|6||Dead to Sin||Sin no longer reigns over us|
|7||Dead to the Law||The law no longer reigns over us|
|8||Alive in Spirit-Given Victory||The indewlling spirit gives us life and liberty|
6:1 – Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not!
“‘Shall we go on sinning, so that grace may increase?’ This suggests that our motivation for sinning is not just our own satisfaction — we are doing it for the glory of God, so that grace may increase. God loves to show his grace. Therefore, if we go on sinning, he will have all the more opportunity. What a chance for God to show his grace! It is clear that this question is not asked by a complete pagan…but by someone who seems intent on the glory of God. Having said that, we come now to the answer, the positive answer of Paul.” -Ray Steadman
To Continue = G1961 – ἐπιμένω / epimeno
- to stay at or with, to tarry in a place, to continue, remain (eg: in Acts 21:4 Paul stays with the disciples for an additional week)
- to persevere, continue (eg: continue in teaching)
Here, continue = present tense, a continual action, indicating its not talking about an occasional sin, but is talking about continuing in a perpetual lifestyle of sin.
6:2 – “Certainly not” / “May it never be” = a typical indignant response by Paul. This response is in the Opative mood, indicating that this is a Prayer, hope, or Paul’s strongest wish concerning the outcome. According to Thayer’s Lexicon, “The optative mood is generally used [to] express a wish or desire for an action to occur in which the completion of such is doubtful…In a few cases, verbs in the optative mood stand apart from a conditional clause to express the strongest possible wish regarding an event. The most common of these appears in the phrase “mh genoito” (AV,”God forbid”; NKJV “Certainly not”).”
“For a Christian to continue in sin, because his sins are forgiven and because grace will abound, is an abominable thought to Paul and it should also be so to all who by grace through faith in Christ are true saints or holy ones.” -Precept Austin
6:2 – How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
“How (pós) leaves no room for the possibility of the continued habit of sin in the Christian, for the Greek word pós means ‘how is it possible?’ In fact according to some lexicons when pós is used in rhetorical questions, the idea is that of rejecting an assumption. In other words ‘how could one? it is impossible that…’ ” -Precept Austin
“How is it possible for such as we are, (classified as we are as) born-again children of God, to do such a thing. It is against our nature to habitually yield to the evil nature. We are not persons of such a nature as to do so.” – Precept Austin
What does it mean to have “died to sin”?
Died here is in the past, aortist tense (indicating finality, once and for all, not a continuing action). Might be more precise (but wordy and awkward in english) to translate as “we who died once and for all to sin”
“To be dead to a thing is a strong expression denoting that it has no influence over us.” -Barnes
“To die to a thing or person, is to have nothing to do with it or him; to be totally separated from them: and to live to a thing or person is to be wholly given up to them; to have the most intimate connection with them” -Adam Clarke
Paul is not teaching here that we *should* die to sin, but rather, this has already been done.
“There is special stress on the pronoun We, and indeed on the whole clause, which gives a description characteristic of believers, and intimates at once the preposterousness of continuing in sin.” -Vine
6:3 – baptized into Christ Jesus
to Baptize = G907 – βαπτίζω / baptizo
Definitions according to Thayer’s Lexicon:
- to dip repeatedly, to immerse, to submerge (of vessels sunk)
- to cleanse by dipping or submerging, to wash, to make clean with water, to wash one’s self, bathe
- to overwhelm
Baptizô in Greek would be the same word that is used to describe the dying of a garment, where the whole material is submersed and then removed from the dye, resulting in a permanent change to the nature (color) of the garment. Baptizo would also describe a sinking ship plunging into the ocean. Or, figuratively, baptizo could mean to place someone or something into union with something else so that its condition or identity is (permanently) altered in some way. This word is in contrast is a different greek word, baptô which means a temporary dipping without the lasting effects. In translating the bible into english, Baptizo was transliterated into English as Baptism, as there was not already another suitable equivalent word to describe such an immersion.
“The clearest example that shows the meaning of baptizo is a text from the Greek poet and physician Nicander, who lived about 200 B.C. Nicander says that in order to make a pickle, the vegetable should first be ‘dipped’ (bapto) into boiling water and then ‘baptised’ (baptizo) in the vinegar solution. Both verbs concern the immersing of vegetables in a solution. But the first is temporary. The second, the act of baptising the vegetable, produces a permanent change.” -James Montgomery Boice
“To baptize is to put into water and take out again. It involves immersion, submersion, and emergence—death, burial and resurrection. The word was used among the heathen Greeks of articles which underwent submersion and emergence, as in the case of the dyeing of a garment.” -W. E. Vine
“The Bible uses this idea of being baptized into something in several different ways. When a person is baptized in water, they are immersed or covered over with water. When they are baptized with the Holy Spirit (Matthew 3:11, Acts 1:5) they are “immersed” or “covered over” with the Holy Spirit. When they are baptized with suffering (Mark 10:39), they are “immersed” or “covered over” with suffering. Here, Paul refers to being baptized – “immersed” or “covered over” in Christ Jesus” -David Guzik (enduringword.com)
“Whosoever is born of God doth not (present tense = habitually) practice sin, because His God’s seed abideth in him, and he is not able to (present tense = habitually) practice sin, because he is begotten of God. (1Jn 3:9)” -Newell
“Paul is not setting forth a doctrine of sinless perfection, but of freedom from sin’s domination. The Christian may sin, but sinning is out of character. It is a declension from his norm, not his habitual practice.” -Henry Morris
1. In their condition before God.
2. In their character in consequence of it.
3. Forensically in the eye of the law.
4. Experimentally; in point of fact.
5. In their affection for it.
6. In its power over them.
1. By participation in Christ’s death who died for it.
2. By communication of the power of Christ in killing it…
In 6:12, sin is personified as a king, with the image of sin reigning.
- Know that old self was crucified w/ Christ (6:6)
- Consider ourselves dead to sin (6:11)
- Present our body members as instruments of righteousness to God (6:13)