THE CHURCH THAT IS IN THEIR HOUSE

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" Preach the word; be urgent in season, out of season;
reprove, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering
and teaching."  2 Tim 4:2
  

 

 

 

“NO CONDEMNATION"

 

Thesis: To teach the hearers how the gospel of Christ has the power to keep the believer in the state of “being saved” (Lk 13:23; Acts 2:47; 1 Cor 1:18; 15:2; 2 Cor 2:15).

Text: Rom 8:1-11

Introduction,
1. As we look into the epistle to the Romans to this point (ch 8) we could summarize it as such . . .
a. The gospel is God’s power to save (ch 1:1-17).
b. The Gentiles (non-Jews) are lost without it (ch 1:18-32).
c. The Jews also are lost without it (ch 2-3)
d. Abraham was justified by faith, “not” the Law of Moses (ch 4).
e. What was lost beginning with Adam (true fellowship with God), is regained through Christ and His gospel (ch 5).
f. Yet the gospel has obligations, it must be embraced whole heartedly in order to work as God designed it to (ch 6).
g. (ch 7)Teaches us that the Law of Moses is no longer in effect, part of its purpose was to expose sin, and the sinfulness of man, this, from man’s point of view, was not good, it showed its true adherents their hopeless condition without Christ’s perfecting work (which is really where God wants everyone).

2. And that takes us up to chapter 8, Chapter 8 explains to us how the gospel accomplishes its defeat of sin, and man’s desire for it, and God’s purpose behind it, therefore with this in mind, we will break today’s lesson into 3 sections,
1) Christians are freed from condemnation (Rom 8:1-2)
2) Christians are freed by Christ (Rom 8:3-4)
3) Christians are freed to become sons (children) of God (Rom 8:5-14)

I. CHRISTIANS ARE FREED FROM CONDEMNATION (Rom 8:1-2)
A. (v 1)
Rom 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. NKJV, is seen in v 4 we will discuss it there)

“Therefore” here indicates a conclusion based upon the previous section, the condemnation that exists with law hanging over one’s head is remedied “in Christ Jesus”, “in Christ” that location where all the spiritual blessings in the heavenly places are located (Eph 1:3).

1. It should be noted that this verse is strikingly similar to Ps 34:22 (turn there) . . .

Psa 34:22 The LORD redeems the life of his servants; none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.

a. God purchases and owns His servants (Tit 2:14), we are God’s blood bought church (Acts 20:28), we have been bought with the precious blood of Christ (1 Pet 1:18-19), if we are trusting in Him, counting on Him, hiding in Him, using Him as our crutch (as our enemies might state), we will not be condemned on That Day but glorified because of our faith in God and Christ.

b. We are told in Romans chapter 6 just how this movement into Christ takes place (Rom 6:3a) . . .

Rom 6:3 Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus . . .

c. This fact is also confirmed in Gal 3:27 . . .

Gal 3:27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ . . .

d. The simple truth is the bible teaches that baptism is the means through which a person is put “into Christ”.

e. Yet we need to understand that salvation is a process, one is in the process of “being saved” (Lk 13:23; Acts 2:47; 1 Cor 1:18; 15:2; 2 Cor 2:15), even getting “into Christ” is depicted as a process as seen in Eph 4:15 . . .

Eph 4:15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ,

f. And we need to understand that the “sum” of God’s word is the truth on any given subject, including salvation (Ps 119:160), therefore based upon the entirety of God’s word that process includes hearing (learning of the gospel message through some means), believing it, repenting of our sins, confessing Jesus as the Christ, being baptized, and living holy lives unto God by the power of His Spirit. In fact this process of salvation actually continues into and through death . . . in our preliminary judgment (Heb 9:27), our following Jesus into Hades, our coming out of that realm, and being reunited with our imperishable bodies, ascending into Heaven and coming before Christ at the Final Judgment when we hear the words of our Lord “Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Mt 25:34).

g. But the starting point of salvation in “the Way” the “Faith” is “belief” (faith), faith in the gospel message (1 Cor 15:1-4), faith based upon God’s word (Rom 10:17), therefore faith is to be first and included in everything, that is why Christianity is called “the Faith” and not “the repentance” nor “the confession” nor “the baptism”. The Lord put it this way in Jn 5:24 (turn there) . . .

Joh 5:24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.

h. When a person hears God’s word and believes it, spiritual movement begins to take place, they are no longer condemned, God gives that person full salvation even though the process just began. Paul puts it this way in Rom 4:3-8 (turn there) . . .

Rom 4:3 For what does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness."
Rom 4:4 Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due.
Rom 4:5 And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,
Rom 4:6 just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works:
Rom 4:7 "Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered;
Rom 4:8 blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin."

i. We could compare the gospel plan of salvation to getting a loan for house, one wants a certain house, one agrees to the terms of a contract for said house, signs it, even though this person hasn’t made a single payment, he is able to move into the house, live in the house, redecorate the house, and so forth, yet the bank expects the person to make the payments, and even if for some reason they don’t make the payments (say some financial difficulty arises), they will still be able to live in it, but if they never make the agreed payments, eventually in time, after a certain grace period, they will be evicted from the house, the house will be taken away, and given to another.

j. The same is true with salvation, one hears and believes the gospel message (about the death, burial, resurrection and ascension of Jesus; 1 Cor 15:1-4) and enters into salvation (Jn 5:24), and God expects that person to continue in that process while He covers one’s sins, and that includes repentance, confession, baptism unto the remission of sins (Acts 2:38; 22:16), and living holy lives according to the gospel. And what if they don’t? Eventually, after a certain grace period, God takes back what He gave and casts those into the outer darkness with the unbelievers, in that place there shall be weeping, and gnashing of teeth, because they have exhibited demon like faith (Ja 2:19).

k. So we could assert that the process of “being saved” is levels, or layers, or steps, in which God’s favor (grace) keeps one afloat while He leads us in this process through which God actually molds us into one likened unto Him, in other words God expects the believer to repent, confess Jesus as the Christ, be baptized, and to bring holiness to completion, and we are all at differing points in this process (thus the stronger or weaker brother as seen in Romans chapter 14), yet He does expect us to express the obedience of faith (Rom 1:5; 16:26) or else! (The parables of the tares, the talents, the drag-net, and so forth testify to this fact). Also the point the is made throughout the NT that the further along one is in this process, the more that God’s love, joy, power and peace are part of our lives, therefore one should desire not to be stagnant, but rather to press on toward the goal of our high calling, of being like Jesus, thinking like Jesus, living like Jesus, looking forward to being with Jesus, in the heavenly places.

B. (v 2)
Rom 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

“The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” (Rom 8:2) is equal to James’ “perfect law of liberty” (Ja 1:25), also “the law of faith” (Rom 3:27), and “the law of Christ” (Gal 6:2). This looks back at the dilemma in chapter 7, with the law tempting us to break it, Who will free us from that (Rom 7:24)? Here is the answer . . .

1. We need to understand that we are not under law but grace (Jn 1:17; Rom 6:14), look at Rom 6:14-23 . . .

Rom 6:14 For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.
Rom 6:15 What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means!
Rom 6:16 Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?
Rom 6:17 But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed,
Rom 6:18 and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.
Rom 6:19 I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.
Rom 6:20 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.
Rom 6:21 But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.
Rom 6:22 But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.
Rom 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

a. As we allow ourselves to be led by God’s Spirit (Rom 8:14), which we receive at belief (Gal 3:2; Eph 1:13), Who works through the means of the Holy Spirit revealed and confirmed gospel, that sword of the Spirit (Eph 6:17) upon our hearts (i.e. remaining active in the salvation process), we are freed from the “law of sin and death” which basically states “the soul that sins, it shall die” (Ezek 18:20), it shall be eternally separated (Ja 2:26) from a most holy God, because of sin (Isa 59:2). In other words as we move, grow through God’s power (however slow it may be) our payments are being made by God for our eternal dwelling (Look at v 12-14; NASB) . . .

Rom 8:12 So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.
Rom 8:13 For if you living according to the flesh (this is an active verb denoting “practice), you must die (spiritually, which extends into the eternal realms), but if by the Spirit (God’s Spirit) you are putting to death the deeds of the body (again, this is an active verb denoting “practice), you will live (spiritually, again extending into the eternal realms).
Rom 8:14 For all who are being led (present passive tense; i.e. continuous) by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. (That is in comparison to the children of the devil; this passage parallels 1 Jn 3:4-10)

2. With this in view, the turmoil associated with our struggles against sin (Heb 12:4) have been basically taken away, knowing that God has got us covered (Rom 4:3-8), thus we are free to let Him work in us (Phili 2:13) through the transforming (renewing) power of the gospel of Christ (Rom 12:2), which is brought about through God’s living and active (Heb 4:12), life imparting word (Jn 6:63), that sword of the Spirit (Eph 6:17), working upon our hearts and changing our inward person (turn to 2 Cor 4:16-18) . . .

2Co 4:16 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.
2Co 4:17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,
2Co 4:18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

3. Through the directives given in the gospel, we have our minds, our thoughts, our spirits, our biblical hearts refocused where God wants them, upon heavenly treasures (Mt 6:21), upon the things above (Col 3:1-4), being resolved about many of the physical, temporal turmoils that take place in this world, knowing that they will come, but God is over all (Eph 4:6), and He expects us to learn how to use them towards our spiritual growth, all the while growing closer to Him through them (turn to Ja 1:2-4; 1 Pet 2:21-23) . . .

Jas 1:2 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,
Jas 1:3 for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.
Jas 1:4 And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

1Pe 2:21 For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps.
1Pe 2:22 He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth.
1Pe 2:23 When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to Him Who judges justly.

a. This was not the focus under the Law of Moses, if they were troubled they thought God was against them (and this could be true, therefore we are to spiritually assess every situation; 1 Cor 2:15), their focus was upon the earthly inheritance, which was never meant to be an end, but rather a means, a type, of the eternal inheritance, of which was fully revealed (explained), and brought to the forefront within the teachings of the gospel of Christ.

b. This type of mindset is one of the main reasons that the Jews (for the most part) rejected Christ, they wanted an earthly king, which He was never meant to be, Jesus said in (John 18:36) . . .

Joh 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world."

c. Because those that focus upon earthly, perishable things will surely have their temporal world come crashing down upon them one day (Heb 9:27) . . .

Heb 9:27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,

4. But those who are not fashioned, conformed according to this world (Rom 12:2; Phili 3:18-19), but rather to the next (Phili 3:20-21; Col 3:1-4), through the renewing of their minds, who have the mindset of Christ (1 Cor 2:15-16), these are able to see the purpose of the temptations and trials that come upon all (and if they stumble, God has them covered, so they won’t fall; Rom 14:4; unless they choose to turn away; 2 Pet 2:20-22), knowing that the escape they have been given is to look “forward” to that “better country” (Heb 11:16) that “heavenly city” (Rev 21:1-2), prepared by God (John 14:2), in this manner “there is therefore now no condemnation in Christ Jesus,” faithful Christians are freed from both temporal and spiritual (eternal) condemnation. Paul put it this way in Heb 2:14-15; 1 Cor 15:22-58 . . .

Heb 2:14 Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil,
Heb 2:15 and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery.

1Co 15:22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.
1Co 15:23 But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.

1Co 15:55 "O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?"
1Co 15:56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.
1Co 15:57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1Co 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

II. CHRISTIANS ARE FREED BY CHRIST (Rom 8:3-4)
A. (v 3)
Rom 8:3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin (or “as a sin offering”), he condemned sin in the flesh,

1. We need to understand that the Law of Moses was perfectly designed for that which God purposed . . .

a. It kept a safety net over the seed line of Christ till the fullness of time (in order that Christ would come into the world, for the sins of the world).

b. It taught the Jew just how terrible sin was in the eyes of God (this could be visibly seen by the millions of gallons of blood that was shed by man, because of man, and that of innocent unwilling animals).

c. And there was a ton of types (shadows), of the true (antitypes) that were to come “in Christ” these would all point to, and thus was purposed to lead them “to Christ.”

d. But it was weak (and meant to be by God) because it was based upon man’s ability to keep its 10 commandments and 613 ordinances (which he could not do), therefore God, through the law, showed man his weakness, his inability to keep God’s commands without God’s divine intervention.

2. But when God sent His Son, in the likeness of “sinful flesh” (the flesh is personified here as that which lures one into sin, and succumbs to inordinate desires, it is not sinful in itself), He condemned (or put to death) sin in the flesh by . . .

a. Not sinning under the Law of Moses (2 Cor 5:21; Heb 4:15;1 Pet 2:22), thus He condemned, He put to death, He defeated sin, by not being drawn in by it, and participating in it, even though He was tempted in all the main avenues, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life (1 Jn 2:16), He was tempted, yet He resisted the devil and submitted to God (look at Heb 4:15; Lk 4:1-13)

Heb 4:15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect (in all points; ASV) has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.

Luk 4:1 And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness
Luk 4:2 for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry.
Luk 4:3 The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread."
Luk 4:4 And Jesus answered him, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone.'"
Luk 4:5 And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time,
Luk 4:6 and said to him, "To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will.
Luk 4:7 If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours."
Luk 4:8 And Jesus answered him, "It is written, "'You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.'"
Luk 4:9 And he took him to Jerusalem and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here,
Luk 4:10 for it is written, "'He will command his angels concerning you, to guard you,'
Luk 4:11 and "'On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.'"
Luk 4:12 And Jesus answered him, "It is said, 'You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'"
Luk 4:13 And when the devil had ended every temptation (i.e. every aspect, all points; 1 Jn 2:16), he departed from him until an opportune time.

b. So here we see Jesus condemning, defeating, putting to death sin in the flesh, submitting to God, resisting the devil, and using that sword of the Spirit, I think its notable that Jesus’ first words in His earthly ministry are “it is written” (v 4) this is our example to marvel at and follow (1 Cor 11:1). And that wasn’t all, we can see some of the “opportune times” in the scriptures . . . when Peter tried to convince Him not to be crucified (Mt 16:21-26) turn there . . .

Mat 16:21 From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.
Mat 16:22 And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, "Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you."
Mat 16:23 But he turned and said to Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man."
Mat 16:24 Then Jesus told his disciples, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.
Mat 16:25 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
Mat 16:26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?

c. Here we see Satan working through Peter, tempting Jesus at an opportune time, but again we see Jesus condemning, putting to death, defeating sin in the flesh, the lesson is clear, faithfulness is more important than physical life, which is fleeting, a vapor, we need to have the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:16), not the mind of a child of the devil.

d. Also we see that Jesus struggled yet again condemned, defeated sin in the flesh in the Garden of Gethsemane, look at Mt 26:31-46 . . .

Mat 26:31 Then Jesus said to them, "You will all fall away because of me this night. For it is written, 'I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.'
Mat 26:32 But after I am raised up, I will go before you to Galilee."
Mat 26:33 Peter answered him, "Though they all fall away because of you, I will never fall away."
Mat 26:34 Jesus said to him, "Truly, I tell you, this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times."
Mat 26:35 Peter said to him, "Even if I must die with you, I will not deny you!" And all the disciples said the same.
Mat 26:36 Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, "Sit here, while I go over there and pray."
Mat 26:37 And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled.
Mat 26:38 Then he said to them, "My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me."
Mat 26:39 And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, "My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will."
Mat 26:40 And he came to the disciples and found them sleeping. And he said to Peter, "So, could you not watch with me one hour?
Mat 26:41 Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak." (Note this phrase and spiritually consider how it ties in to our lesson)
Mat 26:42 Again, for the second time, he went away and prayed, "My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done."
Mat 26:43 And again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy.
Mat 26:44 So, leaving them again, he went away and prayed for the third time, saying the same words again.
Mat 26:45 Then he came to the disciples and said to them, "Sleep and take your rest later on. See, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners.
Mat 26:46 Rise, let us be going; see, my betrayer is at hand."

e. It would seem that Satan also tempted the Lord here, yet, after struggling, He submitted to God and resisted the devil (Ja 4:7), so should we, as God works in us and enables us to do His holy will (Phili 2:13).

3. And not only by keeping God’s law perfectly did Jesus condemn, defeat, put to death sin in the flesh, He also, then, by being Divinity (God in the flesh), when He offered Himself as a willing, perfect, all sufficient sacrifice, One that “could” take away sin completely and permanently (an unwilling animal’s life could not be ransomed for a man’s, for man is a greater creature than the animal, but God giving Himself in His Son as a ransom could effectively bring to pass the forgiveness of the sins of all mankind, including those under the Law of Moses; Rom 3:25; Heb 9:15) this is the basic “the greater blesses the lesser principle” that is seen in Heb 7:7. (Look at Heb 10:1-14) . . .

Heb 10:1 For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near.
Heb 10:2 Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have any consciousness of sins?
Heb 10:3 But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year.
Heb 10:4 For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.
Heb 10:5 Consequently, when Christ came into the world, he said, "Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body have you prepared for me;
Heb 10:6 in burnt offerings and sin offerings you have taken no pleasure.
Heb 10:7 Then I said, 'Behold, I have come to do your will, O God, as it is written of me in the scroll of the book.'"
Heb 10:8 When he said above, "You have neither desired nor taken pleasure in sacrifices and offerings and burnt offerings and sin offerings" (these are offered according to the law),
Heb 10:9 then he added, "Behold, I have come to do your will." He does away with the first in order to establish the second.
Heb 10:10 And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Heb 10:11 And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.
Heb 10:12 But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God,
Heb 10:13 waiting from that time until his enemies should be made a footstool for his feet.
Heb 10:14 For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified.

a. Look a v 14, it is key to this passage and leads into our next verse (Rom 8:4) . . .
B. (v 4)
Rom 8:4 in order that the righteous requirement (ordinance; ASV) of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

The word “that” in this verse is “hin-ah” and it denotes “purpose,” Christ’s sinless life and sacrifice fulfilled the requirement of God’s “law”, and actually “laws” ... “The law of sin and death” “the soul that sinneth it shall die” was fulfilled, thus set aside, and He “also” fulfilled the Law of Moses (Mt 5:17), abolished it (Eph 2:15), nailed it to His cross (Col 2:14).

1. Thus when a person believes the gospel and enters into the salvation process (Jn 5:24), the process of “being saved” (Lk 13:23; Acts 2;47; 1 Cor 1:18; 15:2; 2 Cor 2;15), the process of entering into Christ (Eph 4:15), and begins to walk after the Spirit (live according to the gospel, which would include the other steps of salvation) and not the flesh (not according to their old worldly, unspiritually minded lives without God and Christ being part of it) the requirement of the law (i.e. perfection; Heb 10:14) is imputed to us, this is also seen in 2 Cor 5:14-21 (turn there) . . .

2Co 5:14 For the love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: that one has died for all, therefore all have died;
2Co 5:15 and he died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves but for him who for their sake died and was raised.
2Co 5:16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer.
2Co 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
2Co 5:18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation;
2Co 5:19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.
2Co 5:20 Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
2Co 5:21 For our sake he made him to be sin (or a “sin offering”) who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

a. “The righteousness of God” refers to being “right like God” or “perfect like God” even though we are likely far from it, God is making our payments for our eternal home as He leads us, gives us the growth, the ability to do His will on earth more and more with each passing day.

b. Again this imputed perfection does not come to everyone, but it is conditional upon our “walking not according to the flesh but rather according to the Spirit” in other words as we believe the gospel, and at least in a general sense attempt to live a life aligned with it, God gives us all of it, in other words He makes it easy for us to apprehend salvation, to enter in and maintain the status of “being saved.”

c. But do not be deceived God is not mocked, if we think we are going fool God, if we are going to love the world and be of the world and not struggle against those evils as He would have us to do (even though we oftentimes fail, He enables us to stand; Rom 14:4) the end of this mindset ultimately is eternal separation from God, this is seen again in the context, in verses 12-14 (NASB; look there) . . .

Rom 8:12 So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.
Rom 8:13 For if you living according to the flesh (this is an active verb denoting “practice), you must die (spiritually, which extends into the eternal realms; i.e. you will be lost), but if by the Spirit (God’s Spirit) you are putting to death the deeds of the body (again, this is an active verb denoting “practice” it is “ongoing”), you will live (spiritually, again extending into the eternal realms; i.e. you will be saved).
Rom 8:14 For all who are being led (present passive tense; i.e. “continuous”, denotes “practice” “ongoing”) by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. (That is in comparison to the children of the devil; this passage parallels 1 Jn 3:4-10)

d. To sum up this section “Christians are freed by Christ” by His perfect life, by His perfect sacrifice, His perfection is imputed, given to us, when we believe, and embrace, and grow (however slow or fast it may be) in being like, thinking like, living like God, in order that we ultimately would be with God, Jesus put it this way in Mt 11:28-30 (turn there) . . .

Mat 11:28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Mat 11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Mat 11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."

III. CHRISTIANS ARE FREED TO BECOME SONS OF GOD (Rom 8:5-11)
A. (v 5-6)
Rom 8:5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit.
Rom 8:6 For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.

Seeing that Jesus’ perfecting work has been imputed to us who walk (one’s walk of life, i.e. one’s lifestyle) according to the things of the Spirit, so that we don’t have to be so concerned about dotting every “i” and crossing every “t”, instead focus on being concerned about our lifestyles in general, shining as lights, preserving as salt, being like Jesus.

1. “For” “because” those that mind predominantly the fleshly, the physical things, those that don’t follow the leading of the Spirit, being spiritual, being like Jesus, but rather follow the leading of their old worldly person before they came to the knowledge of the truth of the gospel, this mindset ultimately results in spiritual death (separation from God; Isa 59:2), they are referred to in the scriptures as enemies of the cross of Christ, and there was a lot of them around in the 1st century, and there is a lot of them claiming Christ today (turn to Phili 3:19-21).

Phi 3:18 For many walk, of whom I told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
Phi 3:19 whose end is perdition, whose god is the belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.
Phi 3:20 For our citizenship is in heaven; whence also (and from it) we wait for a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:
Phi 3:21 who shall fashion anew the body of our humiliation, that it may be conformed to the body of his glory, according to the working whereby he is able even to subject all things unto himself.

a. But they that focus upon the Spirit, on the things above (spiritual things; Col 3:1-4), those that put seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness first on their list (Mt 6:33), those that mind the things of the Spirit, who make the gospel a part of their everyday lives, will partake of eternal life, in this life, and in that which is to come, upon this earth “peace with God” which results in a “peace of mind” that those who live according to the flesh, having a mind set on the flesh (who predominantly seek after things of a physical nature) can not properly comprehend (this can be seen in Phili 4:6-7, look there).

Phi 4:6 In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
Phi 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.

b. Instead of being overly concerned about the things that take place in this world, life, death, disease, poverty, assorted hard times and so forth, we need to take our concerns to God concerning them, and ultimately allow His will to be done, knowing He is over all (Eph 4:6), this is walking after the Spirit, i.e. living according to the Spirit revealed and confirmed word of God as seen in Phili 4:6-7.

B. (v 7-8)
Rom 8:7 For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot.
Rom 8:8 Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

This type of earthly focused mindset is against all that is eternal, it puts the here and now (earthly things), ahead of the there and then (living a life of faith in God and Christ, and His promises) trusting that “He” “God” will ultimately work out our earthly difficulties to “His” glory and “our” salvation, if we will just live (walk), according to His will to the best of our God given abilities (Phili 2:13).

1. But the person who will not subject himself to the Law of God (which here refers to the gospel; Rom 10:3, the gospel is God’s law today; “the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” Rom 8:2), cannot be pleasing unto God, until that person repents (turns from following self, the world and Satan), and determines to follow, to walk after (follow) the leading of the Spirit, through His sword (Eph 6:17) working upon our hearts.

a. It is important to note that the word “submit” or “subject” here is in the middle voice, meaning both parties have something to do with the topic under contemplation “God leads” through His Spirit revealed and confirmed word, His sword (Eph 6:17) working in us, and “we allow ourselves to be led” by Him, through it, from the heart (Rom 6:17).

b. But the one that does not put himself into this “submission,” that rebels against God, even though he may claim with his lips to be in subjection, can never be pleasing unto God, in fact that person is actually following the lead of Satan (Ja 4:7) . . .

Jas 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

c. There is no middle ground, one is either promoting the kingdom of Christ, or by the lack of promotion, is opposed to it, as is Satan, the Lord said in Mt 12:30 . . .

Mat 12:30 Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

C. (v 9a)
Rom 8:9a You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you.

Here’s how one knows if God’s Spirit really is really dwelling in them, (turn to 2 Cor 5:17) . . .

2Co 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

1. There will be changes in a person’s life, God prompts that person through His Spirit delivered and confirmed word working in their hearts to make changes, we may resist at first, try and rationalize our disobedience away, but ultimately we will choose either the flesh or the Spirit. And God, Who knows the heart, will give us our choice. Do we want to be perfect in Christ? Or in eternal torments with the unbelievers? The choice is ours to make (Rom 6:16; Rev 22:17).

Rom 6:16 Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?

Rev 22:17 The Spirit and the Bride say, "Come." And let the one who hears say, "Come." And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.

D. (v 9b)
Rom 8:9b Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.

I believe verse 9b belongs with verse 10 (things concerning the Spirit of Christ) , and the first part of verse 9 belongs with that prior context (things concerning “the Spirit”; i.e. the Holy Spirit), this verse shows us that the entire Godhead dwells together, and that is what this last section is basically teaching.

1. So how can one not have the Spirit of Christ? And what is meant by the Spirit of Christ here?

a. The Spirit of Christ dwells in us by faith (Eph 3:17), as does the entire Godhead (Eph 3:16-19),

Eph 3:16 that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being,
Eph 3:17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
Eph 3:18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,
Eph 3:19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. (the entire Godhead)

b. The Spirit of Christ in this context refers to the fact that He put himself to death according to the Father’s will (Phili 2:5-8), we in like manner through the power of the gospel are to be putting our old person’s to death daily, the Lord stated in Lk 9:23 . . .

Luk 9:23 And he said to all, "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

c. Paul reaffirmed this in Eph 4:21-24; Col 3:9-10 . . .

Eph 4:21 assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus,
Eph 4:22 to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt (being corrupted; NASB) through deceitful desires,
Eph 4:23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds,
Eph 4:24 and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

Col 3:9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old self with its practices
Col 3:10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.

E. (v 10)
Rom 8:10 If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness. (NASB)

1. And if this aspect of Christ is part of our lives then our bodies ought to be dead in respect to sin

a. It isn’t leading us to commit sins like sexual immorality, gluttony, drunkenness, railing and reviling, leading us to greed, not being content with the things we have,

b. But rather Christ’s Spirit in us (Col 1:27) is leading our spirits (lower case “s” NASB) to right conclusions about such matters, because the righteousness of God has been imputed to us, enabling us to press on towards to goal of being more like Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.

F. (v 11)
Rom 8:11 but if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you. (NASB; caps “Him” “His” i.e. the Father)

Who raised Christ from the dead? Sure the entire Godhead had a part in it, the Godhead is united, God is one, (Deut 6:4) but Who is specifically named as being the Raiser here?

1. Based upon (Acts 2:24; 32; 3:15; 26; 10:40, 41; 13:30; 34; 17:31; Rom 4:24; 6:4; 1 Cor 6:14; 1 Thess 1:10), I believe this speaks of the Father, and this is also verified to be correct by the phrase “through His Spirit” (not the Spirit’s spirit, nor Jesus’ spirit, but God the Father’s spirit [we could say lower case “s” for less confusion])

a. In other words, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit all dwell simultaneously in the faithful child of God, as they mind, walk after, abide, in God’s Holy Spirit revealed and confirmed doctrine of Christ through God (the Godhead) working in them (Phili 2:13).

b. Therefore the Christian that allows the Holy Spirit to lead them through the gospel, who have Christ’s Spirit of self-death, who also have the Father’s Spirit dwelling in them concerning the mindset of having the bigger picture in view (eternity, not earthy, temporal) . . .

c. That person’s “mortal body,” not the “incorruptible,” “imperishable,” “spiritual body” of the general resurrection on the Last Day, as seen in (1 Cor 15:42, 44), but one’s “mortal,” “physical body” will be given “life” “spiritual life,” by the Father’s Spirit Who also dwells in us.

2. The reason we can be sure that this speaks not of the general resurrection at the end of time is not only that it speaks of ones “mortal” body, but also John 5:28-28 and Acts 24:15 both teach that “all” will be resurrected, even the ungodly in which the Godhead does not dwell (Jesus stated in John 5:28-29) . . .

Joh 5:28 Marvel not at this: for the hour cometh, in which all that are in the tombs shall hear his voice,
Joh 5:29 and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of judgment.

c. And in Paul’s proclamation about the Pharisees in Acts 24:15 . . .

Act 24:15 . . . there shall be a resurrection both of the just and unjust.

d. God promised already to raise all, unconditionally, therefore this probably refers to spiritual life being imparted from the Father to believers.

3. So with this in mind let us read Rom 8:12-14 . . .

G. (v 12-14)
Rom 8:12 So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.
Rom 8:13 For if you living according to the flesh (this is an active verb denoting “practice), you must die (spiritually, which extends into the eternal realms), but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body (again, this is an active verb denoting “practice), you will live (spiritually, again extending into the eternal realms).
Rom 8:14 For all who are being led (present passive tense; i.e. continuous) by the Spirit of God (the entire Godhead), these are sons of God. (That is in comparison to the children of the devil; this passage parallels 1 Jn 3:4-10)

Conclusion,
1. And where and how does God lead us today? Through the miraculously delivered and recorded NT of Christ working upon our hearts (Rom 6:17-18), that sword of the Spirit (Eph 6:17) . . .

Rom 6:17 But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed,
Rom 6:18 and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.

2. This message was delivered miraculously to Paul and others, by the power of God, we can be thankful that he was directed to write it down for us, as he did Gal 3:26-29 (turn there) . . .

Gal 3:26 For ye are all sons of God, through faith (Jn 5:24), in Christ Jesus (Rom 6:3; Gal 3:27; Eph 4:15).
Gal 3:27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ did put on Christ.
Gal 3:28 There can be neither Jew nor Greek, there can be neither bond nor free, there can be no male and female; for ye all are one in Christ Jesus.
Gal 3:29 And if ye are Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, heirs according to promise.

3. This is how one is “freed to become a son of God.”

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                        "That you may learn by us not to go beyond what is written" 1 Cor 4:6

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Kenneth Windbiel
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