Romans 8:12-13 What Do I Do When I Sin?

The Text

Romans 8:12–13 (CSB) So then, brothers and sisters, we are not obligated to the flesh to live according to the flesh, because if you live according to the flesh, you are going to die. But if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

The Support

1 Samuel 17:48–51 (CSB) When the Philistine started forward to attack him, David ran quickly to the battle line to meet the Philistine. David put his hand in the bag, took out a stone, slung it, and hit the Philistine on his forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell facedown to the ground. David defeated the Philistine with a sling and a stone. David overpowered the Philistine and killed him without having a sword. David ran and stood over him. He grabbed the Philistine’s sword, pulled it from its sheath, and used it to kill him. Then he cut off his head. When the Philistines saw that their hero was dead, they fled.

We have no doubt that we are not David in this story. David is the foreshadow to Christ--an sinful man who God had grace upon and supernaturally swapped his heart for his own. Goliath is not the circumstances in our lives that keep us down but it is the sin that breaks every second of our lives. We are the Israelites cowering in fear because we lack the power and the strength to kill off sin.

Yet, when Christ placed himself on that cross, that was where the sin of every believer went to die. Now, because Christ perfectly conquered sin once and for all and this was nicely foreshadowed by David, what does this mean us? Let us look now upon those same scared Israelites:

2 Samuel 21:15–22 (CSB) The Philistines again waged war against Israel. David went down with his soldiers, and they fought the Philistines, but David became exhausted. Then Ishbi-benob, one of the descendants of the giant, whose bronze spear weighed about eight pounds and who wore new armor, intended to kill David. But Abishai son of Zeruiah came to his aid, struck the Philistine, and killed him. Then David’s men swore to him, “You must never again go out with us to battle. You must not extinguish the lamp of Israel.” After this, there was another battle with the Philistines at Gob. At that time Sibbecai the Hushathite killed Saph, who was one of the descendants of the giant. Once again there was a battle with the Philistines at Gob, and Elhanan son of Jaare-oregim the Bethlehemite killed Goliath of Gath. The shaft of his spear was like a weaver’s beam. At Gath there was still another battle. A huge man was there with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot—twenty-four in all. He, too, was descended from the giant. When he taunted Israel, Jonathan, son of David’s brother Shimei, killed him. These four were descended from the giant in Gath and were killed by David and his soldiers.

Whoa, there were even more giants in the land? Why didn't we ever hear about this before? Maybe the teacher didn't know what to do with this. But we know because we are reading Romans 8:12-13. And because of Romans 8:12-13, we now know what to do.

We are to kill off our own sin.

Where do you see God in the text? What does the text say about God?


God is the only way you can kill off the sin in your life because of the perfect life and death of Christ alone.

But if you think you are going to do this alone, you are gloriously mistaken.

Ephesians 6:10–13 (CSB) Finally, be strengthened by the Lord and by his vast strength. Put on the full armor of God so that you can stand against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens. For this reason take up the full armor of God, so that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having prepared everything, to take your stand.

David could not don Saul's armor to slay Goliath. This wasn't just mere flesh and blood but David stood "against rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens." Why would the anything man could do or invent to help us wage ware in the spirtual? Man cannot!

The Gospel

God has to give you six things in order for you to battle spiritually and against sin:

Ephesians 6:14a (CSB) Stand, therefore, with truth like a belt around your waist

God gives you His truth like a belt around your waist

John 14:6-7 (CSB) Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will also know my Father. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”

Ephesians 6:14b (CSB) righteousness like armor on your chest,

God gives you His righteousness like armor on your chest

Matthew 5:20 (CSB) For I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never get into the kingdom of heaven.

2 Corinthians 5:21 (CSB) He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Ephesians 6:15 Ephesians 6:15 (CSB) and your feet sandaled with readiness for the gospel of peace.

God gives you of peace strapped to your feet like sandals

Romans 1:16-17 (CSB) For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, first to the Jew, and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith, just as it is written: The righteous will live by faith.

Romans 10:15 (CSB) And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news.

Ephesians 6:16 (CSB) In every situation take up the shield of faith with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

God gives you faith like a shield with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one

Genesis 3:1-5 (CSB) Now the serpent was the most cunning of all the wild animals that the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You can’t eat from any tree in the garden’?”

The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit from the trees in the garden. But about the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden, God said, ‘You must not eat it or touch it, or you will die.’”

“No! You will certainly not die,” the serpent said to the woman. “In fact, God knows that when you eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Matthew 17:19-20 (CSB) Then the disciples approached Jesus privately and said, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?”

“Because of your little faith,” he told them. “For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will tell this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

Ephesians 2:8-9 (CSB) For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift— not from works, so that no one can boast.

Galatians 2:20 (CSB) I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

Ephesians 6:17a (CSB) Take the helmet of salvation

God gives salvation worn like an helmet

Matthew 1:21 (CSB) She will give birth to a son, and you are to name him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”

1 Peter 5:4 (CSB) And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.

Romans 8:30 (CSB) And those he predestined, he also called; and those he called, he also justified; and those he justified, he also glorified.

Ephesians 6:17b (CSB) the sword of the Spirit—which is the word of God.

God gives the sword of the Spirit—which is the word of God

Psalms 19:7-14 (CSB)
The instruction of the LORD is perfect,
renewing one’s life;
the testimony of the LORD is trustworthy,
making the inexperienced wise.
The precepts of the LORD are right,
making the heart glad;
the command of the LORD is radiant,
making the eyes light up.
The fear of the LORD is pure,
enduring forever;
the ordinances of the LORD are reliable
and altogether righteous.
They are more desirable than gold—
than an abundance of pure gold;
and sweeter than honey
dripping from a honeycomb.
In addition, your servant is warned by them,
and in keeping them there is an abundant reward.
Who perceives his unintentional sins?
Cleanse me from my hidden faults.
Moreover, keep your servant from willful sins;
do not let them rule me.
Then I will be blameless
and cleansed from blatant rebellion.
May the words of my mouth
and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable to you,
LORD, my rock and my Redeemer.

Hebrews 4:12 (CSB) For the word of God is living and effective and sharper than any double-edged sword, penetrating as far as the separation of soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

Luke 24:25-27 (CSB) He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Wasn’t it necessary for the Messiah to suffer these things and enter into his glory?” Then beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted for them the things concerning himself in all the Scriptures.

Our Response

1. Pray for all the saints:

Ephesians 6:18-20 (CSB) Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request, and stay alert with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints. Pray also for me, that the message may be given to me when I open my mouth to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel. For this I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I might be bold enough to speak about it as I should.

2. Be zealous, repent, be with God, and go and conquer:

Revelation 3:19–22 (CSB) As many as I love, I rebuke and discipline. So be zealous and repent. See! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. “To the one who conquers I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne. “Let anyone who has ears to hear listen to what the Spirit says to the churches.”