Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Victory in Christ - Part 10

This is the next installment of a series I am writing concerning what Romans 6-8 teaches about our sin problem and God's plan for victory. To find previous installments do a search for the title: Victory In Christ. You can find the first installment here.

7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. For I would not have known covetousness unless the law had said, “You shall not covet.” 8 But sin, taking opportunity by the commandment, produced in me all manner of evil desire. For apart from the law sin was dead. 9 I was alive once without the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived and I died. 10 And the commandment, which was to bring life, I found to bring death. 11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it killed me. 12 Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.

You can read this whole section for yourself. In essence he wants to make sure we understand that the law is not sin, but it did bring death. The law is holy and just and good. What is the problem then? The problem is that sin is deceitful and in it's deceitful way took advantage of the commandments and stirred up all manner of evil desire in Paul. It does the same thing to us. Sin is kind of personified in these verses as though it is an entity in itself. Paul says that apart from the law sin was dead. But when the commandments of the law begin to be understood, sin starts to wake up and brings about death in us. That's why he told the Corinthians that the letter kills. There's no transgression unless there is a law to transgress. And the punishment for transgression is death.

So as the argument here is being developed, we find that it's necessary to remove us from the jurisdiction of the law so that sin can't use it to have that deadly impact on us anymore.

Principle 12: The law gives sin its power.

13 Has then what is good become death to me? Certainly not! But sin, that it might appear sin, was producing death in me through what is good, so that sin through the commandment might become exceedingly sinful.

Paul reiterates the fact that the law is not the problem per se. It is sin that used the law as the excuse to produce death in me. In so doing sin can be seen for what it is as exceedingly sinful.

Principle 13: Sin in me is the problem.

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