Text: Romans 6:1-10
Consider yourself a slave. It doesn’t matter if you were a slave 2000 years ago or in the 21st century. You are still a captive to someone else; their whims and ideals.
You labor night and day. You work hard and long. There is no appreciation, no gratification, no remuneration and no recognition. Its stifling! The oppression is like a vacuum cleaner dust bag that is never emptied.
There is little hope of change. Nothing to clutch for support. Your life is a labor of drudgery and gloom.
Chains are around your feet at night. A lash stings your back by day. No one comes to say you did well or the sweet sigh of “I love you”.
As you consider your peril as a slave you find a spark of hope, an encouragement for your condition. What you are thinking is not a plan for joy but a way out. To you it is the sweet opportunity for freedom. You must die to be free. There no one can hurt you, beat you, chain your feet or lash your back. No one can scream insults or taunt your every waking moment. No one can criticize, ostracize, or demoralize you ever again. In death you would be free and no longer a slave.
In William Craft’s book Running a Thousand Miles for Freedom he writes of his experience as a runaway slave heading North for his freedom. He wrote that though he and his fellow slaves knew that officers had the power to throw them into prison and that if their escape was detected they would have been driven like the ‘vilest of felons’ back to slavery. And that the prospect of returning to slavery was more dreaded than death.
Think of our former lives of sin and enslavement to Satan. We had no choice but to sin. We had no hope of joy and freedom of life. It comes to mind that we must also die to be free from Satan’s mastery, control and destiny for our lives.
Scripture reminds us “Anyone who has died has been freed from sin” (Romans 6:7) Free from the power of sin, the presence of sin and the punishment for sin. Satan can not touch our eternal spirits and he has no power over us. As a Christian we are truly free. Our spiritual anchor is imbedded in Glory right now. A connecting golden cable spans time and space and lodges in our spirit here on earth, so secure that nothing can cut the cable or dislodge the anchor.
In our rest and fellowship with Him we get a better glimpse of eternity. Our spirit is quickened and nourished and we feel we have actually visited that place of perfect joy. We have actually spent quality time in Glory. This is as it should be because part of us is already in heaven. We can experience that joy and fulfillment because we have died with Christ and are risen with Him to everlasting life.
This poem was written to complement the above text.
Dying and death it will be our portion
We must enter this place with utmost caution
For some dying is to be free from a taskmaster’s whip
But to die without Christ is a sinking ship
When we die with Christ we are safe and secure
Our life with Him in Glory forever more
If we die with Christ we will live with Him
If we die with Christ no judgment for sin
The punishment and pain all left far behind
The chains of slavery can never ever bind
Freedom in Christ we can enjoy today
All He wants is for us to trust and obey
Our joy is anchored in heaven and cabled to earth
It’s all an integral part of our new birth.