Pastor James J. Barker



1.     Two of the great doctrines taught in Paul’s epistle to the Romans are justification and sanctification.  Romans 5 expounds the doctrine of justification; and Romans 6 expounds the doctrine of sanctification.

2.     One preacher put it this way: In chapter 5 we have freedom from sin penally – we have been declared righteous; in chapter 6 we have freedom from sin practically – we are being made righteous.

3.     W.H. Griffith Thomas said, “From Romans 3:21 to Romans 5:21 the theme has been Justification by Faith in the Crucified Saviour; now, from Romans 6—8, it is Sanctification by Faith in the Risen Lord.”

4.     In other words, chapters 3-5 teach us salvation from the penalty of sin; and chapters 6-8 teach us salvation from the power of sin.

5.     Most Christians understand salvation from the penalty of sin (John 3:16), but many Christians struggle with sin because they do not understand what it means to be saved from the power of sin.

6.     In the early chapters of the book of Romans, the contrast is between judgment and justification; now it is between sin and holiness (cf. 6:19, 22).

7.     Sanctification is the logical outcome of our justification. Justification is not only necessary for sanctification (holiness); justification secures it.



1.     Romans 6 begins with the question, “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?”  The answer of course is, “God forbid” (6:2; cf. 5:20, 21).

2.     You may have wondered why the apostle Paul even asks this question.  But there have always been people who have misunderstood the doctrine of grace, and some have even perverted the doctrine of grace (cf. Jude 4).

3.     I was driving in my van the other day and was scanning my radio dial, trying to find something interesting to listen to.  I found a so-called Christian radio station and there was a man preaching the doctrines of “regeneration” and “grace.” 

4.     Immediately I was suspicious because his message was very works-orientated, and the new birth has nothing to do with works (John 1:12, 13).

5.     Romans 11:6 says, “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work” (cf. 3:24-27; 6:23).

6.     But this radio preacher was mixing in works, and I could tell he was not preaching right.  Then he went on to say, “Find a place to worship this weekend, and you should attend every weekend.”   (What about the Lord’s Day?)

7.     By this time I recognized the problem!  This preacher was a Seventh-Day Adventist.  All cults and false religions teach salvation through good works.

8.     Beloved we must know what the Bible teaches regarding grace.  When a man receives Christ he has been delivered from the penalty of sin (hell), and he has been delivered from the power of sin.  This is all according to God’s grace (Eph. 2:8-13).

9.     So Paul says in Romans 6:2, “God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?”

10. I have met people that have said, “Since we are saved by grace anyway, it does not matter how we live.”  Or, “We are not under the law, but under grace.”  This is a misunderstanding of Romans 6:14).  (It is interesting how they always leave off the first half of Romans 6:14.)   Cf. Titus 2:11-13.



1.     We see three dreadful words in Romans 6:1 – “continue in sin.”  No wonder the apostle Paul says, “God forbid” (6:2).

2.     Continuance in sin is impossible for the man that is dead to sin (6:2).  We are not to “live any longer therein” (6:2).

3.     Our sanctification rests upon the same foundation as our justification – i.e., our union with Christ.  Continuance in sin is impossible because of our union with Christ.

4.     Can a dead man sin?  Of course not.   When Christ died, we that believe in Him died with Him (6:6-8).

5.     This is what Paul means when he says in Galatians 2:20, “I (old man) am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I (new man) live…”

6.     “Knowing this, that our old man (old unregenerate man) is crucified with Him…” (Rom. 6:6). 

7.     Before we were saved our body was a “body of sin” (6:6).  It was an instrument of unrighteousness unto sin (6:13) and a servant of sin (6:17).  But it was crucified and thereby rendered powerless – “that the body of sin might be destroyed (“done away” – Scofield margin)” (6:6). 

8.     Our union with Christ in His death and resurrection means absolute severance from sin.  Continuance in sin is impossible because of our union with Christ.  “Christ liveth in me” (Gal. 2:20) and Christ cannot sin.

9.     So why do Christians sin?  Oftentimes it is through ignorance.  Notice how often Paul says, “Know” (6:3, 6, 9, 16; 7:1).

10. How do we know that we have been saved from the penalty of sin?  Faith.  We believe the Bible (cf. Rom. 10:9).

11. And how do we know that we are being saved from the power of sin?  Faith.  We believe the Bible (Rom. 6:8).

12. When Christians yield to sin, it is because they lack faith.  The Bible says they are “free from sin” (6:22), but they do not believe it.

13. When the Gospel is preached there is an emphasis on Christ’s death for us (and there should be – Rom. 5:6-8).

14. There is a death for sin (atonement); and there is a death to sin (victory), which means that sin ceases to have a place in the life of a Christian.

15. I heard a preacher say something once that really gripped my soul.  He said he was preaching in a church and at the invitation time he heard a personal worker tell a man at the platform, “Now that you have accepted Christ, do not think that you will stop sinning.”

16. The preacher said he was shocked because this was not good counsel for a new convert (cf. John 5:14; 8:11; I John 2:1a).

17. Rather than telling a new convert that sin is inevitable, we should be teaching him that if he has trusted Christ as his Saviour, he has victory over sin (Rom. 6:14a). 

18. Many people have this notion that Christianity is just like any other religion – you believe a few doctrines; you follow certain rules or rituals; you observe a few holy days – and then you live just like every other sinner!

19. But that is not Biblical Christianity!  That may be dead liberal Protestantism, and that may be Roman Catholicism, and unfortunately that may be true of worldly, wishy-washy modern-day evangelicalism – but it is not what the Bible teaches.

20. When Christ died on the cross for our sins, He died as an atonement for sin; He died to destroy sin; and He died to rob sin of its power (for the believer).

21. Before I move on, let me say a few words about baptism (Rom. 6:3-5).  Baptism by immersion is a picture of our union with Christ.  In baptism we identify with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection.

22. Baptism is an outward visible sign of an inward spiritual work.

23. The Bible teaches that believers are to be baptized after they get saved (cf. Acts 8:36-38; 9:17, 18).

24. But first there must be that inward spiritual work.  Have you experienced that?



1.     Here is where many believers get confused.  “Dead to sin” does not mean the death of sin as a power in the heart.  The great preacher, H.A. Ironside, was taught that as a young preacher and it nearly drove him insane.  He was taught that a Christian could reach a state of “sinless perfection” and that sin would be “eradicated” from his life.

2.     Ironside struggled with this for quite some time and wound up in a mental hospital (with many others who believed the sinless perfection doctrine).

3.     The Bible does not teach that sin is dead to us.  What it teaches is that those of us who are in Christ are dead to sin (6:11).

4.     But we must continually reckon ourselves to be dead to sin.  W.H. Griffith Thomas wrote, “When sin makes its appeal we must refuse to recognize it by reckoning that we died to it in Christ, and at once it will go, its power broken” (St. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans, p. 172).

5.     This is a matter of faith, not feelings.  You may not “feel” dead to sin.  You may leave here today feeling close to God, and then some one will cut you off on the parkway and all of a sudden sin is ready to strike like a dangerous snake!

6.     So we may not necessarily “feel” dead to sin.  But we do not walk by feelings; we walk by faith.  The Bible says, “our old (unregenerate) man is crucified with Him…” (6:6).  Do you believe that?  We must simply believe God’s Word, and continually reckon ourselves dead to sin.

7.     I heard a true story about two Irishmen, Pat and Mike.  They found a strange looking turtle running around with no head.   It had been completely severed from its body. A big argument started with Pat insisting that the turtle was dead, and Mike insisting that the turtle was alive.

8.     Finally, a man named O’Brien walked by and they asked him his opinion.  O’Brien looked at the turtle and said, “The turtle is dead, but he doesn’t believe it!”

9.     That’s the way many Christians are.  They are dead to sin but they do not believe it.

10. “Reckon” is a faith word, not a “feelings” word.  Too many people act upon their feelings.  Most people select churches based upon their feelings (ritualism, emotionalism, sentimentalism, etc.)

11. In fact people make many important decisions based on feelings (marriage, job, where to live, etc.).

12. We must understand what the Bible means by “reckon” – this is an attitude of faith, based on facts.  God reckons us dead to sin; therefore we must continually reckon ourselves dead to sin.

13. “Reckon” is a fact word; “yield” (6:13, 16, 19) is an “act” word.

14. God reckons us to have died with Christ; therefore we are to keep on reckoning ourselves to have died and to have risen with Him.  These are Bible facts, which we are to believe (6:11), and then act upon (6:11-13).

15. A dead man cannot sin (6:7-9).   At the cross, Christ died as our Substitute.  He died for our sins (5:6).   Therefore, we have been saved from the power of sin.

16. We not only died with Christ, we have been raised with Christ (6:8).  Colossians 3:1-3 says, “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.  Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.”

17. The old man is dead, and so the Christian must “put on the new man” (cf. Eph. 4:22-24; Col. 3:9, 10).   This is made possible because of our union with Christ.

18. When asked the secret of his service, George Muller replied, “There was a day when I died, utterly died: died to George Muller...died to the world...and since then I have studied only to show myself approved unto God.” 



1.     I wish every member of our church would get a hold of Romans 6:14.  This is a wonderful promise from God.

2.     The cross of Christ has separated us from the penalty of sin.

3.     The cross of Christ has separated us from the consequences of sin.

4.     And thank God, the cross of Christ has separated us from the power of sin.

5.     And praise God, some day we will be separated from the very presence of sin.

6.     Dean Alford said that “dead to sin” means being separate from sin and “apathetic toward sin as the dead corpse is separate and apathetic toward the functions and stirs of life.” 

7.     Think about it this way.  You are at a wake (or a “viewing”) at a funeral home and several people are gathered around talking in front of the casket.  Soon some of the unsaved people at this wake start talking about worldly activities.  They are going to leave the funeral home and go to the bar down the street.  They are using profanity, etc.

8.     Do you think this sort of sinful conversation interests the corpse lying in the casket?  Likewise it should not interest you if you are saved because you are “dead to sin” (6:2, 7).

9.     You and I should be just as uninterested in sin as that corpse.

| Customized by Jun Gapuz |