THE BOOK OF
J. Deering, AncientPath.net
ROMANS CHAPTER 7
Exodus 20:1-17 and Deuteronomy 5:7-21
The pattern of the Law:
The book of Romans reveals that the Law came in to “magnify” sin so that we would know of its power and its penalty, but more importantly that we would know its remedy. While the person of Jesus Christ was hidden in the Old Testament the remedy He would provide was not.
When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden God’s holiness was offended, but God provided a “covering” for their sin so that He could continue to fellowship with and love them through a Substitutionary atonement with the animals who provided the skins to clothe them.
When almost every human alive had spurned God – there was Noah. God’s creation spoiled, but God provided an “ark,” sealed with Kophir, or pitch (the same root word as Forgiveness) to seal up the ark that it would carry them to a new beginning.
When Abraham took his son Isaac to the mount as a sacrifice at the requirement of God, Abraham said, “we will return.” “God will provide Himself and offering.” And God provided a “Substitute” sacrifice for atonement.
As we look at Moses and the giving of THE LAW let us look for God’s provision of Mercy and Grace and the atonement that follows.
Exodus 20:1-17 Deuteronomy 5:7-21
1Then God spoke all these words, saying,
1Then Moses summoned all Israel and said to them: "Hear, O Israel, the statutes and the ordinances which I am speaking today in your hearing, that you may learn them and observe them carefully. 2"The LORD our God made (A)a covenant with us at Horeb. 3"(B)The LORD did not make this covenant with our fathers, but with us, with all those of us alive here today. 4"The LORD spoke to you (C)face to face at the mountain (D)from the midst of the fire, 5while (E)I was standing between the LORD and you at that time, to declare to you the word of the LORD; (F)for you were afraid because of the fire and did not go up the mountain. He said, 6'(G)I am the LORD your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.
7'(H)You shall have no other gods before Me.
I am able to choose God. I am able to place others and things before Him.
I am able not to.
4"(E)You shall not make for yourself [b]an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. 5"(F)You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a (G)jealous God, (H)visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6but showing lovingkindness to (I)thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
8'(I)You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. 9'You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, (J)visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, and on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 10but (K)showing lovingkindness to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
I am able to make idols of heavenly creatures, heavenly powers, earthly creatures, earthly powers, earthly things. I am able to worship them. I am able to serve them. I am able to hate God. Doing so makes God jealous of my affections. Iniquity towards God will be dealt with.
I am able to love God. I am able to keep God’s commandments. I am able to meet God’s requirements. Love towards God will be rewarded with His loving kindness.
7"(J)You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.
11'(L)You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.
I am able to blaspheme God and God’s name. I am able to be found guilty.
I am able to Praise Him. I am able to withstand temptation.
8"Remember (K)the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9"(L)Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10but the seventh day is a Sabbath of the LORD your God; in it (M)you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter, your male or your female servant or your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you. 11"(N)For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
12'(M)Observe the Sabbath day to keep it holy, as the LORD your God commanded you. 13'Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 14but (N)the seventh day is a Sabbath of the LORD your God; in it you shall not do any work, you or your son or your daughter or your male servant or your female servant or your ox or your donkey or any of your cattle or your sojourner who stays with you, so that your male servant and your female servant may rest as well as you. 15'(O)You shall remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and the LORD your God brought you out of there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm; therefore the LORD your God commanded you to observe the Sabbath day.
I am able to disregard God’s will and timetable. I am able to obey or refuse God’s commands. I am able to provoke God’s jealousy. I am able to spend time with God, I am able to ignore spending time with Him. I am able to control my home. I am able to not control my home. I can be cruel to family and servants. I can honor family and servants. I am able to forget His provision. I am able to remember His provision.
I am able to disrespect good parents. I am able to respect good parents. My life may be prolonged or shortened at His command.
13"(Q)You shall not murder.
17'(R)You shall not murder.
I am able to murder, torture, slander, and gossip.
I am able to bring life, healing and comfort. I am able to keep confidence in love.
14"(R)You shall not commit adultery.
18'(S)You shall not commit adultery.
I am able to commit sexual crimes against my partner, my children, my neighbor. I am able to misrepresent my intentions. I am able to commit fraud. I am able to be disloyal, and or dishonorable.
I am able to be faithful in every way to my spouse, my children, and my neighbors.
15"(S)You shall not steal.
19'(T)You shall not steal.
I am able to steal things, hopes, dreams, youth, happiness, hearts, and minds.
I am able to provide for others, to bring hope, to fulfill dreams, to extend youth, happiness, fix broken hearts and minds.
20'(U)You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
I am able to lie, to be deceitful, and act against others.
I am able to tell the truth – always.
17"(V)You shall not covet your neighbor's house; (W)you shall not covet your neighbor's wife or his male servant or his female servant or his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor."
21'(V)You shall not covet your neighbor's wife, and you shall not desire your neighbor's house, his field or his male servant or his female servant, his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.'
I am able to covet people and things of others. I am able to desire to possess them.
I am able to rejoice in the abundance of others and rejoice in my own poverty.
18(X)All the people perceived the thunder and the lightning flashes and the sound of the trumpet and the mountain smoking; and when the people saw it, they trembled and stood at a distance.
22Then the LORD said to Moses, "Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, 'You yourselves have seen that (AD)I have spoken to you from heaven. 23'(AE)You shall not make other gods besides Me; (AF)gods of silver or gods of gold, you shall not make for yourselves. 24'You shall make (AG)an altar of earth for Me, and you shall sacrifice on it your (AH)burnt offerings and your (AI)peace offerings, (AJ)your sheep and your oxen; in every place (AK)where I cause My name to be remembered, I will come to you and bless you. 25'If you make an altar of stone for Me, (AL)you shall not build it of cut stones, for if you wield your tool on it, you will profane it. 26'And you shall not go up by steps to My altar, so that (AM)your nakedness will not be exposed on it.'
22"These words the LORD spoke to
all your assembly at the mountain from the midst of the fire, of the cloud
and of the thick gloom, with a great voice, and He added no more. (W)He
wrote them on two tablets of stone and gave them to me.
In Deuteronomy the Law is followed by the itemization of the sacrifices and the ordinances. With the Law was always GRACE that God provided in case the Law could not be kept. For each violation there was a sacrifice. Atonement was always provided for those who wished it.
With the life, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, atonement became Salvation – where Forgiveness, Justification, Righteousness, and a resurrection life await the one who would believe.
Understanding the Covenants
The basic relationships of the covenants can be best understood as a circular expression: My People (expressed by God) and My God (expressed by individuals). Round and round, back and forth. The contract set forth by God, most often in a unilateral (or unconditional) expression (one sided - God makes the contract). The individual or nation (in Israel's case) enters into an agreement whereby God declares that there is a contract between Himself and another (or others). Nothing the second party can do will break the contract.
In the case of the non-unilateral or conditional covenant, God creates a contract that can be broken by either parties but in practice it is always the 2nd party that fails in the contract and God then either dissolves the contract or previously stated actions come into play in the lives of the 2nd parties.
The Abrahamic Covenant (Genesis 12:1-22:18) - God makes a covenant with Abraham that his name would become great, that he would become the father of many nations, and that all nations of the world would be blessed through the results of this covenant with Abraham.
The central theme of the Bible is the coming of Messiah which would be the major blessing expected through the Abrahamic Covenant.
The Mosaic Covenant (Deuteronomy 30: 1-10) - God makes a covenant with Moses that is based upon Israel's loyalty to the character and code of God. They will be blessed IF they performed positively, according to the covenant, and they would be cursed IF they performed negatively, according to the covenant.
Much of the story of Israel told in the Bible is the inability of Israel to meet the demands and standards put forth in the Mosaic Covenant (the Law) and the ways that God deals with Israel through blessings and cursings in response to Israel's conforming to or lack of conformance to the Mosaic Covenant.
Bible notes seven covenants and they are well worth studying.
1. Adamic Covenant (Genesis 1:26-3:19)
2. Noahic Covenant (Genesis Chapter 9)
3. The Abrahamic Covenant (Genesis 12-22)
4. The Palestinian Covenant (Deuteronomy 30:1-10)
5. The Mosaic Covenant (Deuteronomy Chapter 11)
6. The Davidic Covenant (2 Samuel 7:8-16; Luke 1:32-33)
7. The New Covenant (The Blood and Body of Christ) (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Matthew 5:17; Ephesians 2:8-9)
1 Or do you not know, (A) brethren (for I am speaking to those who know the law), that the law has jurisdiction over a person as long as he lives?
The Law (Mosaic, Jew or Law of life, Gentile) is temporal – belongs to the earth and life. The Law is a kind of unilateral contract. It is in force from an individual’s birth to their death. When a person ceases to live – they cease to be held accountable to the Law. Because the Law is a collection of actions and attitudes that either SHOULD or SHOULD NOT be done or held to, and it is not a system of rewards, but a system of works, penalties, and what to do if you break the Law, it therefore can bring forth no freedom from those penalties.
God made provisions for those who unintentionally broke the demands, but those provisions are works themselves – demands you have to meet – in order for them to be effective, thus they are not rewards but Law.
Following the Law through the sacrifices and ordinances brought a temporary limbo state where the penalty for your “lack of conformity” to the Law was placed “on hold” until the perfect sacrifice (the one which met all of God’s Holy, Just, and Righteous demands) in Jesus Christ’s death.
Without the death of God’s Son on the cross there would be no forgiveness possible for sins committed. Only God’s Son could fulfill the demands of God for the forgiveness of sins. Jesus was God, He was a true man, and He was sinless, therefore He did not have to die for His own sin, but as God He could die for the many and pay all the penalties owed for sin and sins of the many (all). Scripture reveals that the provision that is made through the death of His Son, while made for all, can only be applied to those who willingly choose to receive this precious gift from Him. Part of the ultimate plan of God for man's creation in the first place is to collect for Himself a body of persons who willfully choose Him instead of self, the world, or Lucifer.
Without the Resurrection of God’s son there would be no evidence that Jesus was the Son of God or that sin and death had been dealt with in victory – Without the resurrection we would be “most miserable” as the resurrection proves that the demands of God the Father were met in His Son Jesus Christ.
God’s grace is abundantly evident in the Law even though the Law could not save or bring freedom. The vast amount of “the Law” pertains to WORKS that can provide ATONEMENT (a temporary forgiveness, whereby God was able to take the sins of the Jew who followed the sacrificial laws to “sweep under the rug,” but only based on the finished work of His Son Jesus that was yet to come – more than a thousand years (at the time). Without the death of God’s Son Jesus – there would be no ATONEMENT, no FORGIVENESS, for anyone, ever.
2 For (B) the married woman is bound by law to her husband while he is living; but if her husband dies, she is released from the law concerning the husband.
Paul’s example is specifically Mosaic Law – marriage is defined there as part of the Word of God. The relationship of husband and wife is a revealed truth – even though some cultures have practiced husband and wife marriage before God revealed it in The Law. It isn’t until God spoke that we KNOW that marriage has responsibilities and accountabilities attached to it before Him, and that they are part of His Holy and Just demands.
3 So then, if while her husband is living she is joined to another man, she shall be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an adulteress though she is joined to another man.
It is good to note that accountability and responsibility are tied to specific people and situations – that even within the Law there can be seen that the “spirit of the Law” is more important than the “letter.” The letter of the law says “thou shalt not commit adultery.” The spirit of the Law is all about provision, justice and grace. God’s Law was put in place to provide for the protection of the marriage as the perfect way for a man and a woman to honor God in a way that reflects His nature and character.
Adultery is the antithesis of the Law. Adultery defrauds one or both partners, as well as others involved. The promise is that a man and a woman shall become one flesh – Adultery breaks that promise. One or more people become defrauded (offered something they cannot now have).
The becoming of one flesh represents the kind of fellowship that God enjoys amongst His persons – He wants that for us, and when we promise it to each other it becomes a contract. Each member of the contract has the right to EXPECT and BENEFIT from the contract. When the person breaks the contract we DEFRAUD the other person, and God’s Character is offended.
However, if one of the partners does commit adultery there are the sacrifices (Confession, Repentance, and Atonement).
In this example the spirit of the Law was to protect the individual from being defrauded during the life of the contract (life of either partner) and the agreement is here dissolved by God through death. The contract comes to an end and the living spouse is freed from the contract. And free once again to benefit from the option of not being alone for the remainder of their lives, but to have the option of finding another to share their lives with IN A NEW CONTRACT.
Instructions as to the purpose of the Law
4 Therefore, my brethren, you also were (C) made to die (D) to the Law (E) through the body of Christ, so that you might be joined to another, to Him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.
The analogy here is made clear – like in the matter of marriage, it is through death that the Sin Relationship contract under the Law is released. The binding relationship is broken THROUGH DEATH, and new relationship (the relationship of joining together with the Body of Christ can be rightly undertaken.
were MADE to die to the Law, the process of coming to Christ is an action
directed by God and His Holy Spirit. When you came to Christ God declared you
DEAD to the law and the penalty and power of sin. Your contract with Sin and
its PENALTY was CANCELLED by God (based on your FAITH, your BELIEVING) You became DEAD to the PENALTY of the Law.
This DEATH came through the physical BODY OF CHIRST becoming dead… (the death of God) 1st Contract Cancelled - IN ORDER THAT you could be joined to His RESURRECTED BODY (literally) (2ed Contract Enabled).
"IN ORDER THAT – WE MIGHT BEAR FRUIT FOR GOD!" – That’s your purpose in being dead in Christ and Resurrected in Him to Newness of life – TO BEAR FRUIT FOR GOD.
Discourse on God’s Intentions for Man (men and women)
· God is Holy, Just, and Righteous
· The desire of God’s heart is to fellowship with His human creation
· God’s desire is to have His human creation desire Him
· God’s human creation falls short of being God Himself
· God created mankind innocent and ignorant of knowing good or evil, but capable of being “like” God and designed to be “annealed,” in order to be perfected (Romans 7:4) and bear fruit for God – but only through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ
· God’s human creation needs to know good from evil and be able to choose good (God) in order to fellowship with God
· God’s design has put into His human creation free will (in His image and likeness) Able to choose God as God or self as god
· At first there was no Law in the garden
· Where there is no Law there is no offense - Before the commandment of God “Thou shall not eat of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil,” man’s actions could not offend the holy, just, righteousness of God
· Evil exists apart from the Law
· The Law entered “Thou shall not eat….”
· The Law is a magnifier of sin (& evil) (teacher, mirror, etc.)
· The Law created an opportunity for “sinful passions” to develop in Eve and Adam
· Lack of conformity to the Law is sin
· Eve and Adam allowed these “sinful passions” to “take opportunity through the commandment, and produce in them coveting” (temptation) God’s knowledge of good and evil – desiring to be gods (idolatry) – they still did not know this was wrong.
· The serpent only tempted (even though his lying was evil and sinful) and he had no real power to change them
· Temptation became sin when Eve and Adam ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil breaking God’s Law.
· They immediately knew the difference between right from wrong and good from evil – and were immediately ashamed for what they had done.
· (Man’s specific offense was to “EAT of the fruit”, after being created in God’s image and likeness, without actually being gods – mankind DESIRES to be God – mankind has a proclivity to consider ourselves as god, and that proclivity creates in us “sinful passions,” and It is “Sinful passions” that are aroused by the Law that result in DISOBEDIENCE and the breaking of the Law)
· The penalty for sin (breaking the Law) is death
· Adam, as head of the race, passes his inability to choose God and good to all who are his seed. None are now innocent, all fall short of the holy, just, righteous demands of God and the Law.
· God immediately covered their sin with the taking of blood sacrifice – meaningful to God, not meaningful to Adam or eve. God, as ever, propitious and still desiring fellowship – possible only through the expectation of the Substitutionary Sacrifice of His Son in the future.
Then since God, from the beginning, desires intimate fellowship with a creation that knows right from wrong, and that chooses right and not wrong, obedience and not disobedience – What then must His Plan be?
· The heart of man is revealed as being “desperately wicked”
· God is not only Holy, Just, and Righteous, he is propitious and merciful
· God must punish sin
· Mankind is helpless – apart from God’s intervention
· One man must die for the sins of one man
· The penalty for sin must be paid for all who want it paid
· The penalty for sin has no jurisdiction over someone who has already paid the price of the penalty (death)
· God’s plan is to use a SUBSTITUTE for the willing fallen man/woman
· God’s Substitute cannot be an angel – Angels do not die, angles are not human
· God’s Substitute cannot be another animal – the death of an animal is not sufficient to pay the price for even a single sin
· God’s Substitute MUST be a man (human [male in order to be effective and efficient as the “head” of the race])
· God’s Substitute MUST be sinless – or he would have to die for his own sin(s)
· God’s Substitute MUST be infinite – and only God is infinite
· God’s Substitute MUST shed blood (Exodus 12:13)
· God’s Substitute MUST be a willing substitute
Only God’s Son, Jesus Christ, fulfills all the requirements. God must willingly present Himself as the PAYMENT for the crimes of man against Him.
The proof that ALL of God’s Holy, Just, and Righteous demands were met by Jesus the Christ – is the Resurrection from the dead. The Resurrection is the EVIDENCE that God is fully SATISFIED (Propitiation) and those willing to believe in faith are JUSTIFIED (not just forgiven, but made ready for direct contact and fellowship with a Holy, Just, and Righteous God.
The process of the Christian life is like the creation of a good and worthy knife blade. The process in metal is called “annealing”. Soft raw iron, mixed with other metals, is heated and pounded repeatedly – over and over again, and when it is white hot and fully beaten it is plunged into very cold water. The heating and the beating pulls the molecules of the metal apart and makes chaos of them. Then finally the quick drop in temperature creates permanent very hard crystals orientated along straight rows that produces a very hard, steel which can be filed and honed to a fine edge which lasts.
So it is in the Christian life. Now free from the Law and the penalty, God is free to “work” us through Temptations, afflictions, need, distress, “stripes”, imprisonments, tumult, labor, “watchings”, starvation, tribulations, sickness, etc., etc.
My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; 3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith works patience.
2 Corinthians 6:4
But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, 5 In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labors, in watchings, in fastings;
But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: 2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation works patience; 4 And patience, experience; and experience, hope: 5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us. 6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
There were sinsul passions already at work in mankind before the Fall, and before the Law, and they became ARROUSED by the Law. Sin did not come about because man fell. Sin was clearly evident in the of the Angelic creation where Lucifer decided that he wanted to be God and a third of Heaven followed him in his conceit. When man was created sin was already there.
It was the giving of the Law by God to Moses that placed the righteous demands of the Character of God out in the open for all to see. For the first time what pleased God was written down and people saw it and those things that people did against God became clearly evident - The Law aroused sinful passions. Before the Law you could lust after your neighbor's wife, husband or property and not know that it displeased God. Now you knew because of the writing down of the Law. Suddenly lusting after your neighbor's wife, husband, or property was identified as sin.
Now it was clear as to what the character of God demanded and what you and others were dying from. It was sin, actions against the Character and Nature of God - and now you knew it.
Instructions as to being FREE from the Law
"But now," - aren't those wonderful words? But now we have been released from the letter of the Law.
How terrible the Law becomes when you willfully transgress it. Plus, due to the presence of our Old Nature we find it difficult to not sin. The penalty for sin is death. But Now - In Christ we have been released from the letter of the Law.
Think about all those time you did not come to a full stop at a stop sign. The letter of the Law dictates a full stop - the ultimate penalty (if stopping at a stop sign was under the Mosaic Law) would be death - for not stopping at the sign! Yet, even with such a high penalty - we would continue to not stop. We were made in the likeness and image of God- we think we are gods. We can do as we please (when no one is looking) because we have that right as a god. But we are the creature not the creator (not gods). He is God and He is God alone and when we sin we sin in His sight and we are guilty.
Praise God that we are not under the letter of God's Law but under the Grace of Jesus Christ, Free from the penalty of sin, and someday completely free from the power of sin as well.
"So That" right in the middle of verse 6, gives us the opportunity to see why God has released us from the Law through His Son. "So that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not the oldness of the letter."
7 (M) What shall we say then? Is the Law sin? (N) May it never be! On the contrary, (O) I would not have come to know sin except through the Law; for I would not have known about coveting if the Law had not said, "(P) YOU SHALL NOT COVET."
Paul is making the point that since in-Christ we are now free from the letter of the law then the law must have been something really bad.
No, never, may it never be, NO! is the answer. The Law gives definition to our understanding of the Character and holiness of God. But through the Law everyone dies for all have sinned. The Law tells us who He is and should lead us to understand how very much he loves those who willingly believe upon His Son. He sets the Law aside in the case of those who believe. If you would believe upon the Lord Jesus Christ God sets you aside, adopts you into the Family of God and OUT OF THE FAMILY OF MAN - no longer under the law.
The Law does not make you guilty – you make yourself guilty, the Law only shows it to you, and shows it in you.
Without a law against coveting – I would not know coveting – even though I covet. When I covet and I see that it is against the law – then I know that I covet, and how much I covet, because I am one who covets. Without the Law – I would not know coveting, there would be no sin of coveting, I would not be known as a coveter, there would be no penalty for coveting, there would be no sin of coveting, there would be no penalty of death for coveting, With no Law Sin would be dead to me – it could not live in me, it could have no mastery over me.
9 I was once alive apart from the Law; but when the commandment came, sin became alive and I died;
When there was no Law – I (a member of mankind) was alive; free. When the Law was introduced SIN became known or alive to me, and I died to righteousness, I died spiritually, I would die physically.
10 and this commandment, which was (T) to result in life, proved to result in death for me;
The commandment, instituted to teach me righteousness and life, only showed me my sin, my guilt, my conviction, my penalty, and my death. It was not the fault of the Law – It was the fault of ME!
Madame Marie Curie was a famous physicist who was responsible for the development of radiology and radio-active materials. A Nobel Prize winner, she was one of the world’s leading scientists. Late in her life she became ill from radiation poisoning – due to her research that brought her so much acclaim – she died from it. You might say that radiation took opportunity through her research, deceived her, and killed her. The research was good – but it killed her. In a similar way The Law is a good thing, but sin takes advantage of The Law, and through deception, turns the good of the law only into death.
12 (X) So then, the Law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.
A statement of fact: The Law is Holy, and Righteous, and Good.
13 Therefore did that which is good become a cause of death for me? (Y) May it never be! Rather it was sin, in order that it might be shown to be sin by effecting my death through that which is good, so that through the commandment sin would become utterly sinful.
Did the Law kill me? Absolutely Not! It was SIN. The Law only showed my sinfulness – I became guilty, I paid the penalty and died – because the Law was purposed to reveal how sinful, utterly sinful, sin is.
The Conflict of Two Natures
The Law is a revelation of a set of statements that define the character of God. The purpose of The Law is to teach us about His holiness. Seeing and understanding His holiness should lead us to bow down and beg for mercy. Also contained within The Law is the remedy for the problem – The sacrificial system contained within The Law was to teach that this remedy would be found from God in blood sacrifice – specifically through the blood sacrifice of Yeshuah (Isaiah 53). The Law should (except for men and women’s hearts allowing sin to take full advantage and bring forth death) have led men and women to forgiveness, salvation, and life. Men and women chose to worship The Law and Work through the Law instead of worshiping God and seeing His salvation through the Law.
Paul turns his attention to how the believer is still vulnerable to the advantage taking of sin – acting as if sin were still his master. He states that it is confusing to him for he knows what he SHOULD be doing. He knows what he SHOULD NOT be doing. But he finds himself doing what HE SHOULD NOT – even though he hates it.
16 But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with (AF) the Law, confessing that the Law is good.
Paul’s sin demonstrates the righteousness of The Law – and that it is Good
17 So now, (AG) no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
Paul is not “coping out.” He is accurately describing the human condition. It is impossible for him to do that which is good. At every step, every inch of the way – sin is constantly taking advantage and winning every battle.
18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my (AH) flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not.
Paul continues to describe the human predicament:
I want to….. – I can’t.
I need to….. – I can’t.
Feed the poor – I want to, but I wind up feeding myself.
I want to stop and help – but I don’t.
I want to act in holiness – but I wallow in my filth.
19 For (AI) the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want.
Paul repeats himself in stronger terms.
20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, (AJ) I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
When I am turned away from Christ, God, and The Holy Spirit… sin continues to dwell in me – I can’t do it – I want to, but I can’t.
21 I find then (AK) the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good.
A good message to know and understand about yourself (as a mature responsible spiritual adult) – this is not kid stuff – this is adult stuff.
22 For I joyfully concur with the law of God in (AL) the inner man,
Paul REJOICES, and CONCURS with God’s Law – as he sees things through his SPIRITUAL NEW INNER MAN.
Paul also sees that the Unspiritual OLD Outer Man is a prisoner of this “law of sin” which he finds himself in contention with.
The AH-HAH MOMENT! – ERUEAKA! - I SEE IT NOW! – I am a slave to this “body of death” (the one that wars with my SPIRITUAL NEW INNER MAN).
The “body of death” was a severe Roman punishment. The convicted murderer was sentenced to being chained limb to limb, body part to body part, to the body of the one he murdered. The dead body would EVENTUALLY kill the body of the murderer.
Who will deliver me – God through Jesus Christ our Lord
PAY ATTNETION HERE!
ON THE ONE HAND – I Myself, with my mind, AM serving the Law of God.
ON THE OTHER HAND – I Myself, with my flesh, AM serving the law of sin.
Don’t be deceived – this war is continuous – it is going on even now – in ME and in YOU – right now – continuously. BUT IT IS GOD WHO DELIVERS ME THROUGH CHRIST JESUS through GRACE – What a Propitious God!
a. Romans 7:6 Or spirit
New American Standard Bible (NASB)
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