COUNT YOURSELVES… Read Romans 6:11-14

Paul says in Romans 6 that we believers are to ‘count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus’.  Another translation for the word ‘count’ would be ‘consider’.  Now, we know that it is God through Jesus Christ that saves us, forgives us and gives us new life.  Not anything we can achieve on our own.  This aspect of salvation is truly a one-way street–from God who chooses us.  As the apostle says in Ephesians 2:9–‘not by works, so that no one can boast’.  Clear?  Of course it is.  But here in Romans 6 is something we can and must do if our Christian life is to have any joy in it at all.  As the hymn says, ‘Victory in Jesus’. Isn’t that what we all want to experience on a daily basis.  Paul says to ‘count yourselves…’, to consider, to contemplate what we know when we face the fears of the unknown in our lives.  I was thinking of my father, gone many years ago now.  He was a real good guy.  People liked my Dad.  I rarely ever heard him bad-mouth anyone.  He was a hard-working house painter who carried ladders around on his own well into his late 60’s, fell off roofs  into bushes breaking a leg or two, daily smoked a couple packs of Chesterfields at a time the doctors thought cigarette smoking  would help his asthma, and lived with lots and lots of fears mixed with unfulfilled dreams.  I heard about lots of his dreams when I was growing up,  but rarely saw any fulfilled.  He was just too afraid.  Change came with just too much difficulty, emotionally.  He liked his routines in spite of all the talk.  Maybe the dreams were just enough for him.  Maybe. I don’t know. But what about me?  And you?    What do we do with our fears?  When God puts joy and hope and dreams in our hearts,  often Satan, using our insecurities, just chokes out all those godly  blessings  in a spasm of fear and doubt.  We face uncertainties every day, the unknown. But when I read this verse about ‘counting ourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus’…I hear the Lord telling me (and us) to count on what we know to counter what we don’t know.  We’re alive to God because of all that Jesus did for us.  Alive!  Not dead!  Count and consider this. Meditate on that.  You and I must focus on what we know from the Bible to counter all those  fears  and we don’t know.  Zero in on our security in Christ and not on the insecurities of life.  That takes a conscious decision.  That’s what we can do.  Paul says we can do it, otherwise he wouldn’t have said it. When the fears inevitably hit you today, consider what you know about the Lord.  As the old hymn says ‘count your many blessings, name them one by one…and it will surprise you what the Lord has done.’  The more we count them, the more it won’t surprise us at all what the Lord wants to do for us today and in the future! Count yourselves…just do it!

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