The strength of sin is the law (1 Corinthians 15:56b).
What a revelation it is when you see the truth of this verse. The Apostle Paul walks us through what this means in Romans 7. He said, “I would have not come to know sin except through the Law…” He goes on to tell us that “Sin takes opportunity through the commandment,” and produced even more coveting in him. Sin actually does get its power through the law because it fools us into thinking we can stop sinning by sheer will-power, or want to. The more we try to stop in our own strength the more the sin grows in us. He makes sure to tell us God’s Law is not the culprit but sin is, in fact he makes sure to tell us the Law is holy, righteous and good.
The problem we have is attempting to please God by trying to obey his commandments in the flesh. It isn’t until we come to see this that we are set free. Up until that takes place we continue to look at God’s commandments and try to keep them. Each and every time we do this sin becomes stronger and stronger in us and we get more and more beaten down. It’s just here that God’s plan for us is enacted. The enemy takes advantage of God’s Law and our ignorance to kill us, but God turns all of this around when we cry out to him.
Paul’s great discovery in Romans 7 was the fact that he is not the origin of the sin. No, in fact we aren’t the origin of anything righteous either. Paul says, “If I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.” He discovered the true reason God gave us his commandments. The real reason is to point out the sin in us and to lead us to the only solution, which is Christ.
It seems sort of strange at first, but let me just say this: God intends for the sin in our lives to get worse. Don’t shut me out just yet, please keep reading. The first part of Romans 5:20 reads as follows, “The Law came in so that the transgression would increase…” In other words, God gave us his law so “sin “or “transgression” would increase. Before you get too twisted up about this, let me say that I know God doesn’t want to leave us in our sins; in fact it isn’t his will that any perish but the bad news has to get really bad before we are ready to receive the good news.
God has known all along that we were powerless to obey his Law. We are the ones that were deceived into thinking we could; so he gave the Law knowing that sin would increase in hopes that we would see it. I don’t know about you, but most of the time we let things go until they get really bad before we do anything about it. God already knows this about us. So sin gets power from the Law because we want to obey it and be pleasing to God, but in the flesh we have no ability to please him. We try and try again to live a life that we think is pleasing to God and meanwhile the sin mounts up. God patiently watches this until one day we are sick of it all. We are sick of life, religion, friends, family, drugs, in-laws, our job; I mean we have had it! We find ourselves on our face crying out to God “I can’t do it anymore Lord, I can’t live anymore! If you don’t do this I’m finished! Please God take over!” God says, “Amen! You put up quite a fight but finally you have come to the truth, you can’t live the Christian life. I have known this all along, that’s why I sent my Son in the first place. He is the only one that can live it. From now on he is going to live it in and through you by way of the Holy Spirit. You’re job is to trust me and let Christ be Christ from within you. As you yield yourself to him each and everyday he will begin to shine through you in ways that you won’t even be aware of. The power of sin is now broken in your life because you are no longer under the law. I have set you free in Christ. “It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.”