BEING FREED FROM SIN DOES NOT NECESSARILY MEAN YOU ARE FREE FROM SIN [1750a]

To be freed from sin is to be freed from sin’s power over you to condemn you. Rom.6:18 “…and having been freed from sin,…” continues on to say “…you became slaves of righteousness”. So if you have not conformed to that teaching that preceded this, then though Jesus has freed you, it is up to you to accept that freedom and all it entails; it has to result in ACTUAL righteousness, and ACTUAL freedom from sin, which through the action of faith and the Spirit, it WILL.

Rom.6:17. “But thanks be to God that though you WERE slaves of sin, you BECAME OBEDIENT FROM THE HEART to that form of teaching to which you were committed. 18 And having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.

In actual fact in this example, by their heart faith they WERE FREED from sin. (And went from being slaves of sin to slaves of righteousness).

CLINGING TO A COUNTERFEIT CROSS [1654av]

The above is the title of a piece by J.P. Shelly, “Chapter 15, sin and the misinterpretation of Romans 7”, in “TRUTH ACCORDING TO SCRIPTURE” which I reproduce here in part.

“When considering the topic of sin, the passage most often used to defend its pervasiveness in the Church is that of Romans 7:14-25. It is one of the most controversial and debated passages in Scripture. Is Paul speaking of a believer, an unbeliever, or something else entirely? The massive amount of material written on the subject is evidence of the extent of its significance in influencing one’s view of the Christian life. Emotions run high when debating this issue and the rigidity on both sides are dramatic, A.W. Pink states:

(View 1) “This moan, ‘O wretched man that I am,’ expresses the normal experience of the Christian, and any Christian who does not so moan is in an abnormal and unhealthy state spiritually. The man who does not utter this cry daily is either so out of communion with Christ, or so ignorant of the teachings of scripture, or so deceived about his actual condition, that he knows not the corruptions of his own heart and the abject failure of his own life. The one who is truly in communion with Christ, will…emit this groan…daily and hourly.”

On the other side of the issue Adam Clarke says:

(View 2) “It is difficult to conceive how the opinion could have crept into the church, or prevailed there, that the apostle speaks here of his regenerate state; and that what was, in such a state, true of himself, must be true of all others in the same state. This opinion has, most pitifully and most shamefully, not only lowered the standard of Christianity, but destroyed its influence and disgraced its character…. That all that is said in this chapter of the carnal man, sold under sin, did apply to Saul of Tarsus, no man can doubt: that what is here said can ever be with propriety applied to Paul the Apostle, who can believe? Of the former, all is natural; of the latter, all here said would be monstrous and absurd, if not blasphemous.”

Web link https://www.truthaccordingtoscripture.com/documents/books/counterfeit-cross/romans-7.php#.YIEbwB3iuUk

MY COMMENT ON THIS IS. These two views given of Romans 7 surely demonstrate the extreme degree of error involved in either the one or the other.

These two views seem to embrace fully and completely, the idea and therefore reality of, EITHER the absolute ACCEPTANCE of sin in the Christian life, or the absolute REJECTION of sin in the Christian life.

AS SUCH, they must represent the two views of EITHER the “mind of the flesh” OR, “the mind of the Spirit”.

WHICH IS WHICH?

The ‘mind of the flesh’ must surely seek to retain its “life”, its IDENTITY, by the continuation of its presence. The ‘mind of the Spirit’ must surely seek to destroy or severely disable any presence or identity of sin, just as Jesus did.

The question then is, “What is intended to be achieved by FAITH? The last part of the second view allocates BLASPHEMY to the first view, this being how serious this matter is.

BY FAITH, this sinful identity, this SELF, this “sin in the flesh” is intended to be put to death. Its power and identity has been killed on the cross, and by faith we ACQUIRE this same death. “Those who are his have crucified the flesh…”. They acquire Christ.

So the FIRST view is surely an expression of how this has failed to happen, and is continuing to fail to happen. It is an expression of defeat, allowing for continuation of both SIN and LAW, the one obtaining power from the other.

BY FAITH we leave the identity of “sinner” to join with Christ in His identity of Victor, Overcomer, sinless. This expression is found in John, “…he cannot sin, because he has been born of God”.

So here we surely have revealed to us how the mind of the flesh is determined at any cost to hang onto its sinful identity by refusing to submit or to be submitted to, the identity of CHRIST. Blasphemy indeed.

The FIRST view then, is a refusal and a reluctance to be in submission to Christ, and expresses the continuing dominance of the flesh over the identity of the person involved. Those of this first view then, are willingly in denial of the cross of Christ.

Christ in His life, separated the two natures, the spiritual from the natural, so that His identity was “IN” the Spiritual. We now do the same thing; only now we live in Him, in His identity, having rejected our natural identity in order to assume to ourselves HIS SPIRIT, now passed through the fire so we might gain, by faith, HIS VICTORY ALSO.

When we consider the fall of creation, the “opening of Pandora’s box”, the release of evil, the creation of the “Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” situation, and the horrific consequences that resulted in the monstrous fallen identity of mankind: Then the term BLASPHEMY in relation to the promulgation of view number one is surely not strong enough.

[We are reconciled by His physical body through death]

Joyful songs https://crossroman.wordpress.com/2021/04/09/joyful-songs-773ay/

We have been betrayed https://crossroman.wordpress.com/2021/06/08/we-have-been-betrayed-by-pastors-ministers-and-priests-1682b/

Romans 7 Does Not Describe Your Christian Experience

See also Bible Life Ministries https://biblelife.org/romans7.htm

.

WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH THE REST OF YOUR LIFE? [1749a]

Well if you are anticipating your life to only be measured in a few short years, then that parameter will govern how you think about and respond to this. If you are boxed in by death, by the expectation of a piece of land in a graveyard, then what you might have called your hopes and dreams, then amount to diddly-squat.

But if death has been PERMANENTLY removed from your horizon, then that horizon just goes on and keeps on expanding so that your hopes and dreams fall into the plan and purpose that GOD has prepared for your life, now that your ill conceived concept of death has been dealt with in Jesus his Son.

[John 3:16 “For God so loved the world…”]

WHY DO WE FEAR RIGHTEOUSNESS? [1748a]

“Men would not come into the light because their deeds were evil”. Those who seek righteousness will come into the light that their deeds may be seen as righteous.

We fear righteousness because we are not righteous, and the comparison between us and it, reveals a lack that we perceive to be inescapable in terms of judgement. Yet those in Christ are GIVEN His righteousness.

[John 3:19]

BEING FREED FROM SIN DOES NOT NECESSARILY MEAN YOU ARE FREE FROM SIN [1750]

To be freed from sin is to be freed from sin’s power over you to condemn you. Rom.6:18 “…and having been freed from sin,…” continues on to say “…you became slaves of righteousness”. So if you have not conformed to that teaching that preceded this, then though Jesus has freed you, it is up to you to accept that freedom and all it entails; it has to result in ACTUAL righteousness, and ACTUAL freedom from sin, which through the action of faith and the Spirit, it WILL.

Rom.6:17. “But thanks be to God that though you WERE slaves of sin, you BECAME OBEDIENT FROM THE HEART to that form of teaching to which you were committed. 18 And having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.

In actual fact in this example, by their heart faith they WERE FREED from sin. (And went from being slaves of sin to slaves of righteousness).

WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH THE REST OF YOUR LIFE? [1749]

Well if you are anticipating your life to only be measured in a few short years, then that parameter will govern how you think about and respond to this. If you are boxed in by death, by the expectation of a piece of land in a graveyard, then what you might have called your hopes and dreams, then amount to diddly-squat.

But if death has been PERMANENTLY removed from your horizon, then that horizon just goes on and keeps on expanding so that your hopes and dreams fall into the plan and purpose that GOD has prepared for your life, now that your ill conceived concept of death has been dealt with in Jesus his Son.

[John 3:16 “For God so loved the world…”]

WHY DO WE FEAR RIGHTEOUSNESS? [1748]

“Men would not come into the light because their deeds were evil”. Those who seek righteousness will come into the light that their deeds may be seen as righteous.

We fear righteousness because we are not righteous, and the comparison between us and it, reveals a lack that we perceive to be inescapable in terms of judgement. Yet those in Christ are GIVEN His righteousness.

[John 3:19]

IN ROMANS 7, PAUL DESCRIBES THE FUNCTION OF THE LAW, WHICH IS TO CONDEMN [1747a]

Joyce Meyer in a recent telecast, again gave the wrong version of Romans 7. Although she counted the number of “I’s” used in the chapter, she wrongly ascribed it to Paul trying to be righteous of his own accord, by himself, without Jesus, which in the correct context is right, but in the context which she and others use, is wrong.

Now if the description is that of one trying, as a believer, to do what is right under the new covenant with Jesus at the head, (as they would say) then why in verse 24 does he claim to not know Jesus his deliverer? And in not knowing Jesus, why is it then surprising that he fails to achieve righteousness? And why does he still claim bondage to sin, the bondage Jesus died for to break us out of it? All that goes before verse 24 is a description of that which occurs through not knowing Jesus, not simply that of immaturity in knowing Him.

It is because he does not know Jesus that he fails miserably and wretchedly, as Jesus Himself said, “without me you can do nothing”, and Romans 7 is the proof of that. It is Paul on his own, without Jesus, that is the problem. The “I” that he expresses is the “I” that he has just said has been put to death with Jesus. “One died for all, therefore, ALL DIED”. This is the theology he has just taught them in chapter 6, and early on in 7. 7:4 “you also were made to die”.

Why would the “I” so expressed then, be seen in 7 as very much ALIVE to sin, ALIVE to the law, rather than DEAD to the law? Precisely because this is what he is teaching here, that UNDER LAW sin is alive, that the old covenant had to go in order for the new covenant to take its place. He is teaching why the law was superseded by grace, he was revealing the problem of the law and how it failed to achieve righteousness, because of the weakness of the flesh.

Romans 7 EXPOSES the weakness of flesh under law, that is why Paul says in verse 7, after CONCLUDING the matter of verse 5, UNDER LAW and verse 6 RELEASE FROM LAW, “WHAT SHALL WE SAY THEN”, ABOUT THE LAW WE ARE NO LONGER UNDER?!

Is the law itself sin? And he goes on to explain how that under law, we fail, and he explains and demonstrates that failure, using his own knowledge and experience in the unfolding drama of the story of what happens to one under law. It is those who want the law to continue, and our failure with it, who persist in the wrong explanation of Romans 7, and who are in denial of the absolute victory of Christ.

[“Those who are His have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires”][bondage is empowered by law][One who has died is freed from sin][7:14 is a comparison of the spiritual law with the unspiritual “flesh”, human nature]

THROUGH FEAR OF DEATH MEN ARE HELD IN LIFE LONG BONDAGE [1746a]

So here we have the bondage and slavery to sin and the reason for it, that by fearing death we are isolated from the God who is love. But now JESUS has come and died FOR US, has taken our place in death to release us from it and the FEAR of it. “He who believes in me will never die, HE WILL never SEE death.”

Jesus exposed the reality of life and death and provided a “new and living way” through His body, to release us from death and provide us with life. If we accept the death He provided for us to escape the outcome of our sin and judgement upon ourselves for it, if we accept His bearing of it for us in such a way as to cause us to turn from our past and to accept a new future of life in Him; then death is behind us and life is before us and IN us, because we are in Him and He in us.

Jesus took our death upon Himself in His own body so that we might be free of it and free to serve life and the love that He is. Life and love are now ours unless we deny it by denying Him and His nullifying of our old death and the acquisition of new life for us. One died for all, therefore all died. There is now no reason to fear death as long as we leave it behind us and grow in the life that He is and freely gives to us. “Live a life of LOVE”. “He has abolished death”.

[By breaking the fear of our death we are released from its bondage][by breaking the bondage we are released from the fear]