Believers Are Dead to Sin, Alive to God
1What shall we say [to all this]? Should we continue in sin and practice sin as a habit so that [God’s gift of] grace may increase and overflow? 2Certainly not! How can we, the very ones who died to sin, continue to live in it any longer? 3Or are you ignorant of the fact that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? 4We have therefore been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory and power of the Father, we too might walk habitually in newness of life [abandoning our old ways]. 5For if we have become one with Him [permanently united] in the likeness of His death, we will also certainly be [one with Him and share fully] in the likeness of His resurrection. 6We know that our old self [our human nature without the Holy Spirit] was nailed to the cross with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin. 7For the person who has died [with Christ] has been freed from [the power of] sin.
8Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live [together] with Him, 9because we know [the self-evident truth] that Christ, having been raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has power over Him. 10For the death that He died, He died to sin [ending its power and paying the sinner’s debt] once and for all; and the life that He lives, He lives to [glorify] God [in unbroken fellowship with Him]. 11Even so, consider yourselves to be dead to sin [and your relationship to it broken], but alive to God [in unbroken fellowship with Him] in Christ Jesus.
12Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts and passions. 13Do not go on offering members of your body to sin as instruments of wickedness. But offer yourselves to God [in a decisive act] as those alive [raised] from the dead [to a new life], and your members [all of your abilities—sanctified, set apart] as instruments of righteousness [yielded] to God. 14For sin will no longer be a master over you, since you are not under Law [as slaves], but under [unmerited] grace [as recipients of God’s favor and mercy].
15What then [are we to conclude]? Shall we sin because we are not under Law, but under [God’s] grace? Certainly not! 16Do you not know that when you continually offer yourselves to someone to do his will, you are the slaves of the one whom you obey, either [slaves] of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness (right standing with God)? 17But thank God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient with all your heart to the standard of teaching in which you were instructed and to which you were committed. 18And having been set free from sin, you have become the slaves of righteousness [of conformity to God’s will and purpose]. 19I am speaking in [familiar] human terms because of your natural limitations [your spiritual immaturity]. For just as you presented your bodily members as slaves to impurity and to [moral] lawlessness, leading to further lawlessness, so now offer your members [your abilities, your talents] as slaves to righteousness, leading to sanctification [that is, being set apart for God’s purpose].
20When you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness [you had no desire to conform to God’s will]. 21So what benefit did you get at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? [None!] For the outcome of those things is death! 22But now since you have been set free from sin and have become [willing] slaves to God, you have your benefit, resulting in sanctification [being made holy and set apart for God’s purpose], and the outcome [of this] is eternal life. 23For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God [that is, His remarkable, overwhelming gift of grace to believers] is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.