Jesus in Romans
November 28, 2022
Adapted from the Romans Bible Companion—download yours for free here.
Romans 8 is the high-water mark in Romans, and many believe it to be the greatest chapter in the Bible. No other chapter more deeply and fully describes the hope and tender mercies we have in Jesus Christ.
Nor does any other chapter describe the work of the Trinity on our behalf—the Holy Spirit working with our spirit, Jesus’ intercession for us, and the unfailing love of God the Father for His children. All these truths link together to form a great security for every Christian and the opportunity to experience the life in God He intends for us. A life that pleases God must be lived in His power and not ours. The Holy Spirit’s job is to deliver us from frustration and failure.
When Paul described the defeat he experienced when he struggled to live a life that pleases God (ch. 7), he didn’t lose his salvation. Why? Because “there is … no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” (8:1). But Paul still wasn’t enjoying the Christian life as God intended. How could he get it?
Remember we learned how we were once under the authority of our old nature? It controlled us, even as a Christian. It cut off our fellowship with God.
Only a higher authority and power can put us back in fellowship with God—only the Holy Spirit, who is the source of our new life in God can connect us to the living Christ Jesus. He is the one who sets us free from the law of sin and from death’s power.
We can live the Christian life when the Holy Spirit empowers us. We don’t have to lift ourselves up by our own bootstraps. We’ll never make it that way, anyway. Think of all the resolutions we make, like “I’m going to do better,” but do we ever do better? Didn’t we do the same old things this year?
Giving His Spirit to us is God’s way of getting to the root of our sin. First Jesus was identified with us on the cross, putting death itself to death. Today, the Holy Spirit enables you to live the Christian life right where you live in this sinful world. He gives you the strength to win the victory. The Holy Spirit produces a life of joyful obedience, which the Law commanded but could never produce in you. The Holy Spirit furnishes the power, but the decision to let Him rule is still yours.