Thursday, November 19, 2015

APOSTLE PAUL'S AGONY


The following verses have been referred to as "the greatest verses of the Bible". Penned by the Apostle Paul, he is conflicted between the meaning of sin and of doing good and living a holy life. The comments following each of the verses penned by Paul explain the meaning of his conflicted spirit. I found it quite interesting, as we all picture ourselves as being pure in the eyes of God since we are Christians, but then again, are we?
I believe that we can be, and are, as conflicted as Paul. How do we know that we are sinless? We know what is required, but we find our physical existence sometimes conflicts with our spiritual existence, and the two fight over sin or not to sin.
As you will see in reading Chapter 7, and subsequent commentaries, it all comes down to the temptation of evil over living a sinless life, which is to live in peace.
This becomes more and more difficult as we come to present day. Keeping our faith and God at the forefront of our lives becomes more difficult. There are so many distractions in today's world, MANY! One must truly live in a body that contains a soul and a spirit that loves God and which God love in return. We know we can be forgiven, but we cannot continue to commit the sin without repercussion. Read Paul's anguished dilemma and the subsequent commentary.

Romans 7:15-24 (NIV)
15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[a] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? *

~*~

"THE EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS" Chapter Seven*

OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER

1) To understand the Jewish Christian's relationship to the Law of

   Moses

2) To comprehend the dilemma one faces without Jesus Christ

SUMMARY

Paul has just completed discussing how being baptized into Christ makes us dead to sin and free to present our bodies as instruments of righteousness unto holiness.  For the benefit of his Jewish readers (those who know the Law), he now carries the concept of death and freedom one step further: the Jewish believers become dead to the Law that they might be joined to Christ.  He illustrates his point by referring to the marital relationship.  The result of being freed from the Law is that they might "serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter." (1-6)

Lest his Jewish readers think he is implying that the Law was sinful, Paul is quick to dispel that notion.  The Law, he says, is "holy and just and good."  The problem is that the Law only makes Known that which is sinful, but sin took opportunity by the commandment to produce evil desire and deceived him, resulting in death (7-12).

To further illustrate his point, Paul pictures himself as man under the Law who finds himself in a terrible dilemma.  With his mind he knows that which good and wants to do it.  He also knows that which is evil and wants to avoid that.  But he finds a "law" (or principle) in his flesh which wins over the desire of the mind (13-23).  As a prisoner he cries out for freedom.  Is there no hope?  Yes!  God provides the solution through His Son Jesus Christ, upon which Paul will elaborate in chapter eight (24-25).*

*Source: Bible Gateway


In His Service,
ABBEY

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