It’s easy to get caught up in the distraction of life and lose our way. Rather than going through the motions every day, make a conscious decision to live in Christ.
Learn how in this week’s podcast!
Pauly [00:00:07] Welcome to walking our talk with Alan and Pauly Heller. Join our conversation as we discuss practical ways to apply spiritual principles to your everyday life and help you walk your talk one step at a time.
Alan [00:00:28] Welcome to walking our talk with Alan and Pauly Heller.
Pauly [00:00:31] Hi, Alan.
Alan [00:00:32] We’re talking about identity today. More on identity. If you didn’t hear the last podcast, we started with a little bit of that in Colossians. The other classic passage about your identity in Christ is in Romans Chapter six and starting in verse four. Therefore, we have been buried with him through baptism, into death in order that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the father. So we too might walk in newness of life. And that’s really the key, is walking in our newness of life. And in order to do that many times, we need to accept the truths of what God said, even though we don’t feel it. We may not even be obedient at the time, but the truth will set you free. And the truth is always the truth. It’s like gravity. I mean, when I hold the pencil up and drop it, it always goes down. Unless I’m in a space capsule up. There is no gravity. And then it doesn’t go down. But the laws of nature down here are, when I drop something, it goes down. And if we walk as colonel, men or women, then we’re going to be behaving like what we used to be. And sometimes we think when we do that, we’ve lost our identity. Well, maybe from our perspective, we have lost our identity. But the truth is still the truth. Whether we believe it or not. And so we need to learn to walk in who he says we are walking our newness of life rather than taking our cues from the world or from our own emotions or whatever.
Pauly [00:02:19] Well, that’s true. You know, it’s approaching Halloween time here in the United States and that the kids dress up as different, but they put on costumes. And our daughter sent us a picture of our little one and a half-year-old grandson dressed up in a little lion outfit so that he can go ask the neighbors for candy. And putting on a little lion outfit doesn’t make him a lion. He’s still Sam. And when he takes off that little lion outfit, he really is our little grandson, Sam. And that’s kind of the way it is with us in Christ. We think that we are our flesh. But the word of God says that we should take off the flesh. We need to shed our flesh because we have died to our flesh. And just like Sam in that little lion outfit doesn’t make him a lion. We dressed up in our flesh are not our flesh. We really are the image of Christ. We are hidden with Christ in God. And that’s who we really are when we take off our flesh.
Alan [00:03:48] So and there are different translations of flesh we’re describing flesh is that which is the sin that’s in us, but not us.
Pauly [00:03:58] That’s right.
Alan [00:03:58] It’s the propensity to do that. It’s not something you could put in a test tube and test it out. But love isn’t something you could put in a test tube either. But you can see the effects of love. And I think you can see the effects of either walking after the flesh or walking after the spirit. And Galatians talks about the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
Alan [00:04:27] When I’m walking in the spirit and when I’ve put on my new life in Christ, I will demonstrate those characteristics. And when I’m not demonstrating them, that’s not why. No, I’m not walking in the newness of life. Verse five in Romans six says four. If we have become united with him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also in the likeness of his resurrection. Knowing this, our old self was crucified with him, that our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. And there’s a great worship song that talks about we’re no longer slaves of sin, but we are his children. And as his children, we walk in newness of life. A.
Alan [00:05:15] And I remember when our kids were small, they would come over from being at the neighbor’s house and saying, you know, the Smiths don’t do this. Why do we do this? I said, well, we’re Hellers and the Hellers have this identity, and we do it this way, and if you get old enough and you don’t want to be a Heller anymore, that can be your choice. But right now, this is how we walk as a Heller. This is our identity.
Alan [00:05:41] So my wife is looking at me smiling and saying, keep going out. So knowing this, that our old self was crucified with him, that our body of sin might be done away with, we should no longer be slaves to sin. For he who has died is freed from sin. A small verse and verse seven. He who has died or is freed from sin. So I don’t have to be a slave to sin. I can be a slave, a bondslave of Jesus Christ. And in his power, be able to walk in the newness of life and walk out the truth of the Gospel. Now, if he had we have died with Christ, we believe that we also shall live with him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again. Death no longer is master over him. So Jesus broke the power of death and has given us the very nature of himself. If we believe in Him if we’ve asked Him into our life and we never have to die again. Death no longer is master over him. Somebody has said, if you yell at a corpse or if you push him or pull him or whatever, what happens with a corpse? They don’t respond. And so I can know whether I’m walking the flesh or walking in the spirit. If I’m reacting in the wrong way, if I’m not reacting the way God would have me react, then I have an idea that I’m allowing my flesh to have its fling, so to speak. So in verse 10, it says for the death that he died, he died for sin once and for all. But the life he lives, he lives to God. Even so, consider yourself. So because of what Christ did by his death, breaking the power of sin once and for all the life he lives, he lives to God. So we also live our life unto God. And what he wants rather than what we want. Even so, we are to consider ourselves dead to sin. And we are to be alive to God in Christ Jesus. That is who we are to model ourselves and not just model. We don’t want to just try and act like Jesus. We want Jesus in us to act like himself.
Pauly [00:08:07] One of the versions of the Bible that I like to read is that J.B. Phillips translation, and it paraphrases a lot of these concepts and puts it in ideas that sort of flow together in more everyday language. And it says here in this passage, if we have, as it were, shared his death, let us rise and live our new lives with him. Let us never forget that our old selves died with him on the cross, that the tyranny of sin over us might be broken. For a dead man can safely be said to be immune to the power of sin. As you were saying, Alan, you can kick a corpse and it’s never going to respond.
Alan [00:08:56] If it does, we’re in trouble.
Pauly [00:08:58] Right. And if we were dead men with him, we can believe that we shall also be men newly alive with him. We can be sure that the risen Christ never dies again. Death’s power to touch him is finished. He died because of sin once. He lives for God forever. In the same way, look upon yourselves as dead to the appeal and power of sin. But alive and sensitive to the call of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Alan [00:09:34] Then it goes on in verse twelve, and it says, therefore, don’t let sin reign in your mortal body. That you should obey its laws and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness. But present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. What a contrast.
Alan [00:09:58] Are we presenting ourselves to sin and allowing it to have its way with us? Or are we presenting ourselves to God and allowing his truth and his very nature to be expressed through our personality and who we are? I mean, that’s a wonderful thing, is that he allows us to still have personality. It doesn’t kill our personality, but he wants to put to death the deeds of the flesh, and in order to do that, I have to present myself. I have to give myself over to him. And again, that’s that Romans 12:1-2. Don’t be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, presenting yourself to him. And if you’ve never done that, my encouragement would be if you keep seeing the same sin happen over and over, have you ever presented that sin to the Lord, given it to him, laid it at the cross, it at the foot of his feet and the foot of the cross and allowed him to take that and now present yourself to him – fresh a new start. He says his mercies are new every morning. Great is his faithfulness.
Alan [00:11:16] And it says in verse 14, For sin shall not be master over you. For you are not under the law, but under grace. So what then shall we sing? Because we are not under the law, but under grace may never be. Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey either of sin resulting in death or obedience resulting in righteousness. So it’s a clear choice. Am I going to present myself to sin and disobey, or am I going to present myself to God and walk in righteousness and newness of life, which there’s freedom and blessing and grace and mercy? And I’m not quite sure why. I mean, sometimes I listen to people’s stories and they are so going 180 degrees away from God and wondering why it is that their marriage is so messed up and their family is and their thinking is so messed up. And I’m asking him, are you presenting yourself to God?
Pauly [00:12:27] Right.
Alan [00:12:27] Are you spending time in his word? Are you filling your mind with the truth of who Christ is or are you filling it with the garbage of the world? And I mean, it doesn’t take much to get covered over with the junk of the world. So it takes discipline and a focus and an intention each day to get up. And like you were saying in the last podcast, to present yourself to God and just say, God, I can’t do this, I need you.
Pauly [00:12:56] The key in this passage is that you are the slave of the one you obey. You know, you might say, well, I belong to Christ. I’m a Christian.
Alan [00:13:08] Right.
Pauly [00:13:09] But you’re not obeying Christ. You’re obeying sin. You’re obeying your flesh. You’re obeying. As soon as temptation comes along, you’re drawn away. So whose slave are you really? Who do you really belong to? You’re the slave of the one you obey. And we were in a situation sitting in a room with another couple who were dealing with marital issues. And she said he doesn’t see my intentions. I really want to do, you know, what he wants. And I really want to be a loving wife and I really want to be what he wants. But that’s not he’s not seeing you. What you want to be and what you say. You want to do it. He’s seeing what you actually do. He sees your actions. Are you really behaving like a loving wife or are you following after your flesh and acting selfishly and impatiently? And what are you really obeying? Because that’s whose slave you really are.
Alan [00:14:24] So verse 17 of Romans six says, But thanks be to God that though you are slaves of sin, you became obedient. From the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed. So you have to become to me, that’s a process. You became obedient. But it’s from the heart. I have a lot of people that are trying to deal with sin and the external fruit of it. The behavior rather than dealing with the heart. If we deal with the root, we deal with the fruit. As our friend at Delph says, we time with him with the podcasts on trust. But you deal with the root. You deal with the fruit. If you have good root, you have good fruit. If you have bad root, you got bad fruit.
Pauly [00:15:13] So you become obedient from the heart. To that form of teaching to which you were committed. So if you have teaching that you were committed, that means that you actually learned something. So what are we learning? We should be learning from the word of God. That’s why we have time with him. It’s not just to check off a box and then it goes on, as it says. And having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. What a great thing to be. Slaves of righteousness. Right? Living and see the fruit of that. So just to learn how to walk in obedience from the heart, putting to death the deeds of the flesh, because we have accepted the righteousness of God in Christ that he says we are if we are his children. And if you’ve never received Christ, if you’ve never really come to know him, it’s gonna be hard to see this happen. But you have to ask him to come into your life to put to death the selfishness and the pride and ask for forgiveness that he could come into your life and change you and make you into the person that he wants you to be. That he designed you to be. And if that’s you right now and you want to come to know Jesus for the first time, just ask him, Lord, come into my life. I ask you to forgive me for walking away from you, for not being willing to walk in your ways. And I give my life to you right now in the name of Jesus. And if you’ve done that, he came in. And first, John tells us the witness is this, that God has given us eternal life. This life is in the sun. If you have the sun, you have life. If you don’t have the sun, you don’t have life. These things I have written to you. John says that you may know that you have eternal life. And so right now, you can know that you have eternal life because you let go of your life. And you asked him to have his life.
Pauly [00:17:35] So when that happens, when a person gives his life to Christ. When I gave my life to Christ, I had a lot of things that I was enslaved to, that he came in and took over from me. He took some very outward things, like smoking and drinking and flirting with men and those kinds of things that he said, this is displeasing to me. This is not my plan for you. And I just went, yes, Lord, I want to be free from those things. I want you to fill me with your spirit and give me the power to be the person I really want to be. But I didn’t have the strength to be apart from his forgiveness and his strength. So there were a lot of initially, a lot of very big outward things that God took from me and healed me from. But that was, whatever, 46 years ago. And so there are still what is my flesh now? What are the things that I still wrestle with? I don’t have to deal with drinking and smoking and those kinds of major outward habits anymore. But there are still everyday pockets of selfishness that I need to give over to Christ and allow him to take from me so that his spirit shines through me.
Alan [00:19:23] So as we wrap this up, second Peter verse two says, Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus, our Lord, seeing that his divine power, it’s his power, has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness through the true knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and excellence. For by these he is granted to us His precious and magnificent promises in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust. So that’s my commendation to you today. Walk worthy in the Lord. By His grace and peace that’s multiplied to you by his divine power. He is the one that will allow you to walk in newness of life.
Alan [00:20:21] And so we pray you will walk your talk today.
Pauly [00:20:27] This has been walking our talk with Alan and Pauly Heller, where we put into action those principles. We know from God’s word one step at a time. You can find more help at our website: walkandtalk.org