As we continue to work through the book of Romans, chapters 7 & 8 address the issue of following The Laws received by Moses. In these chapters Paul points out how salvation is found in placing faith in Jesus Christ and allowing the Holy Spirit to impact lives towards God’s will. As Paul pointed out how we need Christ, due to our desire to sin, he now dealt with the issue of breaking traditions. In today’s time it’s easy to see and place our faith in the Bible but the population Paul addressed were people entrenched in generational customs and beliefs. Think about the difficulty in our own time with changing aspects of worship styles. Paul is attempting to alter the idea of how to have a relationship with God. For Centuries the Jewish people followed The Law in an act of obedience, to seek forgiveness for sins and to be made right with God. Paul now preached about the perfect sacrifice that was given through Jesus. No longer was an animal needed to act as a substitute. Jesus was the permanent intercessor between God and his people.
Throughout Chapter 7, Paul illustrated that even though The Law was perfect, it was man that was faulty. In (v. 21, Holman), Paul stated “So I discovered this principle : When I want to do what is good, evil is with me.” The NLT uses the words, “I inevitably do what is wrong”, to show man’s plight in trying to obey the laws and relying on self. Paul goes further in the chapter to describe man’s problem in following the Law:
1) Prompted man to live in the process(religiosity) VS. living in the Spirit.
2) Man enticed to commit sins that were pointed out
3) It gave a false since of salvation.
But let us remember the Laws given to Moses served to:
1) Let people know when they were sinning,
2) Acted as a guide on how to live personally and with others
3) Reminded people about how Holy God is
4) Provided a way for people to be reconciled to God.
Paul goes on to conclude in Chapter 7 that because followers could not live up to the Law, faith should be placed in Jesus who freed us from a slavery of sin.
In Chapter 8, Paul addressed how placing faith in Jesus Christ, created a new personal relationship with God. By accepting Jesus, the Holy Spirit would come to dwell in the believer; providing strength from sin and eternal life. Paul also illustrated the new relationship with terms such as adopted children, call Him “Abba, Father” and the heirs of God’s Glory. He proceeded to build on this personal relationship by stating the glory of things to come, how the Spirit intervenes for the believer and how God chose his people and set them in right standing or justified them.
Towards the end of the chapter, Paul made a profound statement that holds us to this day. By accepting God’s gift in Jesus and submitting to him, what an AWESOME thing to know that there is nothing that can separate us from God’s LOVE.