ANSWERS TO OUR DILEMMA
“…When Christ died he took that entire rule-dominated way of life down with him…sin was calling most of the shots as the old law code hemmed us in” (Rom 7:4-6 MSG). “…The law code, instead of being used to guide me, was used to seduce me…The very command that was supposed to guide me into life was cleverly used to trip me up, throwing me headlong. So sin was plenty alive, and I was stone dead. But the law code itself is God’s good and common sense, each command sane and holy counsel” (Rom 7:8-12 MSG). “…using the good as a cover to tempt me to do what would finally destroy me….” (Rom 7:13 MSG).
“…What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise….” (Rom 7:14-16 MSG). “…I realize that I don’t have what it takes…I decide to do good, but I don’t really do it; I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway….” (Rom 7:17-20 MSG). “…I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight….” (Rom 7:21-23 MSG). “…I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question” (Rom 7:24 MSG)?
“With the arrival of Jesus…that fateful dilemma is resolved….A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ…freeing…from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death” (Rom 8:1-2 MSG).
“The law always ended up being used as a Band-Aid on sin instead of a deep healing of it. And now what the law code asked for but we couldn’t deliver is accomplished as we, instead of redoubling our own efforts, simply embrace what the Spirit is doing in us” (Rom 8:3-4 MSG).