No condemnation (part 2)

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Romans 8:1 NIV

And here begins the deeper work of this redemption story – the great grace by which we came to this place.

“Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires.  The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.” Romans 8:5-6 NIV

Spirit.  Praying that you can grasp this – it’s so deep and full of mystery – yet so obvious.  I have read this before and studied it before and dug in deeper – but there is a river under this river!!! And it’s flowing with much tastier waters of life.  Deep truthful surrender – the kind that make you malleable to the will of God. Because if you retain and keep some of that flesh, some of the self-will your mind is then governed by flesh and as Paul explains:

“The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.” Romans 8:7-8 NIV

Paul said it not me, so don’t hold me accountable for this.  Repent, the Kingdom of Heaven is at Hand! Seriously, and honestly it is – because we should be of the realm of the Spirit.

“You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ. But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness.” Romans 8:9-10 NIV

Theological discussions can arise: is there a difference between having the Spirit in you, verse living in the spirit – the spirit of Christ in you verses the Holy Spirit – this Spirit of Righteousness and baptism in the Holy Spirit. And I do not wish to debate theology.  Let’s stick with what the scriptures say and not involve the interpreters.  The general concept herein is summarized in the next verse:

“And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.” Romans 8:11 NIV
This verse is SO VERY WONDERFUL! The SAME Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead raises us up out of sin – raises us up so we can have eternal life – raises us up!  How powerful do you think that Spirit is? To command life into the dead?  We have such power within us. So, what do we do with this power? Safely tuck it away? Why am I not seeing sick healed, demons cast out, lame walk, dead brought back – Jesus did it and so did the first century church. Holdup, it has even been done during periods of revival in the church.  Where is it today? Where is it right now? Because THIS SAME SPIRIT THAT RAISED JESUS FROM THE DEAD IS LIVING IN EACH OF US.  

“Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation—but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it.  For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.” Romans 8:12-13 NIV
Listen Paul, these aren’t the sweet Sunday school lessons we want – this isn’t as nice and easy as so someone love today and I turn to my family member and say I love you – Oh NO! This is an OBLIGATION! A requirement, so to speak and duty, responsibility, compulsion, and part of the commitment. Yes, giving up our sin, our self, our things, even our life – its and obligation with the promise: “You will live”.

Live and hold a special blessing – a new title: the child of God:

“For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”  The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.  Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.” Romans 8:14-17 NIV

Heirs with Christ, children of God, what LOVE – what GRACE – what amazing and wondrous miracle this is!  There is the redemption story told out in excruciating detail as we die in chapter 6, fight for our lives and share in Christ suffering in chapter 7, and emerge in chapter 8 redeemed! GLORY!!!

“The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.” Let chew on this piece of the above passage. Testify is a very important word – it’s our testimony. Our personal proof of God’s power working.

“And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.”  Revelations 12:11 ESV

Our testimony here in Revelation combined with the Spirit testifying on our behalf – see how we overcome. Notice also they loved not their life – they had died to self, given it all to God. This is our obligation because this is how we conquer and overcome in the end! And to continue with that victory, Paul says…

“31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.” Romans 8:31-34 NIV 

What shall we say? Well it seems Paul found much to say – like, it is an unfair fight and the odd are in our favor. Not here but elsewhere in the book, Paul remind us that the battle has already been won, we are just going through the motions, trying to bring others to Christ before Jesus returns again in the sky to call us all up to him! Whoo-hoo – Glory!!! Hallelujah!
We can just rest in God’s perfect love for us!

“35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:35-39 NIV

What can separate us from the love of Christ? We are more than conquerors.

I am loved and nothing can separate me from that love. I am more than a conqueror. This is why there is therefore now no condemnation – we ask forgiveness, we repent from doing it, and by grace we are able to share in the death and resurrection of Christ Jesus by dying to our self and sin, and letting that resurrection Spirit dwell within.  

Maranatha ~ Come Lord Jesus!

~Grace be with you ~
~Thank you for reading ~ Be healthy and blessed ~
~ Pray for our nation ~ Pray Psalm 91 ~

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