Crosses             LBG                  HateLove

Devotional - week of July 18, 2004


SPIRITUAL INCREMENTALISM 

just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.  Romans 6:19

 

Romans 6:19 is a statement about “spiritual changes by increments.” Physically, this is like a person regaining his strength after a lengthy illness in which his muscle tone is lost. He gains a little strength every day.

 

Spiritually, the unbeliever gradually becomes the slave to sin. He goes from “uncleanness” to “lawlessness” and then to “more lawlessness.”

 

This passage also speaks of incremental Christian growth. Paul writes:

 

… so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.  Romans 6:19

 

In Romans 6:16 Paul said:

 

Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?

 

According to verse 16 we can become slaves of righteousness by continuing to obey obedience. This strange statement “obeying obedience” is a reference to our obeying the five commands found in Romans 6:11-13.

 

In Romans 6:19 Paul introduces a new thought to the message of Christian growth. “Holiness” is the result of our presenting ourselves to God as instruments of righteousness.

 

Each time we present ourselves to God as instruments of righteousness, we make ourselves available to God. At that time we are “holy.” That is, we are separated to God.

 

When over a period of years we are increasingly available to God, we arrive at a spiritual state the Scriptures call “holiness.” This state of “holiness” is also referred to as “sanctification.” And we arrive there one step at a time.