Romans 6:1-5, 8.
(Dead to Sin,
Alive in Christ)
1: We are identified with Christ.
Look at verses 3, 4 and 5.
"Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into
Christ have been baptized into his death.
Therefore we've been buried with him through baptism
into death, in order that as Christ was raised from the dead
through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness
of life. For if we
have become UNITED with him in the likeness of his
death, certainly we shall also be"-and the idea is-"united
with him in the likeness of his resurrection."
Verse 8, "Now if we have died with him, we believe that we shall also
live with him."
5 uses a very interesting word.
It's a gardeners term. It's
a botanical term, the term "united" in verse 5, "for we become
united with him in the likeness of his death", and certainly in the likeness
of his resurrection"-the word in Greek is a botanical term. It's a gardening term,
it's a term which the King James Version tried to translate
"planted", "planted". It's
the term for taking a branch and grafting it into a living
stalk and the two become one life. I've got a little apple tree. It's not so little anymore now, in my back yard.
And it has one root, and into that an Anna apple and
apple were grafted into it.
And they have become one tree.
I don't have two trees.
I have two kinds of fruit, but I have one tree sharing
one common root. [I
just thought of something, it struck like lightning, this
thought. The body of Christ has two major branches, one
of which has been re-grafted into it just recently. Since 325 AD, it has primarily been made up
of one kind of fruit, the Gentile Christians.
Now within the past 35 years, the Jewish branch has
been restored to the body of Christ, so "the tree" has two
distinct kinds of "fruit", Jewish and Gentile.
Let that sink in. Both kinds of this "fruit" have been spiritually,
supernaturally grafted into Christ, Messiah!] It's just so neat, so great to see how they've
grown together. And
they're getting their common nourishment and life from
that tree. Planted together. The idea is, we have been united to Christ,
we are identified with Christ. You say, 'I know that.' No, I'm afraid the problem is, we don't really know that. And this is sort of
basic to our whole stepping into Romans 6, 7 and 8. We've got to understand how identified we are
with Christ [Messiah], how fused to Christ we are, how one we are with Christ. We can't be
separated from him. He
can't be separated from us.
We have his life, we have been united, grafted into Christ, identified
with him. He says in
verse 3.in other words, 'You guys should know this, but you're
not living like you know it.'
That all of us who have been baptized
into Christ have been baptized into his death. Now he's not talking so much water baptism,
[water baptism was very important in the early first era of
the Church of God, it was the primary way they accepted Christ
into their lives and simultaneously asked for the Holy Spirit
by the laying on of hands, which always accompanied water
baptism.] he's not using baptism that way. The idea, actually the idea of baptism means
to identify with something.
It was the strongest biblical way to identify with
anything, to get immersed in it. See, the word baptidzo in Greek, the ancient
Greek word means to dip, to soak, to immerse [full immersion
underwater]. And so when John said 'OK, you people, you say
you're repentant, 'Yes we're repentant.'
John the Baptist, remember?
He says, 'Alright, this water now, this is repentance,
this is a baptidzo, a dipping, and immersion into repentance.
But if you really want to get into repentance, if you
really want to identify with repentance, step into this water
and I'll baptize you into repentance.'
Remember, it was a baptism of repentance he had.
1st Corinthians 10:2 talked about how all
the Israelites who followed Moses and identified with Moses
were baptized into Moses.
Now come on, we know they weren't dipped into Moses. [No, but they were immersed under the Red Sea
by walking between two towering walls of water as they walked
through the Red Sea, if you read a little further into 1st
Corinthians 10.] He's not using baptism that way, he's saying,
they were identified, they were one with Moses.
They were thoroughly soaked into Moses.
Moses was their leader, Moses was their guide, Moses
was their advocate before God, he was their intercessor, he
was their protector, their defender, everything was in Moses. They
got identified with him. They
were under his authority.
They were immersed in Moses in the wilderness. And so, here he uses baptism in a little different
sense, and he says "You've been immersed into Christ." In ancient times, the Greeks used the word baptism
to describe the method of dying fabric.
If you have a white cloth and wanted to die it blue,
you'd take the cloth and get a vat of blue dye, and you'd
baptize the white into the blue dye.
And what happens when you pull it out?
The white cloth comes out blue.
It went in as one thing, and out as a whole different
thing. It went in as
a white cloth and it came out with all the characteristics
of what it was baptized into.
Now just follow me, I've got a white cloth right here.
And we're going to talk about what it means to be baptized
into Christ. Now we're not talking about the water of baptism,
where we're identifying with his death, burial and resurrection,
but we're talking about a another
meaning of baptism, that when the Holy Spirit puts you into
Christ, he immersed you into Christ. In
1st Corinthians chapter 12, verse 13 it says "For
by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body"-Christ's
body-".and we're all made to drink of one Spirit" (1st
So here we are before Christ, this is the way we are.And
then the Holy Spirit immerses us into Christ [Meshiach], we're
baptized, we come into Christ.
This is another insight into what it means to be in Christ. OK? Not
just the little legal thing, like last week, the dolls, we're
in Adam and now we're in Christ.
But also when we were in Christ, we were immersed into Christ.
OK, now this white cloth has gone into the blue dye. Now because of it's identification with the
blue dye, because of its identification and its baptism into
this blue dye it's going to come out totally different then
how it went in. And here it comes out, look. It's not white anymore. It has taken on all the characteristics of what
it was baptized into. You
could say it's been baptized into the blue dye, and it identifies
with it. In fact the blue dye is in it now. It can't be separated very easily now. It has taken the characteristics of that of
which it was baptized into onto itself, into itself, into
its very fabric and nature.
Understand this, Christians, when you came into Christ
[Messiah], now you're soaked with him. We're immersed with Christ. People say 'Oh, I need more of Jesus.' What do you mean?! You've been immersed in Christ. You don't understand this yet. 'Oh, I just need more of the Lord in my life.'
What do you mean? You've been baptized into him. You've been immersed in him. What you need more of is more knowledge that
you're already in him. You
can't get any more soaked than you are soaked with Christ.
And the Scripture talks about this all through the
New Testament. Colossians 3:1-3, "If you then have died with Christ." Well, lets look at
Colossians 3. Go to
the right from Romans. Colossians
3, verses 1,2,3,4. It
says "If you've been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the
things above where Christ is, seated at the right hand of
God." We've been raised
with Christ. In other
words, the Bible says Christ is in heaven right now, and so
are you. How can that be? Because you're in him, and he's in you [also
cf. John 14, whole chapter].
I'm in heaven right now?
Yes you are! 'I don't feel like I am!' Remember what I told you about feelings at the
beginning? I don't
want to know what you feel.
OK? I don't care how you feel. I want you to hear the facts, and begin to believe
the truth, because that's going to change the way you live. [Right here I'm going to give Colossian 3:1-4, because this is so important. "Since,
then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on
things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of
God. Set your minds
on things above, not on earthly things. For you died [in baptism], and your life is
now hidden with Christ in God.
When Christ, who is your life, appears [talking of
his 2nd coming], then you also will appear with
him in glory."
Then Paul goes on to say in verse 5 what we are supposed
to do with our earthly nature, the nature of sin.
"Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature:
sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed,
which is idolatry." Cf. this to
Romans 8:13b to see how we are to do this ".but
if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body,
you will live."] Verse 2, "Then set your mind on the things above,
not on the things that are on earth, for you have died, and
your life is hidden with Christ in God."
Verse 4, read it with me, "When Christ who is our life is revealed,
then you also will be revealed with him in glory." Christ (Messiah) is our life. You see, when I became a Christian, I didn't
become a Mark Martin remake, it wasn't Mark Martin remade,
I became a whole new person.
Now that's what the Bible says.
Look at 2nd Corinthians 5, verse 17.
Have to go to the left.
2nd Corinthians 5, verse 17, "Therefore,"
he says "if any person is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old things passed away, behold new things have
come!" Now I want you
to read it with me. You
found your place, now read it with me.
"Therefore, if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature,
the old things passed away, behold new things have come!"
Now I don't believe most of us believe that.
And it's because we don't feel it.
You know what I wish? I have this really weird wish. But I wish that when people raised their hand
and accept Christ, that immediately they'd drop dead. Just follow me for a minute. [laughter] That they would drop dead. Boom! I
mean, really die. And
be dead at least three days.
No longer than three days.
You'd begin to decompose a little.
Please, decompose just a little.
We'd have hearses, last week 10 people saved,
we'd have ten hearses out there. The mortuary would love us! But three days later they'd come to life.
Now they really died [in this weird wish of Pastor
Martin's]. Their relatives,
you know, went out to collect the life insurance. [laughter] Cancelled Social Security cards, drivers license
ripped up. And now
they've got to have a new ID, because they've died.
They really died. And
they've been brought back to life.
But they're a different person than they were.
They died. They're
buried. Three days later they rose again. They need a new ID. I wish that happened. Because then maybe Christians would believe
that it has happened to them.
Because the Bible says when Christ died, you died.
When he was buried, you were buried.
When he rose again, you rose from the dead. And now you're a new creature, you're not the
same person you were B.C. as you are After Christ, that you
have a new ID now. God's
even got a new name for you.
I really think another great idea would be that when
someone accepts Christ, they'd change their name, to show
they're a new person. Some
of you would love to get out of those funny names you have,
funny last name or something you know.
Well, you could go to whatever, Martin, that's a good
name. [laughter] In Africa,
someone told me last service that when people convert to Christ
in Africa, they always change their first name, and they get
a Christian name. So
there's a lot of John's and Mary's and Peter's, Mark's.
But I wish, see, if you would
experience that death, if we would just feel a little 'Oh,
oh, I'm going! Gone!' -And then come
back to life, then people would-"Oh, I have no trouble believing
I'm in Christ, I'm a new creation, I died in Christ, and I
rose again." But because it doesn't happen in the physical
realm, and it just happens in the invisible spiritual realms,
some of you aren't believing it! And
because you're not believing it,
you're not living it, and you're not acting it!
Christ is our life, "I am crucified with Christ" Paul
says. "And the life I live, and it's no longer I who
live, but Christ lives in me, and the life I now live, I live
by the faith of the Son of God"-Galatians 2:20.
I've died, but it's Christ
living in me, Christ in me is the hope of glory.
We have a new life in Christ (Messiah).
Romans 6, verse 4, let's go back and look at it.
Romans 6, verse 4, "Therefore, having been buried with
him through baptism into death in order that as Christ was
raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we
too might walk in newness of life."
We have a new life.
'I don't feel like I have a new life.'
I didn't ask you what you felt!
I'm asking you to believe a [spiritual] fact.
You are a new
creation. The NIV says,
"We too may live a new life."
Philips translation says, "We have
been raised from the dead by the splendid revelation of the
Father's power, so that we might rise to a life on a new plane
altogether." Oh God, help us to revolutionize our thinking.
If this truth gets a grip on you, it will dramatically
change your life. I
mean, come on now, I'm going to step on toes. But it's got to be said. Because it's so wrong! I'm so concerned about people, they go to support
groups, and they're always well meaning support groups, supposedly
they're biblically based support groups, but they stand up,
and month after month they say "I'm an alcoholic, I'm a food-aholic,
I'm a sex-aholic, I'm a pot-aholic, I'm a whatever-aholic,
like I'm a choc-aholic and always will be, and I am powerless
over this thing." I
am sorry, I know they pretend to be biblical, but they never read Romans 6. Because,
Roman 6, I don't have time to get into the rest of Romans
6, but it says, #1, you aren't powerless.
Romans 8 says you are powerful
in Christ, you've got the power of a new life in you.
Romans 6 says the principle
of sin that operated in you is inoperative now. You don't have to sin anymore. That's what Romans 6 says. Now that's not me blabbing, that's
the Word of God. But
week after week, they keep [saying] "I am this, I am an alcoholic,
and I will never change."
Apart from Christ you never will, but if any man be
in Christ, it doesn't say 'he is still an alcoholic', 'he
is still a sex-aholic, he is still a food-aholic'-what does
it say?-"he is a"-come on-"new creation.
The old things have passed away, and the old things
have become new." Now that's the Bible. But you know, because experience doesn't say
that, because somebody goes back and keeps drinking, we develop
a little plan that says 'Well, you always are, and you always
shall be, and you're never going to get power over this thing.'
Look, don't bow to people's experience.
Lift people up to the truth of God's Word and it will
transform them. When
you begin to see the truth, that Christ is living in you,
that when you accept Christ, the nature of God is in you.
You're not a God, and your not going to become a God, but God indwells you. Right? The Spirit of God, Jesus Christ himself is in
you, so much so that in 1st Corinthians 6 Paul
says "now the reason you shouldn't go to harlots, and you
shouldn't sleep around, is not because you're going to go
to hell if you do, but because if you sleep with someone else,
you're making Christ sleep with someone else." What? Yeah,
Paul says you are so identified with Christ, you are so fused
together with Christ, that if you sleep around, you're making
him participate in that. And
that is sickening. That's unbelievable, unthinkable. When you do drugs, you're making Christ do drugs.
And we're going to see in the next week to come that
we don't have to do any of those things. When you accepted Christ the power of sin was
broken. 'I don't feel
like it was.' I'm not asking you what you feel. I'm telling you the facts. And there are reasons why you don't feel it.
Part of it is you don't really understand the power
of the Living Christ is in you. As I look out, I see Christ is in you, the hope
of glory. Christ is
in me. I'm not a Christ, this isn't new-age hocus pocus.
But this is spiritual reality.
He is in us. Amen? And
we are new creatures, we do have
a new life. It's not
the same old life with just a little salvation sprinkled on
top like cheese on top of a pizza. No, not at all. We are new.
We're in Christ. Illustrated,
the life of Christ and what it can do,
is illustrated beautifully, and I know I'm overtime, but that's
OK-I want us to run to Numbers chapter 17.
Give me five minutes.
chapter 17 was about who was going to be the priest, who's
going to be the high priest.
The people were fighting so much that finally the Lord
told Moses, he said 'Moses, I want you to get each of the
leaders of those 12 tribes, and I want you to bring them here
before you.' They came
and stood before him. He
said, 'Now take their walking sticks, take their staffs, have
them etch their names into them, write their names onto them,
scratch their names into their walking staffs, and I want
you to lay their staffs before me, before the Testimony in
the Tent of Meeting, and lay them there overnight, and I'll
show you who will be the priest.
I'll settle this once and for all.'
Those 12 staves represented 12 men.
It's interesting that those staves had been cut off
from life. They were a dead thing. This was an old, was an old camping staff that
we used this summer. (Oh,
almost tipped over my dye, I almost dyed.)
This one is about as dead, I mean, this is dry, it's
not green, there's no green in it.
I mean, I could let this sit in water from now until
the Lord returns and it would never sprout or do anything.
It's dead, dead, dead. Right? It's even had it's
end burned with marsh-mellows on it or something, you know. And they took a dead thing like this, cut off
from life, and set it before the Lord.
And they waited until the next morning, and they went
in. The Lord had just said 'I'll show you in the
morning who is to lead my people.'
And they didn't know how God would show it, but God
was going to show it by letting his life flow into one of
those staves. And the
most incredible thing happened, you'll
read about it here in verse 7.
"So Moses deposited the staves before the Lord in the
Tent of Testimony", verse 8, "Now it came about on the next
day, that Moses went into the Tent of Testimony, and behold
the staff of Aaron for the House of Levi had sprouted, and
put forth buds, and produced blossoms and it bore ripe almonds." I mean, wow!
I mean, are you going to debate this one? What was the deciding factor? What was the proof? It was the new life! It was the life of Christ that had flowed into
that staff. And that
staff didn't just turn green.
And maybe they had peeled their staffs too, you know.
Maybe there wasn't any bark.
But there was bark on it now, it was living, it was
supple, it was soft, there were little buds, there were leaves
sprouting all over the thing, and off some of the leaves there
were pretty almond blossoms, and then off of some of them,
the blossoms had already turned into ripe almonds!
Taste one, try it.
The miracle of life. And
you see, we are like those dead sticks,
cut off from the life, lost in Adam.
But we come before the Lord and he comes and he puts
his life in us, and we begin to come alive in Christ.
'No, I'm not an alcoholic anymore!
I died to that in Christ.
I'm a new man, I'm a new woman
in Christ. I'm a new
creation. I'm not a
dead stick anymore. I'm
alive in Christ! See the fruits. See the blossoms. See the green there to prove it.' Don't let people lie to you, don't let people
tell you untruths anymore.
We've been believing and living a lot of lies. And as we go through Romans 6, 7 and 8, we're
going to expose those lies.
I know we're going to step on toes, and I hate doing
that. But look, I had
to walk away from a lot of stuff,
I had to re-arrange all my beliefs when I came to Christ. So what? That's the price you might have to pay, you give
up some loved thought to make your life square with the Scripture. The first step to freedom over the power of
sin is understanding that you're
a new creature in Christ, and you do have the life of Christ,
you're not a dead stick anymore, that just needs to be painted
and reformed. You're
a whole new creation. You've
budded, you've sprouted, there's ripe fruit, you're
alive in Christ. And
you've got to believe it.
Believing this now will be you're putting your faith
in action and you're believing it.
I want you to go back over the Scriptures the next
couple of weeks that we've studied, and you make them your
own. Let's pray. "Father in heaven we thank you for the truth
of your Word. Lord
I thank you that I'm not just refurbished, I'm a new creation.
And Lord, I know I'm living so much of my life thinking
I'm just the same old person with a little bit of Christ's
help. But that's not the picture you paint. You say, 'No Mark, you're a brand new person
that doesn't really realize who he is yet.
You're a brand new person that doesn't have to do the
things that you're doing anymore.
You're a brand new person with me living in you.'
Oh Lord, I thank you I don't have to pray for more
of you, I have to pray I give more of me to you.
Thank you Lord that you indwell us, that we have been
baptized, identified, saturated with you. And now Lord we pray that our feelings would
be disciplined. That
just because we're not experiencing the fact, we would still
believe it until it does indeed become part of our experience,
we pray, in the name of Jesus (Yeshua), Amen." "
[This is a transcript of Romans 6:1-5,8, "UNITED TO
CHRIST", a sermon given by Pastor J. Mark Martin of Calvary
Community Church, P.O. Box 39607, Phoenix, Arizona 85069]