“Reckon Yourselves To Be Dead”

“Even so reckon ye also yourselves to be dead unto sin, but alive unto God in Christ Jesus” (Rom. 6:11). This is the conclusion to a lengthy argument which begin in verse one with Paul’s question, “Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?” In the ensuing verses Paul has shown:

  1. We have died to sin. How can we live in sin any longer (6:2)?
  2. We died to sin when we were baptized into Christ’s death. Christ died for our sins; thus to be baptized into his death is to be baptized into the benefits of Christ’s death (1 Cor. 15:1-4).
  3. Newness of life into which we enter when we are baptized into Christ’s death (which means a life free from sin’s guilt) demands newness of life when we emerge from baptism, a life no longer under sin’s dominion but freed from it (6:4)! After His resurrection Christ was dead to the old life he had lived prior to it. He would never live that life again. It simply is inconsistent to suppose we can continue an old life in sin since, by a resurrection, we proclaim we live a new life!
  4. Our old man was crucified with Christ which accomplished two things. By being crucified with Christ, the body of sin was done away (free from its guilt and its consequences), that we might be no longer in bondage to sin. Those who die are justified from sin (6:7).

In view of these things we are to reckon — to consider or regard — ourselves as dead unto sin. To be dead to sin means there is no responding voice in us to its temptation and voice. This is not to say that sin no longer is alluring. It is. But, because we have died with Christ and have been justified from sin by his grace, we must have strength and stamina and thankfulness to be able to say “No” to its siren call. We should regard ourselves as alive unto Christ; ready to do His bidding, acting out of a heart full of gratitude that He has freed us from the bondage of sin. Paul wrote the Galatians, “I have been crucified with Christ and it is no longer I that live but Christ that liveth in me” (Gal. 2:20).

In essence Paul tells us, “We should not even think about returning to sin to live therein. How could any believer, saved by the blood of Christ, ever consider continuing in sin that grace might abound?” Such a course of life must be unthinkable!

Jim McDonald

Bible Lectureship

(March 17-20, 2024)

prayer study book

We would love to have you as our guest! 

Register below for the event, and we’ll also send you a prayer e-devotional. Our gift to you.