Many people consider Romans to be the jewel of the New Testament. If this is true then Romans 8 is the crown jewel. It is jam packed with theology, doctrine, and practical application. For the next 5-6 weeks this is where we will be pondering. If you have been memorizing and meditating on this chapter along with me this year then you may have a lot to add to the conversation. Please feel free to add your comments to mine. Let’s dig in to this great chapter by looking at verses 1-4.
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. (ESV)
(Several years ago when I first started pondering, I blogged about this passage. I am going to repeat those thoughts here because as I re-read them they echoed what jumps off the page at me now)
There are 3 words that scream out at me from this passage. I’m sure there are other words that scream at you from this incredible text. But my 3 words are “set you free” in verse 2. Here’s what that means for me…
I’ve been set free from an enslavement to sin – It’s not that I don’t sin it’s that I don’t have to sin. The power of sin has been broken and I am free not to sin.
I’ve been set free from a fear of death – Because my dad died so young I used to fear death. Now I can stare it down because I know that the best is yet to come.
I’ve been set free from life without purpose – I’m not just aimlessly drifting through life trying to make it from start to finish. My life has purpose as I follow God’s directives and choose to live according to His ways.
I’ve been set free from joyless living – Because of what Christ has accomplished for me on the cross I can live each day with “the joy of the Lord as my strength.” Even in difficulty and desperation there is still joy because He walks with me.
I’ve been set free from meaningless relationships – When you are free in Christ relationships take on a whole new meaning. Instead of trying to take what you can you try to give what you can. Instead of using others, you love others and seek to help them discover how to experience freedom and joy in Christ.
I’ve been set free from oppressive worry – I have never really been a worrier. But I know people who are worriers and it can be very oppressive. Better I think to to be a warrior than a worrier. In Christ we have an arsenal at our disposal to combat worry so that we can experience the peace that freedom in Christ brings.
With freedom as our birthright we can do battle against the enemies that want to destroy our faith and demolish the foundation that we have in Christ. As Braveheart cried out upon his execution, let “FREEDOM” be the clarion call that drives you this week to live out the gospel in real life.
Next Week’s Passage: Romans 8:5-8
Memory Verses: Romans 8:1-15