HOW ROMANS 8:2 WORKS

HOW ROMANS 8

Copyright Š 2006 Trumpet Ministries, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright Š 973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.

We love the righteousness expressed in the Law of Moses. But when the Law points out to us that we are sinning we try to do good, and then fail because of our sinful nature. Then we are filled with condemnation and cut off from fellowship with God. This is spiritual death.

The Law of Moses is well able to show us our sin but it is not accompanied by the power to deliver us from sin. This is how the Law of Moses differs from the new covenant.

HOW ROMANS 8:2 WORKS

For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath set me free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:2)

Romans 8:2 is really a summation of the new covenant.

The law of sin and death is the Law of Moses interacting with our sinful nature.

We love the righteousness expressed in the Law of Moses. But when the Law points out to us that we are sinning we try to do good, and then fail because of our sinful nature. Then we are filled with condemnation and cut off from fellowship with God. This is spiritual death.

The Law of Moses is well able to show us our sin but it is not accompanied by the power to deliver us from sin. This is how the Law of Moses differs from the new covenant.

If we are able to keep one part of the Law then another sin is revealed. It is like trying to put socks on an octopus.

The most determined of the Jews make mighty efforts to keep all the points of the Law. But even these attempt fall short. Also, such efforts easily can create self-righteousness even when we deplore self-righteousness.

The self-righteous person seeks to perfect his personality. The truly righteous individual seeks to know the Lord.

The Law of Moses is perfect. If there could have been a law given that would make people perfect, the Law of Moses is the leading candidate. But since the Law cannot do more than admonish our corrupt nature, the pure, holy righteousness that God requires is impossible of attainment.

O wretched people that we are, how are we ever to please God?

The solution to our struggle is the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus. This is the law of the new covenant and it sets us free from the law of sin and death. It does so by ascribing righteousness to us so we are free from condemnation and then changes us so we are able to keep God's righteous laws.

Let us look at four ways in which the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets us free from the law of sin and death.

The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets us free by:

Ascribing to us the righteousness gained by Christ's perfect obedience to the letter and intent of the Law of Moses.

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: (Romans 8:6)

The Lord Jesus, because He was born of a virgin, did not inherit a sinful nature. The bloodline of Joseph did not affect Jesus. His Father is God.

The Lord Jesus was filled with the fullness of the Spirit of God.

The Father dwelled in Jesus.

Jesus' Character was superb, having been with the Father from the beginning. He is the Word of God made flesh.

The Lord when He was here did something no other person ever has done or ever could do. He kept the letter and intent of the Law of Moses perfectly.

Having Himself written the Law on Sinai, Jesus was able to perceive the intent of the Law and thus fulfill all of its meaning. If the Pharisees had believed Moses and the Prophets they would have noticed that even though it appeared Jesus violated the Sabbath by healing on the holy day He did not actually violate it.

It always is of God that someone under the Law of Moses perform a good work on the Sabbath, a mitzvah, if the situation requires it. If someone was starving to death or freezing to death on the Sabbath and we had to work to feed or clothe him, such work would not truly violate the Sabbath.

Anyone with a heart for God, like Jesus or King David, can always read God's intention. But the hardhearted religious individual will succeed in straining out gnats and swallowing camels.

What did Jesus gain by the perfect observance of Moses? Jesus gained perfect righteousness, the righteousness that comes by observance of the Law.

Now Jesus is authorized to ascribe the righteousness He earned to anyone of His choice.

Receiving by faith the righteousness of the Law of Moses is the first step in release from the law of sin and death. But remember, to be without condemnation we must be "in Christ Jesus." To be "in Christ Jesus" does not mean at some point in time we "made a decision for Christ" or took "the four steps of salvation."

To be "in Christ Jesus," and thus free from condemnation, means we are living every minute of every day in the Presence of the Lord, looking to Him for every aspect of life. We live in Christ just as one would live in a house. As we live in Him, seeking always to know Him better, to gain Him, to bring every detail of life to Him, every decision, then and only then are we without condemnation.

The average American churchgoer cannot claim to be free from condemnation, because he or she is not living "in Christ Jesus."

Because the currents of wickedness in the United States are exceedingly powerful and growing stronger by the day, we find ourselves in a continual fight against the encroaching darkness. Fortunately we have the Lord on our side making us more than conquerors. But we cannot afford to be careless or foolish at any time because the enemy probes constantly to find a point at which he can deceive and trick us out from the protection of the angel of the Lord.

Let us repeat the first way in which the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets us free from the law of sin and death:

By ascribing to us the righteousness gained by Christ's perfect obedience to the letter and intent of the Law of Moses.

What is the second of the four ways in which the Spirit of life sets us free?

By leading us point by point to the total removal from our personality of all that is not pleasing to God.

That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (Romans 8:4)

There are three areas of spiritual death in us. The first is worldliness. The second is composed of the sin that dwells in our flesh. The third is self-will.

All three areas, worldliness, the lusts of the flesh, and self-will must be dealt with rigorously until they are totally removed from our personality. These all are forms of idolatry.

The first area, worldliness, has to do with our entanglement with the things of the world. Because the American culture is so rich and varied the believer is sorely tempted to become involved with money, lust, violence, entertainment, and witchcraft to name a few of the problems.

The Apostle Paul warned us that no soldier of Christ is to become entangled in the world but is to endure hardness. Yet this is not always taught in the churches. Perhaps because of the extreme emphasis on church growth the pastors do not make the scriptural demands on the believers. To tell an American believer he is to deny himself, take up his cross, and follow Jesus, may drive him or her from the assembling. Is this true?

American believers to a great extent are more heavily involved in the world than they should be. God warns us to love not the world neither the things that are in the world. Whoever will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God, the Bible says. Yet we go right on with our involvement supposing God has changed His mind.

We are in the world but not of the world. The problem in America is that of preventing the interesting things of the world from robbing us of a close walk with the Master. It is very easy to do! Money, lust, and entertainment are carrying the day with most churchgoers, I'm afraid.

How do we remove worldliness from our personality? We get baptized in water, if we haven't already done so, assigning our personality to the cross with Christ and rising again in the new life of the Kingdom of God. Then we read our Bible and pray every day, assembling on a regular basis with fervent believers.

It should be obvious to those around us that we are not one of them. We are different. We belong to the Lord Jesus. We are not hypocrites, we genuinely are walking in the Lord and inviting whoever will to join us.

Would you believe there are many New Agers and many witches out there who are waiting to see someone who is more than a casual churchgoer, who really knows the Lord? People are hungry for God in America. They are not rejecting the Lord Jesus, they are rejecting what they see in the churches!

We of the churches criticize the New Agers, the witches, the homosexuals, the liberals, and many other people. But the fault lies with us. We are not showing the world the depth of spiritual reality there is in the Lord Jesus.

The world of witchcraft, drugs, familiar spirits, psychedelic lights, mantras, attempts to give the illusion of spiritual depths and wonders. But behind this pseudo-paradise are dens of goblin creatures waiting to scratch and bite once they are uncovered. The beautiful exterior masks the burning fires of endless torment. Be not deceived! It is as I have told you!

In the Lord Jesus there are true depths, true wonders, true beauty, and one glory leads to another, world without end.

Recently a New Ager watched a mime performance by a member of our assembling. He quizzed her carefully to see if she really believed in the blood of the cross that which she was portraying in mime. It was obvious he is a seeker after truth, looking to see if there is anything of worth here. He asked the right person because Karen indeed is living what she is portraying.

The citizens of our country are cynical concerning Christianity. They would be fools not to be cynical, considering what they have witnessed.

We Christians can choose to come out of the world and God will help us to do so reasonably and practically.

For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. (Romans 8:13)

Getting rid of the sin that dwells in our flesh is another matter. The Holy Spirit has to lead us a step at a time. When the Spirit calls an uncleanness to our attention, then we are to confess it clearly, repudiating it in the name of the Lord. We are to describe the behavior specifically to the Lord and then renounce it with all the determination we are capable of.

Such confession and renunciation are an act of judgment. We humans are God's designated judges. We are to bring judgment against the works of darkness. As we do so the demons are forced to leave our personality.

This kind of deliverance must be supervised by godly, experienced elders. There are traps and deceptions of all kinds. However, in an assembling where there are godly, experienced elders, people can come to the altar and confess their sins to God. They will find great release in this activity.

Ours is the time for moral deliverance. The hour of judgment has begun. God is ready to baptize His churches with fire.

Are you willing to have God take you point by point through the depths of deceit of your heart? It is the day for it. How wonderful to get this garbage out of us. I have been walking in the open confession of sin for fifty years and am still at it. I must have had a bad start!

Self-will is yet another matter. Self-will is the most profound of the evils that are part of our personality. God gets at self-will by denying our most fervent desires and by compelling us to remain in detestable situations. Sound familiar?

If you are willing to remain in prison as long as required you will receive the crown of life. In order to endure for the duration you are going to have to put all your treasures in Heaven. You are going to have to put your hopes beyond the grave.

You say that is asking too much. Let me tell you, God is going to have a holy remnant who will overcome the accuser by loving not their lives to the death. If you want to be one of these, one of the warlike remnant, you will have to die this third death, the death to self.

And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. (Revelation 12:11)

It is the suffering of self-denial, of thirst, of carrying our cross after Jesus, that brings us to fruitfulness and dominion. It is waters to the hips and then waters to swim in. The end is to be a tree of life planted by the river of the Holy Spirit.

If you remain at the Pentecostal level, water to the knees, you will never reap a full reward. The fullness of the inheritance goes to the conquerors, to those who overcome the accuser by the blood of the Lamb, by the word of their testimony, and by loving not their lives to the death. If there is a falling short in one of these three areas it is impossible to engage successfully in the final battle.

God does have some who will ascend to this third level of consecration. You can be one if you wish. But if you draw back from the invitation God will not be pleased.

I expect you wouldn't be reading these words if the Holy Spirit were not challenging you concerning one of the three areas of sin. Let me, as a friend, invite you to taste of God's very best. It is for you but you will have to take hold of it. The opportunity will not last forever and once it passes I think it highly unlikely it ever again will be offered.

It will cost you everything to go for the gold. Things of great value have great price tags. The summit is there for the taking. What do you say?

We have mentioned two of the ways in which the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus delivers us from the law of sin and death. These are:

By ascribing to us the righteousness gained by Christ's perfect obedience to the letter and intent of the Law of Moses.

By leading us point by point to the total removal from our personality of all that is not pleasing to God.

The third way in which the law of the Spirit of life sets us free from the law of sin is by totally changing the remaining part of our personality including , at His coming, our body, into the image of Christ's Personality.

God goes to war against the worldliness, the fleshly sins, and the self-will that are part of our personality. This is what the sixth chapter of the Book of Romans refers to as the body of sin and it must be destroyed from us. The idols must be driven from us. Better this than to have God answer us according to our idols, that is, to leave us in the deception caused by the doors in our personality that are open to Satan!

Our personality must be transformed. It is transformed by being made alive by the body and blood of Christ, the Divine Nature of God, that is born within us when we are born again.

Our personality, the part that God chooses to keep, must be completely transformed and transfigured by being impregnated and welded together with Christ. There must not be the tiniest element that is not filled with Christ.

For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; (II Corinthians 4:17)

All the old personality must pass away. All must be made new and by all I mean all things must be of God. It is a new humanity. Adam must go. That which remains must become a new creation, perfectly human and perfectly Divine. On a lesser scale than the Lord Jesus, it is true, but exactly like Him in essence. Otherwise there can be no marriage. God will have no mixed seed in His Kingdom.

As we undergo change while on earth a corresponding change is taking place in the body being prepared for us before the Throne of God. There is no biblical concept more in need of understanding today than that which concerns the resurrection from the dead.

The is much talk about the catching up of the saints, the so-called "rapture." When or how the rapture, or catching up, takes place, is of little importance (except to the adamic man who wishes to escape suffering). The great goal is the resurrection to eternal life. It is the resurrection, and especially that which follows the resurrection, that is the finale of redemption, the climax of redemption. By that which follows the resurrection I mean the good or the bad that will be given to us on that day, according to the way we have acted in the world.

Redemption is release from the presence and works of Satan and change into the image of Jesus, and then entrance into untroubled rest in the Father through the Lord Jesus. We can see instantly that the resurrection unto eternal life in the Presence of Christ is a major action of redemption while being caught up into the air to meet Jesus is a consequence of redemption, not part of the process of redemption itself.

The ascension is of minor importance compared with attaining to the first resurrection from the dead.

Our flesh and bones will be raised from the dead at the sound of the trumpet. Then the Lord will bring our reward with Him. A major part of our reward will be our house, our robe from Heaven. Our house, our robe, is being fashioned from the decisions we are making today. We are going to be clothed with our own works.

Then will the righteous shine as the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. The Christ-wrought righteousness of the victorious saints will be revealed for the world to see. The corruption and death reaped by those who have chosen the ways of the flesh will also be revealed at that time. All shall be revealed at the Judgment Seat of Christ.

How does the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus set us free from the law of sin and death, from the interaction of the Law of Moses with our fallen nature?

By ascribing to us the righteousness gained by Christ's perfect obedience to the letter and intent of the Law of Moses.

By leading us point by point to the total removal from our personality of all that is not pleasing to God.

By totally changing the remaining part of our personality including finally, at His coming, our body, into the image of Christ's Personality.

We have just finished describing three great steps in the program of redemption. We have come now to the fourth step.

The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus sets us free from the law of sin and death by:

Completely filling our changed personality with the fullness of The Father and the fulness of the Son through the fullness of the Holy Spirit so we are living in untroubled rest in the Father through Christ.

Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him. (John 14:23)

Here is the goal of the program of redemption. The goal is to provide an eternal house, a throne, a chariot for God.

God desires to dwell among His children but there are difficulties. We see the difficulties in the Garden of Eden, at Mount Sinai, and by the way Christ was treated while living on the earth.

God (as always) has a brilliant solution. It is to create for Himself a throne made of people whom He is making sons, a Wife for the Lamb, judges of men and angels, kings and priests who are authorized and competent to govern successfully, bless, and heal the saved of mankind. This is the Church, the Olive Tree. This is the true Israel of God, composed first of Jews then of Gentiles.

God never dwells in Adam, only in Christ. Before God will dwell in any human being Christ must be formed in him or her.

First, we must be forgiven.

Next, all the idols of the world, the flesh, and self-will must be removed from us.

Next, our human nature, now released from idols and bondages of all kinds, must be crucified and raised in Christ. All must die and all must be born again in Christ so it is son of God and son of man—because this is what Christ is, and the Lamb will marry only that which has been begotten from Himself.

Eve was fashioned from Adam and was Adam in another form. She was married to Adam by virtue of being formed from Adam. Eve could not marry another because it would be Christ marrying another.

The Church is being fashioned from Christ and is Christ in another form. She is married to Christ by virtue of being formed from Christ. The Church cannot marry another because it would be Christ marrying the other personage.

In so saying we are not implying that we are equal to Christ or are another Christ. There is one Lord Jesus Christ and we in Him.

Christians today are seeking the power of Christ. This is a mistake. We should not be seeking the power of God but the Person and Presence of God.

Satan wants to be like God but he would never consent to knowingly do God's will. Satan wishes to preserve his individuality.

Christians today want to be like Christ but do not consent to become part of Christ. They desire to preserve their individuality. When they do they become satan, the accuser, the adversary, the enemy.

There is only one Christ in God's plan and we are being made an integral part of Him. He is the Vine and we are the branches. Our individuality is lost in His Splendor but our uniqueness is preserved and enhanced, just as the individuality of Christ is lost in the Splendor of the Father but His uniqueness is preserved and enhanced.

We are not partners with Christ, we are being created part of Christ—bone of His bone and flesh of His flesh.

The Bride is not a queen, she is the Body of Christ. Queens get ideas of their own and seek their own glory. The true Bride of the Lamb never seeks her own glory. She herself is the glory of Christ.

The purpose of the Law of Moses is to bring us to Christ. Christ, and only Christ, can set us free from the law of sin and death. This He does—totally, completely, majestically.

We see then that God sets us free from the law of sin and death by:

Ascribing to us the righteousness gained by Christ's perfect obedience to the letter and intent of the Law of Moses.

Leading us point by point to the total removal from our personality of all that is not pleasing to God.

Totally changing the remaining part of our personality including finally, at His coming, our body, into the image of Christ's Personality.

Completely filling our changed personality with the fullness of The Father and the fulness of the Son through the fullness of the Holy Spirit so we are living in untroubled rest in the Father through Christ.

The difference between the old covenant and the new covenant is that whereas our sins were forgiven by means of the shed blood of bulls and goats under the old covenant, our sins are both forgiven and removed from us by the sacrifice and power of Jesus Christ operating under the new covenant.

If you are a Christian you are not obligated to keep on obeying your sinful nature. You can be set free from the law of sin and death.