“Be killing sin or it will be killing you” – John Owen
The Puritans called the battle with sin – mortification. The goal is to embrace Paul’s words from the eighth chapter of Romans: “For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live” – Romans 8:13. Even after a person becomes a follower of Jesus, they must seek to intentionally and decisively win the battle with sin.
As I think about that battle and my own journey to mortify sin, I’ve developed a battle cry:
The battle is within;
Daily I must fight;
Death comes from sin,
Killed only by Christ’s might.
In August 2017 I gave six messages on the mortification of sin to the student body of Cedarville University. My aim was to help them understand and apply a biblical strategy for killing sin.
Screenshots not chosen by me but left for your enjoyment!
The Battle-Lines (Colossians 3:1-4) – The battle with sin starts by understanding justification, glorification, and sanctification. Mortification begins as we embrace our position in Christ.
Live by Dying (Colossians 3:5-7) – What does it means to “put sin to death”? In order for sin to be defeated we must know what this biblical statement means and how to apply it practically.
Inside Out (Romans 7:14-25) – Even after conversion sin is still a problem. Killing sin requires a knowledge of the heart-based war zone within each of us and how to address our actions, thoughts, and desires.
True Freedom (Romans 6) – What does spiritual progress look like? How do we change? Romans 6 helps us see our freedom in Christ and the practical implications.
Empowered by the Spirit (Galatians 5) – The Holy Spirit works in believers to create new life, obedience, and the fruit of the Spirit. By understanding his power, we are able to see the hold of sin weaken and greater godliness take root in our lives.
Weapons of our Warfare (Ephesians 6) – The armor of God and the spiritual disciplines are the means by which God empowers our mortification. These spiritual resources arm us for the daily battle.