knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin;Romans 6:6(NASB)
One could contemplate the wealth of truth packed into this single verse of Scripture for a lifetime and only scratch the surface of God's amazing grace towards those who, by faith in Christ, are united with HIM. Jesus is our Substitute, our Representative, and heavenly Advocate. Jesus is the Author of a new creation, Whose resurrected life has become our new, born-again life. In Christ we have been made an entirely new race of people, which has removed us from the power of sin and death in our lives, and released us from the eternal condemnation of God's holy law.
Jesus hung on the Cross alone and paid the price of our sins alone. There is nothing that sinful man could ever do - past, present, or future, through time and into eternity, that is sufficient to pay the incalculable price for our sin. As our substitute, His sacrificial death paid the price for our sin - releasing us from the penalty of sin. As our representative, His finished work on the Cross fulfilled all the righteous requirements of the law on our account - releasing us from the power of sin. As our substitute, He died for our sins and we are forgiven and declared righteous. As our representative, He died unto sin, rendering us no longer under the wrath of God and lifting us from the hand of His righteous condemnation.
As our substitute, Jesus went to the Cross alone, but as our representative, He took US with Himself to the Cross. Jesus took our many sins to the Cross together with our old, fallen sinful nature, and there He paid the price of our sin by His death and in so doing, in the sight of God, we died together with Him. The death of Christ rendered us dead in the sight of the law, freed from the power of sin over us, released us from the eternal punishment that we justly deserve, and pronounced us righteous in the sight of God.
NOTE: we are not made sinless or innocent, but declared righteous. He (though sinless and innocent) identified with our sin so that we (although sinful and guilty) could be identified with HIS righteousness.
As the believer's substitute, He paid the price for our sins and rendered us forgiven. But as the Christian's representative, He broke the power of sin and death within; setting us free from the authority of the law and delivering us from the consequences of our imputed sin nature, which is a slave to the world, the flesh, and the devil.
We are forgiven of sin because He died for us, but we are delivered from sin because we died in Him. God knew that there was no way that we could pay the price for our sins and so He died in our place. God also knew that there was no way that once we are saved by grace through faith, we could obey the law, resist worldly lusts, curb our fleshly desires, resist the devil, and be freed from the power of sin in our own human strength. God knew that the old sin nature that was imputed to us via Adam was incurable; incapable of being reformed or improved, unable to be mortified in our own strength, and incapable of being trained to become righteous.
It is impossible for the old sin nature to be reformed or cleansed. Our old sinful self can never be made righteous and so God, in His grace, gave us a new nature - a new life - the resurrected life of Christ which He imputed to us by faith at the point of salvation. When we were saved we were not only given the indwelling Holy Spirit of God to guide us but also a new, born-again life to be guided by Him. At salvation, we received Christ's resurrected life, which gives us the opportunity to draw on His sufficient power, for without Him our old nature can do nothing, but in Him our new life can do all things for He is the power of God, from Whom our strength is drawn.
Let us be diligent not to slip back to walking in the ways of our old nature, but to keep that old nature nailed to the Cross in the place of death so that the life of Christ may grow from glory to glory as we are conformed by the indwelling Holy Spirit into the likeness of Christ Himself.
One could contemplate the wealth of truth packed into this single verse for a lifetime and only scratch the surface of God's amazing grace towards us, but praise God that in Christ as our representative Man, we are no longer slaves to sin and Satan, and we are no longer slaves to the law - for we died to sin and we died to the Law - and our life is hid with Christ in God.
Heavenly Father, please open my understanding more and more to the wonderful truths that are contained in this astonishing verse of Scripture. Thank You that my old sin nature was crucified with Christ. Thank You that because Christ is my representative, my 'old Adamic self' was crucified with Him so that I no longer need to be a slave to sin, but am set free to live holy as unto the Lord. In Jesus' name, AMEN.