Reckon Ourselves Dead to Sin

Regardless of our feelings, we are to reckon on this great fact, —of our union with Christ in death and resurrection.

“Reckon ye also yourselves to be dead unto sin, but alive unto God in Christ Jesus“ (Romans 6:11).

Note that Paul does not say, reckon sin dead to you. God‘s way of victory over sin is not through the suppression of sinful desires, nor through the eradication of the old nature, nor yet through the cleansing of inbred sin. God‘s way of victory is through crucifixion—deliverance is only through death. There is a vast difference between reckoning myself dead to sin and reckoning sin dead to me. Every attempt to make sin dead to me, through self-effort, or struggle, or blessing, or make-believe, is not following the scriptural pattern. God says I am to reckon myself dead to sin. If I am willing to be rid of sin, let faith fasten onto the fact of my death to sin through my actual life-union with Christ. I am “in Christ.“ And to be in Him is to be “dead to sin.“ Oh, to believe it! Never mind the feelings.

God‘s way of victory is through crucifixion—deliverance is only through death.

That I may realize His indwelling, I am commanded to reckon myself dead unto sin but alive unto God in Christ Jesus. Reckoning, in order to be real, includes self-renunciation. Our reckoning is doomed to failure unless we renounce self. In the power of Christ’s death I must refuse my old life. On the basis of Calvary and of my oneness with Christ in His death, I must refuse to let self lord it over me. I must choose whether I will be dominated by the hideous monster self, or Christ. The life that “Christ liveth in me” must have a happy “yet not I” at its very heart. How can I have the benefits of Christ’s death while I still want my own way? Self must be dethroned. I am indeed promised newness of life, but only on the basis that I put off the old. If Christ went into the abysmal depths of self-emptying and self-renunciation, I must sink my old self-life into harmony with His ignominious departure.  – L.E. Maxwell