June 23/Romans 7

Verses 1-6 > In these verses Paul answers the question; If we are not under the law but under grace can we continue to sin?”

Verses 2-3 > As long as a husband and wife are alive they are under the Law of Marriage and are to be faithful to each other. If either one of them dies the other one if free to marry again. Rules don’t apply to dead people.

Verses 4-5 > When we trusted Christ, we died to the Law; but in Christ, we arose from the dead and now are “married” (united) to Christ to live a new kind of life! We have a new spouse that we really love! Now the way we live honors God. We seek to please him in all that we do because he has given us a new nature just like Jesus got a new body when he rose from the dead.

Before we died with Christ our sinful nature ruled our lives. When we were faced with the law or rules our sinful nature wanted to rebel. When we gave in to our sinful nature we did not honor God. The works we produced were not good. They are like unruly kids in a bad marriage. An example would be; handicapped parking only. Well if we were in a hurry and would be in the store long the sinful nature would influence us to look around for any police and if we didn’t see any we would in the handicap space and go into the store. The law aroused that sinful desire within us.

The Law didn’t die. God still rules over our world. But as we shall see the in this next verse we are not motivated by the Law but by the Spirit of Jesus.

Verse 6 > As Christians we do not live lawless lives in fact we live better obedient lives now that we are married to Christ and not our sinful nature. The Holy Spirit within us energizes and motivates us to obey and serve the Lord because His word is now written in our hearts. We have a new nature because of Jesus! Before we died to our sinful nature our initial response to the law was to disobey but with the our new nature energized by the Holy Spirit our initial response, as we grow in our faith, is to obey.

2 Corinthians 3:3 (NLT) — 3 Clearly, you are a letter from Christ showing the result of our ministry among you. This “letter” is written not with pen and ink, but with the Spirit of the living God. It is carved not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts.

Verse 7 > The law is a mirror that shows us how dirty we are on the inside.

James 1:22–25 (NLT) — 22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. 23 For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. 24 You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. 25 But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it.

Paul talks about covetousness which was the last of the Ten Commandments. It is an inner attitude, not an outward action, but that attitude leads to the breaking of all the other commandments and the law reveals it!
When Jesus confronted the rich young man(Mark 10:17-27) it was to get him to get him to acknowledge the sin within him. Outwardly he said that he had obeyed the laws; however when Jesus told him to sell his stuff and give the money to the poor the young man went away with great  sorrow. Jesus exposed the coveting in his heart and he was unwilling to admit and receive Jesus. The law revealed his inner attitudes.
Verses 8-9 > The law arouses sin. The law gives sin its power.
1 Corinthians 15:56 (NLT) — 56 For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power.

Like I said before the bent of the sinful nature is to rebel. Another example: Put a sign on a bench that says, “Wet Paint, Do Not Touch.” What do you think will happen? Or tell a child not to cross the street. So if you try to obey the law to get yourself right with God it is impossible. The Law arouses sin. That is why God sent Jesus. He is our motivation for living righteously.
Verses 10-11 > The law kills. It can only condemn you. It can’t acquit you.
Verses 12-14 > The law shows us how terrible sin is. Sin takes what is good > God’s commands and uses those commands to get us to sin! It is like someone who uses water, which is essential for life, to kill by holding another person’s head under the water until they drown! Sin wants to drown us with the law.
Verses 15-20 > The law cannot change you. The law cannot make you do good. That is why those who try to be good on their own can’t do it perfectly and consistently. Only Jesus was perfect and when we believe in him he transfers his perfec record to us and we rely on his power. Without the new nature God gives us we will always fail if left to our own power.
Verses 21-23 > The Law cannot set you free. You may do well one day or a few days and think you have arrived however you will eventually fail. You can love the law will all your heart but the law will never give you the power to obey it. Even the Apostle Paul couldn’t obey it perfectly. I am sure we can all relate to how Paul wrestled with this issue.
In my mind I want to follow the law of God. I want to walk in His ways and keep His commandments. That’s truly my determination and my mind-set. But my body rebels. My eyes are prone toward lusting. My ears strain to hear something juicy. My tongue wags so readily to gossip. There’s a war going on.
Verses 24-25 > The old nature is not completely killed when we yield to Jesus. In Colossians Paul says it is cut off. It only has power over us if we give in to it which is like feeding it. If we give in to it it begins to regain its power. However if we yield to the Spirit of Jesus we in a sense feed our spirit and it becomes the main power in our lives. Our new nature doesn’t need the law to empower it. It is never about How can I overcome sin it is always about Him! Remember that we are united with Jesus. Spend time with the Lord and draw your strength from Him.
The best is yet to come! Romans 8 explains the work of the Holy Spirit in overcoming the bad and producing the good.
Be Inspired Hilltop!


  1. Mark Gundersen says

    The law sets limits and human / sinful nature always wants to push those limits. If you did not have the law then the temptation to bend the law would have no target. When you die to the law and take on the Holy Spirit then the law is how you want to live not how you are told to live. It changes your attitude from condemnation about failing to a pursuit to do better.