The title of this post comes from Romans 6:23 (KJV) For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. Embodied within that one scripture resides several key words. Those words are wages, sin, death, gift, God, eternal life, Jesus Christ and Lord. Let’s look at those words, dissect them, and apply them to our lives.
At our church, we occasionally sing a congregational song entitled Payday is Coming After a While. (You have to hear it to feel the joy that it brings) But the wages that I am speaking of, based on Romans 6:23, are not so joyful or rewarding. Those wages represent the payday that comes at the end of a life lived in sin.
The word “wages” means a fixed, regular payment, typically paid on a daily or weekly basis, made by an employer to an employee. We know the word to mean the money that you make in exchange for work that you provide or perform. But did you ever think about the fact that sin pays a wage or provides a payday? When you are working for money, you expect a pay check. Well, sin also provides a paycheck. But it might not be one that you want to earn. There is something that is coming up again after you sin.
The next word to be discussed in the scripture is the word “sin.” “What exactly is sin?”, You might ask. The Bible tells us that sin is the transgression of God’s Law. 1 John 3:4
Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
Sin is whatever God tells us to do through His Holy Word that we refuse to do. It’s also whatever He tells us not to do that we do. Sin is disobedience to the ordinances of God.
In the first Book of the Holy Bible Adam and Eve committed the original sin. God told them that they were not to eat of a particular tree and they ate of it. Now, in the minds of us ordinary people some of us might think, “Why was that so bad? All they did was eat of forbidden fruit.” But you have to understand that all disobedience to God is sin. Our God is sovereign. He makes the rules, and we are to follow them. He knows what’s best for us and it doesn’t matter how small a matter may be in our little minds, if it is disobedience, it is sin. And sin is going to pay an awful wage. Every human being on earth that came from Adam and Eve (and we all did) was born with a sin nature. You don’t have to teach a child to lie, do you? No, lying came with the package. You don’t have to teach a child to steal, do you? No, it came with his package at birth.
Now let’s look at a few examples of sin. You already know them, of course, and many of them you may have committed. It helps to put a tag on sin, though, because some may dare say that they are not sinners. A very concise list includes such things as pride, abortion, adultery, fornication, lying, cheating, stealing, drugging, and alcoholism. We could go on and on because all manner of wrongdoings come under the general heading of sin. These and all sins generate a wage or paycheck. The paycheck generated is, yes, death. Let’s talk about it.
Before Adam and Eve committed the original sin, God warned Adam in Genesis 3:3 that if he partook of a particular tree, he would die.
But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
Adam and Eve rebelled against God and ate of the fruit, thereby sinning. That sin caused death to come upon the world and all of us. Since that time every one of us is going to die a natural death (except those who escape through the Rapture). That’s just the way that it is. But that’s not the worst kind of death. Their sin cost them and us eternal separation from God, which is a spiritual death. God is a Holy God and sin cannot abide in His presence. Since the soul is an eternal soul, our souls have to spend eternity some place. Unfortunately, that eternal place for the sinner (along with Satan, who enticed the original couple to sin, and all of his demons) is The Lake of Fire by way of Hell.
But don’t despair. I have good news for you. God looked around creation for a vessel pure and Holy enough to die for man so that man’s sins could be remitted. The only individual that was able to fit the bill became sin itself so that the justice of God could be satisfied. Though Jesus never committed a single sin, He became sin for us. He absorbed the impact of God’s hatred for sin for us. Jesus hung, bled and died on Calvary’s Hill so that we might have a right to the Tree of Life. Jesus rose again so that we could regain fellowship with our Holy God and so that we could avoid the Lake of Fire. Our key scripture, Romans 6: 23 says the gift of God is eternal life. It is the gift of God, your and my Creator, that is the answer to eternal separation from God. His gift to mankind is eternal life through His only begotten Son. The word eternal means never-ending or existing forever. God devised a solution to our sin problem that allows us to live eternally with Him. That gift of God has a name, and that name is Jesus Christ.
Acts 4:12 (KJV) tells us
Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
Jesus Christ is our King of Kings and our Lord of Lords. He gave His life so that you and I could have a right to eternal Life. A Holy God who loves you gave his only Son so that we might live. They both gave the best that they had for us. Now all that we have to do is receive Jesus as our Lord and Savior.
John 3:16 (KJV) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Apostle Peter said in Acts 2:38
Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Let’s look at our original Scripture one last time:
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Please receive the gift that God gave us so that you might live eternally with Him. The wages, or paycheck of sin, is death. Please choose life. I did.