Of the Resurrection
Romans 6:8-11
Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:…

The two principal words of the passage are "knowing" (ver. 9), and "counting" (ver. 11). Knowing and calling ourselves to account for our knowledge: two points needing ever to be conjoined. Oft we hear, but small reckoning we make of it. What Christ did at Easter we know; but to what then we are to do we give no great regard, Now this Scripture teaches us that Christian knowledge is not a knowledge without all manner of account, but that we are accountants for it, especially in the matter of Christ's resurrection.


1. The means of it. Not by actual vision, as in the case of the apostles, but by their testimony which is —

(1) Ample — for all the apostles were witnesses, and if they are not enough five hundred saw Christ risen (1 Corinthians 15:6).

(2) Trustworthy. For the witnesses —

(a) Were not credulous, but otherwise (Mark 16:11; Luke 24:11, 13, 41; Matthew 28:17; John 20:25). That is ever best known that is most doubted of; and as says, "All this doubting was by them made, that we might be out of doubt, and know that Christ is risen."(b) Lost their living and their life by their testimony.

2. The particulars.

(1) That Christ is risen. Death is a fall; it came with the fall of Adam, and was a fall from which, but for one thing, there had been no rising. But by Christ's rising it falls out to be a fall, from which we may get up again. For if one be risen another may be; and if Christ rose in our nature then is our nature risen; and if our nature then our persons may be (ver. 4). Bernard well observes, "that Christ is risen only but not wholly," till we be risen too. This then we know, first, that death is a fall, not like that of Pharaoh into the sea, who never came up more, but like that of Jonas (Matthew 25:41); not like that of the angels into the bottomless pit, there to stay forever, but like that of men into their beds; not as a log or stone to the ground, which, where it falleth there it lieth still; but as of a wheat corn which is quickened and springeth up again.

(2) That Christ now dieth not as the widow's son, ruler's daughter, and Lazarus did. And if we only rise as they did, this mortality of ours will be to us as the prisoner's chain from which he escapes only to be pulled back again; but if we rise as Christ rose, then our resurrection will be no return to the same life, but a passing over to a new.

(3) That from henceforth "death hath no more dominion over Him." Three times in chap 5. Paul saith, "death reigned," as if it were some mighty monarch having great dominions. And so it is; for how many dangers, diseases, miseries, there be of this mortal life in which we live under death's jurisdiction and arrest; and if we escape them we are still under the fear of them which is death's dominion too (Job 18:14). And when we are out of this life unless we are in Christ we are not out of his dominion. But he hath no dominion over Christ; Christ hath dominion over him (Hebrews 2:14; 1 Corinthians 15:55).

3. The reasons. The Romans loved to see the grounds of what they received and not the bare articles. Indeed it might trouble them why Christ should need to rise since they saw no reason why He should die. The truth is we cannot speak of His rising well without mention of what He rose from. The two are never separated by the apostle, and their union serves many good purposes. It shows His human nature and weakness in dying, and His Divine nature and power in rising; His two offices — His priesthood and sacrifice in His death, and His kingdom in the glory of His resurrection; His two main benefits — the death of death in His death, and the reviving of life in His resurrection; the two moulds wherein our lives are to be cast. Of them both, then, briefly —

(1) The cause of His dying. "Sin." To sin He died; and yet not simply to sin, but with reference to us, i.e., He would save us, and because else He could not save us. By justice sin must have death — our death, for the sin was ours. This His love to us could not endure; therefore that we might not die to sin He died. But why "once"? Because that was enough "to take away" (John 1:29), "to abolish" (Acts 3:19), "to draw dry" (Hebrews 9:28), utterly to exhaust all the sins, of all the sinners, of all the world. The excellency of His Person that performed it, the excellency of the obedience He performed, and the excellency of the humility and charity wherewith He performed it, were of such value as made His once dying "a plenteous redemption" (See Ephesians 2:7; Ephesians 3:20; 1 Timothy 1:14).

(2) The cause of His living — God who had by His death received full satisfaction, reached Him, as it were, His hand and raised Him to life; and not only raised Him, but for that cause exalted Him (Philippians 2:8, 9), to live with Him in glory forever. For as when He lived to man He lived to much misery, so now He liveth to God He liveth in all felicity (Psalm 36:9).


1. Of our comings in. An account there is growing to us by Christ's rising of much benefit. The hope of gaining a better life is our comfort against the fear of losing this (1 Peter 1:3); and through this we comfort ourselves in bereavement (1 Thessalonians 4:18; John 11:23), and in regard to the issue of our work (1 Corinthians 15:58).

2. Of our goings out.

(1) The sum or charge of which account is set down in these words that we be like Christ; that what He hath wrought for us He wrought in us.

(a) Like Him in His dying: for He died not only to offer a sacrifice for us but to leave an example to us. Like Him, too, in His rising: for He arose not only that we might be begotten to a lively hope, but also that we might be planted in the likeness of His resurrection.

(b) Like Him in His living to God.

(2) The discharge and means of it. "In Jesus Christ our Lord" (ver. 11). Out of Christ we can do nothing towards this account; but in and with Him enabling us to it we can do all things. And enable us He will as not only having passed the resurrection, but being the Resurrection itself. If in the days of His flesh there went virtue out from even the edge of His garment, much more from His own self, and those two principal and powerful actions of His own self, there issueth a Divine power: from His death a power working in the old man, or flesh, to mortify it; from His resurrection a power working on the new man, or spirit, to quicken it. A power able to roll back any stone of an evil custom and to dry up any issue though it have run upon us twelve years long. And this power is that Divine quality of grace which we receive from Him.

(Bp. Andrewes.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:

WEB: But if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him;

Love of Religion, a New Nature
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