Notes: LIFE - THE GIFT CHRIST GIVES US!
- John 11:25 Jesus said, 'I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in Me (Added: that is a choice in our minds) will live, even though they die!'
- Life is what Jesus came to give us when He came to earth in human form to die and to rise from the dead.
- Life is our portion, our right, our privilege and our inheritance.
- The Bible actually speaks of abundant life that we can enjoy.
- How often we settle for so much less.
- We settle for survival and 'lifeless' living, when He paid the ultimate price to give us real, true and abundant life.
- Humanity is often like 'Dead Men Walking'.
- We can physically alive, but dead in every other way.
- The question is: 'How can we know more of His life in our daily lives?'
- What causes us to miss out and not experience this life?
- Is there something we should take note of, or is there some aspect that we should be aware of that can help us to move from a place of death to a place of life?
- The Apostle Paul writes about this aspect in the book of Romans and gives some direction on this point.
- The Apostle Paul mentions several laws that apply to the situation and we will take a look at four that he mentions.
- Perhaps in what he says we can find a key to enjoying more of this life that the Lord has in store for us.
SCRIPTURE READING: Romans 8:1-2
(You may want to read Romans chapter 7 and 8)
Romans 8:1-2 'Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.'
FOUR LAWS THAT THE APOSTLE PAUL MENTIONS IN THE BOOK OF ROMANS
1. THE LAW OF GOD.
- In Romans chapter 7, we see how the writer repeatedly mentions the law.
- The word 'LAW' appears more than 20 times in one chapter in my translation.
- He sums it up towards the end of the chapter.
- In Romans 7:22'For in my inner being I delight in God's law.'
- God's law or what we shall call the 'LAW OF GOD' is the overarching law under which we all live.
- God commanded the world to be a certain way.
- He also gave commands or laws as to how we should live.
- An example of this would be the law that we should not kill (murder). This law does not only apply to Christians, but most humankind oppose the taking of innocent life.
- Paul, the writer of Romans, goes on to say that the law is holy (v12), the law is spiritual (v14) the law is good (v16).
- I believe that the LAW OF GOD was birthed out of His love for humanity.
- With the coming of Jesus this aspect took on a new dimension.
- We see this in Jesus' answer to one expert who asked Him about this.
- Matthew 22:35-40 One of them, an expert in the law, tested Him with this question: "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" Jesus replied: 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind'. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbour as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
- So, we have the LAW OF GOD into which we are born and under which we find ourselves.
- Ultimately, I believe that the 'LAW OF GOD' is a demonstration of His love towards us.
2. THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH.
- Another law we see mentioned is the law of sin and death.
- In fact, it is mentioned more than once.
- Romans 7:23 it speaks of the 'LAW OF SIN'.
- Romans 8:2 it speaks of the 'LAW OF SIN AND DEATH'.
- There are many other scriptures that make mention of this aspect.
- Romans 6:23 'For the wages of sin is death!'
- Romans 3:23 'For ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God.'
- 1 John 1:8 (Amplified version) 'If we say we have no sin, we delude (deceive) and lead ourselves astray, and the Truth is not in us.'
- Romans 7:21 'So I find it to be a LAW, that when I want to do good, evil is ever present with me and I am subject to its insistent demands.'
- Every man, woman and child who was ever born or ever will be born has a problem with SIN.
- The Good News is that God has provided an answer to our sin problem.
- 2 Corinthians 5:21 'For our sakes HE made Christ to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in HIM.'
- So, we see this 'law of sin and death' that Paul mentions in his writings.
3. THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE.
- Christ came and died so that this law could become a reality on our lives.
- Romans 8:2 speaks about this: '...the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus...'
- Here we see a different dimension.
- Here is another law that gives us all the hope we need.
- It's a law that changes the dynamic in every situation we may find ourselves in in the course of life.
- It is clearly illustrated in the verse.
- Romans 8:2 'For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.'
- Jesus has turning things around for us.
- Through Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirit, there is another law that comes into effect and this law has the power to set us free from the other law.
4. THE LAW OF THE MIND.
- In Romans 7:23 we see another law mentioned: the 'LAW OF THE MIND'.
- Our minds play a very important role in our daily lives.
- The Bible tells as that as a man thinketh - so is he.
- In essence the 'LAW OF THE MIND' gives us the ability to choose between the 'LAW OF SIN AND DEATH' and the 'LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS'.
- In Romans chapter 8, Paul describes two classes of people.
- Those who live according to their sinful natures and those who live according to the Spirit.
- Which class you belong to depends on what you decide in your mind and who you will submit to as a result.
- Romans 7:23 (Amplified version) 'But I discern in my bodily members a different law at war against the LAW OF MY MIND (my reason) and making me a prisoner to the law of SIN which dwells in my bodily members.'
- We have this ability to reason.
- It is a God-given gift, but reason itself will draw us away from God.
- It is for this reason that we have to be aware of this law of the mind.
- If we rely purely on reason, it will take us down the wrong road.
- Our minds need to be brought under the control of our spirits and the Holy Spirit, so that it will not lead us astray.
- Our minds need to set, programmed and renewed according to the Holy Spirit and not our own natures.
- You see we can choose unforgiveness, grudges, anger, offence, hatred, pride and selfishness and reap the results of the relevant law, OR
- We can choose to forgive, release, be tenderhearted, love, humility and kindness and reap the results of that relevant law.
- Romans 8:6-7 (Amplified version) 'Now the MIND of the FLESH [which is sense and reason without the Holy Spirit] is DEATH. (Death that comprises of all the miseries arising from sin, both now and hereafter) BUT the MIND OF THE Holy Spirit [the mind controlled by the Spirit] is LIFE and soul peace both now and forever.'
5. CHOOSE HIS LIFE.
- CHOICES we make in THE MIND, determine whether we live under THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH, or we live under THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS.
- THE GOAL is to live in THE LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS! - Romans 8:2 "The law of the Spirit of LIFE in Christ Jesus."
- Hebrews 8:10 (Amplified version) For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord. I will imprint My laws upon their minds, even upon their innermost thoughts and understanding, and engrave them upon their hearts, and I will be their God and they shall be My people.
NOTE 3 IMPORTANT POINTS:
Point 1 God's law no longer comes to us on stone tablets, but is written in our hearts.
- Romans 7:6 'So now we serve, not under obedience to the old code of written regulations, but under obedience to the promptings of the Spirit in newness of LIFE.'
Point 2 This teaches us that we are to be led by the inner promptings of the Spirit. Only the Holy Spirit knows the mind of God concerning our lives and circumstances.
- He (The Holy Spirit) will reveal God's will for us and lead us into His fullness as we follow His promptings.
- To PROMPT MEANS TO REMIND US OR GIVE US A CUE. It does not indicate force or control or manipulation.
- God sets before each of us LIFE and DEATH and encourages us to choose LIFE, so that we and our descendants may have lives He has carefully planned for us.
- Romans 6:12-14 Let not SIN therefore rule as king in your mortal bodies, to make you yield to their cravings... Do not continue offering or yielding your bodily members and faculties to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but offer and yield yourselves to God, as though you have been raised from the dead to perpetual LIFE and your bodily members to God, presenting them as instruments of righteousness. For SIN shall not have dominion over you, since you are not under the Law, but under Grace.
Point 3 SOW TO THE SPIRIT.
- Galatians 6:8 For he who sows to his own flesh, will from the flesh reap corruption. Decay and ruin. BUT he who sows to the Spirit, will from the Spirit reap life - life eternal.
- Galatians 6:7 Don't be deceived and misled. God will not allow Himself to be mocked, for whatever a man sows, that and that only is what he will reap.
- Ephesians 5:18 'Keep on being filled with the Holy Spirit!'
- Listen to and obey His voice (often gentle nudging)
- Choose the LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE IN CHRIST JESUS and walk away from THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH.
- Speak life, choose life and reject sin and death and do not entertain it!
By: Andrew W Roebert
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