The Fruit of Sin
Romans 6:20-21 – “For when you were the servants of sin, you were free from righteousness. What fruit had you then in those things whereof you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.”
WITHOUT A DOUBT, CHAPTER 6 of Romans is one of the single greatest chapters found in the whole of the Word of God. In this chapter, the Apostle Paul began his explanation of the sin nature, the damage it can cause, and the havoc it can create in the life of the believer if he does not understand its magnitude.
As Paul would explain, we are now dead to the sin nature due to our faith in the finished work of Christ, which frees us from its clutches, never to bother us again. As one might understand, all of this took place at Calvary when we were baptized into Christ, buried with Him by baptism into His death, and raised with Him in newness of life (Rom. 6:3-5). As a result, the sin nature is to remain dormant in the life of the believer — never to bother that person again — only as his faith remains in Christ and the Cross.
As we travel through this chapter, we will see Paul begin to express his feelings to the Christians at Rome and remind them of what they were before they were so wondrously and gloriously saved. He will tell them of how they were servants of sin, but now they are servants of righteousness, and he will explain again to them how all of this came about. Paul will remind them of what became of their lives of sin, which was not a pretty picture. For those who refuse to believe, I would like to take this opportunity to explain what sin entails and the price one pays to live a life of sin and shame.
SIN LEADS US TO INIQUITY
I believe the above title is pretty self-explanatory but please indulge me as I explain what this means. Without a doubt, there is a destructive power to sin. It brings about an uncleanness that has plagued the entirety of the human race. Sin brings us to a place where one sin leads to another, and it grows in its intensity and severity, which makes it impossible for an individual to break the cycle on his own.
In other words, sin never remains static but ever grows. It is as if we become trapped in quicksand, and if you know anything about quicksand, you know that the harder you fight, the quicker you sink. This is a perfect description of sin, for it drags us down with us being unable to change our direction. It leads from one iniquity to another.
SIN LEADS TO SLAVERY
There is an absolute truth to this statement, for sin ever leads to being enslaved, and there can be nothing worse than being a slave. Being a slave to sin presents a horrible existence, for it never brings any peace whatsoever but only suffering and failure. I know that many claim they can handle their sin, but all sin starts out innocently.
As the Holy Spirit proclaims in Hebrews 11:25, the pleasure of sin only lasts for a season, and then it leads to bondage unlike anything that person has ever experienced before. I want to say this again: All sin begins in an innocent manner, but it never remains innocent. It grows and leads that person into a slavery that he cannot remove its grip. Every alcoholic started with one drink. Every drug addict started with one hit.
Every person who is an addict of something or the other began with one sin, but it quickly ballooned into something that he or she could not escape. No matter how hard they try, they cannot free themselves. The only freedom that one can truly have is the freedom that is found in Christ Jesus, for He can deliver the captives. He can set the individuals free from all sin, and it was all done through the Cross.
SIN LEADS TO SHAME
This is exactly what the fruit of sin produces — shame. Shame simply means “a painful feeling of humiliation or distress by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behavior.” Everyone of us has experienced shame at some point in our lives, but living a life of constant sin brings constant shame upon the individual. To sin means “to miss the mark,” the mark that is set by God. All have come short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23), which means that we all have failed God due to sin. This means that all sin is against God, and all sin is wrong, and will always result in the feeling of shame, guilt, and disgrace. Without the Lord, there is nothing that can be done by the person to alleviate that feeling of guilt and shame. Any satisfaction that is felt is fleeting; it is momentary and will never last.
SIN LEADS TO DEATH
Finally, the fruit of sin leads to death, and death refers to both physical and spiritual. Both speak of separation from God, and there can be nothing worse than being separated from God. The last verse in Chapter 6 of Romans tells us that “the wages of sin is death.” This means that sin does pay, but not in the way that we would like.
In fact, the word wages found in this verse means “whatever is bought or purchased to be eaten with bread,” such as fish, etc. It has reference to a Roman soldier and his being partially paid in monetary wages and partially in food. Once again, Paul was saying that sin does pay, but its wages is death (separation from God), both physically and spiritually. This is a life that does not seem to be too enjoyable, but unfortunately, millions have suffered and are in hell right now because of the fruit of sin.
However, the person need not live that kind of life, for there is an answer for all who suffer from sin, and that answer is found in a person, Jesus Christ. He alone can bring about the freedom from sin and give us life eternal. This was all accomplished for us through what Jesus Christ did for us at Calvary’s Cross, where all sin was paid. It was paid by the spotless, precious blood of Jesus Christ. He can remove the guilt of sin and bring us into a right relationship with God. The only thing that we have to do is simply believe.
One does not have to jump through hoops or recite certain creeds. All one has to do is simply say, “Lord, I believe.” The jailer asked Paul, “What must I do to be saved?” Paul responded, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you shall be saved, and your house” (Acts 16:30-31). There is an alternative to the fruit of sin, and that is the fruit of holiness, which we will get into in the next article.
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