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Romans;- Escape from law

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posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 05:09 PM
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In Paul’s explanation of the gospel, he has shown that believers have been freed from, and must keep themselves free from, the dominion of sin.
This makes it necessary to return to the subject of the law, which professes to offer a means of avoiding sin.

He addresses his readers as “brethren- for I am speaking to those who know the law” (ch7v1). In other words, he is still writing to the Jews, in his own mind.
Then he draws a metaphor based on the ground rules of marriage.
On close examination, the metaphor runs rather awkwardly.
“We may safely assume that Paul knew how to choose his instances with exactness and precision…”, remarks one (German) commentator about this verse. With respect, sir, the occasional clumsy metaphor which doesn’t quite work seems to be one of the features of Paul’s letters. As when he wants to make the point that he is a late arrival among the apostles, and uses a word which actually means a premature birth (1 Corinthians ch15).

In this case, the problem is that Paul is mixing his metaphors.
On the one hand, he wants to use the marriage analogy by taking hold of the point that marriage is dissolved by death. The surviving partner is liberated from the deceased partner and free to make another connection.
On the other hand, he also wants to make use of his favourite image that the believer has “died to” the old life.
Combining the two ideas forces him into the incongruous argument that the deceased partner (the believer) has been liberated from the surviving partner (the law) and is therefore free to make another connection.
The new connection is with Christ himself- “so that you may belong to him who has been raised from the dead” (vv2-4).

The purpose of the transition is to enable us to “bear fruit for God”.
That is the opposite of what was happening in our old life.
In those days, the law was arousing our sinful passions, working in such a way that we would have been bearing “fruit for death.”
But we are now discharged from our commitment to the obligations of the law.
We have “died to” the gaoler who has been keeping us captive- another version of the statement that we have died to our old husband.
It is understood that we are now living in the Spirit, instead of living in the flesh.
So we are now serving a different master, as he was arguing in the previous chapter.
We no longer serve under “the old written code”, which was leading us to death.
We are now serving God in the new life of the Spirit (vv5-6).

The theme of living in the Spirit is resumed in the next chapter, but first there will be a digression.
Paul has come close to saying that the law is sin, or at least the promoter of sin, “arousing the sinful passions”. So he has to back away from that false conclusion and explain himself.
We need to understand how Paul will be using the word “I”. One of his habits of speech is that “I” may refer to “anyone”, or some representative human individual. As in, for example, “If I build up again those things which I tore down…” (Galatians ch2 v18). This really means “if anyone”, and in the context it is probably an oblique criticism of Peter.
(Here is the reverse of the old-fashioned British convention of saying “One” when the speaker is talking about himself.)
So when Paul says “I” in this chapter, it’s not a personal confession.
It’s a way of representing the universal conditions of human life.

The basic point is that the law made it possible to know sin (v7).
It was already possible to sin, so the law was not responsible for that.
But the law made it possible to know what sin was, and therefore developed awareness of sin.
So, for example, it introduced the conscious concept of “coveting”, and put ideas into people’s minds about the way they might express their sinful tendencies.

For practical purposes, sin was “dead” in the absence of law, allowing the individual, free from sin, to be “alive”.
However, this must be understood in the light of the explanation in ch2, that even those Gentiles “outside the law” have a version of the law in their hearts.
In other words, the condition of being “apart from the law” has never existed in reality.
Even Adam, from the moment of coming into existence, was under the “law” of not eating from the tree of knowledge.

If the condition of being “apart from the law” is purely notional, then “coming under the law” is just a logical transition, not one that occurred in history.
Once the law is in place, the “dead” sin comes to life, and consequently the living individual “dies”, coming under judgement.
Thus while the law promises life to the obedient, the practical effect is judgemental death. However, this is not the fault of the law itself; it is the fault of sin, which exploits the opportunities which the commandments provide.
So the law itself may still be counted as holy and just and good (vv9-13).

All the commentaries notice that the rest of the chapter moves into the present tense.
Nothing has changed, though. Paul is still describing the general human condition under the law.
But the present tense gives a greater sense of immediacy, puts the reader more “in the moment”.
(There are places in the letters where Paul talks about the sins of Christian life, but this passage is not one of them and ought not to be co-opted.)

There is a basic dichotomy.
The law is spiritual, expressing God’s will for my life.
However, my human life as a whole is “carnal”. I am “sold under sin” (v14). That is, I am living in a state of servitude, under sin, quite as harsh as the servitude of a man who has lost his liberty through his debts.
I cannot understand my own actions, because my understanding takes place in the mind, and my actions take place in my fleshly limbs.
My mind agrees that the law is good and wants to follow the law.
But my body ignores all that and does what my mind hates.
That is, the sin that dwells within me is doing these things.
I have a conscious will for doing good, but that better will is not controlling what I do.
This contradiction almost amounts to a new law of human nature.
My mind, my inmost self, is delighting in the law of God.
But my limbs are following a completely different law, the law of sin.

The individual calls himself a wretched man and asks who will free him from this carnal body leading him into judgement.
The response, “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord”, looks forward to the solution provided in the next chapter;
“The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set me free from the law of sin and death” (ch8 v2).




posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 05:53 PM
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Be in the world, not of the world.

Put in this context, it might be said the first sin was a loss of innocence to the worldly.



posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 08:03 PM
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a reply to: DISRAELI

I have found people obsessed with sin are the most sinful. People who don't think about sin are without sin.


edit on 25-10-2019 by dfnj2015 because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 08:55 PM
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originally posted by: dfnj2015
a reply to: DISRAELI

I have found people obsessed with sin are the most sinful. People who don't think about sin are without sin.



I have yet to find a definition of sin, except missing the mark. What is the mark that one misses?



posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 08:58 PM
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originally posted by: PhilbertDezineck

originally posted by: dfnj2015
a reply to: DISRAELI

I have found people obsessed with sin are the most sinful. People who don't think about sin are without sin.



I have yet to find a definition of sin, except missing the mark. What is the mark that one misses?


I imagine it has something to do with the golden rule.



posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 09:00 PM
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originally posted by: dfnj2015

originally posted by: PhilbertDezineck

originally posted by: dfnj2015
a reply to: DISRAELI

I have found people obsessed with sin are the most sinful. People who don't think about sin are without sin.



I have yet to find a definition of sin, except missing the mark. What is the mark that one misses?


I imagine it has something to do with the golden rule.


Where does that rule come from? What if I live where that golden rule has never been set down.
Which rule cleanliness is next to godliness?
edit on 25-10-2019 by PhilbertDezineck because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 09:28 PM
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a reply to: PhilbertDezineck

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you is generally the Golden Rule. Interestingly enough pretty much every major religion has a version of it, so I'm not sure how you are ignorant of it. It's pretty universal and commonly known even to the irreligious.



posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 09:32 PM
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originally posted by: ketsuko
a reply to: PhilbertDezineck

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you is generally the Golden Rule. Interestingly enough pretty much every major religion has a version of it, so I'm not sure how you are ignorant of it. It's pretty universal and commonly known even to the irreligious.


My original question what is sin?



posted on Oct, 25 2019 @ 10:42 PM
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Other than what Scripture has laid out

Not to worry, it covers it well with an out! It's turns out Paul couldn't stop sinning....said he had a wa r in his mind.....

We ackowledge6 we can't keep the law.....and we are free from it....that's Paul's message

Rom 16 25, 26

a reply to: PhilbertDezineck


edit on 25-10-2019 by GBP/JPY because: IN THE FINE TEXAS TRADITION



posted on Oct, 26 2019 @ 01:16 AM
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a reply to: dfnj2015
None of us are without sin. "If any man say that he have no sin, he deceives himsself and the truth is not in him" (1 John)



posted on Oct, 26 2019 @ 01:20 AM
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a reply to: PhilbertDezineck
My NTS series coverning the second half of last year was based on a definiton of sin. To quote;

"Sin is a relationship problem. The human will has come out of alignment with the will of God, and this misalignment impedes our knowledge of God and our contact with God. We are born with independent wills, and that is the state of sin."



edit on 26-10-2019 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 26 2019 @ 03:42 AM
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a reply to: PhilbertDezineck


I have yet to find a definition of sin, except missing the mark. What is the mark that one misses?


In religion terms "Sin" is a an offense against a moral law. A simple example is "Steal". In the 10 commandments it says "You shall not steal". That is the mark the God has set for you according to the 10 commandments. If you as a person go against that and "steal", that means you missed the mark God has set for you. That is the definition of "Sin".

In non-religion terms it refers to actions of a kind that are likely to be strongly condemned.

Peace



posted on Oct, 26 2019 @ 12:23 PM
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It’s interesting that we are called to produce fruit
What is the fruit?
I once believed it was converting secularists to christianity but

It’s the Fruit of the Spirit, it’s not about making people believe in Christ
Evangelical charismatic churches tend to push that line, where I learned that teaching anyway

So, just live the fruit of the Spirit and you are living accordingly
edit on 26-10-2019 by Raggedyman because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 26 2019 @ 12:28 PM
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a reply to: Raggedyman
Yes, you're referring to Galatians ch5 v22 (not every reader will know that reference). What James calls "the wisdom from above" (James ch3 v17) has the same effect.




edit on 26-10-2019 by DISRAELI because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 26 2019 @ 12:43 PM
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originally posted by: Seed76
a reply to: PhilbertDezineck


I have yet to find a definition of sin, except missing the mark. What is the mark that one misses?


In religion terms "Sin" is a an offense against a moral law. A simple example is "Steal". In the 10 commandments it says "You shall not steal". That is the mark the God has set for you according to the 10 commandments. If you as a person go against that and "steal", that means you missed the mark God has set for you. That is the definition of "Sin".

In non-religion terms it refers to actions of a kind that are likely to be strongly condemned.

Peace


Except at the sermon on the mount, Jesus made it even more difficult, literally impossible to live The law of the sermon on the mount
It became impossible, it wasn’t just stealing, even considering stealing was sin



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