“You will no longer be a slave when your master finds you dead.”  I was part of the conference audience that heard this startling statement from Pastor John Elmore in February.  What did he mean?

Although I say that I’ve been set free from sin, I often live as if it still has some authority over me.  As if fear, worry, and pride are my permanent handicap in life. Have I really understood the way in which I’ve been set free?  “Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life,” (2 Corinthians 5:14b, NLT). “For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives,” (Romans 6:4, NLT).

In Christ I haven’t just taken a few steps away from my old ways – I have died to them.  That is the measure of finality with which He has set me free from Satan, the cruelest of all slave masters.  When Satan returns to prod me into service again, he should find only a corpse. So why do I still struggle? One who has lived her whole life as a slave and is suddenly freed, still carries all the habits of a slave.  All my former attempts to resist my master ended in bitter defeat, and it will take a rewiring of my mind to believe that my resistance is now backed by the limitless power of Christ. It will take a series of daily decisions to leave the old me in her grave and walk on with Jesus, the most gracious and loving of all Lords.

Sometimes, when a sin lies close to my heart, that decision will feel like dying again.  But in that choice to crucify my fleshly desires and walk with the Spirit (Galatians 5:24, 25), I will find a greater life.  In the words of Jesus, “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life,” (John 6:63, ESV).  That phrase “gives life” means “to make alive that which was dead,” or “to infuse with divine, eternal life.” Are you willing to die today, so that you can be made truly alive?

John Elmore’s message on daily choosing to walk by the Spirit in freedom