Romans 8 : 1 – 17 Verse by Verse Bible Teaching
Romans 8 : 1 – 17 New King James Version (NKJV)*
1There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.
3 For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh,
4 that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.
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, the things of the Spirit.
6 For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be.
8 So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
9 But you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His.
10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors—not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.
13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”
16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.
Check out this weeks teaching from Pastor Terry Martens available below in Video, Audio Podcast, and transcribed text.
Other studies from the Romans series are available at the following link https://www.ccn.org.au/romans
Audio Podcast Version of Romans 8 : 1 – 17
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Transcript of Romans 8 : 1 – 17
Welcome to Calvary Chapel, Newcastle verse by verse study of the book of Romans. For other studies from the book of Romans, go to our series on firstname.lastname@example.org/Romans. Join us now for this week’s message from Pastor Terry Martens as he teaches from Romans.
Welcome to Calvary Chapel online. It’s good to be with you again, this Sunday afternoon. It is Father’s Day. So Happy Father’s Day to all of you men out there who have children. God bless. Yeah, you’re doing a good job, continue to do it. Enjoy them while they’re young. and bless them when they go. That’s all you can really do. Train them in the ways of the Lord and your legacy will go on. From that very truth it will be a good legacy if you’re faithful to teach them the ways and the will of God throughout your parenting.
Today we’re going to be looking at Romans chapter eight verses one through seventeen. I hope we have time to cover all the content. It’s a message that I’ve titled, a new and wonderful life in the spirit. But before we do that, we’re going to pray. Lord, we thank you for your word. We thank you for all that it has to say concerning parenting, being a father, being a mother, but today, we want to celebrate dads. We thank you, first and foremost that you are our Heavenly Father. And we cry out to you, Abba, Father, we cry out to you as we would a dad. And we ask that as we look to your word, we would see your ways and your will for each of us, not only as dads, but as mothers, as single men, and single women, and as children that are going to be listening to this study with us. And thinking about these truths that Paul wrote in Romans over and over throughout our lifetime as we read our Bibles and contemplate what it’s like to have a father in heaven, who is perfect and without fault, because I know as a dad that I’ve got my problems.
I’m not the perfect Dad I try. But I know that I’m incapable of being the kind of father that you are. Lord, give me strength give all of us men strength in the commission to be dads, and that we would train our children faithfully in the way of the Lord that we can trust your word that we can trust you. Day in and day out, year after year. We pray this in Jesus name. All right, we are looking at Romans chapter eight verses one through seventeen. And in today’s study, specifically, we’re going to be looking at two aspects in Romans chapter eight. The first comes in verses 1 through 11. We’re going to see life in the spirit contrasted with life in the flesh. Then we’re going to move on to verses 11 or excuse me, 12 through 17, which is going to deal with our obligation to live in the spirits.
Let’s look at the first 11 verses where we’re encouraged or at least call to consider life in the spirit contrasted with the life of the flesh. So beginning in verse one, there’s therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, who did not walk according to the flesh. But according to the Spirit, Paul opens chapter eight with the word there for and whenever you see that word, therefore, in the Bible, we need to understand that it’s a call to go back to what’s already been said, I’m not going to go over everything. Again. I encourage you if you’re not sure where Paul is at here, if you’re joining us for the first time, look at the previous studies, specifically, really from chapter one right to chapter eight. And then obviously, in chapter seven, where Paul is wrestling with the law he describes its role and today Paul, emphatically says, Therefore, there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh to the old man. But according to the Spirit. He comes with a logical argument for us. In other words, I can prove what I say here. That’s what Paul is saying, I can prove what I’m saying here. One commentator notes that if we are one with Jesus, He is our head and believers, this is sometimes expressed by Christ being in them, and here by their being in Christ. Christ is in the believers by His Holy Spirit, and believers are in Christ by faith. Now, on the flip side, if you are not in Christ, there is condemnation for you for those who are not in Christ, when Paul says no condemnation, it’s a declaration as if the courtroom of Heaven is stating that if you’re in Christ, if you’ve believed him for salvation, you will not experience condemnation, condemnation to eternal separation from God, we receive it, that we certainly deserve condemnation. We receive it.
We receive this standing because Jesus bore the condemnation that we deserved, and our identity is now in him. Our identity is no longer in the old Terry. It is found in Christ, still called Terry. But I have a new way of thinking I have a new worldview, I have a new way of processing decisions and so to you, if you find yourselves in Jesus Christ, there is therefore now no condemnation, to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. Now, as we move on into verses two, and three and four, we see this contrast of life in the spirit and life in the flesh. And Paul wants us to understand that there is indeed a contrast that exists.
Let’s read verses two through four. And then I’ll make some brief comments concerning each of these verses, beginning in verse two. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh. God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh on account of sin. He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement and law might be fulfilled in us, who did not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit, let’s look closer at verse two the law of the Spirit of life in Jesus Christ, or Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin, and death. Now, every cemetery that we see proves the laws power.
I’m one of those weird guys who always notices the cemetery when I’m driving past it. I always notice it and I always wonder who will be resurrected to life in that cemetery, and who will be resurrected to death or to eternal separation from God. It’s a sobering reality. If you’ve never walked through a cemetery, it’s a bit creepy to talk about this. But if you’ve never walked through a cemetery, I encourage you to do so. It’s sobering and it brings us back in touch with the brevity of life. It reminds us that we are here as but a vapour. We’re here today and gone tomorrow. Even if you live 80 or 90 years, you come to the end of your days, I talked to my mom weekly, and she’s getting older, and she’s in her mid 80s right now. And she’s certainly preparing her heart to meet the Lord. Well, that’s good. And that’s logical. And of course, she’s going to do that just as your parents who have passed have done that, or your grandparents. But I’m sitting here at 47 years old, nearly 48. And if I fail to think about death, if I fail to think about my own tombstone, I’m doing myself a disservice.
Not preparing to meet the Lord one day. And I look forward to meeting the Lord. My whole life has been predicated around serving Him, adoring him, serving his people, raising my children in Christ, serving my wife and Christ, building relationships that will either lead them to Christ or encouraging my brothers and sisters in the Lord, to walk and obey Christ in all our ways. It’s really a declaration that the law gives us no power over the grave, but Christ does. The law of the Spirit of life in Christ is stronger still, which will prove to be true at the resurrection. Now, do that some time appointment. Now the first one tells us that we are free from the guilt of sin. Verse two essentially tells us that we are free from the power of sin. Listen, the law can do a lot. The law is holy, just and good. You hear me saying that often throughout the book of Romans, because that’s exactly what it tells us. In our previous studies, the law can teach us, it will guide us, and it will tell us about God’s character, but it will never give us, it can’t give us the power to obey what the law requires of us. And so we need that in Jesus Christ law gives the standard but it can’t give us the power to please God.
One commentator by the name of Mason adds this. Moses law had right but not might, sins law has might. The law of the Spirit has both right? And might. And so we have the capacity or the resource of heaven, through the Holy Spirit living and dwelling and abiding in us to say no to sin, but yes to righteousness.
In verse three a, it says this, let me read it for you again, for what the law could not do and that it was weak through the flesh. God did by sending his own son. Now the law couldn’t defeat sin. It can only detect it. Only Christ through the crucifixion on the cross could defeat sin, a common theme throughout all of Paul’s epistles throughout all of Peters epistles throughout the epistles or the letters of the New Testament, calling us to look at the past.
And the capacity of Christ, fulfilling the law, dying as an innocent man on our behalf, so that we would be declared righteous. Also in verse three, God by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh on account of sin, He condemned sin in the flesh. Now in order to defeat that sin, Jesus had to identify with us who are bound by it. He identifies with us, he becomes like us, though sinless, he could identify with the temptations that sin brought, he had to become human to be the perfect propitiation, or the covering of sin on behalf of all those who would believe and Paul here carefully chooses his words, doesn’t he? He carefully chooses his words. Jesus was not sinful flesh.
For you, and he did this for me. And we can’t ever forget that he did this. This is the where and the win that he accomplished for us. So that judgement would fall on him, rather than on you who have believed. Since we’re in Christ, the condemnation we deserve has passed over us. We experienced the true Passover, the fulfilment of the Passover in Exodus, and the Holy Spirit has passed over us, it sees Christ in us and therefore, the judgement of death has been dealt with. It is indeed the true Easter. The true Easter.
Again, reading verses two and three and tying it in with verse four. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law sin and death for what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh on account of sin. He condemned sin in the flesh, verse four, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit, because Jesus fulfilled this righteous requirement of the law, because we’re in Christ, we then fulfil the law, because Christ fulfilled the law. Our identity is in Christ. And so when God sees us, he sees that we have fulfilled the law by exercising faith in Jesus Christ there in lies, the grace and the theme of the book of Romans, the entire New Testament and the plan of God from Genesis through to the end of Revelation, especially when the consummation of all time takes place, and we receive our new body, our new creation, and we’re able to enter into all that was in the mind of Jesus, when he was an anguish there in the garden.
Nevertheless, your will be done God, but not mine, Jesus battled with the reality of going to the cross. His flesh was not in favour of it. His body, I should say, was not in favour of it. He understood pain. He was a carpenter. He knew what it is like to hit his thumb with a mallet. He knew what it was like to cut something and the knife slip and take a big gouge out of his hand. He knew what it was like to stub his toe, it hurts. He had seen people crucified. It was a common Roman execution. He had seen the anguish of humanity. He knew how God had created men. He knew how he had created men. He was there at original creation, and he created men with nerves and he took on that body of men and his own body had nerves and to go to the cross, and to suffer ridicule. And to see people abandon him. He knew the pain of that. And so he goes through it so that he could see us overcome the consequences of sin really are into condemnation and be eternally separated from God. And so we look at this here that Christ fulfilled the law, so that we could live according to the Spirit. To put it simply he becomes our substitute. He becomes our substitute for what we deserved. He was treated as a sinner, and so we can be treated as righteous. When God sees you, he sees you as righteous because we have an advocate and our advocate is Christ. Who went to the cross to fulfil the merit required so that we would not have to go through eternal condemnation.
It’s a continued and progressive motion that Paul lays out here for us, quoting Charles Haddon Spurgeon, on this text, he says this, observe carefully that the flesh is there. The flesh is there. He doesn’t need to walk after it, but it’s there. It’s there striving and warring and vexing and grieving. And it will be there till he’s taken up into heaven. It’s there as an alien and detested force. It’s there as an alien and a detested force that is this flesh and not there so that we have dominion over him. He doesn’t want to walk after it nor practically obey it. He doesn’t accept it as a guide, nor allow it to drive him into rebellion. And so we recognise that the flesh is in us, wanting us to disobey. But there’s another there’s the Holy Spirit in us who detests that temptation, from its spiritual understanding of what’s really going on because my flesh wants to do it. That’s the art or the reality of deception. We want to do it because we think it’s going to fulfil us. But have you noticed that when you succumb to the temptation, you never feel good about it? You feel guilty about it. You wish you hadn’t have succumb to your own appetites? Well, I would just encourage you this way. And I can identify with you even as you’re listening to me speak here, that when we have the grace to say no, when we have the aptitude or the discipline to say no, we are then relieved and satisfied and overjoyed.
By overcoming temptation, even when we acquiesce with temptation, we feel guilt and we feel remorseful, feel bad for it. Well, in Christ, we have the resource to really enter into peace and joy and satisfaction and goodness for overcoming temptation. That’s the expectation that Paul wants to remind us that our resource is in God, that He has given us the capacity to say no to that which lives with us. It’s not our identity again, our identity is to do that which honours God, but it is there with us, enticing us to rebel against what we know we ought to do.
Next in verses five through eight, we see the futility of trying to please God in the flesh. Let’s read verses five through eight, and then we’ll take a closer look at this section.
Beginning in verse five, 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, the things of the Spirit just as I had set already, For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace, verse seven. But the carnal mind is empty or hostile against God, for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then those who are in the flesh cannot please God. look closer at verse five. 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, the things of the Spirit, Paul gives us an easy way to determine what it’s like or what it looks like to live after the spirit or to walk in the flesh.
In other words, he’s asking us, where is our mindset? Where is my mindset? Where is your mindset? The mind is where the flesh and the spirit do battle. It’s between this ear and this ear. It’s within our brain and our thinking capacities, how we process decisions. Listen, Peter met Well, when he told Jesus to avoid the cross, didn’t he? I mean, they were close friends. And we don’t want to see our close friends go through tribulations and trials. But Peter was earthly minded. It wasn’t until the day of Pentecost when he was filled with the Holy Spirit, that he could see Jesus’s plan. It wasn’t until the day of Pentecost that this man was truly changed from having an earthly mindset to having one that was of heaven.
Peter meant well, when he told Jesus to avoid the cross, but Jesus responds to Peter, with these strong words, you know them well, in Matthew chapter 16, verse 23, you are not mindful of the things of God, Peter, but of the things of men. Exactly my point.
I’ll never forget one pastor when I was in Bible College, said to me, Terry, Pastor your community. Don’t worry so much about pastoring the church that God calls you, the pastor do that. Of course. That’s without question. I mean, that makes sense. But don’t just limit it to your congregation pastor your community. I’m a tradesman and I lay eyes with all kinds of electricians, and plumbers and builders, and plasterers. concreters and God has called me to be a clear representation of him to that. And that’s pastoring my community. And when you get to know people well and if you find yourself in the office and you’re running into the same people continually and you start building life with them, after all, you’re spending eight, nine hours a day with them five days a week, 40 hours a week. You get to know them really well. And you develop an affinity with the people that you’re around in your communities, whatever it is that you do, maybe you’re retired and you’ve picked up hobbies. And there’s people around you who don’t know the Lord, but they know you really well and you know them really well Shepherd them, pastor them, be open to new people coming into your flock into your fold.
Even at Calvary Chapel. We are to be welcoming of new people that come in sharing our lives with them, getting to know them, being sincere and honest with whoever comes into our fellowship. Likewise, for you and your ministry in your pastoral ministry, whether it’s in the office, or in the trades, or ever you are in the hospitals. People find out about your faith. They will ask you questions when they feel comfortable to do that, and you’ll be able to inject pastoral heavenly counsel to them. Hopefully they’ll come to the Lord. And if that takes time, and that’s delayed, you continue to give them wise and sound counsel, and may your life be consistent throughout that process, as they watch you as they watched the living epistle that God has put in their presence.
Moving on to verse six. Paul writes this to be carnally minded his death. To be carnally minded is death. So if you’re a Christian and you’re being carnally minded, in your pastoral ministry, it’s going to do you no favours. So be spiritually minded. Okay. But Paul here says, to be carnally minded is death but to be spiritually minded is life and have a clear conscience, pursue peace by functioning spiritually. mindedly when our spirits are set on the things of the flesh or carnally minded, it will bring death to our lives like lying and cheating and stealing, using rude and coarse language or course jesting.
That’s the kind of stuff that dismantles friendships and relationships. Be careful not to function in that way, you’re going to be tempted to be loose with your lips. Hold a restraining factor on your mouth. Do this if you have to, because it will serve you well in the future. And often, when you’re tempted and there’s that circle of people that are drawing you into a conversation that’s not wholesome, you’re glad you didn’t engage about an hour later when everybody disbands, and you go home, and you find yourself back in isolation or with your own family. So guard your lips, around your wife, around your children, around your co workers and around your playmates, but to walk in the Spirit, it brings life in peace.
What does that look like? Well, honesty integrity etc in our lives can we say that he is Lord over our thinking and our actions? And Paul here makes it clear, doesn’t he? The carnal mind is enmity against God for is not subject to the love of God, nor can it be. But the spiritual mind is subject to God now we need to allow our hearts to be subject to him and acquiesce to that prompting of the Holy Spirit. The battle is to tame the flesh, isn’t it? The law is powerless, but the Spirit gives us the power to deal with temptation appropriately. Listen to this comment from a commentary as Paul doesn’t say that the carnal mind was at enmity with God. He put it even stronger than that. The carnal mind is enmity against God
We can try to do good in life without being subject to the law of God. We may hope to put God in debt to us by good works, thinking God owes us. But it doesn’t work. The flesh cannot please God, even if the flesh does religious things that are admired by men, God sees the heart and He knows what’s going on in my life, and he knows what’s going on in the lives of those who call themselves believers in Jesus Christ, ie Christians. Next in verses 9 through 11. As we move along, I’ll read verses nine through 11. And it’s a section that I’ve labelled Christians are empowered to live in the spirit. And this is what it says in verse nine. But you are not of the flesh but of the Spirit. If indeed the Spirit of God dwells in You. Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of God, he is not his. And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin. But the spirit is life because of righteousness, verse 11. But if the spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies, through His Spirit who dwells in you again, let me share this every believer has the Holy Spirit.
Every believer has the Holy Spirit. It’s a misnomer to divide Christians among spirit filled and those who are non spirit filled. If a person is not filled with the Holy Spirit, they are not Christians at all. Our responsibility is to take that resource of the Holy Spirit in us and act on the provoking of that which is right in the midst of options, the option to do that which is displeasing to God, and the option to do that which pleases God, before we knew Christ, we didn’t have that option. We didn’t have the mind of Christ. We didn’t have that conscience, which led us into that which we have a conscience now not to do. And so that’s critical for us to understand. But if someone is born again, they are filled with the Holy Spirit, they just must draw on it. They must call upon God, to extra, this filling of the Holy Spirit, another filling or coming upon is what Jesus refers to in the Gospel. I believe it’s in Matthew, where the Spirit will come upon you for the purpose of ministry, where you are sharing the gospel with somebody Lord, fill me with your spirit. Give me insight into the situation and give me boldness. The early church was filled with the Holy Spirit. But they would often pray for boldness and bolus would come and they would proclaim in the midst of persecution, we need to pray that God would give us an extra measure of his spirit. It’s just semantics. It’s just rhetoric that we would draw upon the resource that’s in us to not retaliate when we are under persecution. Unfortunately, a lot of Christians misses. A lot of Christians know that they are Christian. A lot of Christians have received the gospel of Jesus Christ, but they choose not to draw upon this aspect of the Holy Spirit giving us power to overcome temptation in a definitive way.
In Ephesians chapter five, verses 18 and through 21, Paul says this, to not be drunk with wine. Now we know some Christians struggle with this. But Paul says, Don’t be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, draw upon the reality of being in Christ. Speak to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord giving thanks always, for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, submitting to one another in the fear of God.
Jesus said this in John chapter seven verses 37 through 39. Let me read it to you on that last day, the great day of the Feast, Jesus stood and cried out saying if anyone thirsts, let them come. To me and drink. He believes in me as the scripture had said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water. But this he spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believers in him would receive. For the Holy Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified. And hence you see, the change of mindset from Peter saying, Jesus don’t go to the cross, to then finding out that he’s filled with the Holy Spirit. Jesus has gone to the cross, he’s resurrected, he showed himself to the disciples. He’s ascended into heaven. Peter obeys the commandment of Jesus to wait for the promise that was to come, the promise that comes as the Holy Spirit and they were filled with boldness to act out on the mind of God on the mind of Jesus, and then he got it and then he understood it. How can we function this way? Some of you might be Christians and have been Christians or have had faith in Christ for a long time. But you battle with the capacity to deal with temptation or to have this power to share your face. How is that done? How is that possible? How do you do that, Terry?
Well, it’s very simple. It’s very simple. First of all, be a man or a woman saturated in the Word of God. Read it often, and read it a lot and read it for long periods of time. Also, be a person of prayer. Be a person of prayer. Those two aspects will give you discernment. You don’t need to pray for discernment. You’re going to have discernment as you read the word and pray. You then find yourself in a situation that is provocative or difficult or you’re given a situation where someone is eager to hear the hope that’s within you, at that moment in your mind with your eyes open in the midst of conversation, in your mind said, God. Give me the strength fill me with your spirit. Give me an extra measure of your grace. So I can clearly articulate the hope of the gospel of Jesus Christ to this individual. And use me now to lead this person, Lord, may the words that I speak, bring this person to conviction over their own sin, and their need of a saviour and help me to lead them to Christ. And then as we go from the process of seeing them come to Christ, that we continue to pray for insight and knowledge and wisdom into how we might address the questions that come in their lives, that we can do graciously we can do it mercifully. Above all, be patient, and kind and gentle, as the fruit of the Spirit is described, that we would have, the way the way that we deal with these people would be in a way that is pleasing to Christ, even as he dealt with those disciples. He was gentle, he was patient with them. But he was certainly led by the Spirit. He is God and we have the mind of God and so we can minister in a way that’s very similar to the way that Jesus ministered. Do you realise that Jesus didn’t just function as a man while he was on earth or like the men around him? Very early in the morning he would get up and spend time with the father he would spend time in prayer. The Word of God was marrying together the relationship of God with God.
He found his strength in communion and fellowship with God therein lied his power to serve or to do ministry. And ministry is a challenge and you know what I’m talking about. It eats at you. You feel depleted often. Because the world is full of problems. People have all kinds of problems. I have problems, I need to go to God with my problems, to find renewed strength in the midst of adversity. When I’ve been called to mediate or to build relationship or to talk through issues with people going through hard times, I must draw upon God in prayer, so that I’m prepared with a heavenly mindset rather than a carnal mindset in making sure that my counsel is sound, that it’s good. It’s God, honouring and when I leave, I’m able to look back at the conversation and say I handled that in a way that is pleasing to God. It is absolutely critical that we are men of the word that we are women are the word that we are people of the word and prayer, and also fellowship. Because iron sharpens iron, iron in the word iron in prayer and iron in fellowship. It will give you an effective ministry that will not be burdensome.
My prayer is that I never burn out of pastoring. And sometimes it’s hard, just because I’m drawing on my own resources to make ministry happen. But when I draw upon the Lord, when I look at the word and I’m refreshed in Scripture, and I’ve spent time with God, ministry is an incredible blessing to me, I wouldn’t want to do anything else. I love it. I love ministering and serving my wife ministry and service mean the same thing. I love serving my wife, but when I’m in the flesh, or when I’m kind of just thinking about myself, I don’t really want to serve her When I’m right, I want to serve my children, I want to bless them, I have a greater capacity to handle their wants and their needs. When I’m not drawing upon the resource of the word and prayer, then I get irritated by them, even at church when I am in the word, and when I am in prayer, and I fellowship with the saints, obviously, some are easier and some are more difficult when I’m right in the word and in prayer, both are easy, because it’s a blessing to serve, because I’ve found my strength or the power in God to do it in a way that refreshes me. And that’s the way that I want to continue to pastor and that’s the way I want you guys to continue to pastor in your sphere of influence. Now, how do you know that you have this Spirit? That’s a great question. How do you know that you have the spirit you have to ask these questions. Has the Spirit led you to Jesus Christ? Has the Spirit led you to Jesus Christ. Secondly, has the spirit put in you a desire to honour God? Third, is the spirit leading you to be more like Christ. And fourth, is the spirit at work in your heart, or has your heart become callous? May your heart be soft. God has given you a heart of flesh. He’s taken the old heart of the law out and replaced it with a heart of flesh. Those stone tablets are redundant. He has given you a heart of flesh that doesn’t negate or neglect what the law says. But that heart of flesh desires to obey it. joy and peace and goodness to the blessing of you and to the blessing of those around you. Continuing in verse 10.
And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. You have life in salvation, mind and spirit. Okay, we’ve dealt with this quite extensively already. You have life in salvation, but there’s also the sentence of death on you how so Terry? Well, I look different today at nearly 48 than I did when I was 21 years old. There’s a few more lines coming. A few more grey hairs in my beard and in my hair, my body parts are slowly starting to feel the wear and tear of what I do for a living or just Clearly entropy working on my life. You know what I’m talking about. If you’re older than probably 35, 40, 50, 60, 70 years old, you know what I’m talking about? Well, that’s the reality of living in a broken and sinful world, the sentence of death is on our bodies because of sin, because of sin, but you have life and salvation because your mind has been renewed. I feel younger every year in my mind, because the hope of heaven gets closer and closer and closer, and so I get more and more joyful and giddy about the reality of the consummation of my face. That one day I will die I hope I’m 85 years old one day and I’m giddy for glory. I hope I am at 85 years old laying in my bed. I don’t know what my condition will be. But I like my mother will look forward to the day that God calls me home. To see those who are in glory that I know are there to see men like Paul and to see women who are righteous. there to see obviously, my Lord, see men like Abraham and Noah, to see Jacob, in Isaiah. To see Noah, you know, to see Paul and Peter and the disciples to see those great saints like Charles Haddon Spurgeon to see people like Ravi Zacharias to see Chuck Smith to see you. You might beat me there. But we should grow giddy in the anticipation of glory, because we have been given life in salvation. Yeah, our body is deteriorating, for sure. Enjoy your youth while you have it. Don’t sit In your youth, flee youthful lusts. But you’re going to get older. I married Lindy 22 years ago today.
And I have grown with her. We have grown together we have changed. We discussed about a month ago how much we have changed over the last 22 years. And change is a concept that’s difficult for us to embrace because we are settled and content in our present condition. Changes always uncomfortable, uncomfortable for us as humans, but change when it’s done in a way that Christ does. It is a good thing. I’m a better man today 22 years after marrying Lindy than I was even 10 years after I married her, and that’s due to the grace of God. That’s due to the fact that the word of God has continued to wash my mind My time in prayer is much more intimate than it was when I first believed. My time in prayer is much more focused and dedicated. My time in prayer is, is much more dealing with the sins of the mind rather than the sins of the flesh. And so it is with you and we’ll be with you. So remember, there is life in salvation, even though the judgement of sin is also on your life, rendering your body to a place of decline. your mind and your spirit are being renewed day by day, but your body is deteriorating. So in verses one through 11, we’ve studied the contrast between life in the flesh and life in the spirit. Next, as we move on to verses 12 through 17, we’re going to study our obligation to live in the spirit.
Let’s read verses 12 through 15. Therefore, Brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh, you will die. But if by the Spirit, you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live, For as many as are led by the Spirit of God. These are the sons of God, for you to not receive the Spirit of bondage again to fear, but you receive the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, Abba, Father. In other words, our debt is to the Lord and not to the flesh or to the carnally minded man. Also, here, Paul constantly reminds us that living after the flesh ends in death. And we need these reminders, because we’re often deceived into thinking that the flesh offers life when it doesn’t. The flesh offers regret. The flesh offers sadness. The flesh offers pain and suffering in relationships and in private pain and suffering and death. Okay? So when you’re tempted, it’s going to offer you escape. It’s going to offer you a package of liberty, but you open that box and it’s empty, and it will leave your heart empty, as well.
Paul speaks in verse 15, of intimacy, for you to not receive the Spirit of bondage again to fear but you received the Spirit of adoption, by whom we cry out our Abba, Father. Now it’s only fitting that the sons of God should be led by the Spirit of God. That is obvious, even as it’s fitting. My boys are led by their parents, that they are led by their father. And so I lead them even as God leads me. And hopefully I’m doing a good job of leading my boys into what a man looks like who fears and reverences God. And this is what Paul is talking about here, especially fitting on Father’s Day. We have our Father in heaven, who we need to celebrate as our dad. He is good to us. He loves us. He cares for us. He has gone to the extent of the cross, to make us his sons by adoption. He is adopted as he is included us in his family completely. Even as you look at your sons and your daughters, they are yours. Nothing that they could do to you would separate that reality from the truth that they are your sons and your daughters. Now some of you may have children who you don’t have an intimate relationship with. And that’s tragic. And I hope that that is restored. And I hope that I have an intimate relationship with my sons as they become men and they build their own lives. Clearly, they’ll be doing things differently than I’ve done as a parent. Clearly, I have done things differently than my parents did to me in their parenting that is just the nature of establishing your own home and your own identity as a parent. But God our Father is the perfect parent and so we can’t point the finger at him. And so we will always try and emulate our parenting after his parenting. Does he teach us? Yes. Does he correct us? Yes. Does he point out when we make mistakes and discipline? Yes. But he is also faithful to remind us that we have always been his we will always be His and he will put his arm around us and remind us of all the blessings that we have in His Kingdom in his family. And we need to adore him and praise Him and thank him for that. Now, how does the Holy Spirit lead us? Well, he leads by guidance. He draws us. He is the governing authority in our lives. And he will lead us to cooperate with the leading of the Holy Spirit through the Scriptures. I keep banging on about this, but it is vitally important. If you want to live in the fullness of Christianity. And you’ve got no problem calling yourself a Christian do you? Now live in the fullness of it by what the Scriptures have to say, concerning God, the condition of men And, and how he is to get right with his maker, and how as we embrace God were to live in a way that pleases our father. After all, it’s Father’s Day, let’s come back to that which he has given to us to know Him, and to know how we ought to live before Him and before people. That is how we honour our Father in heaven on Father’s Day, and really every other day that we live. Again, let’s ask another question.
Where does the Holy Spirit lead us? Where does the Holy Spirit lead us? Well, again, he will lead you to the Scriptures, to the Holy Scriptures. They’re not just the scriptures, okay? There’s a lot of religions that have scriptures. These are the Holy Scriptures. They are without blemish or mark. They are holy. It’s called the Holy Bible for a reason. It’s called the holy book for a reason. Don’t give into the temptation to neglect the word holy men will try to, men have attempted to, and it their arguments have been torn down by any civil thinking person who actually has looked at the credibility of Scripture. Now embrace them as holy. buying them in your heart, read them constantly. Remember them, memorise them, be in the Word of God, so that your prayers are not malign so that your prayers acquiesce with what God has already said to you in the Holy Scriptures. And then you can enter into the subjective, then you can enter into questions like God, which job should I take? Or Lord? Which school should I send my children to? Or Lord how can I know what I ought to do in this particular situation? Go to the word, the Holy Spirit will lead us to the Word of God known as the Holy Scriptures, the 66 books of your Bible. Secondly, he leads us to repentance. Sometimes there is error in my thinking, as much as my pride wants to tell me that there’s no error in my thinking, there’s error in my thinking. And God is faithful by His Holy Spirit, to correct my air, usually from the Word of God. And through my subjective relationship with God, and through people who know the word of God, and see in consistencies in my life. So repentance is a huge huge area where the Holy Spirit will lead us. Third, he leads us to think little of self and much of Jesus Christ, little of self and much of Jesus. He leads us into truth, into love into holiness, and then into usefulness to be useful for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. A child of God can have a relationship with Gods so close, that they may cry out abba father, in other words, transitioning that from the ancient way of addressing an intimate relationship with their dad. Here. It says, if we can come to God and call him dad or daddy, depending on how you feel comfortable addressing him, in your own time with the Lord. We have that privilege of relating to them. Father, even as Jesus did and does.
FF Bruce wrote this, in the Roman world of the first century AD and adopted son was a son deliberately chosen by his adoptive father to perpetuate his name and inherit his estate. He was no whit inferior in status to a son born in the ordinary case of nature. Under Roman adoption, the life and standing of an adopted child changed completely. The adopted son lost all rights in his old family and gained all new rights in his new family. The old child or the old life of the adopted son was completely wiped out, with all debts being cancelled, with nothing from the past counted against him any more. Finally, in verses 16 through 17 the Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God. We are children of God, you know what within your heart that that is true. Now don’t give into that temptation of wishy washy ness. The word declares that if you have admitted your sin, you have confessed Christ as Lord. And you ask him into your heart, you believe that God raised Him from the dead, and you profess him publicly, you are saved eternally. You are adopted, even as the Romans would select someone to adopt them. That kid would forget his past, and he would forever be identified with his new adopted family. That is substantiated here in what Paul is saying.
In Romans chapter eight. The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God. Now, if you’re not sure where you stand, it may be that you’re not in Christ. And that’s fair enough. And I don’t say that, to come down on you. I say that so that you can ask Christ to forgive you of your sin, come into your life, believe the ministry in the work of Christ, that He died on the cross for your sin, that he was raised to life on the third day that he ascended into heaven and he’s promised to come back for those that are his and He will judge the world he will separate the sheep from the goats, the believers from the unbelievers, and he will create a new world, the New Heaven, the New Earth, where there is no taint where there is no sin, and those who didn’t embrace Him, He will create a world where there is suffering and pain and you need not go there and you can have full confidence that you are in him, never having to question that again. Now how do we know? Based on what the Word says and what you do with the gospel message?
Now how is that played out? Well, it’s played out with your hands and your feet. The truth of your salvation will be borne out over time. Time is the great expositor of truth. Did you embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ sincerely, or were you pressured into it by a friend? Were you lonely and you needed a social group? So you thought the church would be a loving and accepting place, and you really didn’t need to embrace the gospel in your heart, you could kind of secretly live the way that you’d always live. But now you’ve got all these friends.
There’s a lot of motivations that people have for coming to the church, but we’re not called to come to the church. We’re called to come to Christ, confessing our sins and when we do when we embrace Him, then we are the church. We are the church. The only way that someone can join the church is if Christ establishes them as righteous based on their faith in the work and the merit of Jesus alone. That is the church, not the institution, not the ordinances, not the social gathering, not the hype, not the lack there of it, not the money, not the music, not the preaching. It is based solely on coming to Christ with your sin, and accepting his forgiveness there of and then being led by the Spirit of God who converted you by that same spirit.
In verse 17 some of the benefits and responsibilities of being God’s children and if children then heirs that’s pretty cool when you start talking about inheritances that’s pretty cool. When you start talking about Kingdom reality, not in the sense of Christian rhetoric, kingdom, this and kingdom that I think there’s too much kingdom, this and kingdom that going on within our church circles. But we are talking here about children than heirs heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ in the kingdom of reality in God’s way, not our own kingdoms. I don’t ever want to be a pastor who’s trying to establish his own kingdom so everybody can look at Calvary Chapel and be envious of what we’re doing at our church. God forbid.
God has called us simply to teach the word and to live it out, to do it simply, but to do it profound in the sense that we deal with every verse of scripture. And we just happen to be in Romans which deals with the doctrine of salvation, and what that looks like and what it doesn’t look like. The kingdom of heaven is all about acquiescing with the mindset of God.
And what he has for us in the future, is something so wonderful that even Paul the Apostle couldn’t lay it out when he’d experienced it. When he couldn’t even declare it because to do so, he said would be sin. If we’re children, then we are heirs, heirs of God, we inherit him and join us. with Christ, if indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified together, together with him and together with those who believe in Him as Christians, we have the privilege of relating to the Father even as Jesus does. Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Oh, what a blessing for him to say that. And what a blessing for us to be able to say that to declare that being a child of God also means that we have an inheritance that we are going to inherit all that has been promised to us there at the back end of Revelation and so much more. Yeah, we have peace and joy now, but all that is just a taste of what will be our eternal reality.
In Luke 18 :18, the rich young ruler asked Jesus, what must I do? to inherit, but the rich young ruler missed the point because inheritance is not a matter of doing. It is a matter of being, of being in the right family. Now whatever I have monetarily will end up in my children’s hands when both Lindy and I pass away. Whether I have a great relationship with them, or I don’t, it will end up. Theirs split three ways. It’s not a matter of what they’ve done. It’s a matter of the family that they were born into, if indeed we suffer with him, that we may also be glorified together with Him and with each other. In fact, our sharing in the presence sufferings is a condition of our future glorification.
We suffer because Christ suffered. We are little Christ’s. That’s how we were first identified as as believers in the way. Christianity was first described as ‘the way’ and then it developed into the term Christian or little Christ’s, as we suffered in the way that Christ suffered, so that we could also look forward to the glories that he also is enjoying today and as others are enjoying today never shirk, suffering, righteous suffering, okay, if you’re going to suffer because of stupidity, well, that’s on you. But if you suffer for righteousness sake, you can have a quiet, inward joy and smile about you because even as Christ suffered, we must also suffer all those who desire to live godly in this day must suffer will suffer promise given to us by Peter, as far as God’s concerned. It’s all part of the same package of sonship.
Let’s pray. Lord, we thank you so much for your word. We thank you so much for your saving us for your drawing us to salvation, for our relationship, that we can know you are ours and that we are yours. And we can be settled in that. Yeah, sure you’re doing your work of shaping us into a clear picture of what you look like to those around us. You’re sanctifying us. You’re setting us apart. But Lord, our life in Christ is rich. We are so blessed and we look for forward to that kingdom come.
We know that we have a taste of that kingdom in our hearts, which cries out Abba Father, dad. We have that subtleness of spirit that we are in you and we are in truth declared by the word of God. The testimony of two witnesses being the Word of God and prayer, and the assembly of the saints, that we are yours.
Lord, it’s my great desire, it is my holy hope. That one day we will be with you forever. And I thank you so much that we can discover these truths and the Word of God that we can study them and, and chew the cud. That we can muse upon it and meditate on it. Now God is we are reminded of our salvation and we’re reminded that we’re not To give ourselves over to the flesh any longer, but to the Spirit of Christ, that we would find our strength in you. Help us who struggle in that to become more disciplined in our Bible reading in our prayer life. Help us to find fellowship, even in these strange days. And as the days become more normal ahead, may we not forsake the assembling of the saints. But may we find refreshment in it because we are so refreshed. We want to come together and refresh those around us. I pray that our fellowships all around the city around this country around the world would find their true resource in you and not in any other kind of Kingdom. Not the kingdom of the church, not the kingdom of man or ordinances. But in the kingdom of the one true God. God the Father, God the Son and God, the Holy Spirit. Our Christian God, Lord, we love you and we thank you. God bless all of my brothers and sisters, wherever they are. Lead them, deliver them from temptation. And may their spiritual vigour grow to be even more potent than it was yesterday.
We asked us in Jesus name, amen.
God bless you. Take care
* Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.