We Serve Whom We Obey
I. Study Text: Romans 6:12-23
II. Theme: Jesus was God's perfect servant because Jesus surrendered to God in total obedience. God wanted His son to devote
himself to a ministry of service. Jesus obeyed. He assumed the role of a servant and did a servant's work. God wanted His
son to be devoted exclusively to God's purposes and objectives. Jesus obeyed. He did only those things he saw the Father
doing and spoke only those things the Father wanted him to speak. God wanted His son to surrender life in a criminal's death.
Jesus obeyed. He was executed by Roman soldiers on a cross.
Today God's mature servants serve and obey. The world can see our obedience in our service. The world can see our
service in our obedience.
Many Jewish Christians did not appreciate a presentation of and emphasis on grace. Grace made it possible for people who
had not known God to be "first class citizens" in the kingdom of God. A resentment of God's grace was founded on a
misunderstanding of their baptism. First, Paul led these Christians toward an understanding of their baptism. Then Paul led
them toward an understanding of obedience.
III. Questions and Application
1. A Christian must not allow sin to "reign" in his or her physical body. He or she must not allow "lusts" to control how he
or she uses his or her body (verse 12).
a. What does the word "reign" mean? What concept was Paul emphasizing?
b. What does the word "lusts" mean? What concept was Paul emphasizing?
2. To what does the Christian not present the parts of his or her body (verse 13)?
a. What determines if he or she presents parts of his or her body to sin?
b. If he or she presented members of his or her body to sin, how would sin use those parts presented to it?
3. To whom should the Christian present his or her body (verse 13)?
a. As the Christian presents his or her body to God, how does he or she view the body?
b. How does he or she want God to use his or her body?
4. Sin is not to be what over the Christian (verse 14)?
5. Did God intend grace to be used as a license to sin (verse 15)?
6. What basic truth did they need to understand about obedience (verse 16)?
7. They were sin's slaves (verse 17). What delivered them from that slavery?
8. When they were freed from sin's slavery, what did they become (verse 18)?
9. State the physical illustration that Paul used (verse 19).
10. When they were sin's slaves, how much righteousness did they serve (verse 20)?
11. They were ashamed of the things they served prior to coming to Jesus Christ (verse 21). What was the
consequence of serving those shameful things?
12. Now that they were delivered from slavery to evil and voluntarily were enslaved to God, what outcome would
their sanctification produce (verse 22)?
13. Sin pays wages (verse 23). What are sin's wages?
14. God gives a gift (verse 23). What is God's gift?
IV. Conclusion: We begin life in God by focusing on and understanding Jesus Christ. We realize he is the Word and the
Light. We study the Bible to understand God. We study the New Testament to understand (a) Jesus and (b) Christian
existence in Jesus. We learn who we are as individuals in Christ. We learn who we are as the church. We serve God to
be God's community of people in Christ. We serve God because we want our lives and existence to be ruled by God.
Our obedience comes from our faith, our hearts and our love. The objectives of our obedience include these four things:
(1) to build our personal relationship with God; (2) to build our personal relationship with all who come under God's rule
by being alive in Christ; (3) to reveal to weak Christians the values and joys of allowing God to control our lives; and (4)
to reveal to those enslaved to sin the life and freedom found in Christ.
Grace and obedience are not enemies. Grace never gives us "the right" to be disobedient. Obedience never "earns"
salvation or "obligates" God. Grace renews our relationship with God when Satan defeats us through temptation.
Obedience expresses our love and gratitude for God's grace. We serve God because the benevolent God of compassion
saves us from death. Obedience expresses our love and demonstrates our gratitude.
How have you demonstrated your obedience to God this week?