Sunday April 17, 2022
Created by Reverend Dikiea Elery
Romans 6:3–11 (NIV)
3 Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.
5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with,[a] that we should no longer be slaves to sin — 7 because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.
8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.
11 In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
Today is the day we remember and celebrate Jesus’ victory over sin and the grave. Hallelujah! He got up with all power in His hands, giving us freedom! Romans 6:5–7 remind us of this freedom. It states, “For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his. For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin — because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.” Isn’t that great news? That we as children of God have the power to refuse to participate in sin. The door has been opened that allows us to step outside of our need to allow sin to be master over us!
Even though these words were simple to type, I am fully aware that this is not as simple a concept to live out. But the difficulty of the task does not make it any less necessary. As children of God, we have an obligation to honor the sacrifice of Jesus with our living because we are no longer slaves to sin. Surely that means there’s no more work to be done! Jesus did it all, right? I hate to be a party pooper but the truth is…as we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus and the freedom it represents, we are actually committing ourselves to the work of eradicating sin.
Truth is, it’s committing ourselves to the work of tearing down systems that enslave the resources and opportunities for BIPOC, economically disadvantaged and all marginalized populations. Truth is, it’s committing ourselves to breaking the shackles of racism, sexism, ageism, homophobia and everything that oppresses people as a result of who they are or what they look like. Truth is, it’s committing ourselves to the fact that we may lose some privilege that allows us to benefit off the backs of others. Because it’s not just about the getting up, it’s about the dying as well. To fully embrace the resurrection and freedom, we must die to our sinfulness and be willing to sacrifice just like Jesus did!!!
God of Surprises, thank you for bringing us through our Lenten journey and doing what we thought was impossible: bringing abundant life out of places of death. We praise you as the Risen Christ! Amen.