"Good content" Sermon / Romans 6:1-11 / Pr. Lucas Albrecht / January 13th 2019: Season Of Epiphany / Mount Olive Lutheran Church
Text: Romans 6:1-11
Theme: Good Content
Intr – Which of these do you consider yourself capable of carrying?
_a 120lb flour bag;
_a bag of potatoes with that same weight;
_a 100lb plastic garbage bag.
I don’t know what your answer is, but I know I won’t be wrong if I said that you are able of lifting all three. Not just separately but even together at the same time. How could that be? Well, they would only need to be…empty.
Applications for this illustration in the Light of Romans 6:
1 - Dead to sin
The first – we walk heavy laden along our road, with problems sometimes as big as a garbage bag. They look to be too difficult to carry or at least to be pulled aside. This happens when we want to deal only with our own ability, rather than remembering that God is the One who can empty them, reduce their weight, and make them less threatening and easier to carry.
And one of our biggest enemies, the one who needs to ba daily emptied, who is it?Paul speaks of 'killing the old man.
_ I can _ I want _ I will.
This is a danger for sure. But it becomes smaller when we transpose to the spiritual area, especially when it comes to salvation.
We need to be emptied of our arrogance and pride, in order to be filled by God’s love in Christ.
2 - Living for God
The other application - the importance of content. Now on a different perspective
The more emptied we are intellectually and spiritually, the more easily we will be carried anywhere even by the weaker idea, the simpler suggestion or the guiding hand.
But when we are filled by what God offers- content, substance, strength - it will not easy for every wind of doctrine and false ideas to whirl us around.
Here we can broach as well resisting to sin. As Paul teaches us:” hat shall we say then? mAre we to continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 By no means! How can nwe who died to sin still live in it? 3 Do you not know that all of us owho have been baptized pinto Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were qburied therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as rChrist was raised from the dead by sthe glory of the Father, we too might walk in tnewness of life.”
That includes going against the flow in many ways in our world. Like for, example, a text I read online the other day about self control. The title of the article is “The myth of self-control”. Listen to its lead: “As the Bible tells it, the first crime committed was a lapse of self-control. Eve was forbidden from tasting the fruit on the tree of knowledge. But the temptation was too much. The fruit was just so “pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom,” Genesis reads. The takeaway from this story was clear: when temptation overcomes willpower, it’s a moral failing, worthy of punishment.Modern-day psychologists might not blame Eve for her errant ways at all. Because what’s true today was also true at the beginning of time (regardless of what story you believe in): Human beings are horrible at resisting temptation. (...) Several researchers I spoke to are making a strong case that we shouldn’t feel so bad when we fall for temptations.” And on it goes.
When it comes to sciences that study mind and behaviour, we are happy for many advancements in that area. But also very careful about what we read and follow, as becomes clear from this report. Or as we hear this week that the American Psychiatry association has declared the “traditional masculinity” as a problem. This could be one of the winds of false doctrine truing to blow content inside our hearts. And if we leave room for it, there is no doubt it will be scooped up inside and finds its way to remain there.
We need Christ to change the person and the conjugation
You can - through me
- You give me - so I can use
_You strengthen me, so that I can continue
-Baptism - God fills us with grace.
What is the difficulty you need to carry at this time? What is the burden that weighs? Do not waste yourself away trying carrying the wrong content around. Deplete, drain out, clear it totally in the arms of the Father. You will go back to life with a heart filled with the good things he gives us, all the time.
Cc - Depleted of the content that does not help - that is, dead to sin - and with the right content, - that is alive for Christ, full of his grace and love, our mind, our arms can always continue to fight, because the heart would be filled up with His love.