1. There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.
3 For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:
4 That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
5 For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.
6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
9 But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwells in you.
12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.
13 For if you live after the flesh, you shall die: but if you through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, you shall live.
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
15 For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
16 The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
19 For the earnest expectation of the creature waits for the manifestation of the sons of God.
20 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who has subjected the same in hope,
21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
22 For we know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain together until now.
23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
24 For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man sees why does he yet hope for?
25 But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.
26 Likewise the Spirit also helps our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
27 And he that searches the hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.
31 What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifies.
34 Who is he that condemns? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, For your sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.
37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
This is the greatest chapter in the Bible. Every aspect of the Christian life can be seen in Romans ch 8. John, when trying to finalise his gospel, declared that all the libraries of the world would not contain all that could be written. To those who delight in studying the word of God, such a sentiment could well be reflected here. To attempt to fully expound this chapter in “note” form, could only be the aspiration of a fool or a genius and by now you will know that the author is no genius.
The first four words of the chapter could well need an explanation of the whole of scripture to be expounded sufficiently.
‘There is therefore now...’’ - at last we have reached the summit of what God planned since Genesis. (see page 71-72)
This word ‘‘therefore,” reminds us of the many ‘‘Therefore’s’’ in Romans. This shows that the gospel is reasonable, for it has been designed and created by the same mind that made the universe. This should make us realise that if the world of Laws and Designs has been so wonderfully made, yet it is only temporary, how much more perfectly designed should God’s way of salvation be, which He designed for eternity.
God is no cowboy builder and our salvation is built to endure. and to fit the need perfectly. As science has discovered that everything works because of ‘‘Laws’’ so the Gospel is set upon Laws also. We have two more mentioned in the first few verses of this chapter; The “Law of Sin and Death” and the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus”
We have already seen the following three ways in which God has revealed Himself to man. We can also call them ‘‘laws’
a, Law of Nature b, The Moral Law - Conscience. c, The Law of Moses,
It is the spiritual world that controls the physical world. When we brake the spiritual laws, the physical laws are affected, and the world fails to function as it was designed to. Thus sin has caused havoc in the world. Man is fundamentally a spiritual being. Martin Lloyd Jones once said something to this effect, that “Man is not a monkey getting better, but a spiritual being out of contact with spiritual life-source.”
To those three laws we now add two more;.
d, The Law of Sin and Death.
e, The Law of the Spirit- Life in Christ. (Romans 3:27 calls it “The Law of Faith”)
Each Law is based upon the previous one. The Law of Sin and Death is based upon, a, b, and c. These state that man is a sinner by nature and practice. There are many ways of defining Sin e.g. Sin is the breaking of the law, or straying from the set path, or missing the target.
Just as the law of gravity says that what goes up must come down, so the law of “ sin and death” says that sin results in death. That means spiritual death, - the end of spiritual life, or contact with God and the world of the Spirit, in which God lives. However the Law of Sin and Death is not the final dismal end, there is good news which declares that men can come ‘‘alive ’’ again to God and into his spiritual kingdom. But if men can’t stop sinning, how can that be possible, if every time he sins, he cuts himself off from God and his life? Can the law of “sin & death” be destroyed? No, for it is just as much a law as the law of gravity. Here we have the answer;
There is another law which overcomes that law, just as there is a law which says that a bird can fly, regardless of the Law of gravity.
If you were to throw a bird and a stone into the air at the same time, what would happen? The stone would fall and the bird would fly. (if it was alive of course)
The stone falls, because of the Law of Gravity. The Bird is set free from that law, by a higher law of aerodynamics. The law of aerodynamics, which sets the bird free, does not disprove or abolish the law of gravity, but it overcomes it. In ourselves, we are dead, but in Christ we are alive. Because of our Faith we fly like the butterfly mentioned earlier into the realm of the Spirit, where there is life in Christ. We leave the world of sin and death and rise like the bird to a world where our sin does not separate us from God. For we have died and we are alive now in Christ.
Hallelujah!! The law of the Spirit, of life in Christ, has set us free from the law of sin and death. God has done it all for us, so now we are as righteous, in Christ, as though we had kept the whole law. The Law still remains unchanged and eternal to judge those who are not ‘‘in Christ.’’ The problem now is to remain in that spiritual zone where all this is true. To do that you must ‘‘live by faith’’
Chapter 8 is similar, but different from chapter 5. Both deal with overcoming the problems that a child of God has in this world, with Tribulations and sin.
Chapter 5 can be seen as from man's view point and chapter 8 can be seen as God sees Tribulations and Sin. Both have their source in Satan, the accuser of the brethren. His aim is to separate man from God by breaking his faith, so when his permitted power operates to send tribulation or cause us to sin, he immediately put in our minds lies, to make us believe that our relationship with God has broken down either temporally or permanently.
So, if we know what God says we are, as his children, then we should live in the realm that God declares is light and truth. God knows that the Devil has charge of our bodies, which has sinful appetites. But God declares in this chapter that as far as he is concerned our bodies are dead, because sin brought death. Our flesh has no contact with God. Any effort in the flesh will fail to bring us to God. God, sort of, ignores all that the devil has in his domain, that is- our flesh and our sinful nature. He knows that is inevitable for us being Adam's descendants.
He has devised a completely new form of life in a new environment all together from this world. His children are born, not of Adam but of His own Holy Spirit. we are new, and totally different creations, for we are not in the flesh but we are alive in Christ Jesus, and we live before God continually in Christ, just as He lives continually in God. In this environment Satan cannot touch us; check this verse. He can access and live through our old nature but certainly not our new one. God is only interested in our new one.
I Jn 5:18
18 We know that whosoever is born of God does not sin; but he that is begotten of God keeps himself, and that wicked one touches him not.
We have our own new life which the devil cannot altar or change. this is the miracle of God's wisdom in his battle against the evil one who wants to usurp God from His throne of Glory. It is as though, we are like beautiful pure white lilies growing in a thick, dirty, filthy stinking pond. and just to rub the devils nose in it, he actually uses all that the devil tries to do, as a means of a, making our faith stronger, and b, proving to the Devil who is God - in other words, when we continue to grow as a child of God by faith, despite all the devil's sins and tribulations, God is glorified and the devil is out-witted.
As you go through this study, hopefully you will see this wonderful truth and join the apostle Paul in his Doxology in chapter 11;
33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!
34 For who has known the mind of the Lord? or who has been his counsellor?
35 Or who has first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?
36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.
Note: the third column in the following chart could be headed "three tests of our faith in the love of God."
I trust you will see also, the connection between Faith Hope and Love. Chapter 5 also begins with these three characteristics.
There is a natural hope, which is like a man who plants a seed by pushing his forefinger into the soil, placing the seed in it and covering it with soil. He would be hoping that it would grow. But it is not a certain hope by any stretch of the imagination. When the Bible speaks of the christian's "hope", it means a "certain glorious future". This hope springs from our faith, and our faith is based upon God;s word (promises) Just as a real gardener would not only plant the seed, but he or she would prepare the ground, plant the seed in the right place, in relation to the sun and elements. They would make constant watch, and prepare for bugs and disease showing on the tiniest leaf. That kind of knowledge will ensure that the gardener's faith is firm and sure, that the seed will grow and blossom or bear fruit. Our faith is grounded firm and deep in the Saviour's love (Rom 5;5-8 and Romans 8 :36-39)
One day, faith will be lost in heavenly sight, hope will disappear in realization, and the only thing that will remains is that which spoke the word in Genesis ch 1 - God, who is Love.
The chapter is more easily remembered with the help of this chart. (click to enlarge)
The number three is prevelant, as it is throughout scripture.
The chapter is in three parts, and each part has three dominant truths.
Part 1. Living in the Spirit
If you read it carefully and meditate, you should discover that the first seventeen verses teach us how our Mind, Heart and Will must be controlled by the Spirit. Your soul consists of your mind, your heart and your will.
First of all we must have a spiritual mind. As you cannot think of two things at once, so we cannot think spiritually and carnally at the same time. We must always think ‘‘in the Spirit’’. This means that we must always think of things from God’s point of view. ‘‘Be spiritually minded, for to be fleshly minded is death’’ ( V.......)
As repentance means to think again, God wants us (his children) to now begin to think as He thinks. God is a Spirit- invisible to the human eye. He longs for his children to see things which are invisible to the flesh. In the natural we think on what we see, and make further steps, or actions accordingly. We rely upon all our natural senses before we can make a "rational" decision. But living in the realm of the Spirit, is not like that. For essentially our spiritual eye depends upon the Word of God for guidance. More often than not the word of God will declare something that is not only invisible to the natural eye (thought) but is patently and obviously a contradiction to what we know from our five natural senses. God's life is faith.
He created the world by the power of his Word. He, who is a Spirit, who is invisible, spoke into nothing and everything came into being.
God expects some semblance of that life in His children who have his Spirit. This is what is meant by "Living by Faith- not by sight"
Not only does God desire us to do his works of faith, but also he desires to do a work of faith in us, at the same time. Changing us from living in the flesh to living in the Spirit is a life time growth. He feeds us with His word, and the Spirit, grows stronger. Like a tree planted by a river we bear the fruit of the Spirit. (Check out Galatians ch 5)
So to live ‘‘in the Spirit’’ means that we must hand our whole lives over to the control of the Spirit. We must learn to be led by the Spirit. Ask his advice and permission in everything; where we go, what we do, how we spend our money, who to be friends with, how to witness, who to witness to, etc. and etc. and etc. I cannot emphasise enough the importance of letting the Spirit, be your Boss. Count yourself as His slave now. He will speak to you through the word of God. There are over 450 commands in the New Testament to guide us in almost every situation in Life. Most of it sounds like impractical nonsense to the natural mind. Obedience is proof of our faith.
The whole of this chapter is a classic guide to how to grow as a child of God. we are all familiar with the fact that babies don't always remain as babies.
In the first seventeen verses, three aspects of growth can be seen
Firstly we read about the MIND v 5-8
Then we read about a relationship with God, as sons with a Father, that is expressed in the HEART. (v 15-17)
And in verses 11-13 we read of the body and the WILL coming into operation, in that we are exhorted to mortify (put to death) the deeds of the flesh.
What day is it today?
The Flesh and the Spirit.
Since you have been born again and a new person lives in you, you now have a choice as to which “life” is to be expressed through your body. You can either live in the flesh, which will accomplish absolutely nothing, like every one else in the world, (you will reap corruption,) or be alive to God, and allow Christ to live out of you and reap eternal rewards. We cannot live them both at the same time. We have to die to ourselves for the Spirit in us to live out of us. (if you play golf check out our Page "Everyday's a chooseday")
You will notice in the chart that the first column is headed "Faith"
This chapter, like most things has a beginning, a middle and an end.
The middle is about Hope. The end is about Love. So we should expect the beginning to be about Faith. However the word "faith" does not even occur in the first 17 verses, but what we do have is the formula for Living in the Spirit. So if you haven't realised this already, we can see that Living in the Spirit equates with Living by Faith. The word "Spirit" means "Life" and we are talking about the Life of God. So this confirms our earlier definition of faith as the Life of God. God made the universe by faith. He made what we now see from what could not be seen. He made the physical from the spiritual. Today through Science we know that this can be reversed, in that all things material and physical can be reduced to gases, i.e. invisible.
So the first section is verses 1-17. We learn of what it means to live in the Spirit.
Section two comprises verses 18-27, where we learn of the Future Hope of all those who are alive in Christ, and the yearnings which we experience while waiting for our hope to be manifested.
Finally, section three is mainly to do with the Love of God and how we maintain our faith in His love. This section is a reiteration of the beginning of chapter 5, The enemy of our souls seeks to break our faith which is anchored in the Love of God. This third part forewarns us of these attacks, and provides the arms to counter such attack and gain victory over them and the one who sends them.
So we see that we live by FAITH, HOPE & LOVE. These are all spiritual characteristics. You should come to realise that they are vastly different from what the natural man thinks are faith, hope and love.
Like a baby grows naturally, so also we grow spiritually. In order for us to grow in mind, heart and will God has provided the spiritual equivalent to what we need to grow naturally in these realms.
First a baby needs food.. We get this by reading the word of God.
1.Peter 2:2 says, “As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word that you may grow thereby.” This is where our mind is in operation.
Secondly like a baby we grow up to know our parents, and a ‘‘heart ’’ relationship matures. We do this by Prayer. Jesus said; “When you pray say “Abba father’’. Check out a similar verse in this chapter (v.........)”
Someone once said, “prayer is not getting things, it is getting to know God”
Thirdly we grow up to work, in our Father’s business. The Spirit controls our will. It is God’s will that we serve Him and that we are a good witness unto Jesus. Read these verses over and over, until you see the mind the heart and the will all controlled by the Spirit.
In the natural world a baby grows by food, air and exercise. If you are a new believer, then you are a new born baby. You are a child of God. You have a new life within you. If that new life is to survive then it will need spiritual food, air and exercise.