer the bondage of sin. Stay tuned for Part 2; You Must Choose to Lose your Life Daily.