Romans 7: 1 “Or do you not know, brethren (for I speak to those who know the law), that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives? 2 For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband. 3 So then, if while her husband lives, she marries another man, she will be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from that law, so that she is no adulteress, though she has married another man. 4 Therefore, my brethren, you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another—to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God. 5 For when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions which were aroused by the law were at work in our members to bear fruit to death. 6 But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter.”
Please note that this particular section of scripture is directed to those who either are under the Law of Moses, or Gentiles who have chosen to practice Judaism In parenthesis in verse 1 reads, (for I speak to those who know the law). Romans 7 is one of the most misunderstood chapters in the entire Bible. Verse 1 sets the tone for the whole chapter, which should be obvious to any Christian that might take time and pay very close attention to the God breathed Words spoken through the Apostle Paul.
Mat 4:3 “Then the Devil came to him and said, “If you (Jesus) are God’s Son, order these stones to turn into bread.” 4 But Jesus answered, “The scripture says, ‘Human beings cannot live on bread alone, but need every word that God speaks.’ ” (GNB).
Not only do we need the Word of God for our daily living, we also need to know what the Hebrew and Greek definition of those Words mean.
Sin’s Advantage in the Law
7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Certainly not! On the contrary, I would not have known sin except through the law. For I would not have known covetousness unless the law had said, “You shall not covet.” 8 But sin, taking opportunity by the commandment, produced in me all manner of evil desire. For apart from the law sin was dead. 9 I was alive once without the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived and I died. 10 And the commandment, which was to bring life, I found to bring death. 11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it killed me. 12 Therefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.
Law Cannot Save from Sin
13 Has then what is good become death to me? Certainly not! But sin, that it might appear sin, was producing death in me through what is good, so that sin through the commandment might become exceedingly sinful. 14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin.”
Galatians 5: 14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another! 16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
I Am Not A Soul Man Anymore
Before I became a Christian, I thought of myself as a soul brother. Most people from my culture growing up back in North Carolina consented to the same ideology. This idea separated us from all other ethnicities giving us our own sense of who and what we were. The R&B singer James Brown sang, “Say it loud, I’m black and I’m proud”; while Sam & Dave chimed in with, “I’m a soul man.” At that time, during the early sixties and seventies it was a natural response to the oppression black people experience for centuries. However, that is not the subject matter I want to touch upon. This is about the term “soul man”. It was fine at the time to confess that I was a soul brother, but now I have come into the knowledge of the truth concerning the soul of human species, from Adam to this present time.
(Gen. 2:7) The Soul is the product of both body & spirit. The Spirit of God animated Adam by breathing His life into the nostrils of Adam, and he became a living soul. Jesus said in John 6: 63 “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh (sarx) profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life”. That breath of life became man’s spirit, the principle of the life that is in him. (Romans 8:16) It would be a mistake to confuse the Holy Spirit with our spirit. Jesus also said in John 3:6 “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit”(The Holy Spirit gives birth to man’s spirit). He went on to say, “You must be born again”. The questions that come to mind are; who is the YOU Jesus is speaking of? Moreover, what is that YOU? Human flesh begets human flesh, but The Spirit of God gave birth to YOU, the real YOU. The Apostle Paul declared in 1st Cor. 15: 50 “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption.” We must conclude that these meat-suits we ware are not Born Again; the meat-suit is not the YOU that received the New Birth. The YOU is the spirit of man, the real YOU.
In Luke 1: 37 in says in the EBR, “Because no declaration from God, shall be void of power”; the ASV says “For no word from God shall be void of power”; and finally the AMPCE (Amplified Classic Edition) says, “For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.” I said that to say this, The Spirit of God inspired every writer of the Old and New Testaments to used specific words and phraseology to convey His will to us. Therefore, not one Word that proceeds from the mouth of God should be taken lightly. For instance, the Greek word soul is psuchē. This word means according to W. E. Vine’s Expository Dictionary:
(a) the natural life of the body; (b) the immaterial, invisible part of man; (c) the disembodied (or “unclothed” or “naked; (d) the seat of personality; in Luke 9:24 , explained as == “own self; (e) the seat of the sentient element in man, that by which he perceives, reflects, feels, desires; (f) the seat of will and purpose; (g) the seat of appetite; (h) persons, individuals.
“Apparently, then, the relationships may be thus summed up (‘Soma), body, and (pneuma), spirit, may be separated, pneuma and psuche, soul, can only be distinguished’ Consequently, we are much more than a soul man, we are spirits possessing souls, living inside of a body. This is why The Spirit of God put upon the Apostle Paul’s heart to write, “Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” I believe the word ‘Spirit’ should have been translate in the lower case. If the flesh (sarx) was at war with The Spirit of God we wouldn’t stand a chance. The battle is with our human, born again, re-created spirit. In this life our spirit must gain ascendency over the soul and body. To be continued…