"But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness. " Rom. 6:17-18
In this life there are many inescapable concepts. An inescapable concept is something which will always exist. It is never a question of if we have it or if we don't have it. The question is always what kind will we have. Slavery is an inescapable concept.
To begin with we are all born slaves of sin. That is our "default" setting. We have no choice. We sin because we are sinners by nature. We may choose the style of sinning from self-righteous church-goer to mass murderer, but we are slaves to sin nevertheless. It is slavery. A drug addict may be doing what they want when they get "high," but they are not free. Although people may, sometimes with great effort, change the style of sinning they can never escape the slavery of sin outside of Jesus Christ.
Now, as most of my readers are Christians, I know what you are going to say. We are free in Christ. We are no more slaves to sin. Slavery is no more an issue. Right and wrong.
Yes, we have been set free from sin. We are in the process of learning to walk in that freedom. A Christian never has to sin. When we do sin it is a choice because we are in an area of deception. In that specific area[s] we believe more in the power of sin than in the power of God. We are all in the process of dropping the shackles of sin.
However, that does not mean we are independent and are suddenly "free" to do whatever we want. That is the illusion of the slavery of sin! Instead, we have traded Masters...or to be more accurate, one Master has bought us from another master. We had no choice in the transaction. We were slaves to sin, now we are slaves to God.
This idea, although common in history, is abhorrent to modern man who worships independence. He wants to believe that he is in control. He wants to be the captain of his own ship. Unfortunately, this thinking has infiltrated the church. Christians think they are free to choose for themselves how they will live and act just because their new Master doesn't immediately judge or override their decisions. In many cases, there is no substantial difference between the lives of Christians and non-Christians.
Christians today need to come to the realization that although they are not the slaves of sin or of man [including the State!], they are the slaves of God. They do not have a choice about their lifestyle, about their language [i.e. profanity and "bathroom" words], their tithes, their attitudes [i.e. to forgive or not to forgive], sexual lives/fantasies, etc. God is a total God. There is NO area of independence from Him, no area which God does not have the right to govern.
Adam's sin was that he sought an area of independence from God. He wanted to prove his independence. The only way to do that was to choose the route of disobedience, in doing so he did not find independence but a new master - a harsh master instead of a loving Master.
One of the primary reasons for studying the Word of God is to discover what our new Master - whom we love and who loves us - requires of us and then choose the path of obedience. This is one of the reasons why I have a page on Christian Social Theory where we can explore God's requirements on a national level. But we should never forget that God's ownership is total and there is no area of independence from God. Properly understood, this is not a negative thing, but a joyous release to be who God created us to be.
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