Paul left us at the end of chapter 7 and with the discussions leading up to it divided. I do not do what I want to do and do that which I don’t want to do. I acknowledge and accept Jesus as my master, but my flesh still feels as if I’m churning on the side of sin. But, I am saved. I am redeemed by Jesus Christ. I am not perfect or holy or righteous on my own, but I am also not the one I was before being saved. So, what now?
And this is where Paul starts chapter 8. “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” We are free. We are safe. If God is for us, who can stand against us? If God declares us not guilty, who would have greater authority to overrule the verdict?
But, as with most things Paul has written, there is depth in this explanation and that depth tells us a lot about the character of God. By this I mean, the real God, not the gods that men create or want God to be.
I’m reading a book by Timothy Keller called Hidden Christmas and he explains the reason for the Christmas, which is the reason for a savior to be born, in a way that supports Paul’s depth in our modern world views. He writes, “Neither the god of moralism nor the god of relativism would have bothered with Christmas. Moralism is essentially the idea that you can save yourself through your good works. And this makes Christmas unnecessary. Why would God need to become human in order to live and die in our place if we can fulfill the requirements of righteousness ourselves? Relativism is essentially the idea that no one is really “lost,” that everyone should live by their own lights and determine right and wrong for themselves. The “all-accepting god of love” many modern people believe in would never have bothered with the incarnation. Such a god would have found it completely unnecessary.”
As Paul states it, “the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us.” This comes not by us but by the work of Jesus, through the Holy Spirit, coming in to us and fulfilling the requirement for us that we cannot fulfill. God is just and God is compassionate.
We are saved by faith not works, we are dead to sin and having been made so, through grace and faith we are alive in Christ Jesus, the law is fulfilled and no longer the measure of our righteousness. NOW, there is no condemnation. We are declared righteous not because of our works or adherence to the law but because of the work of Christ and His fulfillment of the law
Free from sin and joyfully indebted to my savior. I’m humbled that the one who by a single word created all there is and that He would want a relationship with me. To seek God not as an advisor by as my savior and Lord.
The Father God sent His own Son to be a sin offering because He is just. The Spirit lives in us and we live in the Spirit not as slaves to our flesh. Christ Jesus is the giver, the one who saves.
The requirement is still present (God is Just), but paid by Jesus through His sacrifice and conquering of death and ascension to heaven. We have righteousness fulfilled through the seal of the Holy Spirit marking that we are in Christ and Christ is in us in Spirit, Word and Power