Romans 6:23 – For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (NIV)
As drivers or passengers on the roads, all of us have seen speed limit signs. These signs tell us what the maximum safe speed is for travel on a given road.
Now we can travel at that speed and have no problems, or we can exceed that speed and then face the possibility of being stopped by the police. If stopped, we face the possibility of paying a fine for exceeding the speed. Many times that fine is related to how much one has exceeded the speed limit — the more the speed is over the limit, the greater the fine will be.
In the state of Pennsylvania, they used to post along the highways a sign that told how much fine one would pay related to one's speed over the limit. So, for example, in those days, if someone were caught doing between 56 and 60 M.P.H., one would be fined $50.00. If caught doing between 60 and 65 M.P.H., one would be fined $75.00.
Similarly, in Ontario, on Highway 401 between Kingston and Toronto, there are signs that indicate fines for going a certain speed. The sign states that for those travelling 100 km/h, the fine is $0. Going 120 km/h, the fine is $90.00. Doing 135 km/h, the fine is $245.00. So there is a very clear posting of the consequences of one's actions on the road. The consequences can be either good or bad.
In the today's scripture, we see very clearly what the consequences are for a life of sin. The wages we receive for sin is death. It is very clear and to the point here. The sign is up and we see it. The beautiful thing about this verse is that while we are told that the wages of sin is death, we are also told that the gift of God is eternal life. It is God who negates the wage of sin that is rightly due to us. He takes away the consequences of sin with his gift. So, do we ignore the sign that is up, by continuing to live in sin and speeding towards death, or do we show gratitude for the gift that God has given us?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, we have lived lives of sin through our words and our actions. The wages for our lives should be death, but we give you praise and glory, for you in your mercy have given us the gift of eternal life. In Jesus' name. Amen.