Creflo Dollar - Sin Consciousness vs. God Consciousness
I wanna start off with this statement. What you believe and how you believe will govern your conscious thinking, your conscious mind. What you believe and how you believe, think about that. What you believe. You know, I believe that when you believe right, you'll live right. But if you believe wrong, you'll live wrong. If you believe the requirements that are under the law are meant for you to meet those requirements today, then unfortunately, that wrong belief will be responsible for how you live.
I mean, I said before, when I was in India and I saw a lot of folks that were starving, and then I looked up and I saw these cows in the front yard, I thought, "Man, they're starving because of wrong belief". And so, the things that happen in our lives we might need to examine how are we believing in those areas. And this area of our consciousness is so important because when something's been established in your conscience and it's wrong, then you live your life based on that.
Let me show you what I mean. Let's work a little definition here on your conscience. When I use this word "conscience" today, it's like the inner sense of what is right or wrong in your conduct or your motive, kind of like feeling guilty about something as an act, something that you consider wrong. And what if you're feeling guilty about something that you consider wrong, and the only reason you're feeling guilty about it and the only reason you consider it wrong is because of wrong belief about that thing. You're believing that this particular thing is wrong, and so now it is governing how you feel. It's governing shame in your life. It's governing guilt in your life and your belief in that thing is wrong in the first place.
And so, I wanna look at some things in the Scriptures, because my objective today is we've gotta stop this vacillating from performance-based religion to, "Okay, I trust what Jesus did". But it's gonna be what happens between these two ears. What am I thinking and is it right? Where did I hear it from and is it right? You know, it's becoming a very serious issue, the issue of rightly dividing the Word of Truth, because context is king. I mean, the application of Scripture is gonna be based on the context that you find that Scripture in. You're not gonna be able to just lift that Scripture out and then just kinda do whatever you wanna do with it.
You've got to understand that the context of the Scripture, wherever that Scripture's found in its context is gonna give you the definition of it and how to use it and how to apply it. There may be several things that are true when you lift the Scripture out of its context, but it may not be so if you define it within its context. In fact, I teach in our school that our people have to understand how to let the Bible define itself. We've gotta begin to study the Word based on, you know, what happened before the cross, what happened after the cross, who was around, who's doing the speaking.
All those things become very important in coming to the place where you understand the truth. Because here's the ultimate goal of the enemy, "If I can affect the way you think, if I can impact your conscience, and if I can do it in a wrong way, I'll get you in guilt, condemnation, and shame; and the whole time, you'll think it's the right way". And I think that's what this grace of God is doing is getting people to take another look at things that tradition has always fed you, and you've been living your life this way all this time and never knew that you were believing wrong.
Now, Romans chapter 3 and verse 20, let's start there. Romans 3, and verse 20, and I wanna set up what the Bible says about three or four different conscience things that he begins to look at in verse 20. He says, "Therefore by the deeds of the law, there shall no flesh be justified," or declared righteous, "in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin". So, what he says here is the law makes you recognize and the law is what makes you conscious of sin. By the law, you're made conscious. You recognize and you become conscious of sin.
You know, when I was in Germany the very first time and had the privilege of driving on the Autobahn, I could hardly enjoy the experience because I had been exposed to a speed limit. And so, I mean, you know, I could only drive so fast before I think, "Oh my goodness, I'm up here at 55. I'm getting ready to break the speed limit," and have to remind myself, "There is no speed limit here". There's only the limit where safety is concerned. You know, you probably wanna be concerned if you get up to 150 or something like that, but I'm thinking, "I can't even enjoy this because I've been exposed and I am conscious of a speed limit that had been imposed on me by the laws of this land that govern how we do things here".
And so, it's almost true the same thing, when you've been living by religious law and performance-based religion and somebody tells you you can't wear a dress above your knees, or you know, you can't wear makeup. And then you discover the freedom of grace, you can hardly enjoy it because of the consciousness. And what it wants to do is to maintain sin consciousness. Now, look at Hebrews chapter 7:11. I wanna establish this foundation and it's gonna bless you here. Hebrews chapter 7, verse 11, he says, "If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it people received the law.)"
Now, notice what it says, "If perfection were by the Levitical priesthood," it wasn't, he said, because, "(under this people received the law,) what further need was there that any other priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron"? Now, in verse 11, when he uses the word "perfection," he's not talking about sinless perfection, but he's talking about perfection as it pertains to the conscience.
Go to Hebrews, I believe 9, verse 9. Perfection as it pertains to the conscience. What he says, "If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood," or you know, if your perfection or perfect conscience came by the law, is basically what he's saying, if a perfect conscience came by the law, which we know it does not, look at Hebrews chapter 9 and 9, he says, "Which was a figure for the time then present, in which we offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience". So, when you see the word "perfection" here, we're not talking about sinless perfection, but we're talking about as it pertains to a man's conscience. We're talking about a perfect conscience.
Now, one of the things I want you to recognize, perfection, that's the goal. That's what we're trying to get after. And you're gonna find out it's not gonna be based on what you do to try to obtain a perfect conscience. If you are sin conscious, then your conscience has not been perfected. Even if you're at this grace conference, if you are sin conscious, you're more conscious of sin than you are conscious of the righteousness of God, you're more conscious on your performance than you are on what Jesus has done. If you are sin conscious, then obviously you don't have a perfect conscience. And is it possible to have a perfect conscience?
Well, it is what I'm gonna share with you today. So, your consciousness must be perfected, and I'm telling you right now, the only way that can be done is through the blood of Jesus. The only way you can get that is through, look at Hebrews chapter, if you're there, 9, verse 13 and 14. Hebrews chapter 9, verse 13 and 14. And verse 13 says, "For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: how much more shall the blood of Christ"?
Now, since the blood of animals can set you apart, you know, it could never get rid of sin, but it could cover sins for a year. "How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, how much more can his blood purge your conscience from dead works so you can serve the living God"? So, the blood of Jesus can purge your conscience from dead works.
Now, again, what are dead works? Dead works are when you're trying to do something to get God to do something. You're doing something to try to earn God's response. It's almost like, you know, trying to do something to get favoritism. You walk into your classroom when you were in elementary school, you give the teacher an apple, and hopefully that'll buy you some favoritism. Well, that stinks with self-effort. And what he is saying is only the blood of Jesus can purge your conscience from dead works, thinking you have to do something to get something. And that's where religion is. It's a way of thinking that says, "I just cannot believe that God is going to do something for me without me having to do something to earn it".
Well, you're still having a sin conscience there, and the blood of Jesus can give you a perfect conscience. Your consciousness can be purged from sin conscience by the blood of Jesus, and you're no longer thinking, "I've got to work in order to get this thing from God. I've got to do something so I can earn it from God". And I'mma tell you something, I'm gonna show you why that is so difficult for a lot of people. Now, go to Hebrews chapter 10, and verse 22. Hebrews chapter 10, verse 22. We've got sin consciousness. We have a perfect consciousness. Let's see what the Bible has to say about an evil conscience. Hebrews 10:22, "Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water".
Now, sin consciousness is an evil conscience. When you are sin conscious, then the Bible calls that an evil conscience. Now, what's the problem then with being sin conscious? Faith won't work. I mean, when you're sin conscious, faith will not work and you'll end up condemning other people. When you walk around conscious, you know the things that people have done over the past because they were sin conscious? There've been people who'll get up early in the morning, before they even walk out the door, and say, "Lord, forgive me for the sins I've not even committed yet". And you're so conscious about sin, it never came across your mind, "Lord, thank you that I am the righteousness of God today".
And that's what I'm hoping that we change, that you can get up in the morning and you can declare that, "I'm the righteousness of God". You're more conscious about what the blood of Jesus has done for you instead of being more conscious about, "Oh my God, I'm so sin conscious, I wonder what I'm gonna do today that's gonna cause me to have to repent". I wanna convince you today that it's finished. All right, listen to me, it's finished. Now, let's go to the next one. We've got a perfect conscience, we've got sin conscience, we've got an evil conscience. Thank you. We've got an evil conscience.
Now let's look at something which I think is just the key to the whole thing. It's called a seared conscience. Think about an iron, and you left the iron on the material too long, and it scorched the material. It made a mark on that material. Look at 1 Timothy chapter 4, and verse 2, 'cause we gotta get a little radical today, amen? 1 Timothy chapter 4:2. Verse 2 says this, "Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron". A seared conscience is a perpetual sense of sin consciousness.
When your conscience has been seared or marked, that means you are not responding because your conscience has been so seared, so marked to the point where it's calloused. When it's marked and that mark is in that material, and you're talking about in some cases not being able to remove it, please understand that means it's so marked that you can't even respond to what the blood of Jesus has done. And there are some people, they have had their conscience so seared with sin consciousness that even when you begin to preach to them about what the blood has done, they don't even respond to what the blood of Jesus has done because their conscious mind has been so seared.
"Scorched" is the word I was looking for. A scorched consciousness, a calloused conscience, hardened, unfeeling. It means to dry up or to wither, parched, to mark or to put a scar on it by searing. Now, when you have a conscience that's been so seared, and so marked, and so scorched by sin consciousness, and you've spent 30 and 40 years hearing that same sin consciousness being preached to you, that you can never do enough to please God, that you have to be good in order for God to be good to you, that you didn't pray long enough to have his anointing on your life, and you just can't be anointed without doing these five different things, and oh dear God, the reason why anything bad happens to you financially, because man, you remember what the Bible says? You didn't tithe and a curse is on your life because, all of that has seared and scorched your conscience.
So then, when you come to meetings like this and you hear the stuff you've been hearing, it's like your heart wants to get it, but it's having a battle with your mind and trying to remove that mark. But how many of you know the blood of Jesus is well able? But it's gonna be based on what you continue to listen to. Genesis chapter 3:7, we talk about the trees in the garden, and this is so important. You have the tree of life, which I believe represents Jesus, and you have the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, which represents the law. Adam and Eve had an opportunity to determine which tree would be responsible for opening their conscious eyes.
Are you gonna allow Jesus to open the eyes of your consciousness or will you allow the law to open the eyes of your consciousness? For so many of us, we've allowed the law to open up our eyes of consciousness. Let me show you something. Go to Romans chapter 6, and verse 14. Now, I have to lay this foundation in order to preach what I'mma preach this week, but we gotta make sure we get ahold of this. And I think, you know, this is radical, what I'm about to show you in Romans chapter 6, but I think you'll be all right. Romans chapter 6, and let's look at verse 14. "For sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the law, but you're under grace".
All right, now one thing that's interesting here, the word "sin" is only used as a verb one time in this chapter. The rest of the time, it's used as a noun. Now, the significance of that is if you keep reading the word "sin," which is used as a noun, as a verb, you miss the whole meaning of what he is saying. When he talks about, "You're delivered from sin," he's not saying you're delivered from sinning, the verb, but he says you're delivered from the sin nature, the root of sin. And if you're delivered from the root of sin, you're no longer under any obligation to produce the same kind of fruit of sinning. But we've read the entire chapter as if it was talking about sinning.
Back up to verse 1, let me show you what I'm talking about. Verse 1 says, "For what shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin"? Shall we continue in the sin nature, the noun? Shall we continue in the sin nature? Shall we continue in the body of sin, that grace may abound"? Watch this, "For God forbid. How shall we continue? How shall we, that who are dead to the sin nature, live any longer therein"? You're dead to the sin nature. You got born again and the sin nature is no longer there. You are dead to that sin nature. You can't continue being governed by that sin nature because you no longer have that sin nature.
Verse 3, "Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in," what? "The newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: knowing this, that our old man now is," what? "Crucified with him, that the body of sin now might be destroyed".
Let me ask you a question. Now, what has happened to the old man? He's crucified. What's happen to the body of sin? Destroyed. Now, here's what he said, "The old man's dead. The body of sin's destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve the old man or the body of sin". See, we read it like this, "Henceforth we should not serve sinning". No, he said now the body of sin has been destroyed. He said that old man has been destroyed. Therefore you don't have to serve that old man anymore because he's dead, he's crucified. But if you keep reading it, see, people who have a sin conscience will always read this noun as a verb, "sinning". And you're so concerned about sinning, so when you read this, it brings about a conflict, because you're saying, "Wait a minute. If I'm supposed to be free from the body of sin, then why am I still sinning"?
Now, you heard Pastor Mike the other day. He said you don't have to do if you don't wanna. The answer to that question, "Why am I still sinning"? the answer, you know the honest answer to that is 'cause you want to. We sin because we want to, not because you have to. You don't even have the equipment anymore to produce the same fruit, and that's why Paul says, "How can you since you don't have that root no more? It's dead, it's crucified. You do what you do 'cause you want to do it. It ain't like you ended up in a bed with a woman and talking like, "Golly, I'm in the bed. How did I get in the bed with this woman and where is my clothes? And who is this? What happened? Oh my".
No, you know exactly what happened. You thought about every single step of it. Every stitch of clothes, you understood every one of 'em that came off. What he is saying is since that old man is dead and you are dead to it, which means you're no longer under the dominion or the authority of that old man, but look what happens. Sin-conscious people will read this like this. They'll read it like this, "Knowing this, that the old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not have to serve sinning". That's not what he's talking about. You should not have to serve the noun, the body, the root, the old man that was responsible for producing the fruit of sinning.
See, now that you're born again, it's a matter of just renewing your mind and getting your mind to line up with your brand new spirit and you can determine what kind of fruits you're wanting to produce because you're in Christ and the branches can't bear fruit of its own. You've got to have the root. Jesus said, "I'm the vine. You the branches". So in essence, we're in Jesus, and if he's the vine, and he is, he's on the inside of us, praise God, we should be living life bearing his fruit. Unless you decide, like Mike said, you just wanna sin. And it really is crazy when you do stuff and you look to blame somebody.
You remember Flip Wilson? "The devil made me do it"? In the booth in the back in the corner in the dark. No, you did that. You made the decision. I think that's the first step for deliverance. When you first come to the point of realizing it is not the devil, it is you, and if you keep saying it's the devil, then look in the mirror and you will see him and he's got a name. All right, let's go on. "For he that is dead is freed from sin". Now, this is how we read it: "He that is dead is free from sinning". That's not what he said, "He that is dead is freed from sin," the person of sin, the nature of sin, the body. You're free from that root.
Now, here's the thing we got to do. And we have to resolve these issues in our thinking. Do you believe you're dead? To sin? This guy's looking at me, saying, "Well, I don't wanna confess that". Do you believe that you are dead to sin? So if you believe you are dead to sin, imagine how frustrating it is for you to try to be dead to sin. Let me give you an illustration. Are you seated right now? All right, well, why don't you sit down? No, no, no, no, sit down. Sit down! Now, can you imagine how frustrating that would be for you to be trying to sit down when you're already seated? That's what happens when people take out of context the Scripture when they say, "Paul said I die daily".
That is not what Paul was talking about. Go back and read it again. Paul was not talking about dying daily to sin. He was talking about dying daily to persecution. Check it out. Paul didn't die daily to sin. He died once. And you know what we're doing? We're trying to die every day. "Paul died every day; I'm dying every day". He didn't die every day. He died every day to persecution. Now, you're gonna have some persecution that you're gonna have to die to and deal with every day. He didn't die to sin every day. For Paul to die to sin every day, here, prove it.
When Saul did his thing, Paul had the gall to say, "I have wronged no man. I've offended no man". And then in Acts 20:25, he said, "The blood of no man is on my hands". That's the guy who has completely accepted his identity in Christ and is not trying to do a redo every day. He has settled it. I am dead to sin. I am in Christ Jesus. We gotta do the same thing. We're just not doing it. Somehow in our conscious thinking, we're thinking, "Well, no, that can't be. That can't be right because if I'm dead to sin, watch this, then why am I sinning"?
That's easy. You're dead to sin, but you have yet to renew your mind and to get the sin consciousness straight and to deal with that seared consciousness. I use the illustration of a cell phone. You know the cell phone when they have a new cell phone like iPhone 3 came out, then they had a iPhone 4 and then the iPhone 3 gets a message that says they have a new download. And they give you a choice to do it now or do it later. Well, I always mash "later". And then it comes up again and I hit "later".
Now, if you don't hurry up and get the download, your phone's gonna start malfunctioning, okay? And so, likewise, when you get born again, you've got a perfect, full-grown, full-mature, heaven-ready spirit. But the last guy that was there, that old man, left the residue of the old man, so now we need to get a new download, mmm, to match the new man. And the most important thing you can do as a human being is to get born again; the most important thing you can do as a Christian is to renew your mind. And the renewing of the mind is not a one-time event. It's an everyday process, and most likely the area that you keep choosing is an area of the leftover software from that old sinful man that needs to be renewed.
Well, Andrew said last night when you got born again, your soul didn't get born again, your body didn't get born again. If you couldn't do algebra before you're born again, you're not gonna be able to do it right away. Thank God for the wisdom of a God that'll come in and help you right now, but that part of you was not impacted when you got born again. And what we do is we get born again and think that's a cure-all for every area. No, that got the real you together, but your soul, you need to still renew your mind with the Word of God and put some downloads up there so your spirit is already in perfect alignment with the Word of God.
The Word of God and your spirit line up perfectly. But your mind has to be renewed, and if you're not renewing your mind, and I'll say it like this, in the word of grace, you're gonna be still stuck in the word of the law and that will still maintain a sin conscious and you'll have an evil conscious, a seared conscious, because you've not received what the blood of Jesus has made available for you and you wouldn't download it.
So you're still going around playing baseball in a long dress 'cause they hadn't downloaded anything new. I'm serious. It's frustrating to experience a Christian who is saved and heaven-ready, but still operating by the old program, afraid to be you. You won't enter into the liberties of what this grace has made available to you because your mind and your consciousness won't let you. You're seared and you're stuck in that old way of thinking, and you can't live life full of joy because the thing that keeps religion going is fear and guilt. I'm gonna make you afraid.
You know, when I got born again, like I told you, I didn't get saved because I loved Jesus; I got saved because I was afraid I was gonna go to hell. And I saw the movie "The Burning Hell" in a church parking lot and it scared the hell out of me and I got born again and gave my life to Jesus Christ. That's why I got saved. I didn't know if Jesus loved me or not. I just didn't wanna go to hell. If this is what I gotta do to stay out of hell, then I'm gonna do it.
And religion now kept me coming back, just like the drug addict, just give me a little taste and I keep coming back and all they had to do was say, "You're going to hell". I'm back, I'll be at church, I'll be back next week. I'm sorry. And if the hell didn't get me, the guilt did. "Boy, you ought to be ashamed of yourself. You ought to be ashamed of yourself. Drinking a beer with your momma, you ought to be ashamed of yourself. God don't like ugly," and I'm thinking, "Oh, God, he don't like ugly. Oh, Jesus, oh, I feel so bad". And then I'd go on a two-day, well, a day-and-a-half fast and I'm just like, "Oh, God, oh. Oh, help me, Lord". If it were not for the fear and if it were not for the guilt, religion wouldn't be able to survive.
Sin consciousness. "For he that is dead is freed from that sin consciousness". Now go to the next verse. Watch this. Somebody said, "I am dead to sin. I don't need to die no more. I am dead to the sin nature. Therefore, I do not refer to myself as a sinner. I am a saint". Now, here's what your old church is gon' tell you: "You're no way, nothin' but sinners saved by grace. You ain't nothin' but a sinner saved by grace". And you sit up there, "Yes, amen. I'm a sinner saved by grace. I am not gonna greet you. I am no longer a sinner".
It doesn't make any sense to me for you to say, "I am a sinner," and then you got saved. For if you got saved and you're still a sinner, either you're a sinner or you're saved. Which one? See, if you got saved and you're dead to that sin nature, you were not a sinner because you sinned. You were a sinner because of the nature that you had in you. So if you no longer have that which makes you a sinner, then you're no longer a sinner because you don't have the root that makes you a sinner. The root that makes an apple tree an apple tree, if it's no longer there, it's no longer an apple tree. The stuff that made you a sinner was not sinning. You still think that sinning is what makes you a sinner.
You don't go to hell for sinning. You go to hell for rejecting the replacement for the sin nature. You go to hell because you wouldn't receive Jesus. You don't go for sinning. We keep dealing with, "What about sinning"? It is not sinning; it is about have you gotten rid of the root that made you a sinner, and if you now have the new creation on the inside of you, you are no more a sinner because you have a root that is going to produce love and joy and peace and patience and righteousness and redemption. It won't produce the same thing that the last root produced. Don't you dare go around calling yourself what you're not to justify what you did. I am not a sinner.
Now, watch this. This is radical. I am not a sinner, even if I sin. It's like, y'all looking at me, like, "What"? See, that religion wants to kick in and you're, like, "Uh-oh". Now, did I... am I... by any way am I saying, "Oh, so we can just go on and sin and we still won't be a sinner"? See, you don't get it. And let me tell you something, I'm gonna go ahead and answer this: yes, you can. Yeah, you can. "What"? I don't advise it, but yeah, you can. Yeah, yeah, go and smoke some weed, do all that stuff.
But I gotta remind you that the guy that was comfortable with you doing all that before, he ain't there no more. You got new company in there, and he gonna have a issue with all that and there's gonna be conflict until you find out how to walk in agreement with him on the inside of you, he gon' bother you, you ain't gonna be able to sleep, it ain't gonna feel good, the high that you used to get off dope, you ain't getting no high. I guess we don't all back talk on the dope again. I hadn't called it dope in so long I felt something was wrong.
And weed used to be something we used to cut. But you won't get the high you used to get. That's over, you won't get the high you used to get. Always searching to try to relive that high. It won't be there because there's a new sheriff in town. He's a new creation, and let me tell you, I don't care how, this covenant of grace is so solid, it is fool, F-O-O-L, proof. You can act like the biggest fool in the world, and when it's all over with, grace is still gonna still be in there, say, "I'm still here, I haven't let you go. I'll never leave you nor forsake you. I'll never leave you nor forsake you". See, that's the power about this Jesus. Jesus say, "You do the stupidest thing in the world, and when you finished stupid, I'm gonna still be here ready to take you where we were going in the first place".
So I don't advise stupid because stupid might end up killing you. You know, there are consequences with sin. You go do something stupid, then you know, you're gonna go to heaven, but stupid is gonna have a consequence. You know, like, go cheat on your wife if you want to, you know, I don't know how sane she is. I just know she got a shotgun... It might not end up right. She might go to jail on her way to heaven, and you might just go and get on out of here and go to heaven. It's just not gonna be good. And you're not gonna ever be satisfied until you can fulfill the yearning in your heart to do what God has called you to do and to fulfill his will.
See, we're always looking for ways to try to go in sin, but once you get born again and get that new man on the inside of you and realize that he's delivered you out of the ditch, he's delivered you out of debt, he's delivered you out of poverty, and when you start looking at him delivering and forgiving you when you know you didn't deserve it, you know you didn't deserve it and he did it anyway, who's interested in trying to keep finding ways to sin? I wanna find ways where I can glorify God and give him the honor and the glory. That's what I wanna do.
Grace is not gonna allow, when Jesus comes on the inside of you, you're not looking for ways to cheat the system. "Well, since I'm saved and technically I'm not a sinner, but what do they say? They say you can still sin, then we might as well throw this party tonight". Nobody's doing that who's really saved, who really let Jesus in. The issue I have is with some of the stuff I see so-called Christians doing, I'm wondering, did it take? 'Cause when you got Jesus on the inside of you, some of that stuff ain't gonna be happening.
You gotta ask the question, did you really get saved? You sure you got it? "No, man, actually, I just went upstairs 'cause, you know, they told me to so I just went on there because a fine lady was in front of me. I just following her". 'Cause some of the stuff some folks do I say, I don't think it took. "You trying to say I ain't saved"? No, you already proved that. Because the grace of God'll teach you how to live righteous and holy life. He will rearrange your furniture, amen? So now that we settled that, I'm so glad I just got that out because we, kind of like, skate around it. Well, no, we don't wanna say that. But let me tell you something, there is nothing you can do that will ever outshine grace.
Now, don't walk out of here saying we said you can go and do anything because grace will shine. I wanna make this very clear. There will be consequences. If you go and do opposite of what I'm saying, we might not see you no more 'cause there are some consequences. But don't you dare blame it on the devil. And don't you blame it on grace. You just make sure, you said, "I did this 'cause I wanted to do it, that's why I did it, praise the Lord". We don't teach this kind of grace that says, "Well, I'm under grace, so I can just go get a divorce and then holler, 'Grace.'" Or, you know, "I can go and rob the bank, and if the police catch me, 'Grace.'" All they're gonna say is, "What you say? Boy, get your butt in that car. You're going to jail. You and grace going to jail".
That's not how that works. But there are some people who think that they can do that, and they play around with it like, you know, they think they can. That's not how that works. God's grace, as powerful as it is, will outshine the foolishness of a fool until you finally realize that if he stuck with you in the midst of all your foolishness, you will finally humble yourself and say, "Lord, here I am. Use me. Send me. I want to do your will," amen? Praise God. Now, so we're dead to sin. Say, "I'm dead. I don't have to die tomorrow, I ain't got to die next month. I ain't got to die next year. I ain't got to wait 'til the next Grace Convention to die. I'm dead to sin. Dead, dead to die no more, dead".
All right, now, pause for a moment. In some of your minds, you still thought, "I'm dead to sinning. Seared, sin conscious to the point that I just can't be done". And I'm telling you, you are. Verse 8: "Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more," yeah, "death has no more dominion over him". Verse 10: "For in that he died, he died unto sin," oh, how many times? How many times? "But in that he liveth, he liveth unto God".
All right, now watch this. This is radical. How many times did you die unto sin? How many? Once. Now, you can't come to me, talking, "Well, I died to it last week, but you know, I messed up and I gotta die again". No, you're dead to sin once, just like Jesus. "Likewise reckon ye also," this is a very interesting word. Pastor Mike talked about this word. It's an accounting word.
When you reckon something, most likely you're saying it because it's true. If I say, "I reckon I have $10 in my top drawer in the bedroom," the reason why I reckon I have $10 in my top drawer in the bedroom is 'cause I do have $10 in my top drawer in the bedroom. "I likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto that sin nature now, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord". Verse 12: "Let not sin," that nature, that old man, "therefore rule and reign in your mortal bodies". Ah, residue. "Don't let it reign in your mortal bodies, that you should obey it in the lust," or appetite, "thereof". Verse 13: "Don't yield your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God".
Now, that's gonna be by your choice, who you yield yourself to. You're gonna either see yourself as just a plain human being or you're gonna see yourself as a born-again man or woman of God, like he said last night. Which one are you gonna do? "But yield yourself unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God". Verse 14: "For sin shall not have dominion over you: for you're not under the law". So under the law, sin dominates you. Sin gives you that sin conscience and you're dominated under the law. But you're not under the law. You're born again, and you're under what? Grace. Verse 15, now he uses it as a verb. "What then? Shall we sin". Action, action, "Because we're not under the law, but under grace"? He said, "God forbid".
Now, watch this carefully. Oh, this is good. Watch this. "Know you not," watch this now. Are you watching this? Are you up? Are you awake? "Know you not, that to whom you yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants you are to whom you obey," here are the choices of what you obey, "whether you obey sin unto death, or whether you obey obedience unto righteousness". Now, the issue here is this word "obey". In the Greek, it does not mean you submitting to a set rules and regulation. This word is interesting because it means to hearken or to pay attention to or to listen to. To hearken, to pay attention to, or to listen to.
Now, watch this, "Know you not, that to whom you yield yourselves servants," to listen to or to hearken to, "his servants you are to whom you listen to or pay attention to, whether you are listening to sin unto death, or whether you're listening to obedience unto righteousness". Well, what are those two things? Go to the next verse. "But God be thanked, that you were servants of sins, but you have listened to and obeyed, you have paid attention from the heart that form of doctrine", doctrine. The doctrine of sin unto death or the doctrine of obedience unto righteousness.