THE PROMISES OF JESUS [1915]

He who WAS the promise, also made promises to us. His assurance to us was that whoever believed in Him would not die but would have eternal life which would not be taken from him.

He who believes in me will never die. He will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life. He will never see death. He will not be harmed by the second death.

This was because anyone who took His sacrifice to heart, would gain power over sin. It was sin, the corruption of the creative design, which brought death to the human body. The sacrifice of Jesus was meant to be emulated by empathy with Him in recognition of His empathy with us.

“Those who are His HAVE CRUCIFIED the flesh with its passions and desires.”

One of the great tragedies of theological deception is the teaching that Paul was displaying Christian nature in Romans chapter 7, when it was in truth, the DEATH chapter of that great book, to be followed of course by the LIFE chapter, chapter 8.

The DEATH chapter 7 reveals the nature and operation of indwelling sin and how it brings about sin in man’s mortal body, which is why it is mortal.

The LIFE chapter 8 reveals and then displays the LIFE that is given through the Spirit of Christ in order for SIN to be overwhelmed and destroyed in the body of faith, that understanding and stance taken when one believes in that great victory over sin which Jesus achieved for us, and then gave TO us.

If you are a believer, then: You will never die. You will never see death. You will not be harmed by the second death. You will live forever. PROMISED by God.

[The destruction of sin enabled and enables the creation of love][Go and sin no more].

LAW WARS [1890]

VERY EXPLORATORY THEOLOGY. Not Star wars, law wars. All conflict occurs through the clash of opposing positions, and those positions can be defined by “laws”. You cannot live under law, you can only die under law. ‘If a law could have been given that would bring life, then righteousness would certainly have come through law, but God has declared that all men are guilty under law…’. Sin and Judgement. The actual quote is Gal.3:21.

“AND THERE WAS WAR IN HEAVEN…” (How could there be literal war in [God’s] heaven?) [“Thy will be done, as it is in heaven”].

What I wanted to express here was the various conflict situations in scripture. [Of course the old testament is full of literal wars and conflicts]. In the garden of Eden we have an idealised conflict where Adam is then excluded from that garden, or that PERFECT (HEAVENLY) PLACE [though supposedly on earth] because of the turmoil ensuing after the “fall”. It appears it was his conscience that excluded him from the place of innocence, now lost and unretainable, and unreturnable.

It could be seen that the temple veil or curtain that was torn when Jesus died may symbolise that return to the holy place that the first Adam initially lost for us and the second Adam returned to us, it may symbolise the returned or cleansed conscience. ‘There is now dust in heaven’ as someone has said. Of course there is a whole existent regime of thought [because the word says so] about Lucifer falling from heaven. Then also Jesus said “I saw satan fall like lightning from heaven”. This becomes a matter of whether He means that satan fell from heaven or that he simply meant that satan fell like lightning does from heaven, which are two different things. The “enemy” certainly lost all authority after the cross, he “fell” from any ‘heavenly’ place of authority, forever. [People also talk about Jesus sweating drops of blood, only it doesn’t say this, only that His SWEAT resembled the way drops of blood fall.]

The “war” that occurred in Jesus body that resulted in our salvation by Him winning it, is the same “war” that occurs in us also by the conflict in our bodies of our “flesh” against our moral conscience and which war, in the natural, we always lose. It is the same “war” that occurred in Paul in Romans 7 which he also similarly lost through the authority of law which condemned his mortal flesh, but which in Romans 8 he and we were given the victory of Christ in the form of His Spirit, the “Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus” coming into effect for all mankind to avail themselves of by believing it to be true, and which “gives life to your mortal bodies” Rom.8:11.

So in all these “wars” or conflicts between man and his conscience, or righteousness (Jesus or God) against unrighteousness; there exists that which is not of God in conflict with that which is of God, and there is only one ultimate outcome, that of the emergence of the righteousness of God, and the destruction of all that is not of God. There is only one victor Jesus, and only one perfect victory which has been made available to all through faith in that perfect victory. That is why to see Romans 7 as the situation of a believer is perverse and perverted, because it perverts and distorts and corrupts the very victory that Christ won for us. WE may not be perfect (though the word says we have been made so in Him) but the victory (HIS) in which we partake and in which divine nature we partake OF, IS perfect, otherwise there would be no power in it for US at all.

JESUS BECAME SIN (FOR US) [1879a]

There is nothing difficult in this, the only way Jesus could bear our sin was by being of the same nature as us, by being of that same nature that was subject to sin, yet without sinning. If He did not have the same nature as us, He could not have been in a position to bear the sin that we sin. All sorts of silly arguments centre around the sinless nature of Christ, His perfection and sinlessness, of being the spotless lamb.

So we were tempted and we sinned, Jesus was tempted but did not sin. How hard can it be? It is similar to those who say the law continues for us, when the statement plainly is that WE ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW. [yes, we are OVER it]. We having lost our identity through the accusation by the law of us sinning, not having the power of any moral authority behind us, did sin. Jesus knew who He was, the Son of God, and having all the moral authority under the sun behind [above] Him, and in Him, did not sin.

But it was when Jesus allowed Himself to enter into that same nature of ours which contained the possibilities of sin and to sin, that matters became more confused. We have to acknowledge that all sin comes through the thought processes of our brain, of our thinking. That if we arrange certain thought patterns in certain ways, we may end up with a structure that is ungodly. And that if our bodies have certain desires which tend to favour the self rather than others, then we may become self-serving instead of other serving or God serving.

So if the reason for these self serving desires can be sorted out and eliminated, then a completely new scenario is created. The righteous Spirit of Jesus entered into these physiological areas of physicality and of mentality and did battle with them. The righteousness He had become was able to confront and overcome all these areas of service to the self, similar to when temptation led Him to avoid food for forty days in denial of His body, and to refuse to take upon Himself the kingdoms of this world as His prize, because He knew He was in charge of all those kingdoms already, and also the kingdom of heaven.

So He defeated within Himself, not only those thought patterns set up within the human makeup necessary for our survival, he also altered the physical, psychological, and complete physiology of the human form, so as to destroy the very root cause of sin, that of the temptation itself. While this was in progress we hear Him cry “My God, My God, Why have you forsaken me”. The battle was hard and the darkness of evil was felt within Him as the struggle continued in His body, now dealing with the reality of inner sin, just as Paul said “evil is present in me, the one who wishes to do good”. Well Paul could NOT do the good, but Jesus fought until all the deficiencies that were of the natural human birth had been overcome and replaced by all the elements of the Spiritual birth, leaving no remnant of that human nature left by which it might resist or oppose God at all. “It is finished” He cried.

His body was now rendered as immortal, but death had to ‘seal the deal’ to set the scene for resurrection. HE ‘gave up’ His spirit of His life OF the flesh from which He had entered IN (into) the flesh, and then died. He literally became sin for us, He became the object of “the wrath of God” as the righteousness of God that He was, was brought to bear on the unrighteousness of elements of His “flesh”, His body, in which lay those miserable components of self generation and self preservation, until Holiness pervaded every part of Him, and not just in His Spirit. He became the completed perfected creature of creation that God seeks also for us, which is why the ‘hope of the Christian” is not stated to be heaven going or any such thing, but is the RESURRECTION OF THE BODY, of the WHOLE person, of the NEW CREATION in Christ, yet to be revealed by the fire of purification on the last day, but intended to be seen in THIS life as by faith people apprehend the message of complete redemption done for them at great cost, His life, His body, His blood, His immense SUFFERING for us.

[The question arises as to the nature of guilt that He bore for us, within Himself. The nature of the case suggests that He bore the pain and the suffering of the guilt for which we are guilty, no guilt of His own. And how could there be any of His own, He had done no wrong. Yet it must have been HIS conscience that was under attack, perhaps as being the god-head representative it was to do with the assumption of the responsibility for having created a wayward creation which produced so much evil. LOVE that suffers the consequence of loving enough to bring into existence the children of that love, yet then suffering the consequence of love unreturned, and the ultimate loss of those His children. Yet the internal darkness would be completely recognisable in terms of gaining that victory over those thought patterns of guilt, in terms of depression, anxiety and the absolute stress of having to justify the whole process within the body of His Son, as Love did its necessary work within Him.]

JESUS BECAME SIN (FOR US) [1879]

There is nothing difficult in this, the only way Jesus could bear our sin was by being of the same nature as us, by being of that same nature that was subject to sin, yet without sinning. If He did not have the same nature as us, He could not have been in a position to bear the sin that we sin. All sorts of silly arguments centre around the sinless nature of Christ, His perfection and sinlessness, of being the spotless lamb.

So we were tempted and we sinned, Jesus was tempted but did not sin. How hard can it be? It is similar to those who say the law continues for us, when the statement plainly is that WE ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW. [yes, we are OVER it]. We having lost our identity through the accusation by the law of us sinning, not having the power of any moral authority behind us, did sin. Jesus knew who He was, the Son of God, and having all the moral authority under the sun behind [above] Him, and in Him, did not sin.

But it was when Jesus allowed Himself to enter into that same nature of ours which contained the possibilities of sin and to sin, that matters became more confused. We have to acknowledge that all sin comes through the thought processes of our brain, of our thinking. That if we arrange certain thought patterns in certain ways, we may end up with a structure that is ungodly. And that if our bodies have certain desires which tend to favour the self rather than others, then we may become self-serving instead of other serving or God serving.

So if the reason for these self serving desires can be sorted out and eliminated, then a completely new scenario is created. The righteous Spirit of Jesus entered into these physiological areas of physicality and of mentality and did battle with them. The righteousness He had become was able to confront and overcome all these areas of service to the self, similar to when temptation led Him to avoid food for forty days in denial of His body, and to refuse to take upon Himself the kingdoms of this world as His prize, because He knew He was in charge of all those kingdoms already, and also the kingdom of heaven.

So He defeated within Himself, not only those thought patterns set up within the human makeup necessary for our survival, he also altered the physical, psychological, and complete physiology of the human form, so as to destroy the very root cause of sin, that of the temptation itself. While this was in progress we hear Him cry “My God, My God, Why have you forsaken me”. The battle was hard and the darkness of evil was felt within Him as the struggle continued in His body, now dealing with the reality of inner sin, just as Paul said “evil is present in me, the one who wishes to do good”. Well Paul could NOT do the good, but Jesus fought until all the deficiencies that were of the natural human birth had been overcome and replaced by all the elements of the Spiritual birth, leaving no remnant of that human nature left by which it might resist or oppose God at all. “It is finished” He cried.

His body was now rendered as immortal, but death had to ‘seal the deal’ to set the scene for resurrection. HE ‘gave up’ His spirit of His life OF the flesh from which He had entered IN (into) the flesh, and then died. He literally became sin for us, He became the object of “the wrath of God” as the righteousness of God that He was, was brought to bear on the unrighteousness of elements of His “flesh”, His body, in which lay those miserable components of self generation and self preservation, until Holiness pervaded every part of Him, and not just in His Spirit. He became the completed perfected creature of creation that God seeks also for us, which is why the ‘hope of the Christian” is not stated to be heaven going or any such thing, but is the RESURRECTION OF THE BODY, of the WHOLE person, of the NEW CREATION in Christ, yet to be revealed by the fire of purification on the last day, but intended to be seen in THIS life as by faith people apprehend the message of complete redemption done for them at great cost, His life, His body, His blood, His immense SUFFERING for us.

[The question arises as to the nature of guilt that He bore for us, within Himself. The nature of the case suggests that He bore the pain and the suffering of the guilt for which we are guilty, no guilt of His own. And how could there be any of His own, He had done no wrong. Yet it must have been HIS conscience that was under attack, perhaps as being the god-head representative it was to do with the assumption of the responsibility for having created a wayward creation which produced so much evil. LOVE that suffers the consequence of loving enough to bring into existence the children of that love, yet then suffering the consequence of love unreturned, and the ultimate loss of those His children. Yet the internal darkness would be completely recognisable in terms of gaining that victory over those thought patterns of guilt, in terms of depression, anxiety and the absolute stress of having to justify the whole process within the body of His Son, as Love did its necessary work within Him.]

OTHER THAN GOD [1878]

A friend asked how I would define sin, so I said “anything other than God”. [Actually I think I may have said “anything that is not of God”]. You see, it is only God who is not sin, has no sin and does no sin, and it is only “other than God” which DOES. Things and people of this world all produce sin in some form or fashion, all at some time and in some way do they produce or participate in that which will not survive the coming fire which is God, but will be destroyed by it, by Him.

Since God is love, it is only love which does not sin, and only acts of love which are acceptable in Him, to Him, by Him. That which is of love is eternal, anything and everything else is not. Only those born of God can act out of the true love that HE is, only they can perform his work of continuing and establishing the growth of His creation.

[Only that which is of God is not of sin]

[Jesus]

WE ARE NOT HELD TO ACCOUNT FOR OUR SIN – WE ARE HELD TO ACCOUNT FOR NOT HAVING LEFT IT [1784b]

It is a sad thing to dwell on sins of the past, God says “He remembers them no more” so why do WE? While we are dwelling on the past, we are poisoning our present and therefore also our future! Death is already dead, so we should ensure we have left death behind and are producing life as a result of having left death behind.

Because all flesh will perish, only that flesh which has recognised this and crossed over from death to life, will survive the final crossover from flesh to Spirit. Past sins have been accounted for – ALL sin has been accounted for as death worthy already in the body of Jesus.

So we are held accountable for nothing but the absence of life. Life produces in us more life, and only THIS life will be “held accountable” but only in the good sense. What you become is what you will be forever, once “the door is shut”. Death is already accounted dead, just like our past sin. Only real life remains, and it will remain forever.

ROMANS 7 FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF SPIRIT [1872]

We know of only two spirits here, the one being that of Paul but which is never described here as “spirit”, and the other being that of God. Spirit is the essence, the core centre of an entity, is the driving force and (singular) nature of the being himself.

“Spirit” gets only ONE mention in Romans 7, which is indicative of the whole chapter’s “fleshly” nature. That one time occurrence is in 7:6 which is a summation of the gospel having been described to those people of chapter 6, which is now to be built upon from 7:7 onwards to serve as an explanation, mainly to the Jewish converts, (those “who know the law”) as an explanation of just why the covenant of old had to be REPLACED with a new one.

So because this whole chapter is about the production of sin, through the flesh, empowered by law; there is only this one reference to The Spirit of God at all, being that chapter 7 is the very opposite, that of law flesh sin death. And this ONE reference of 7:6 is really the conclusion to chapter 6 where the elements of the gospel had just been explained, and how the Jews were included also in this predominately gentile? new covenant arrangement, in the very first verse 7:1 about law only being in force until there is a death of one party to it.

The Jewish members of the congregation, then having been singled out for a more intense and complete explanation of why the covenant had to change (HAD CHANGED) means that verse 4 says they had been MADE TO DIE through the body of Christ and so were included in this new covenant of grace and life in the Spirit (7:4-6). Verse 6 concludes the matter of the proclamation of the gospel effect, and verse 7 begins Paul’s explanation mainly for their benefit. He is going to tell them exactly why that covenant change was necessary, and why it and they needed to be ‘put to death’ with the body of Christ.

7:6 This was the statement about the change of covenants and that it was now by the Spirit [that appeared at Pentecost] they were to serve God and NOT in the “oldness of the letter” (of the law).

From 7:7 forward Paul then goes on to explain the failure of the law to enable and assist the production of righteousness because of its inhibiting factor of the communication of guilt, which only condemns us. The more the righteousness of the law is explained, the more condemnation by it we experience.

The active ingredients are law flesh sin death, and Paul’s MIND, but NOT ever Spirit. The conflict here is NOT between Spirit and flesh, as it is in Galatians, but is between Paul’s MIND and his flesh, it is this seemingly never ending conflict which exists in mankind regardless of the degree of guilt felt or appreciated. That felt guilt depends on conscience levels, so that there is a verse “When the gentiles, who DON’T have the law, DO BY NATURE what the law REQUIRES*, they show they are a law unto themselves..”

In Galatians the conflict is between the Spirit and the flesh, in which contest the Spirit is superior (the power is the Spirit). But in R7 the contest is NOT between Spirit and flesh, but MIND and flesh (sin), and FLESH (SIN) is superior (the power is the law).

In Galatians Paul is talking to believers about the weakness of the flesh which is coming about because they are being influenced by LAW, which they should not allow to be happening; whereas in Romans 7 Paul is talking about that very same weakness in them WHEN THEY WERE UNDER THE LAW before they became believers, using his own story as an example of that.

Christians ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW. They are under grace, IN the Spirit, NOT “IN” the “flesh”. Those OF the flesh [all living creatures][are subject to the law of sin and death] may be in man’s case either OF the flesh and NOT in the Spirit, but IN the flesh: OR OF the flesh but IN the SPIRIT. The gospel provides man with that choice which he never before Jesus could have.

There is no Spirit or His victory in Romans 7. There is only sin and our defeat under law.

*[ 8:4 “In order that the REQUIREMENT of the law might be fulfilled in us…”][from our new nature]

ROMANS 7 FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF IDENTITY [1871]

Jesus’s strength lay in His identity, in His knowledge and conviction of who He was. Conversely, our weakness lies in our lack of knowledge of our identity in anything other than our basic human nature, “flesh”. We are ‘in bondage to those who by nature are not gods’. Our identity lies in our familiarity and identification with, that with which we interact on a daily basis, being ourselves and others in the natural world. [from now on we consider no man after the flesh, said Paul commenting after the salvation change]

Our identification with the naturalness of our “sinful flesh” needs to be changed to identification with Jesus and His transformation of sinful flesh to spiritual “flesh”. From mortality to immortality, by faith in Him and His resurrection (“the first resurrection”).

So commonly, speculation arises about Paul’s identity in Romans 7, about the nature and identity of the “I” which he refers to. Well plainly and simply he is speaking of himself, of his perceived identity of himself, of who he feels himself to be, of his sense of being, of existing, ID or whatever. (ID-entity). That which he senses as himself as an entity (I think, therefore I am?).

WHO AM I? Well, who do you think you are? [“Who do men say that I am?”]

Paul finds himself located within certain circumstances and feelings within the focus of which, he finds his identity. So Paul’s “I” is connected to events and times, the interpretation of these leading to the manipulation of the facts by those unable to see the simple truth of what he is saying.

The times and circumstances of his “I” are unfolding as he progresses through past events right up to verse 21, where he makes a conclusion relevant to that time and circumstance whose context is given in the next verse 22, “I joyfully concur with the law…” (in a nominated part of me).

BUT (verse 23) I see my mind in conflict with my body, which TAKES ME PRISONER TO THE LAW OF SIN WHICH IS IN the workings of my body and outworks from it, through it.

WRETCHED MAN that “I” AM. So Paul, at this stage of his teaching, has arrived at a position which is based on his journey of explanation about the law from verse 7 onward. He is speaking of the end net result of being under the law (other than actual physical death) he is SPIRITUALLY DEAD as was stated in verses 9, 10 and 11. Killed by sin empowered by the law.

At every stage he has progressed through his journey of explanation of why the law covenant had to be changed, because it empowered sin in our natural bodies. His “I” is progressive in understanding and revelation as his experience grows and drags him through the web and complexities of the sin nature as it behaves under law, and how he in his “observer” position eventually has to stand back and observe how he is completely powerless within the given circumstance and scenario of law flesh sin death. Wretched man indeed!

Paul has discovered that He, his “I” is at odds with his natural born self, his NATURAL “I” that was , before his embarkation on the journey of law. And he has discovered that he is powerless to alter, to change this outcome, that he is locked into a “body of death” without any prospect of release from its power to produce sin in him and from him. His “I” because of knowledge of right and wrong by the law has conceded to the position of ongoing death. He is a conflicted person trapped and in conflict within himself AS IS ALL HUMANITY UNLESS SOMETHING CHANGED.

And something did change, the covenant with God changed from the old to the new. Jesus ‘paid for’ our body of death with HIS body of death. He overcame sin in the flesh and BECAME A LIFE GIVING SPIRIT.

So Paul’s closing statement, his conclusion to his investigation of flesh under law, which began at verse 7, is that natural man under law is in a conflicted state. That within him as a whole person, mind and body, lie two laws, but only one with which he identifies, and the other with which he disowns. “It is not “I” but sin that dwells IN ME”. Although confessing that he as a whole creature is responsible for the sin that proceeds from himself, he explains that there are two operative laws within him. The one of his mind which agrees with God’s law and seeks to truly ‘serve’ it, but the other, the ‘law of sin’ which his natural nature serves and which he himself is brought into servitude to. His mind is powerless before the law empowered flesh that is his natural human nature.

These two “laws” which sit within him, waiting for some stimulus to come along to provoke them into action, are “The law of his mind” and “the law of sin”. Paul’s “I” NOW resides within the law of his mind, because of polarisation by the law, and the law of sin resides in Paul’s naturalness of nature, chiefly involved with his body and its functions.

These are the two laws, BUT ONLY ONE OF THEM IS EMPOWERED TO OPERATE AND OVERCOME THE OTHER. The law of sin wins every time! because LAW lends its power of authority over the dissention of his mind from this regime of sin and death, and SIN WINS. This is the enigma which precedes Romans chapter 8 which now enters into the argument and takes it over, completely changing the balance of power contained in Romans 7, by “The LAW of the Spirit of life SETTING YOU FREE from the LAW of SIN and DEATH.

Paul’s identity as one who wants to serve righteousness is now released, is freed from, that “other law” of ‘sin in his flesh’, into servitude to Christ.

ROMANS 7 FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF SIN [1870]

Having talked about the perspectives of flesh and law, let’s now look at the perspective of SIN. “The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.” So sin that kills is empowered by the law, without the law sin would not have the power to kill. The word “power” could also mean “authority”. Sin could also be said to be the consciousness of transgression? It is the prohibition of law that creates the condition known as sin, it makes one guilty legally and consciously. This sets up a conflict of conscience. Without the knowledge of it being transgression then, there would be no DEFINABLE “sin”.

But scripture says that “before the law was given, sin was in the world”. But that where there is no law there is no transgression (of that law). I probably need to look further at these terms.

Sin in real terms has got to be ‘that which is at variance with (God’s) love’, since that which is at variance with God is only temporary, whereas that which complies with God’s love because it is itself love or of love, is, will become, permanent.

So the problem is that sin kills, which means it creates a condition in opposition to God’s creation of life, by producing situations whereby the creative process is either damaged or reversed. “The thief comes to kill and destroy”. Sin brings death and death is the enemy.

With mankind however, the condition of death is already in place because sinning is the default position of man.

Rom.7:5&7:6. – 5. While we were IN the flesh. That is, our identity was not only OF the flesh, but was also IN the flesh. Being of/in flesh SINFUL PASSIONS were AROUSED BY THE LAW, to keep us in death. So where “sin was in the world” it was because death was in the world because of sin, but there were no SINFUL passions because there was no law? There were no LAW AROUSED passions, only “normal” ones? Sin is not brought into account where there is no opposing law, “nevertheless, DEATH REIGNED”. Mankind was in death because of sin and needed a second birth into a system of life in order to correct it, to remove the death, to alter the sin-ridden nature and infuse it with new life, leaving us with an old nature which was being transformed into the new nature, but with elements of the old still making claims on the new, but which the life of the new now rejects, in the main, according to one’s own particular ‘level of faith’.

Rom.8:11 “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who indwells you”.

But the bulk of the problem in Rom.7:5 particularly appears to be about “sinful passions that are aroused by the law”. The law has the effect of arousing these passions which are in themselves the work of the sin nature, and which outwork through the body (“the members of our body”). The law then concentrates and increases the arousal of sin in us, because with the increase of law (the knowledge of law) comes the increase of guilt concerning its (our) transgression. The person concerned has increasingly a law-flesh-sin-death consciousness which can bring them to utter wretchedness. (7:24).

Law then increases the presence of sin and the awareness of sin. It increasingly produces more death, not the law itself but the sin which results from its presence. But Paul’s gospel battle, as much as he in Romans 7 would seek to acquit the law itself from wrongdoing, rages continually in conflict with law and with those who would promote it. Against the words of Jesus (which means you have to truly find the context in all this) who said that blessed is he who teaches the law or some similar statement, Paul called the law “The Ministry of Death” and “The Ministry of Condemnation”. [The gospel is “The ministry of reconciliation”] And again as a matter of extreme example of context were the apparently opposing statements by these two people, Jesus and Paul, of the one: “I have not come to abolish the law but to fulfill it” and Paul “He has abolished the law” (with its commandments etc.). There was a change of covenant FROM law TO Grace. Jesus was still in the old time of the law covenant while Paul was in the new covenant of Grace.

The activity of sin is activity opposed to the activity of God and His Spirit. It emerges from a state of death and proceeds to further increase that state of death. It opposes life and the Spirit of life, it opposes righteousness. That is why those who promote law under the guise of the gospel of Christ are the promoters of sin, and is a sure sign of those who are opposed to the Gospel and the Spirit of Jesus, that saving Spirit of life ‘who is the Lord Himself’. There is a proper place for law as Paul explained to Timothy, that it is meant for law breakers and “…is not meant for good men but for bad…”.

So Romans 7 explains the how what and why of man’s sinful character and basic nature as born into this ‘world of sin’. It explains how man’s flawed nature can do nothing BUT sin because man is a slave to it, is bound BY THE LAW to it, to this body of death, “we are by nature children of wrath”.

7:25 hints at the solution, at freedom from this condition, from the law of law flesh sin death. “Thanks be to God through Jesus…” So then, the law which brought me to the knowledge of my desire to serve it, along with the knowledge that because of the law of sin in me, I COULD NOT serve it, has now been made redundant through the sacrifice of the body of Christ, so that in Rom.8:1 we are FREE from CONDEMNATION and therefore 8:2 RELEASED from the law of sin and death which was preventing me from being able to serve righteousness which through Jesus I do now serve.

[Or because of being released from the law I am free from condemnation][sin in the garden was that of querying and being at variance with God’s nature][provocation to sin was by the commandment]

ROMANS 7 FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF FLESH [1868]

Romans 7 is about the weakness of the flesh, of our natural human born of a woman flesh and blood nature, when placed under the legal and moral demands of some law or authority. We were basically made like the animals, but with a higher and far greater sense of evaluation of the competing demands of self satisfaction and the need to appease others with due regard for their own needs, to find a balance of operation and outlook whereby one’s own self is best served by the principle of “you scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours”, IE of mutual benefit.

This of course can only be arranged within groups of people who accept a common aim or common living conditions. This provides boundaries between groups who themselves then embark on competitive enterprises by which to gain the advantage of the one over the other. So these groups then may come again to mutually beneficial conditions, albeit with a degree of compromise involved.

So rules and laws may exist in these groups and between groups themselves. Where conflict emerges between either individuals in a group, or between groups themselves, raw elements of the human existence may emerge and blood may be shed, until such time as the conflict ends either by the overpowering of the one, or by an agreement met about setting conditions whereby peace returns once more to the scenario.

Where GOD is recognised as having implemented such rules, it falls to men to implement them. This is fine within the concept of a primitive people, but with emerging consciousness of rights and wrongs, it becomes outgrown and something of higher value is required.

Such rules and laws are inadequate to improve the lot of such people, they simply point out the deficiencies and failings of such a social environment. A new and ultimate law or rule needs to be established whereby all parties remain permanently in a state of resolution, having contained the resolution of internal conflict internally without spilling out into the realm and abode of others such as to “disturb the peace”.

Enter Jesus to deal with the matter by providing an ultimate destination and the means by which to get there, including the dispelling of the consciousness of sin and death by raising that consciousness to its highest level while simultaneously providing the ultimate solution to it’s existence. Because it has been ultimately dealt with, its value has also been raised to the ultimate level of satisfaction, which is LOVE.

Condemning law serves the purpose of raising one’s awareness of wrongness to the highest level (“Wretched man that I am”) before matching that awareness with the solution of removing the problem by paying the cost of its removal, yet necessitating the awareness of that payment as being essential to the process of its removal. So the condemnation exits as the fullness of appreciation of it, enters. To be true to the conditions, to the “contract”, the truth of the matter has to be established in one’s consciousness so that the effect is that of one’s own “flesh” being also crucified with Him, with His flesh. To be at one with the condition, the person has to be at one with Jesus, by belief.

In Romans 7 Paul ‘in his flesh’ is failing under law which provokes further failing, and ultimately consciousness of PERFECT FAILURE. He of course is telling the story as being “of flesh” and consequently “in flesh” but who himself at the time was not in flesh but in the Spirit. “But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit if the Spirit of God dwells in you” – “but if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.”

Romans 8:3 “For what THE LAW COULD NOT DO” – “Weak as it (the law) was through the flesh, GOD DID – sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He CONDEMNED sin in the flesh, 4 IN ORDER (so that) the REQUIREMENT of the Law might be FULFILLED IN US who DO NOT walk according to the flesh, but (walk) according to the Spirit.”

Paul’s description in Romans 7 is that of one “walking according to the flesh”, [under the law] NOT “walking according to the Spirit”. It is a description of “this body of death” and its moral failure.

[Jesus said, “Without me you can do nothing”][7:18 “…nothing good dwells in me…THAT IS TO SAY, IN MY FLESH…” I wish, but I can do nothing]