The Delight vs The Captivity

Today we are reading from Romans 7:8-25.

 But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead. I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died. 10 The very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me. 11 For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. 12 So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.
Can you see what sin does in a body?  It seizes opportunities. It uses the commands, the laws, to produce covetousness.  A great desire to possess something.  It makes us want something that we don't have.   Can you see that?  The law of God was meant to be freeing, but it wasn't.  The presence of the law revealed the heart...that heart that longs for something more.  BE MINDFUL therefore...what do you covet?  Don't let it deceive you.  Look for what it holy, righteous and good.


13 Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. 14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. 15 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16 Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. 17 So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.
Paul asks himself, if I know that the law is good, did it then bring me death?   The answer to that is NO.  It was sin that produced death using what is good (the law).  This shows sin to be sin.   Paul tells us how often he does what he doesn't want to do.  I don't know you about but I'm the same way.  So often I react to the world in ways I don't want to.  It's the physical part of me eh?   It's what sin does.  It takes me away from the spiritual, of wanting to obey the law, and brings me into the physical realm.

As Paul says "So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me."   Just like Paul, I have this desire to do what it is right, but I can't always get myself to do it.  You know what I mean?   Surely you do.   It's the age old struggle.

Paul's conclusion is that it the sin in us that it is at fault.   Not my mental outlook, or the spiritual aspect of me wanting to do what is right, but the sin that lives in us.  It's at fault.
 
21 So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. 22 For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, 23 but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.
So here you the law.  It's good and right.
And you know what you find lying right next to it?   SIN!  
It's right there, ALL THE TIME.  Staring you in the face.  
Causing you to not do what you know you want to do.
Paul sees clearly the wretchedness of it all. The horror of it.  Wanting to do what is right but being unable to.  Like a snapped trap!

But don't miss it.. I almost did.  Paul DELIGHTS in the law of God within himself.  That delight is there.   And he sees the battle clearly.  The battle between the spiritual and the physical.  The delight vs the captivity.

But look.. there is hope.   
Paul puts it this way.  Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin
We have help.  God, through Jesus Christ our Lord.  He is our help.  No other way through it.  God is our help.   We can serve God with our mind.. sticking to his law.  Our bodies will fight with us being trapped to sin, but With God's help.. we can still serve him. 

What say you? 

To follow along with the rest of this devotional series in Romans Click Here.  


A commentary I found helpful with this passage>
Amazon.ca: Haldane's Commentary.  
Amazon.com: Haldane's Commentary.

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2 comments

  1. What an easy thing to miss - that sin seizes opportunity. Thanks for the reminder this evening.

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    Replies
    1. You are most welcome...it's fascinating going through Romans

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