Under Gods Command

Romans 7:1-6 Do you not know, brothers-for I am speaking to men who know the law- that the law has authority over a man only as long as he lives? For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law of marriage. So then, if she marries another man, while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress, even though she marries another man. So, my brothers, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might be long to another, or him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God. For when we were controlled by the sinful nature, the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in our bodies, so that we bore fruit for death. But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released ferom the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.

Paul uses marriage to illustrate our relationship to the law. When a spouse dies, the law of marriage no longer applies. Because we have died with Christ, the law can no longer condemn us. We rose again when Christ was resurrected and, as new people, we “belong” to Christ. His Spirit enables us to produce good fruit for God. We now serve not by obeying a set of rules, but out of renewed hearts and minds that overflow with love for God.

When a person dies to the old life and belongs to Christ, a new life begins. An unbeliever’s mind-set is centered on this or her own personal gratification. Those who don’t follow Christ have only their own self-determination as their source of power, By contrast, God is at the center of a Christian’s life. Go supplies the power for the Christian’s daily living. Believers find that their whole way of looking at that world changes when they come to Christ.

Some people try to earn their way to God by keeping a set of rules (obeying the Ten Commandments, attending church faithfully, or doing good deeds), but all they earn for their efforts is frustration and discouragement. However, because of Christ’s sacrifice, the way to God is already open, and we can become his children simply by putting our faith in him.

Keeping the rules, laws, and customs of Christianity doesn’t save us. Even if we could keep our actions pure, we would still be doomed because our hearts and minds are perverse and rebellious. Like Paul, we can find no relief in the synagogue or church until we look to Jesus Christ himself for our salvation – which he gives us freely. When we do come to Jesus, we are flooded with relief and gratitude. Will we keep the rules any better? Most likely but we will be motivated by love and gratitude, not by the desire to get God’s approval. We will not be merely submitting to an external code, but willingly and lovingly seeking to God’s will.

Lets Bring it Home: Are we trying to reach God by keeping rules or looking the part, going to Church, Bible Study and Sunday school, or are we trying to become more and more like Jesus as we live with him day by day. Don’t keep the rules because it’s the American Way, go to Church to gain that personal relationship Jesus and hear and put into action when He has to say.

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