Tet: Romans 7:7-25
On the heels of describing the substitutionary work of the Lord Jesus Christ by laying his body down and bringing the work of the law to fulfillment in that body, Paul asks another reasonable question. So, is the law sin? Since Paul has just associated the law with death he asks that question. Then he goes on to explain the value of the law.
Romans 7:7-16 The Law Illuminates Sin, the Monster
The law exposes sin
- Spurgeon’s sermon “The Monster Dragged to the Light”
- The verses identify the everyday battleground within the believer. You will see two things at work. Sin at work in the body versus the Holy Spirit at work in your mind and heart.
- Carnal vs Spiritual (7:14)
- Flesh vs Spirit
- foolishness vs wisdom
- The law expressly exposes sin – I had not known sin, but by the law (vs 7)
- In a very quick a precise way, the Lord spoke words that acted like flood lights on a criminal. There was immediate exposure.
- The problem with sin is that when it is found out, there is no white flag. He doesn’t put his hands behind his back admitting guilt. Sin is the most arrogant, prideful, insatiable, hateful, selfish, crafty, insidious, deceitful creature. So when the light of God’s law floods the area of sin, sin gets irate and will react in one of a few ways:
- Scoffing – accuse and berate how stupid the Spirit of God is.
- Romans 8:7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
- The law also awakens sin – sin, taking occasion by the law (vss 8-11)
- Because of sin’s nature, that it has no “white flag” and any appearance of a surrender is only to gain the advantage. Sin has no ability to surrender.
- That’s the temptation to touch when you’re told not to. When children are told don’t touch and they give you the look to see what you’ll do, you’re looking at sin working. Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil.
- sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.
- Sin had to be exposed because it is so deceptive (vss 12-14)
- Law is holy, just, and good. It isn’t the cop’s fault the criminal’s life is ruined.
- But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.
- If you and I could just see how sin is working to destroy your life, destroy others around, destroy your family, and drag you down into a grave, then those decisions made to satisfy the flesh would become bitter as they should.
- The Lord Jesus Christ ups the ante. He says it’s not a matter of look but don’t touch, it’s a matter of don’t look.
- Matthew 5 – the Lord Jesus Christ exposes sin as a desire, not as an event
- The old nature is called the body of this death by Paul
Romans 7:17-25. The Body Houses Sin, the Monster
Now then – Now that you’re saved, your body of sin is no longer part of you according to God though it is still very much attached to you. There is a difference between salvation and service.
- Colossians 2:11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:
- The circumcision made without hands is not the Holy Spirit in OR scrubs preparing to do surgery on your soul. It is done without hands and with the word of God (Hebrews 4:12).
- Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
- Paul is going to talk about a literal dual personality of a Christian. He will use the word “I” or “me” and depending on the context he is either describing his body or his soul.
- Colossians 1:27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
- 2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. How so? Now, you are a truly dual personality.
- Read Romans 7:17-23 – Now then it is no more I (SPIRITUAL MAN) that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. For I (SPIRITUAL MAN) know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me (SPIRITUAL MAN); but how to perform that which is good I (CARNAL OLD MAN) find not. For the good that I (SPIRITUAL MAN) would I (CARNAL OLD MAN) do not: but the evil which I (SPIRITUAL MAN) would not, that I (CARNAL OLD MAN) do. Now if I (CARNAL OLD MAN) do that I (SPIRITUAL MAN) would not, it is no more I (SPIRITUAL MAN) that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me (CARNAL OLD MAN). I (SPIRITUAL MAN) find then a law, that, when I (SPIRITUAL MAN) would do good, evil is present with me (CARNAL OLD MAN). For I (SPIRITUAL MAN) delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I (SPIRITUAL MAN) see another law in my members (CARNAL OLD MAN), warring against the law of my mind (SPIRITUAL MAN), and bringing me (SPIRITUAL MAN) into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members (CARNAL OLD MAN).
- Notice how Paul even after almost 30 years of being saved still says, O wretched man that I am!
- Deliverance from the body is the day of redemption
- Ephesians 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;
- Ephesians 1:13-14 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
- Ephesians 4:30 – day of redemption
- Romans 8:22-23 – adoption, day of redemption
- 1 Corinthians 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.