Romans 7: Law and Sin

21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?

Righteous Living Now is Possible 6:1-8:39

Chapter 7  Released from Law

Sin shall not be your master, because you are not under the law, but under the grace. 6:14

How can we be released from the law?

Marriage illustration. — Under the law a married couple become one, bound together until one of them dies.  We who  are union with Christ — died with him and Law has no authority over a dead man.  Thus Christ’s death legally releases us from the authority of God’s law.

Why must we be released from Law?

Law not only reveals sin, it also “arouses the sinful passions.”  (e.g. a child, told not to touch cookies will be hungrier for them than before).  The do’s and don’ts of law simply charge the old nature with energy and lead to acts of sin.

What is wrong with the Law?

Nothing.  Law – God’s expression of his character — holy, righteous and good.  What is wrong is man’s nature.  Law acts on the old nature to “produce in me every kind of covetous desire,” so that sin “springs to life” and shouts for dominion.

Does the believer experience this reaction too?

20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.

It all seems so hopeless!  In my inmost self I delight in God’s law.  But another principle wars with the desire to obey and brings me to my knees, a captive to the principle of indwelling sin.

24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?

Paul’s struggles as a Christian to keep the law did not lead him to a life of righteousness.  The way out is found in Romans 8!

 

 

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