What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? Romans 6:1-2 NASB
No doubt many of you have heard these verses quoted as a caution against the dangers of having too much grace. I mean, it does sound reasonable, doesn't it? After all, as kids, we did learn that it's human nature to take advantage of too much freedom, right? And here, the question is posed and answered with a strong negative, which makes our fear seem quite Biblical.
So, how about it ... have these verses caused you to keep the grace of God on a short leash in your life lest you use it to continue in sin? Don't you find it rather odd that the very thing that delivered us from the bondage of sin keeps getting blamed for causing it? Perhaps we've learned to read these words through somebody else's glasses.
"Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?" Don't you realize whose question that is? It is the question from the mind that fears God. The fact that Paul wrote these words only indicates that he fully understood what it was to have feared God. This knowledge made him fully aware of the question begging to be asked by those who heard of the inconceivable grace he described. He asked the same question that has haunted us from childhood each time we learned to fear whatever degree of freedom we had been given.
The answer to this question is not really "no" because the response, "May it never be!", demands that the question itself is absurd. The real answer is found in this:
How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
Do you hear it? How is it even possible for one to live when (or where) he has died? You see, the problem we have with the question only exposes the problem we have with the very idea that we have died with Christ.