Part 3: The New Man and The Holy Spirit
“Two natures beat within my breast. The one is foul…the one is blessed. The one I love…the one I hate. The one I feed will dominate!”
(Romans 8:1) “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
The new man is in Christ and the reason that he is in Christ is that he was crucified with Christ. You see before he was a new man he was an old man, and to become a new man the old man had to die. (Romans 6:6) “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin.”
Out of the old man, God made a new man when Jesus was crucified. For the old man was in Christ, dying to sin so that the new man would not have to serve sin. God did this by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now Romans chapter 8 tells us some things that we need to know about being a new man. I hope you are a new man because you have made Christ your Lord and Savior by faith in Christ.
The first thing that chapter 8 tells us is that if you are in Christ you are not condemned. We know that the old man is condemned to death.
The next thing chapter 8 tells us is that the new man is not condemned and will “walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
We can say that we are not judged and condemned when we walk after the Spirit. In verse 2 there are two laws: one of these laws will condemn, but the other will give life.
The two laws are:
1. “The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus”
2. “the law of sin and death”
First, I want to talk about the second law – the law of sin and death. I believe this law is found in Romans 7:23. “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.”
This law says even though I do not want to sin I will sin. This law has captured our flesh in that it is not able to keep the law of God. Our flesh is powerless to keep the law of God. Paul put it another way, “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.” (Galatians 5:17)
You see it is our flesh that has lusts that are contrary to the law of God. When we see the good that will come out of obeying God’s law in our mind this does not help. Chapter 7 verse 17 says that we cannot stop sinning because of the law of sin and death. In our flesh, the default way of acting is sinning even though our mind does not think it is the best way.
In chapter 7 Paul does not see any way out of this and he asks (Romans 7:24) “O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
Paul answers this question by saying that it is Jesus Christ that will deliver him from the body of this death.
Then in Romans 8:2-4, he tells us how God does it. (Romans 8:2) “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” This is the answer to Paul’s question in Romans 7:24, “Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” It is “the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus”.
This law is empowered by what God did. He sends “his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh”. In doing this, He freed us from the law of sin and death. Paul is saying that if we walk in the Spirit, we will not have to sin for we will not be under the law of sin and death.
The message that I want you to take to heart is that to live a life in God’s will and not to sin is to walk in the Spirit so that you will be free from the law of sin and death. There is a lot more here in chapter 8 but I do not have time to go into it now I will do it next time.
*Devotional written by Ralph Williams, retired pastor and member of One Hope Mobile.