Are you a Romans 7, or a Romans 8 Christian?
Are you a Romans 7, or a Romans 8 Christian? That is the question addressed in the most recent readings from our Daily Scripture Reading Bible Study podcast service.
As we continued our readings from Paul’s letter to the Romans, we saw Paul teaching about the new man and the new creation. Previously in Romans we saw him teaching that these new men literally die as they go under the waters of baptism, and are born again as new creatures upon their coming up from these same waters.
What we learn from this is simple yet powerful. In essence, chapter 7 saw Paul speaking of the life of man before choosing faith in Jesus Christ and becoming a new creature through that faith—chapter 8 saw Paul speaking of the life of a man after becoming a new creation. In other words, for believers, chapter 7 is not what we have to look forward to, it is instead what we can remember back to—chapter 8 is what we have to look forward to, and, what we will see more and more of in our own lives as we fall more and more in love with God through Jesus Christ, the visible manifestation of the everlasting triune God of Scripture.
So indeed the way out of the agony spoken of in chapter 7 is found in chapter 8, and described such that we can come to understand that, even during our life here on planet earth, we are new creatures living in a new creation. Christ has mortified the deeds of the flesh and through the Spirit of Christ living in us, we can and do live as totally saved spiritual beings, not as totally depraved sinners. Chapter 8 is one of the greatest chapters of Scripture—as through it shines the glorious nature of the sons of God! You see, once you understand the incredible victory won by Christ directly after the cross in the depths of hell, this overwhelming victorious heaven view enables you to understand this overwhelmingly victorious and powerful worldview of the Apostle Paul—and your part in this already won victory lived out in your daily walk with the Lord.
Further, he confirms that the Spirit will provide the means, it is not up to us—hear the words of the Lord when He said “all things are possible with God.” Then, to remind us that while we will live this new life as new creatures of a new creation, there will remain all the earthly trials and tribulations natural to this created world, Paul goes on to make the point that these trials are nothing compared to the magnificent future God has planned for us. And that “hope” of our magnificent future is the blessing that gives us the grace to see the big picture. Our worldly lives are but the birthing center for our newly born spirit’s which, upon being translated from this life to the next, then obtain in fully realized form all those promises of that life lived beyond the bounds of time in the spiritual realm of the Kingdom of Heaven.
As you continue through your days, never forget that we are indeed rescued from the tyranny of destruction from sin. Our victorious heaven view confirms that. Our understanding of Christ’s work in Hell after the cross proves that. Our faith in the resurrection proclaims that. So while we may, from time to time, groan in a sort of universal travail over the tragedies that sometimes accompany this earthly life, it is with patient hope that we make our way through, knowing full well the already won victory, and the glorious life awaiting us if we can just finish our race here in faithful triumph.
Over and over, we see Paul making plain how the Spirit will indeed make us capable of such a high calling. The Spirit ever reminds us how glorious is our total salvation, and how completely we have left behind that total depravity still clung to by some. In Christ, we are made wholly perfect. Let no one therefore accuse you—only Christ can accuse you, but He died for you, gained the victory over death for you in Hell, rose again for you from the dead, and reigns in power for you even now. As a believer, the Spirit of the Christ lives in you, literally providing you the means to live the life we are called unto in chapter 8 of this marvelous book of Romans. So live it! Proclaim the victory! You need not be a chapter 7 man, but instead, fulfill your calling and be a Romans chapter 8 Christian. And build up fellow believers in this word, that all might then see the means to build Christendom wherever we are, and wherever we go.
Truly we are already victorious. We are more than conquerors. As believers, we already have the Kingdom of Heaven within us, and will, upon our translation as our spirits leave this material world for the spiritual, fully receive all the blessings promised in that life beyond the bounds of time. This is the glorious victory of the sons of God made plain to all who see the glorious victory already won in Heaven by Christ directly after the cross. Indeed, we are more than conquerors.
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Paul Rakowicz, the Pastor of the Church of Christ’s Glory, has been a student of the Bible for more than twenty-five years. Through his Daily Scripture Reading Bible Study Podcast Service, Books, Newsletter, and other Ministry Services, he seeks to help today’s Christians rediscover their biblical heritage, which he believes can be found only in the teachings of Christ Himself, the Apostles, and the ministries of the Early Church Fathers.