Ask God to orient or reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.
“9 You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ. 10 But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness. 11 And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit, who lives in you.”
Paul made it clear: Our only hope is being united with Christ! Because we are in Christ and have received His Spirit, we’re now able to live by the law of the Spirit. We’re in a new realm! This change in dominion occurred for those who were united with Christ. So think about this: as a believer—one who is united with Christ—you have tasted the fruit of the Spirit and entered the dawning of a new era. We are now living in the era where the believer now has the Spirit—in fact, that Spirit now lives in you. This is how believers know they belong to Christ. Though your body is dead because of sin, your spirit is alive because of righteousness.
But what does this mean? It is kind of confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. More than likely it references the physical death all believers will one day face and yet despite this truth, we still have hope. Why? Because even though we live in fleshly bodies that are marred by sin and our bodies are subject to death, we’re not left without hope because at the same time, the Spirit dwells within us. We have been made alive through Jesus Christ, His death and resurrection—His righteousness has been credited to our account.
The truth is: sin no longer has mastery over us as believers, but it doesn’t mean that sin is nonexistent. There is an eschatological tension here—a tension between the already and not yet. I think Paul is aware of the tension between the already and not yet as He reminds believers—you and I—that the resurrection of the body is still future.
This doesn’t need to cause us any alarm or despair. Why? Because the Holy Spirit dwells in us and guarantees that just as Christ was raised from the dead, so He will also give life to our mortal bodies. With the coming of Christ, we’ve seen the inauguration of His reign. With His returning, we will see the consummation—the final act of our redemption when our bodies are glorified like the Savior’s.
Think about what it means to have the Spirit living in you, working in you, empowering you to serve God and do His will. Because of the Spirit, you can stand firm in Christ. Think about the assurance you have because of this reality.
Now think about this: He [God] makes us stand firm because we belong to Christ. He anointed us. He put His Spirit in our hearts and marked us as His own. We can now be sure that He will give us everything He promised us (2 Cor. 1:21-22).
*From what you have just read and considered, what is a personal implication/application for your life today?
(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)
Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the Gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live out this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the Good News today. KEEP PRAYING THROUGHOUT YOUR DAY.
Inspiration and insight for the devotionals came from the following books: Reading Romans with John Stott; The Message of Romans: God’s Good News for the World (The Bible Speaks Today Series), Stott, John; Romans (The NIV Application Commentary Book 6) Moo, Douglas J.; Encountering the Book of Romans: A Theological Survey (Encountering Biblical Studies) Moo, Douglas J.; Believers Bible Commentary; The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, with the New International Version, Romans through Galatians; NIV Application Study Bible. The Cambridge Bible Commentary, Romans, Best, Ernest.