Home Bible Study- Lutz, Florida
Established November 2008
Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth
(2 Timothy 2:15)
This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 1Timothy 2:3-4
Romans by the Book Lesson 39
Greetings and welcome to Home Bible study.
One of the goals of HBS is to get people interested in their Bible and I pray it is having that affect. A recent survey revealed that people are interested in learning about end time events and the Bible certainly has something to say regarding this subject. But the Word of God has so much more to offer and this is why it’s to be studied.
Once again for the sake of our new visitors please balance what you read here with Scripture because this is my intention. Let’s let God have the last word and not yours truly.
You’ve heard me say this, you’ve seen it in print here, and if you’ve read the Bible then you’re aware that we’re living in troubled times (see 1 Timothy 3:1-9). Morality in America continues to wane and as a result of this determining between fact and fiction is becoming increasingly difficult.
What is truth and where will you find it?
These are genuine concerns today.
The younger generation does not read a newspaper, they aren’t watching the evening news, and they rarely read non-fiction books. But even if these things were true are these reliable sources of truth? I think not.
The youth today utilize the internet to read up on what’s happening in the world.
They use the internet to get advice about things that concern them, who to vote for, and who to date. The information accessed and gathered on the internet is central to forming their attitudes, their beliefs, their political views, and it aids them in formulating a sense of who they are within the world.
A vast amount of information is available to the individual via the internet through e-books, journalism, articles, blogs, chat rooms, and other various on-line sources at the click of a mouse. What power…what a sense of control!
But one should consider the unprecedented amount of mistakes, half-truths, mistruths, propaganda, misinformation, disinformation, and then there’s the general nonsense that’s out there on the internet. Truth is, many do not.
Research shows that the majority of young people are not careful, discerning users of the internet. They do not apply fact checks to the information they uncover. They are unable to recognize bias and propaganda and will not compare other sources of data.
As a result they will accept information that they should probably discard. This makes them vulnerable to: ignorance, falsehoods, cons, scams, etc. In other words, they permit themselves to be manipulated by those with a personal agenda who think nothing of exploiting those who fall into the above mentioned category. I’m not just picking on the youth of America. Older folks need to pay attention to this message as well.
So, what is truth and where will you find it?
Make no mistake - the only source of reliable truth in this world today is the Bible.
I know this because its author is the living God.
George Washington said, “It is impossible to govern the world without God and the Bible.”
The more you learn about Scripture, the more you’ll realize that you can believe the Bible, because it has been inspired and preserved by God. The Bible is firmly based on the facts of history; not on myth or fiction.
The truth is incontrovertible. Malice may attack it, ignorance may deride it, but in the end, there it is. Winston Churchill
Please open your Bible to Romans, chapter 6.
We have arrived at the second part of Christ’s work for us – this is our identification with His death. We died with Jesus Christ, our Spirit baptism into the Body of Christ giving witness to this (see 1 Corinthians 12:12-13); therefore, we Believers are to consider ourselves dead to sin and alive to God through Jesus Christ. (Verses 1-11)
The Apostle Paul is now going to address our “holy” walk under God’s abounding grace in the answers to two questions:
- First, shall we keep on sinning that God’s grace may keep abounding?
- Second, since we are no longer under Law, but under that of grace, shall we use this liberty to commit sin? That is, shall we use our freedom from the law- principle for self-centered purposes?
Believers Are Dead to Sin,
Alive to God
1: What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?
Paul originally defended himself against this same argument back at Romans 3:8; 3:31.
In short, Paul is saying, God’s grace does not give the Believer liberty to sin freely!
This question probably came from a newly saved gentile. Coming out of that heathen culture, that world of sin and darkness, and as yet having received little instruction about the faith; he might imagine that if just believing on Jesus Christ can save me from all that then the more I sin the more God’s grace I receive. Isn’t more grace better?
2: May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
Paul’s response, in the Greek, is a strong expression of surprise and condemnation.
To die to a thing or person is to have nothing more to do with them.
And why would you? Death is finality.
And then there’s this truth to consider:
2 Corinthians 5
17: Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he (or she) is a new creature; the (what) old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
Meaning: since God has reconciled you to Himself through Jesus Christ, you have received the baptism of Holy Spirit into the Body of Christ, and you are a saved, new creature in Christ Jesus living a new life; how can you spend any of your time living as you once did in your old life? To be succinct shall the spiritual live as the carnal live?
How can you who were once slaves to sin but now have been made free by the precious blood of Jesus Christ go back into the world of slavery?
The opposite of this truth is to live to a person or thing; to be wholly given up to them, to experience an intimate connection or relationship with them. Let’s go to the book.
1: And you were (what) dead (to God) in your trespasses and sins.
2: in which you formerly walked according to the course of (where) this world, according to the prince (Satan) of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience.
3: Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were (read carefully) by nature (that old Adamic Nature) children of wrath, even as the rest.
4: But God (I love those two words), being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,
5: even when we were dead in our transgressions, (now watch this – this is why we’re here) made us alive together with Christ [by grace you have been saved],
6: and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
As you read through these verses above this truth rings out.
God made us alive in Christ.
We who were once “children of wrath” because of our trespasses and sins have been “made alive” together with Christ. God moved us from death to being spiritually alive with Christ; we were raised up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places.
When I speak of a relationship or an intimate connection, this is what I mean.
A Believer isn’t just a saved individual. A saved Believer becomes a “child of God,”
Please turn to Romans chapter 8.
14: For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are (who) sons of God.
15: For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again (that old life –you left), but you have received a spirit of (what) adoption as sons (and daughters) by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!”
16: The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are (now read carefully) children of God.
17: and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.
Paul uses the term, ‘adopted as sons’ to write to the Believers in Rome, where they would have understood the meaning of his words. Under Roman law, if you were an adopted son, you had identical rights to a naturally born son in the family. An adopted son had the right to the family name of the person who adopted him and the right to an inheritance of the father’s property. Under Roman law, the adopted son also had the right to the father’s citizenship of the Empire.
For Believers, this means you have been given the name of Christ and have the right to be called Christians. Our inheritance is nothing less that the property of our heavenly Father and all the spiritual riches that are in Christ Jesus in this life and the life to come.
And we have obtained a new citizenship. Our citizenship is in heaven with God, our Father.
When I speak of a Believer’s relationship or an intimate connection, this is what I mean.
Please turn to Romans chapter 6.
3: Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death?
4: Therefore, we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.
Our Lord Jesus Christ not only bore our sins on that Roman cross but He was made to be sin itself. There He died. Then He was buried. God then raised Him from the dead.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead was the greatest display of divine power ever witnessed. Jesus Christ became the first-born from the dead who walked in “newness of life.”
Note: Resurrection life was not known until Christ was raised from the dead.
Lazarus whom Jesus raised from the dead was brought back into this life but he would experience death yet again. In Christ’s resurrection, He was the first-born from the dead. He was not brought back into the old flesh and blood earthly existence as before. It’s true He had a body, He could eat, and we know this from the Scripture accounts.
But He could also pass through closed doors and transport Himself from one place to another – He was now a heavenly Man.
When a Believer “walks in newness of life,” they demonstrate their oneness or union with Jesus Christ.
5: For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection,
6: knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;
7: for he who has died is freed from sin.
You are either driven by the lusts of the flesh or you are not.
Put another way – sin either steers your course or it does not.
Those who are “alive in Christ” steer another course, if you will.
Instead of seeking to gratify the desires of the flesh or chase after momentary pleasures, they have another guide. They are led by the Spirit. They seek those things that are “good” and “acceptable” in the eyes of God. Their daily prayer is, “Lord Jesus, show me what you would have me do.”
In addition, Believers are alive to the teachings of the Spirit of God who will lead you in all truth.
(To be continued)
© Copyright 2011
GJ Heitzman’s Ministry
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