Studies In The Book Of Romans
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1. Is the law sin?
No: “What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet” (Romans 7:7).
The sting of death is sin (I Corinthians 15:56).
Breaking the Law is sin (I John 3:4).
We will address this later, but the Law itself was not sin (Romans 7:12).
The knowledge of sin came by the Law (Romans 3:20).
Accountability came by the Law (Romans 5:13).
Freedom from this Law came through Christ (Romans 8:2-3).
To illustrate the point, we read that man would not have known lust if the Law had not said “thou shalt not covet” (Exodus 20:17, Deuteronomy 5:21, Joshua 7:21-26, and Romans 13:9). Verses 8-9 continue this illustration further.
2. Can sin happen without a law in place?
No: “(8) But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead. (9) For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died” (Romans 7:8-9).
Sin taking occasion [opportunity] by the commandment can only mean sins seized the opportunity through the commandment to produce wrong doing. How does sin work (James 1:13-16)?
Concupiscence [longing, desire, lust; Strong’s # 1939] (cf. Colossians 3:5 and I Thessalonians 4:5).
“I” is not referring to Paul and he was not alive when instructions prior to Moses or the commandments of Moses came into effect.
There were commands given to Adam and then Eve (Genesis 2:15-17).
There was no chance for sin prior to that command.
Paul never lived at a time wherein there was no law in place. He lived under the Law of Moses (Philippians 3:4-5) and of Christ (Galatians 6:2).
Sin revived [made alive] when the Law came. Why? Sin is the breaking of the Law (I Samuel 15:24). As we addressed already (Romans 7:7), where there is no law there is no transgression.
Death came about through sin (Romans 5:12 and Romans 6:16).
3. What was the commandment ordained to?
Life: “And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death” (Romans 7:10).
Notice, verse 13 will show that the Law did not bring death. Sin did.
Ordained to life (Deuteronomy 8:1, Deuteronomy 30:16, Leviticus 18:5, Proverbs 4:4, Proverbs 7:2, Ezekiel 3:21, Ezekiel 20:11-13, and Luke 10:25-28).
4. Was it sin or the law that deceived?
Sin: “For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me” (Romans 7:11).
The deceptiveness of sin (Obadiah 1:3, Ephesians 4:22, Hebrews 3:13, and Titus 3:3).
This does not mean sin deceives us without our choice to allow it (James 1:26).
5. What is holy, just, and good?
The Law: “Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good” (Romans 7:12).
Nehemiah 9:13-14, Psalms 19:7-8, Psalms 119:127-128, and I Timothy 1:8.
We should recall though, while the Law was good and gave physical life, it was not designed to give eternal life (Galatians 3:21-24; cf. Acts 13:38-39).
6. Was it the Law or sin that brought about death?
Sin: “Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful” (Romans 7:13).
Romans 4:15 and Romans 5:20.
In regard to the wording “exceeding sinful”… This is a statement of emphasis. We KNOW that there is not an exceeding [beyond measure] sin (James 2:10-12).
7. Is it the Law or man that is carnal?
Man was carnal: “For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin” (Romans 7:14).
The Law was spiritual (I Corinthians 2:9-13 and II Peter 1:20-21).
The word of God always works on the inward man (Deuteronomy 30:14, Psalms 119:11, and Luke 8:15).
Man, to be considered carnal in thinking, means they’re walking as men (I Corinthians 3:1-3) rather than being directed by God (Galatians 5:16-26).
Sold under sin; i.e. slaves to sin (John 8:34).
The Old Law served the flesh of man (Romans 7:6) whereas the words of Christ serve the spirit of man (John 6:63).
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