But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness.
"If Christ is in you". Following on from v9, Paul is talking about the Christian. But what does it mean to have Christ in us? It isn't literal, obviously. Here are some possible reasons for Pauls saying this: 1. We have the Holy Spirit in us, and The Holy Spirit is God, and Jesus is God. Therefore we have Jesus in us (I'm not sure if that's a valid reading of it). 2. It means having the principles or 'spirit' of Christ in us - living how he wants. If we are christians, we need to live like it. There is no such thing as genuine faith without deeds - that faith is dead faith - useless. (James 2:14 onwards). 3. It can be taken as a reference to our unity with Christ - we died with him and we rose with him figuratively. We are co-heirs with him if we are Christians, adopted children of God. We are united to him, and as a church we are the 'body' of Christ with him as our head.
"Your body is dead because of sin" - On reading some commentaries, there seems to be a few views on what this means. Some say it means that we are dead to sin - to the 'flesh' which is how Paul describes the sinful nature previously. It could mean that we are going to die physically, because of our sin, or as a result of Adam's sin - both of those seem valid to me, though forgiven we still will face death. But we have no fear in it. We are saved from God's eternal and just wrath against our sins if we are Christians. Or, it could be Paul continuing on from previous chapters and saying that the 'old man' the sinful man is dead, and we are a new creation in Christ (see 2 Corinthians 5:17). All of these explanations seem reasonable to me, but I haven't explored them thoroughly. One thing to note though, is that sin requires death. We all sin, and by God's perfect law we are all condemned to death - not just physical death, we deserve his wrath eternally (i.e. hell). There is no escape from that, well there wouldn't be, except that Jesus came into the world. He is God, perfect, eternal, creator of the universe. He came to earth as a man, humiliated willingly. He lived, he was mocked and hated, rejected for our sakes, and then murdered by the ones he came to save. But that was all the plan - he came and died and he knew he would. In his death he takes our sin and he takes God's wrath. God dying in our place, The son of God taking the wrath of God which we deserved. Why? For his glory and out of love for us. Yet we are not automatically saved - he calls us to put our faith in him, to repent and turn to him, to give up sin. How do we know Jesus actually dealt with our sin? He rose again. He came back to life and defeated sin and death. He proved that he had truly dealt with sin, because he rose from the dea and death is the penalty for sin. He dealt with it in full and therefore was no longer condemned for our sakes. Therefore there is complete forgiveness in jesus! Turn to him! Repent and Believe for the Kingdom of God is at hand! Mark 1:15! Romans 10:9! Joel 2:32! There is salvation in jesus,a nd in him alone!
"yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness." How are we righteous? Well through Jesus! He died and we take his righteousness, he takes our sin. We are forgiven and 'made right' with God - thats what righteousness means. We are no longer dead in sin, but alive in Christ, no longer enemies of God, but adopted as his children! What a wonderful creator! What a merciful Lord and Saviour!