I just say this to you: If there has not been a time in your life where there was a transformation, where you went from being the old, to the new; walking in oldness of life, into newness of life; I am not saying you know the exact hour or the day or the week or the month. But if you can't look at some point in your life where you fell in love with Jesus Christ, where there was a genuine faith that produced obedience from the heart, not where you were being just whipped by the Law that said, "Don't do what you love to do," but where there was a change of heart. Where there was, for the first time, a hungering and thirsting after righteousness. If you don't have that, you gotta have that. You gotta have it. Because whatever faith you have is dead. That is what Scripture tells us. This isn't my saying, this isn't my doing, this isn't my doctrine. This is the Bible's. This is why you cannot continue in sin if you've genuinely been converted.
If you've been justified, you've also been regenerated. That means you've been brought to spiritual life. And those who are spiritually alive are true Jews, and they are circumcised in heart. They've had that old foreskin cut away. That old flesh has been crucified. And it's real. (We are going to look at this more next week,) but the old self, the flesh, is crucified with Christ. That means there is death. There is putting to death. And we'll see that more when we get into [chapters] 7 and 8. Brethren, this is what Paul is saying here why we can't continue.
Now listen, I just want to say this in the end. This is so important. Many, many, many people want to believe in Jesus in order to be forgiven and justified, so that they will escape hell; who really don't want to be set free from the dominion of sin. Let me tell you this: There are people all over the place who do this. They call to Jesus, and He doesn't save them. They say, "I want to be saved, but He's not saving me." But if you inquire, what you find out is, they want to be saved from hell but not really from sin. Listen: Jesus never says you need to conquer the power of sin. Repentance isn't cleaning up sin in your own life. That is not what it is. Repentance is coming to Jesus to do all those radical things you saw there; knowing this, if you come to Him, He will break the power of all sin in your life. He will make you obedient, He will marry you, He will make you fruitful, He will kill sin all over. There is not one you can hold on to. That is what repentance is.
Repentance is, "Lord, wash me, clean me of all of it. Save me from all of it." The problem is we got too many people that have one or two idols in their life. They don't want hell, and so they come, and they say, "Lord, save me." But they've got this thing back here that they really don't want to be saved from. They really don't want the power of it broken. They really don't want to become obedient against it. Which is what obedience is, right? Sin is disobedience. Obedient from the heart means Jesus is going to make you not want that thing. Isn't that what being saved and having the dominion is? All sin, it's coming to Jesus and saying, "I am a slave to it. Free me. Lord, free me." That's it. That slave who really loved the taskmaster and said he wanted to be free, but he really liked some of the slavery? Jesus came to set us free. And if He sets you free, you are free indeed.
Don't come to Jesus, saying, "I want You to set me free," when you really want to stay in bondage to some sin. Which is what it is when you've got something you don't want to let go of. When you've got a sin in your life you don't want to let go of, what you'really saying is, "I want to continue in bondage to it." "I got that girlfriend, that yeah we are kinda living in a certain relationship with, and I really don't want to give that up." "I've got my money," You see, that's exactly how it was, remember the rich young ruler? He had that thing. "You go sell all that you have." But the thing was, he didn't really want to be saved from the power of his riches. He didn't want to. Jesus would have saved him from it, Jesus would have broke the power of it, Jesus would have set him free, but he didn't want to be set free.
It wasn't just that he didn't want to give it up, he didn't want to be set free from his love of it. He loved it; and he wanted to keep that love. If you've got some love of some sin, but look, whatever sins you've committed, if you really, genuinely... (I know this first hand.) I saw the gospel, and I probably had, in the beginning when I heard it, I probably had ten things - I didn't want to go to hell, and I realized I was - I probably had ten things I didn't want to give up. As I really began to look at God's Word and I saw, "What will it profit a man if he loses his own soul?" I said, "Yeah, boy, if Jesus says you've gotta forsake everything to be My disciple, which He does say by the way in Luke 14:33, 'Unless you forsake all that you have, you can't be My disciple.'" And I am thinking, "What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and he loses his soul?" Yeah, right, if I hang on to all these; and every time I'd read that, it's like, "Okay, maybe I'll let my motorcycle go. But I still got these..." "Yeah, I'll let ACDC go, but I'm going to keep Van Halen back right now."
I mean, you can laugh. But listen: That rich young ruler is not laughing. And that would be the death of many in this room. You got something you don't want to let go of. I didn't let go of it the first time. In fact, when it came to my music, it took me three times of going back to it. And the Lord kept coming at me: "It's total surrender, and I will save you in a moment." And brethren, that night where I got to the place where I gave up, "Lord, help me." And when I said that, I wanted it. I wanted help with everything. He saved me that moment. There was no pause. And I know that that is the way with Him. If you come on His terms, ready to abandon all of it and let Him heal you from it, you're His. I mean, if you've got faith to believe He can save you and has the power to save you from all of it, and you want to be healed that way, He is just the Physician for you. If you've got a disease, but you only want to be part-way healed, He is not in that business. All or nothing. Total heal or none.