"Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?" (Romans 7:1).
God became man and came to this world for the express purpose of going to The Cross.
It is impossible to fully understand the great doctrines of the Bible unless one first understands The Cross of Christ. When I speak of understanding The Cross, I am referring to understanding it not only for salvation, but also for sanctification.
DO YOU NOT KNOW, BRETHREN, FOR I SPEAK TO THEM WHO KNOW THE LAW
Romans Chapter 7 is at least one of the most important chapters in the entirety of the Word of God respecting the Christian walk and its victory, or the lack thereof. Every single believer who has ever lived must go through the scenarios of Romans Chapter 7; it is not possible for it to be otherwise. The fact is that it is not intended for the believer to stay there any length of time, but the sad truth is that most believers, even those who truly love The Lord, have remained in Romans Chapter 7 all of their lives, and that is the tragedy.
Yet that is the case because they do not understand The Cross of Christ as it regards sanctification, which means that they really do not know how to live for God. I realize that is quite a statement, but regrettably it happens to be true.
By not understanding Romans Chapter 7, many believers ignore it, or else they just scan it when they come to its place in the order of scripture. Others give it little credence because they have been taught that it pertains to Paul's "before conversion" experience, of which they have little interest; however, that is gross error. I pray that we will be able to properly expose that error and portray the truth of this great chapter.
That which makes the teaching in this chapter so important to the believer – and it is written to believers exclusively – is because Paul had some of the same problems that all of us have or have had. He thought surely after he was saved and baptized with The Holy Spirit that he could live a victorious, overcoming Christian life. But to his dismay he found that he could not, at least with the light that he then had. That same situation caused him to exclaim, "O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" (Romans 7:24).
In that frame of mind, Paul went to The Lord seeking an answer. The answer was gloriously and wondrously provided given to us in Romans Chapters 6, 7, and 8.
In fact, what The Lord gave to the apostle Paul is the meaning of the New Covenant, which is the meaning of The Cross. It is the greatest revelation the world has ever known.
In Romans Chapter 7, The Holy Spirit through the apostle outlines the reason for the failure of the believer. Sin is not to have dominion over us, yet sin does have dominion in the lives of virtually all Christians. Romans Chapter 7 tells us why, and, if that is correct, and it is, then we are made to understand how vitally significant this chapter really is.
WHY DOES THE HOLY SPIRIT THROUGH PAUL OPEN THE SCENARIO WITH THE LAW?
Paul opens this chapter with law – whether the law of Moses, laws we devise ourselves, or laws devised by some church. In other words, law is the problem, but it should not be a problem because the law of Moses was given by God. It is the problem because of the manner in which it is approached by most Christians. Let us say it again: whether it is the law of Moses, which it is not in most Christian's lives; laws we devise ourselves, or laws devised by some church – this is most definitely the problem.
First of all, Paul is writing to Gentiles, which means they had precious little understanding of the law of Moses. However, and I state again, the reason The Holy Spirit had him to do this was simply because law, or actually the manner in which it is addressed, is the problem. I hope to show the reader how that it is the problem, even though it is the law of God and thereby perfect.
To be frank, the problem is really not in the law; the problem is in mankind.
Considering all the things that Paul says about the law, which some were inclined to take wrongly, one is apt to think that the law of Moses was evil. However, nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, the law of Moses, which was really the law of God, was holy and righteous and actually perfect in every respect. The giving of the law by God to the children of Israel placed them in a position of far greater advantage over all other nations. While others had laws, they were all man-devised, but Israel's law had come from God and consequently gave these people a tremendous advantage in every respect.
SO WHAT WAS THE PROBLEM WITH THE LAW?
First of all, the problem was not actually the law, but rather how man approached the law. Instead of accepting and using the law of Moses as it was intended by God, they attempted to make salvation out of its commandments, which God never intended.
Among many other things, the law of Moses was intended to point out and define sin. As well, it was to portray to man his total inadequacy and inability to keep the simple commandments – the Ten Commandments – that God laid down. He was then to throw himself on the mercy and grace of God for help and redemption, which was portrayed in the sacrificial system. It actually was a portrayal of The Cross of Christ, which would one day come. While some few did exactly that, most did not. Most of Israel became puffed up in their own self-righteousness. Despite the fact that they couldn't even keep a few commandments that God had given them, they multiplied hundreds of other commandments to go along with what was already there. In effect, Jesus was the giver and keeper of the law, and actually the only manwho ever lived who did keep it, and kept it perfectly. But by the time that Jesus came, Israel would not accept Him. Not only would they reject his message, but in their evil they felt that they had to destroy the messenger, which they did by crucifying Him. Again, the law of Moses was not the cause or fault, but rather the evil wicked hearts of these people.
SO HOW DOES THIS EFFECT THE GENTILES?
Whether it is the law of Moses or a law of our own devising, man seeks to try to satisfy his spiritual needs by his own efforts. He tries to do it with laws of one kind or another, exactly as Israel did with the Mosaic law. There is an innate spirit in man, even in believers, that is loathe to admit to himself or God that he cannot solve his own spiritual problems. All of this is a result of the fall.
There are many reasons The Holy Spirit has the apostle use the law of Moses as an example. One reason is that if man could not gain righteousness by his attempts to keep the law of Moses (considering it was from God and perfect in every respect), how in the world does he think he can bring about the same results through pitiful laws of his own making? Yet all of us have fallen into this trap in one way or another.
Our trust is in our own laws and efforts rather than in Christ and Him Crucified. That, in a nutshell, spells out our failure.
Man's self-sufficiency is his greatest enemy. In other words, we have met the enemy, and he is us!
It is strange, but believers will look at the world and try them for refusing to admit that they need Jesus, while we are doing the same thing. Too often we claim that we are leaning on Jesus when in reality, we are leaning on our own arm of flesh. All of it is so subtle and religious; consequently, it deceives so many people.
SATAN AND THE LAW
The evil one is quite content to allow us to struggle and strive in efforts of our own making instead of trusting Christ. He knows that not only are we not going to get victory in that manner, but also that our situation is going to become progressively worse. All attempts to bring about victory in this way can only lead to defeat, with each defeat becoming worse than the previous one.
Satan is very content for man to be religious – even very religious – for the simple reason that he knows there is no victory or salvation in that sector. He even encourages these efforts. But the moment the believer begins to depend totally on Christ, that's when the war begins. Strangely enough, most of the opposition will come from fellow Christians. That is sad, but true!
In this chapter, Paul is going to open his soul as few preachers ever have. He is going to portray his own failures and the reason for those failures. While we are studying this, do not forget that the reason for his failures is the reason for our failures as well. If the great apostle cannot bring about victory by his own efforts, do any of us seriously think that we can succeed where he failed?
HOW IS IT THAT THE LAW HAS DOMINION OVER A MAN AS LONG AS HE LIVES?
The heading addresses the individual who attempts to live for God by means of law, whether the law of Moses or laws devised by us or by our churches. Any person who seeks such a direction – and virtually the entirety of modern Christendom does – is going to find law dominating him, which destroys grace and brings with it a curse.
Paul said, "For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse..." (Galatians 3:10). Actually, this is a far cry from biblical Christianity and is, in fact, a miserable existence, as should be obvious.
If a person attempts to gain victory by using law (his own strength and power), he will find that the law has dominion over him. He will not obtain that for which he is seeking – victory over the flesh – but rather the very opposite. So Paul is now going to press home the point that the believer is no longer under law and the Christian who puts himself under law and fails to avail himself of the resources of grace is a defeated Christian. This was Paul's own experience after his conversion before he came into the knowledge given to him by Christ, which he gave us in Romans Chapter 6 (and in all of his writings).
However, the law will incite the Christian to more sin, which is the very opposite of what he wants. Yet the law is not responsible for that sin, but rather the sin nature that is in the believer. It is the sin nature that the law incites, which it is intended to do.
THE CORRUPTION OF MAN'S NATURE
The idea is that as good as the law of Moses was, in itself and the divine intention, instead of it helping to make man good, it actually did the very opposite. This is because of the corruption of man's nature, which God knew all along. That sounds strange to the Bible student, doesn't it?
One might ask, "If the law of Moses stimulated sin in God's people, how could it be called good?"
Once again, the problem was not in the law, but in the corrupt nature of man. The Lord desired to show man just how corrupt he really was, and this was the best way to portray that fact.
It is somewhat like placing a certain type of medicine over a boil on the human body; the medicine draws the corruption to the surface. The medicine did not cause the boil, nor is it the reason for the corruption; it just merely portrays the fact that the corruption is already there by drawing it to the surface. So, if a man tries to obtain victory by attempting to keep the law; he will have no more success than all who preceded him. The reason is simple: man has no power or ability to keep the law.
Then we must understand that Jesus has already kept the law for us, and He did it in every respect. In other words, He never sinned – not even one time in word, thought, or deed. He did it all as our representative man, keeping the law perfectly, which He did for us. This means that when we come to Christ, we step away from the position of law breaker into the position of law keeper – all because of Christ and what He did for us at The Cross.
IF GOD DEMANDED THAT THE LAW BE KEPT, WHICH HE DID, WHY DID HE NOT GIVE MAN THE POWER TO DO SO?
To the natural mind it seems unfair that God would give a law and demand that man keep it, all the time knowing that he could not. It becomes even more serious when we realize that there is a severe penalty attached to not keeping the law. Of course, for the law to truly be law, there must be a penalty attached for disobedience.
While it is true that God did not give man any power to keep the law, He did this for a purpose and reason.
Man's problem has always been pride, which was actually the cause of the fall in the Garden of Eden. If God had given man the power to keep the law, he would have been lifted up further in his pride and seen less need of God instead of more, which was the intention to begin with. The law was intended to show man his inability, his weakness, and his efforts to be woefully insufficient, not increase his problem with more pride.
DID GOD NOT KNOW THAT ISRAEL WOULD RESPOND TO THE LAW WRONGLY?
Of course He did! But the law did exactly what it was intended to do:
So, even though the Law of Moses must be addressed in what seems to be a negative way, the law was, in fact, not negative at all but the very opposite. As stated, the problem is on the part of man and not the law. In fact, some few Israelites down through the centuries treated the law of God as it was intended, and they were blessed abundantly.
FOR THE WOMAN WHICH HAS AN HUSBAND IS BOUND BY THE LAW TO HER HUSBAND SO LONG AS HE LIVES
"For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband" (Romans 7:2). Let me say it again: if the believer does not understand The Cross of Christ relative to sanctification, no matter the instruction, he will not properly understand the great doctrines of the Bible, at least as he ought to.
Let us say it in another way: to understand the great work of The Cross relative to our everyday living for God also opens up to us the understanding of the great doctrines of The Word of God.The statement of this particular scripture presents the first statement of an analogy used by Paul to describe the law and believers under the New Covenant. First, the Bible student must understand that Paul is not teaching here on the subject of divorce and remarriage, but rather using this as analogy or comparison. Even though it seems somewhat confusing at first, as we go along, it becomes clearer as to why The Holy Spirit chose this particular illustration.
The husband is here likened to the law, and the woman (wife) is likened to the believer. As long as her husband (law) is alive, then she (the believer) is bound to him (bound to the law, which was the state of Israel before Christ).
BUT IF THE HUSBAND BE DEAD, SHE IS LOOSED FROM THE LAW OF HER HUSBAND
The heading simply means that she is now free in the eyes of God and man to marry again, if she so desires.
Continuing with that analogy, the law is now dead – fulfilled by Christ – at least dead to the child of God. Consequently, the believer is no longer bound by the law simply because it no longer exists (In Romans 7:4, Paul changes this analogy a little bit, which tends to confuse the reader, but which is done with purpose).
The argument here is, just as death is the only force that could liberate from the demands of sin (the death of Jesus), so it is the only force that can liberate from the demands of the law.
The Cross of Christ satisfied the law in every respect (Romans 10:4). However, it satisfied the law only as the believing sinner places his or her faith exclusively in Christ and what He did for us at The Cross, and maintains it accordingly.
SO THEN IF, WHILE HER HUSBAND LIVES, SHE BE MARRIED TO ANOTHER MAN, SHE SHALL BE CALLED AN ADULTERESS
"So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man" (Romans 7:3).
This presents the very opposite of Romans 7:2. Here, Paul uses the analogy for the husband not dying, but rather his wife leaving him and marrying another man. Divorce is not actually mentioned, so in a sense this means she now has two husbands – the law and Christ. Really, this is the gist of the entire analogy.
Paul is using this to portray the believer attempting to serve two husbands – the law and Christ – which is a literal impossibility, but where most believers find themselves.
Paul is also saying that irrespective of what man may say of the woman (the believer), God calls her an adulteress. That means if the believer attempts to serve Christ, and at the same time tries to hold onto some type of law, the believer is, in effect, committing spiritual adultery. Please understand, anything in which we place our faith, irrespective as to how scriptural it might be in its own right, God looks at it as spiritual adultery; we are in effect serving two masters. The believer is to look exclusively to Christ and nothing else.
Some time back I looked at a book written by a particular brother, and in no way did I question his love for God. But he was telling people that if they fast so many days, they will have victory over sin. While fasting is definitely scriptural and will bless the person, it will not give one victory over sin. As somebody has said, after a while we're going to have to start eating again.
Let me say it again: anything other than our faith in Christ and The Cross is looked at by God as spiritual adultery. That means that if the believer attempts to serve Christ, but at the same time tries to hold onto some type of law, then that believer is committing spiritual adultery. Why? The believer has placed himself in totality to Christ but as well is playing footsie with another effort or law, attempting to obtain results that only Christ can give. It's like hedging your bet. The believer will not gain any thing by this action, and he will greatly hurt himself – not only in the results but also in his relationship with Christ.
The believer must understand that all victory and all righteousness come exclusively by and through The Cross of Christ. In other words, no believer, no matter how zealous he or she might be, is going to find victory outside of The Cross of Christ. The things that are done may bless the person greatly, but it won't give him victory.
As well, righteousness comes to us again only because of our faith in Christ and what He did at The Cross. Once again, it is The Cross.
Let us say it again: victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil, can come only by The Cross of Christ, which demands that our faith be exclusively in Christ and The Cross, and maintained exclusively in Christ and The Cross. As well, we are given righteousness simply because of our faith in Christ and The Cross and by no other means.
Yet, whether they realize it or not, most believers do what they do – fasting, witnessing to souls, giving money, or whatever it might be – thinking that it brings about righteousness. It does not. One can gain righteousness only by one's faith in Christ and The Cross. Listen to what is said about Abraham: "And he believed in the LORD; and he (The Lord) counted it to him for righteousness" (Genesis 15:6).
What makes this scenario somewhat confusing is that most of the time the believer is not deliberately trying to find victory from other sources. He thinks he is depending solely upon Christ, while all the time depending on his own strength or even the strength of others. His efforts are probably very spiritual, and, he thinks, even scriptural, but these efforts are made mostly in ignorance. Irrespective of good intentions or spiritual ignorance, the result is the same: failure. Having good motives, being sincere, and having good intentions, while good, never compensate for error. Wrong direction is wrong direction, regardless of the reasons.
A SECOND BENEFIT
As stated, most of the problem, at least as it pertains to personal victory over sin for a child of God – and the problem is sin – is an ignorance of the teaching given in Romans Chapter 6. We have all been taught greatly and grandly of the price paid by Christ at Calvary regarding the terrible sin debt, which makes it possible for the believing sinner to be saved. But most of us have heard very little about the second benefit of Calvary, which is the victory won by Christ in destroying the dominion of sin over the believer.
Coming to salvation is wonderful and great, but the believer – even in the face of the powers of darkness with all of its attendant wickedness – must walk straight and clean before The Lord thereafter. Even though Jesus did pay the terrible sin debt, and paid it in totality, sin as a fact was not eradicated or dissolved at that time. It is still very much real, and its bite causes just as many problems as it always did. What Jesus did in respect to breaking its dominion was to literally build a spiritual shield between the sin nature and the believer, effectively isolating that monster. Even though that was done at Calvary and the resurrection – and done in totality – most believers little understand it, and even fewer know how to appropriate this great benefit.
The second difficulty is that there must be a continuing faith, which should not present a problem but sometimes does. Christians love to make everything final; however, while there is finality to what Jesus did respecting the destruction of the dominion of sin over the believer, in another sense of the word, it is not final. By that I mean the believer must continue to exercise faith even on a moment by moment basis. To be sure, this is all done for our benefit, but at times it seems like anything but a benefit.
Once again, we come back to the foundation of the Word of God, which demands that man go God's way, and nothing must be taken or added from that way. This is man's great problem. Even believers – they either do not know the way, which is the way of The Cross, or else they try to change the way. Perhaps this is done in ignorance, but again the end result is the same: failure.
BUT IF HER HUSBAND BE DEAD, SHE IS FREE FROM THAT LAW
This presents Paul proclaiming the situation as it ought to be. The husband being dead represents the law being dead: or one might say fulfilled, in effect, by Christ. As a result, the believer is no longer obligated to the law. He is free from its demands simply because Christ has fulfilled those demands on his behalf. The law within itself is not dead, but as we shall see in a later verse, we are to be dead to the law. This means that we are to treat the law as though it is dead. The law is dead only to believers and not to the world at large.
Actually, the law died with Christ. Paul said, "Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross" (Colossians 2:14).
SO THAT SHE IS NO ADULTERESS, THOUGH SHE BE MARRIED TO ANOTHER MAN
The heading presents the believer as now married to Christ and no longer under obligation to the law because the power of the law is dead, at least as Paul draws the analogy. Israel was obligated under the law because Christ had not yet come, but when Christ came, He took the place of the law and is to be the only husband. With Christ as the only husband, the believer is not looked at by God as committing spiritual adultery asHe did when the believer was attempting to exert loyalty to both.
MARRIED TO CHRIST
Pursuing the matter of the Christian's relation to law as a method of divine healing, Paul returns to the substance of his statement in Romans 6:14: "...ye are not under the law, but under grace," (married to Christ).
To be under law is to be in the state of an unsaved person, obligated to obey God's law; however, the law gives neither the desire nor the power to obey its precepts. Instead it brings out sin all the more, because that is what it is designed to do. Its very presence incites rebellion in the totally depraved nature of the individual (Romans 5:20). Conversely, to be under grace is to be a Christian who has had the power of the evil nature broken in his life so that he does not need to obey it any more. A Christian has been given the divine nature, which gives him both the desire and the power to do God's will. Consequently, we can now see how deadly it is to resort to any other method of victory other than Christ and The Cross. Jesus is not only our Savior from sin (the sin debt), but He is also our Savior respecting the dominion of sin. It no longer rules us and in fact, cannot rule us, that is as long as we look to Christ and The Cross.
WHEREFORE, MY BRETHREN, YOU ALSO ARE BECOME DEAD TO THE LAW BY THE BODY OF CHRIST
"Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God" (Romans 7:4).
The Christian has the choice; it is either law or grace. For the believer to operate in grace, which is God's intention, the believer only has to make The Cross the object of his faith and maintain The Cross as the object of his faith.
Romans 7:4 presents the passage that causes some confusion about Paul's analogy regarding the husband who died. Continuing that analogy, Paul would have said that the law died, in as much as the dead husband represented the law, but he does not say that. He said the believer has become dead to the law – instead of the law being dead to the believer – even though in truth the law is dead to the believer, or should be.
The real point that Paul is making in this symbolism is about the woman – a type of the believer – who attempts to be married to two husbands: the law and Christ. Of course she cannot be.
Also, when Paul uses the statement, "are become dead to the law," he is referring to fellowship with Christ in His death. As well, Paul is using another analogy, which in a sense turns the entire scenario around. He is saying that when the husband (law) dies, the wife also dies as far as that particular marriage relationship is concerned, and she is free to marry another. So, when Jesus died on Calvary, the believer (continuing in the analogy, the wife) died with Him (Romans 6:6). Therefore, the believer is now free to marry Christ, which he does at conversion.
The phrase, "are become dead" in the Greek is thanatoo, which means "you are made dead, put to death," and speaks of great violence. Henry Alford said, "The more violent word is used instead of 'apethanete (you died),' to recall the violent death of Christ, in which, and after the manner of believers have been put to death to the law and sin. In other words, there is absolutely no doubt that the believer is dead to the law and sin."
THE STRUCTURE OF THE LAW
Now why did Paul change the structure of the analogy and make the believer dead to the law instead of the law dead to the believer, as was originally typified by the dead husband? As we have already stated, the original intent was to portray the impossibility of the believer attempting to be married to two husbands – law and Christ.
But the reason Paul did not say that the law is dead to the believer, but rather that the believer is dead to the law is because the law is not dead; it is very much alive, even now.
All human beings in the world who are not saved, if they do not give their hearts to Christ, will answer to the law, which will be done at the great white throne judgment.
The reason the believer does not have to answer to the law, is because Jesus satisfied the law in every respect and kept its precepts completely. Whenever we accept Christ, we are given His perfection, with the law having no more hold over us. That can be only if a person accepts Christ, otherwise they will answer to the law, and that judgment is death – eternal separation from God, eternal hell.
THE LAW DIVIDED INTO THREE PARTS
The law of Moses, although one, was somewhat divided into three parts:
The ceremonial part of the law, which was all the time pointed to Christ and was meant to symbolize Christ, was fulfilled when Christ came. Consequently, there was no more need for the symbolism. The moral law – the Ten Commandments minus the fourth – was brought over into the New Covenant, that part of the law is still incumbent upon believers today because moral law cannot change. However, we go about keeping it in a totally different way than in times of old. If our faith is exclusively in Christ and The Cross, The Holy Spirit keeps the moral law for us. Otherwise, we will find ourselves trying to do it by our own ability and strength, which guarantees failure.
The fourth commandment, "remember the sabbath day and keep it holy" was not brought over into the New Covenant because it was exclusively between Israel and God. It was the only one of the Ten Commandments that was not moral but rather ceremonial. If one looks carefully at the New Testament, after the four Gospels, one will find that the fourth commandment is nowhere in view. In other words, Christians did not keep the Jewish Saturday, which was the Sabbath, but rather Sunday, which was the Day of Resurrection(1 Corinthians 16:2).
THE MORAL LAW
However, even though the moral law is very much alive and in incumbent upon all believers, that law was and is kept in Christ, meaning that He lives in us, keeping the moral law (Galatians 2:20).
Jesus personally and perfectly kept the moral law (Ten Commandments) in every respect, and in the eyes of God our faith in Him grants us the status of law keeper instead of law breaker without us even having to think about the situation.
The "body of Christ," as Paul uses the term, speaks of Christ offering His physical body as a sin offering on Calvary's Cross. In the vehicle of His body, He died to the law, which means that if we have faith in Him and what He did, then we died to the law also. His dying means He suffered its penalty and met its demands.
The believer is never to forget that all of this was done for him, and not at all for Christ Himself because Jesus had never broken the law or incurred its curse. In as much as He has done this strictly for us, surely it would stand to reason that He would want us to have all that His great victory affords.
Once again, we go back to the fact that all of this – payment for sin and victory over sin – and that its immediate effectiveness is carried out within our lives on a day to day basis by continued faith in Christ and what He did at The Cross, and our place in Him.This must never be misunderstood: the believer died with Him, was buried with Him, and rose from the dead with Him in newness of life (Romans 6:4).
This is what is meant in Romans 6:3: "Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death?"
In order to be saved, the believing sinner simply has to believe that Jesus died on Calvary for him and paid his terrible sin debt. Accepting what He did and accepting Him as Savior guarantees salvation and freedom from the demands of the law.
DOMINION OF SIN BROKEN
The believer who is in Christ – already saved – must now take his faith to a much greater degree than that of the believing sinner. He must believe that he was in Christ when these great things were done (including the resurrection), and that this great happening broke the dominion of sin. Continued faith in this great event and his part in it guarantees that it stays broken, even to where the sin nature is so isolated that it no longer is a bother or trouble to the believer. It is all wrapped up in The Cross of Christ and our faith in that finished work.
THAT YOU SHOULD BE MARRIED TO ANOTHER
This subheading refers to believers being married to Christ. He alone can provide all that is needed and in whatever capacity. When we came to Christ as believing sinners, we actually married Him. At least in the mind of God that is exactly what has happened (2 Corinthians 11:1-4).
The keeping of the law of Moses was incumbent upon all, but all failed until Christ. As the representative man, Christ kept the law of Moses in every single respect, and faith in Him grants to the believer the satisfaction of the law in every respect also. Consequently, the believer is no longer obligated to the law because its demands have been met with the believer now free and qualified to look to Christ exclusively.
EVEN TO HIM WHO IS RAISED FROM THE DEAD
This subheading presents the believing sinner as identifying with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection. Consequently, the law now has no more jurisdiction over the believer for the obvious reasons. In Romans 6:6, the "old man" (sinner) died and was buried with Christ meaning the law has no more dominion over that person, especially considering that he has passed out of the realm where the law holds sway. He is resurrected with Christ – in effect he is in Christ – "to walk in newness of life." Incidentally, it is a life free of the law, because its demands have been met in Christ.
Paul's purpose now is to press home the point that the believer is not under law any more. Consequently, a Christian putting himself under law and thus failing to avail himself of the resource of grace, which can all be brought about by our faith in Christ, is a defeated Christian. This was Paul's own experience before He came into the knowledge of Romans Chapter 6. While the law incites the Christian to more sin, even as it always does, the law is not responsible for that sin, but the evil sin nature is. This can only be conquered as the believer cries in Romans 7:24, "...who shall deliver me...?" and looks away from himself and self dependence to The Lord Jesus.
THAT WE SHOULD BRING FORTH FRUIT UNTO GOD
The only way that the believer can bring forth "fruit unto God" – that which God will accept – is by one's faith placed exclusively in Christ and what Christ has done for us at The Cross, and maintained exclusively in Christ and The Cross. The hinderance to us living such a life is dependence on the flesh instead of on Christ. With that being the case, such a believer cannot walk in victory.
In fact, without understanding The Cross of Christ as it regards our daily living – how we order our behavior and how we have victory over the world, the flesh, and the devil – such a believer is guaranteed failure. And, I might quickly add, failure that gets worse and worse. It is not possible for sin to remain static. It will ultimately end in death – the death of one's own experience with God and the death of that for which Christ has paid such a price.
How firm a foundation, ye saints of The Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word!
What more can He say, and to you He hath said,
To you who for refuge to Jesus have fled.
Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed!
For I am your God, and I will still give thee aid:
I'll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.
When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of sorrow shall not overflow;
For I will be with thee, through trials to bless,
And sanctify to thee your deepest distress.
When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
My grace all sufficient shall be thy supply;
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design,
Thy dross to consume and thy gold to refine.
What I Hate, That Do I Chapter 1