I have wrongfully heard all my life that Christians and their leaders justify their sinning by saying “so long as we Christians live in our sinful body in our sinful world, we are going to sin.” Romans 7: 5-24 teaches that our pre-salvation, sinful body was the main reason we couldn’t obey God’s moral commandments before Christ came to this Earth with his salvation.
Romans 6: 1-13 reveals that the very moment an unsaved sinner obeys all of Christ’s salvation instructions, Christ miraculously changes our physical body from being a sinful “military weapon” against righteousness into a “righteous military weapon” to overcome every unrighteous temptation — a miraculous feat no humanistic, devilish, worldly religion will ever be able to accomplish! “Military weapon” in this paragraph is the Greek definition of “instrument” in Romans 6: 13. Any person adding, removing or rearranging even one word in scriptures renders their sin body totally unchanged (Matthew 5:18; Revelations 22: 18-19).
Romans 6:6 reveals that Christ’s salvation actually “destroyed” our body from being a “sin” body. Romans 12:1 teaches that our saved body is now “holy.” Our “sinless, “righteous,” “holy” body has us now empowered to live and minister holy and righteously in the midst of our unholy, unrighteous, sinful world.
1 Thessalonians 4:4 mirrors that our saved body in our sinful world is now so “honorable” and “sanctified” that God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit have chosen to live inside as their “Holy Temple” (1 Corinthians 6:19).
Many times God doesn’t view us Christians as individuals. At other times he views us collectively as only one body which he calls all of us together “The Body of Christ” (1 Corinthians 12:27), and Jesus as our “head” (Ephesians 1:21). Our righteous, holy, sanctified body now no longer belongs to us, but rather only to God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19) for them to use for their purpose and glory.
In the eyes of God, when a Christian sins, such person has stolen from God that which no longer belongs to us (our body). Because all Christians are now “The Body of Christ” and Jesus is our “head,” God now views our sinning as the “Body of Christ” sinning inside “God’s Holy Temple” (our body).
When the author and interpreter of these scriptures (the apostle Paul) saw such a seemingly blasphemous image of his sins as a Christian and minister he didn’t become offended at his biblical teacher (the Holy Spirit). He instead became so offended at himself for sinning that he used some kind of strict self-discipline he called “chastise my body” (“Young’s Literal Translation”) to keep himself from sinning (1 Corinthians 9:27).
Until the first Saturday of next month, “the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all (2 Corinthians 13:14).
The Rev. G. David Henderson is the pastor of Temple of the Lord at 611 S. Green St. in Dalton. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org. His column appears on the first Saturday of the month.