Bringing Tongues Of Fire From The Sparks Of Faith…
By Rev. G. Evan Newmyer
INTRODUCTION TO LESSON 22
After going through the history, the warfare lesson, then metaphors and allegories, we wonder if we will ever see the Glory, or if we can be Justified before God. Most assuredly we can, it’s what Grace is all about. It’s a matter of Understanding the Process, rather than waiting for it to happen, or assuming it has happened. The greatest element of Grace is the Relationship, based on “Follow Me”; no matter what anyone else does, we as individuals can make it. There are various forms of being justified, one can be justified before the Law of Moses, but it doesn’t mean they are justified before God. They can be justified before mankind, but it doesn’t mean they are justified by God. They can even be justified in their own eyes, but it doesn’t mean they are either justified by God. The Romans made an error, one anyone can make; they confused the declaration of Justification with the performance, assuming they were justified, yet ended judging others. Their situation tells us much, they were in the Body, like the Corinthians they had the Spirit, but they were judging people, in the process they became judged. If Justification is being innocent, how then can Paul say “therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whosoever you are who judges, for wherein you judge another you condemn yourself, for you do the same things” (Rom 2:1). Clearly if they are innocent, they could not be condemned, unless they confused the Declaration with the Performance.
Romans is not the first letter written by Paul, yet the Holy Ghost wanted it first in the process of learning; therefore, it must contain information regarding our Foundation. The Book of Romans is going to be our first look at the check and balance system of God. Let us get into Romans, in order to find what the Lord has for us.
LESSON 22 – BOOK OF ROMANS
THE CROSS – REAL OR FICTION – OVERVIEW:
This area will be an introduction to the concept of Apologetics, yet we’re not apologizing, rather it’s a matter of defending the faith, without debating. Paul tells us debate is a sin: a debate is an argument based on what each person thinks are the facts concerning their viewpoint. Far different from presenting Truth, although the natural mind considers their opinion truth, we find Truth is found in Jesus, not opinion. Paul’s Letter to the Romans is a typical example of an Apologist format as he was defending the faith. Strange, or perhaps sad is how we find Paul defending the Faith to those who were already in the Body.
Rome was an area full of idols and mystery religions, from there came some unsound remarks concerning the Cross of Jesus. Over the years we know there are those who desire to be more special than the rest of the Body of Christ, they pick up winds of doctrine, or make their own making them feel superior, yet if the elevate themselves, they have actually lower themselves. In some cases we find someone who is termed a scholar, yet becomes so centered on a subject they tend to go completely the other way, falling into error in their fight against heresy. We can also find a scholar, who wants to force their view to the point they remove, or ignore Scriptures. Theology is a study, it is not suppose to be unyielding, rather it has to yield, even if it means rewriting everything we’ve written. Only the Holy Ghost can interpret the Bible, yet the Bible will define itself, thus all mysteries are defined for us in the Bible, thus all mysteries point to Jesus, since the Bible testifies of Him.
Things are things, the thing is neither good or evil, rather it’s what man does with them. A pencil can be a tool to help us in our communication, but if we worship it, it becomes a idol, is it the fault of the pencil? No, of course not, it’s the fault of the person misusing it. Even if we remove the pencil, they will find something else to worship. The problem is within the person, not the thing, thus we are being cleaned by the Word in us. Paul said the idol is nothing, thus it’s not the idol, or even the social evils, it’s what people make of them. Some of the attacks against the Cross are based in misunderstandings of the Cross. The Cross in and of itself never saved anyone, it’s He who was on the Cross becoming the issue, thus Jesus on the Cross made the Cross a doorway, or place of separation. It was Jesus on the Cross sanctifying the Cross, not the other way around. However, there are elements of the Old Covenant nailed to the Cross, there they must stay, yet we know Jesus isn’t on the Cross now, He sits at the Right hand side of Majesty.
The same is true with the Cup, it was the Blood of Jesus giving the cup importance, not the other way around. At times man misses the point, ending exalting things far above measure.
Alexander Hislop’s book Two Babylons attempts to depict what he considered the misuse of the word Crucifix by saying it was connected to the idol Tammuz, or other pagan rites; his purpose was to point out how anyone can do as the children in the Old Testament did with the Brass Serpent, end giving worship to something God used as a tool. The Cross is the object upon which Jesus was raised, the Crucifix is likeness of Jesus on the Cross, yet giving worship to either is error.
There is always a danger in giving worship to the things of God, one can worship the anointing, the office, the person who is anointed, rather than Jesus. Winds of doctrine make much to do about things meaning little, but the type of Cross Jesus was on is important. It had to represent a Door, a place of separation between Life and Death. Unless it held the symbols to identify the purpose it failed in the process, thus knowing the type is important, but to worship it would be error.
There are some who attack the shape of the Cross, some point to the “T” shape as a symbol going back to the time of the idol Tammuz (Ezek 8:14), like any idol, in and of itself it was nothing, it was the evil in the heart of man making it something (I Cor 8:4). Years ago we were told television was the “mark of the beast”, then those who said it were all of a sudden on television. They said credit cards were the mark of the beast, later they began to take credit card donations. Then it was the computers, but then they used computers in their ministry. Then it was the World Wide Web, yet they obtained Web Sites. Were those things evil? No, they were things, nothing more, nothing less. James says everyman is drawn away by his own lust (James 1:14), thus it was the lust in the person causing the evil, not the thing. In Acts the people burned their own books, but those books were manuals instructing them in the black arts, much different from “books” in general (Acts 19:19). Clarity is always the Pureness of God’s Wisdom, it keeps us from destroying the Wheat thinking we are killing Tares.
Tammuz has a history, it was picked up by the Greeks and renamed Thaumas; mythology said he was the father of Iris and the Harpys. The Harpys were the idol counterfeit of the Trinity named Okypete, Aello and Podarge. Should we then reject the Trinity because the pagans copied it? The sign of Tammuz was not a Cross, but a plus sign; the name Tammuz means Sprout of Life, the priests of Tammuz had plus signs along the rims of their headgear to identify them with the idol. The same sign was picked up by the Romans, thus some misguided Christians assumed the plus sign inside a circle inscribed on the coins of Julius Caesar in 100-44 BC became the Tammuz symbol; however, there are many things to consider with the premise. The worship of Tammuz was done many years before Rome was Rome. Next, Jesus commanded Peter to obtain a fish, in the mouth of the fish would be a silver coin, which Peter was to use to pay taxes with. The taxes collected by Rome from the Jews were used to build temples for idols. Didn’t Jesus know it? Yes, but what someone does with the product in hand, is no reflection on the one who gave it. The heart of the giver is the issue, what the receiver does, the receiver is responsible for.
Long before Caesar was in power, far back to the third dynasty of Ur we find the Tammuz symbol, thus it was not invented by Caesar. All this shows the item is not evil, just as the love of money is the root of all evil, not the money. If we are obsessed with money, then the obsession is evil, not the money. The circle on Caesar’s coins is reported by historians to represent eternity, as found in the Delphic temple; therefore, if we take it to its extreme we end tossing out Proverbs 3:18, 11:30, 13:12, 15:4 and Revelation 22:2. This in no way condones idol worship, but in our haste to toss out the idol, we may toss out the good with the bad. The same is true in dealing with any lust, we can mistakenly toss out some picture, or icon, thinking we are free, yet we haven’t dealt with the lust. In Romans Paul is going to deal with many misconceptions, lusts, and problems any Babe in Christ can fall into. So, if we toss out the Book of Romans, do we also remove the conviction? No, neither does tossing out the icon free us of the lust, we must turn our backs on the passions of the world.
Jesus was not afraid of idols, neither was Paul. We know Paul preached to Mars’ Hill, looked right at an idol marked “for the unknown god”, then used the symbol to preach Jesus. Was the man crazy? How could he use an idol to preach Jesus? Today some in the Body would not only condemn Paul, but toss him to the wolves, others would say he left his “eye gate open”. When in fact he had awareness of what an idol was, nothing, a thing without power, or authority. It’s not what goes into a person defiling them, it’s what comes out of their mouths, corrupt words from a corrupt tree, make the person corrupt.
All this still has to do the lust to worship things, or elevate them above what God has. Jesus was on the Cross, He was in the Grave, but are we to worship either the Cross or the Grave? Of course not, we know all things are under the feet of Jesus. We are suppose to be Christ Minded, yet if we become paranoid, or fearful regarding the things of darkness, we are no longer above them, but in them. The fourth month of the Jewish religious year, which is also the tenth month of the civil year is Tammuz, which means First Grapes in Hebrew. The Jews still observe the 17th of Tammuz when the breach of the walls of Jerusalem took place (Fast Of Tishah Be-Av). The Jewish use of the term Tammuz doesn’t mean they worship Tammuz, they merely have a month by the name. We also have a month by the name of August, named after a Roman emperor, should we shut ourselves up in a cave during August so we don’t become “evil”? Not hardly, we know it’s a month, it doesn’t have life, it can neither offend, nor edify.
One should never confuse veneration with respect, we must determine what is exalting Above measure, as compared to exalting within measure. We respect the people of God, there are people God has exalted, yet we are warned not to exalt them above the measure. Icons, images, and the such are not people, God doesn’t exalt “things”, thus there is no measure. God exalts His Word, but His Word is Jesus. The word Image means a Likeness, thus we are to be the Image of God’s Son, yet man can make an Image of an animal then worship it.
The word Icon means a Representation, picture or religious image used for veneration, thus veneration becomes the problem, not the thing. Pictures of Jesus are Icons, since no one past 130 AD knows what Jesus looked like. Statues of little angels are a likeness of the Greek god Eros, thus they are Icons. Some of the most used pictures of Jesus are not likenesses of Jesus, but likenesses of models used by the artists. Does it mean we should run in fear, or destroy the pictures of Jesus? Not at all, it’s the veneration of icons becoming the problem, not the icon. We pray to the Lord, not to a picture.
Some think Jesus would never allow a T shaped Cross because of the association made between the Cross and Tammuz, but to assume Jesus would be afraid of the T shaped element rejects faith, it also removes the purpose of the Cross. Jesus defeated the devil by death, yet God is the God of living. Could Jesus be placed on a symbol of Life, to defeat death? No, Hebrews tells us it was Through death Jesus destroyed (made ineffective) him who had the power of death, that is the devil (Heb 2:14).
The shape of the Cross was important, to assume the T shaped Cross would not be used because of Tammuz, would also denote the I type couldn’t be used either, since at the same time the Romans were worshipping Tammus, they were also worshipping Isis. The temple of Isis became the cause of the Jewish rebellion, which caused the destruction of the temple in 70AD. The “I” was used in the court of Caesar, it was also found in many temples of idol worship. The seven mountains surrounding Athens were used for idol worship during the earthly ministry of Jesus and beyond; does it mean we should reject the number Seven? Of course not, there is a freedom in understanding it’s not the things, but the lust in the person making the things evil.
Counterfeits are around, even in Paul’s day there were counterfeits. Paul was faced with the counterfeit of spiritual matters when talking to the Corinthians, he warned them about attempting to use carnal means to arrive at spiritual conclusions. The Corinthians had their treasury in Delphi, a city across the bay from Corinth, which also happen to be a center of divination. This would be the same location where the “damsel” in Acts 16 would have obtained her training (Acts 16:16-18). The Delphic priestess chewed on a laurel leaf, then drank water until her speech was incoherent, then she would answer questions from the priest, thus the priest Interpreted the tongue. Does it mean we should reject all manifestations of the Spirit? Of course not, the enemy displays counterfeits to scare us away from the real (Steven Rossiter, Greece; London: Ernest Benn, Ltd, p 400).
It’s true the devil has symbols of power, but those symbols have no power. Crystals are a prime example, the Book of Revelation shows the Crystal as a metaphor for the Bride of Christ (Rev 4:6 & 21:11), is it therefore any wonder why the devil would counterfeit the purpose of the Crystal? Should we then deny being the Bride because the devil uses some Crystal? Should we burn our Bibles because some Satan worshiper owns one? On the same note should we make our Bible a god? No, there is a spiritual attitude wherein we keep things in Order.
What then gives these elements power? Our fear of them, thus as faith has a power, so does fear. The New Age is not new, our fear of it may be. What would the enemy desire? For a Christian to fear his counterfeits, but why? Authority, once we fear the enemy, or his doings, we are giving him authority over us. Once we determine “things are things”, as all things are under the feet of Jesus, we can then retain our faith, refusing to give place to the enemy.
Cult systems are motivated by the lust of being the special among the special, a hidden book, a special revelation, a certain act of self-righteousness, all pride based, but they center on placing fear on people, they want us to fear the world, fear icons, fear most anything, even the shape of the Cross, once we allow fear to reign, our faith is set aside, or we become susceptible to their deception. From there they will introduce us to another Cross, one where the Law, or the curse is not nailed, one where pride and deception rule. This is clearer when we find Rome used three types of stakes (crosses), the I, which was originally used for all violations of Roman Law; however, the method was binding the victim, not nailing them, it was termed the Pole, not the Stake. The method was to hang a sign on the person denoting the violation, then placing them just outside the city, to warn others of the punishment for violating the law. Needless to say it was more of a deterrent than a posted speed limit sign. This type of cross was used upon clear evidence of a violation of civil law, thus it had nothing to do with religion, Jesus or Moses, thereby showing it would not hold victory for us, rather if we accepted this type of cross it would be the wrong cross, for the wrong reasons. If this type was used it would show there was evidence to prove Jesus was a malefactor, which we know is not the case at all.
The next shape was X shaped, later to be known as Saint Andrew’s Cross, the victim would hang upside down on the cross for days until death came as the blood rushing downward burst in the brain. The Catacombs in Rome show many various shapes of crosses, most of which were not used to crucify people, rather they were used for identification. They included the Pope Cross, the Alpha and Omega and many others. They represented different things, but not the Roman elements of bringing death.
Why does the devil want us to run from one type of cross, or use another? The lustful desire to be the special of the special, or greater than the brethren. The lust to be superior is based in pride, the mother of all cult systems. In most cases we tend to attack the cultist person, but clarity points us the cause. Therein is the place of ministry, the manifestation of the Spirit will bring the cultist to a place of decision.
However, our subject is the Cross, and why it had to be T shaped. The Cross being the very Door of Passover, the place of division between the world and the kingdom seems to come under attack, yet we can retort by making the Cross an icon, and be none the better. The devil’s purpose in any counterfeit is many fold, first he preys on the lust in the person, next he wants us who accepted the Cross to make some mockery out of it by exalting it above measure. Even wanting the “the correct name for God” has been an issue used by cults, but it too is based in the same lustful desire to be greater than the rest of the Body. Often we go through all these Names of God to determine what we should call God, but God has told us the Name for us to use during our Season. It’s one thing to tell God what name we will call Him, another when He tells us which Name He wants us to use. The same is true with the Cross, the Cross without Jesus is big piece of wood, but the second we introduce Jesus into the equation, the Cross takes on importance. Therefore, the shape or type of Cross without Jesus, really doesn’t matter, but when we find Jesus and His disciples speaking of the type, then it does matter.
The same is true with the Name of God, the word Name means Authority, thus it depends on the Authority used to determine which Name is used. God doesn’t need a Passport to identify Himself, thus He told Moses, “I Am That I Am”. When God walks into a room He doesn’t have to say, “Hi, I’m God who are you?”. We know who He is, surely He knows who we are. In our Season the Authority of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost are in the one Name (Authority) of Jesus. We are in the Body of Christ, not the Body of El or Jehovah. The Head of the Body is Jesus, thus we could use the title “Jehovah”, but in so doing we would be using the wrong Authority for our Season. When Jesus told us to go in His Name, it’s what He desired. The winds of doctrine are areas drawing us away from the Truth of Grace, usually pulling us into areas of self-righteousness. When we engage in acts of self-righteousness we blind ourselves to the Righteousness of God.
Both the X and I types of crosses were Phoenician in nature; however, the Phoenicians didn’t worship Tammuz, nor were they subject to the promises of God. The Phoenicians were in the location we know as Tyre, coming from the people noted in the Hebrew as Arvad (Gen 10:18 & Ezek 27:8-11). They didn’t call themselves Phoenician, they called themselves Canaanites, they worshipped many gods and goddesses, including their god named El, but not the same El (God) as the Hebrews. The Phoenician El was supposed to be married to Asherah the goddess of the sea. Does it mean the El the Hebrews worshipped was an idol? No, of course not, keeping things in order keeps us from becoming fearful over things which matter little.
The shapes of the crosses give us symbols, the Romans had no idea of the importance of the symbol, but God did. When we take the I or X shaped pole, over the T shaped we are missing the Passover by miles. Both the I and X were used regarding civil matters, not religious. The Passover is religious in nature, thus the Cross had to have some significant connection to the Passover. What could it be? The Blood on the door, it was in three places, the top and both sides about two thirds up, giving us the perfect sign of the Cross. Jesus is our Passover, He went to the Cross on the Passover, thus the shape of the Cross had to correspond to the Door of the Passover.
The Holy Place had the furniture arranged to match the same figure, with the Menorah to the left, the Shewbread to the right, and the Golden Altar of Incense at the top just before the entrance into the Holy of Holies. If God saw the sign of the Cross when Moses held the first Passover, surely He knew the type of Cross to be used. If it was an X, then Moses would have placed the blood at the top left, top right, bottom left, bottom right; if it was the I shaped then the blood would have been at the very top, and very bottom, but Moses followed the instructions of God, indicating the Cross was seen in Passover.
Simply because some idol worshiper or witch uses a symbol of God, it doesn’t make the symbol evil. We as Christians must discern between good and evil, or we will fall into the evil thinking we are doing good, when all we’re doing is working for the enemy. Allowing a carnal theology of fear to run to its extreme would cause one to remove the use of the name of God (El) based on the Phoenicians use, then we find the Phoenician god El was seen on many Roman coins at the time of Christ; especially the silver ones. When Peter took the money out of the mouth of the fish it was Roman money, paid to the Romans. Jesus told us to render to Caesar the things of Caesar, and to God the things of God, separation and division, yet still rendering.
The Romans took from many sources, including the Phoenician. The Phoenician language was mixed with Egyptian, found in Cuneiform or wedge shaped letters and figures. Astarte was the main Phoenician goddess, and Nimrud (Nimrod) the main god, both were seen throughout history. We know Nimrod was related to Noah, so do we say Noah was a witchdoctor? No, God saved Noah and Noah’s family, knowing full well Nimrod would begin Babel. If God knows all things, then He knows all things. It doesn’t mean He ordains, or causes them, but it does mean He has full knowledge of them.
The T shaped Cross used by the Romans came from the Chaldees, during the third dynasty of Ur in the Chaldees the worship of Tammuz was common, so common it’s believed by Jewish scholars Terah, the natural father of Abram may have been engaged in the making of Tammuz figures. Joshua 24:2 shows Terah did worship idols, some Jewish historians show Terah was also an idol maker. Abram left his father’s house of idol worship, yet as Abraham he was the first person God imputed righteousness to. The history of Abram didn’t stop God from making Covenant with the man, yet we also know God loved Jacob, but hated Esau. If God knows all things why even allow Esau to be born? God intervenes, He doesn’t interfere.
The T shaped cross used by the Romans could always be determined by how the victim had to carry the cross piece, which had a weight near one hundred pounds, rather than the upright Pole which had a weight near seven hundred pounds. A hundred pounds would be a chore for any person to drag, but to think they were able to pull seven hundred pounds is out of the question. The use of Nails (plural) on the Victim removed the concept of the I shaped, but left the X and T shaped. The T shaped called for Three Nails to be used, one in each wrist, with one through the feet. There are historical notes showing the victim was more than likely bound with leather straps to the X shaped, eliminating the use of nails. The T shape used bindings to lift the victim, but they were then removed leaving the victim nailed to the cross piece by their carpals, then the upright piece held the feet one over the other with a nail through the top of the feet.
Thomas said, “Except I shall see in His Hands the print of the NAILS, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe” (Jn 20:25). This verse was quoted by Polycarp, who was a disciple of John the Apostle, thus it’s correct in language and tense. With this we know “blessed is he who doesn’t see, yet believes”. We find some must see before they believe, interesting how man proves the point, those who believe, believe, those who don’t, don’t.
The standard or upright stake was always in place before the victim arrived with the cross piece. Usually there was a hole in the ground, thus the upright piece was placed in the hole, indicating Jesus carried His Cross, or better He carried the Cross Piece. The victim would be tied to the Cross Piece after nailing their wrists at the carpal joints to the cross piece; however, the palms of their hands would be turned and placed against the wood, rather than pointing outwardly. We get our English word Carpal from the Greek word Karpos which refers to the location where the wrist meets the base of the hand. To the translators, and early Greeks the word “hand” included the carpal joints to the point where the lower arm joined. We know the palm of the hand couldn’t support the body weight, but carpal area could. We can become a legalist on the issue, missing the importance of the Cross. Making an issue of the “hand” or “wrist” is no different than making an issue out of the type of wood the Cross was made of, rather than what it represented.
The victim and cross piece would be raised by ropes going over the top of the cross, then tied to the cross piece behind the neck of the victim. The cross piece would be lifted until it was about two-thirds or higher up from the ground, but not at the top, since it couldn’t be tied off if it was too high. The cross piece was not nailed to the upright pole, rather ropes held it in place. Then the legs were slightly bent, with one foot placed over the other, with the bottom of the feet against the upright pole. Than the final nail would be driven through the top of the feet into the pole, this nail was often referred to as the “sure nail”, or the securing nail keeping the victim on the upright piece. This nail would keep the victim from twisting and turning, causing the ropes to lose grip.
With the palms of the hands turned and placed against the cross piece the victim’s shoulder’s would begin to come out of the sockets, the victim would push up with their legs to relieve the pressure, but as they did the nail through the feet would begin to break the many bones in the feet. The pain would cause them to relax their legs, but in so doing the shoulder’s would again begin to disjoint. When the shoulder’s did disjoint the bones would slam together in the neck area causing the victim to choke to death. The T shaped Cross was the only one wherein the victims legs would be broke. It did no good to break their legs on the X, or the I shaped. As horrid as this type of death was, God saw it before the Romans used it.
David the king and prophet wrote “I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint, my heart is like wax, it is melted in the midst of my bowels” (Ps 22:14). The Septuagint shows Psalm 22 reading, “I am poured out like water, and all my bones are loosened; my heart in the midst of my belly is become like a melting wax” and “they pierced my hands and feet”. This is important since the Septuagint is not a Christian document, rather it’s Jewish. Psalm 22 shows the dislocation of the bones, thus if we claim the Cross was “I” shaped, the prophetic Psalm would show we were in error.
John said he saw both blood and water flow from the side of Jesus. There is a sack covering the heart of a person, in the sack is a fluid like water, when the spear entered the heart of Jesus, both water (mercy) and blood (grace) came out, showing He was physically dead, but hardly soul dead. When a person is under pressure to the point their heart bursts, the sack around their heart also breaks, but John saw the water and blood flow from the wound, indicating the spear passed between the third and fourth rib, then punctured the heart. However we also find both Mercy and Grace were in Jesus, they flowed out making the Water and Blood two elements of the Witness, the Spirit as a result of being Born Again the third element to the Witness (I Jn 5:7-8). The Record in Heaven consists of Father, Word and Holy Ghost, the Witness connects the Water for the Mercy of the Father, the Blood for the New Covenant of the Word, then the Spirit as the Gift of the Holy Ghost. The Report sees things complete, thus it makes Declarations, but the Witness carries out the Declarations. Therefore, God can say something is complete as far as the Report is concerned, but the performance of the matter must be completed by the Witness to bring them into Unity.
It all begins at the Cross, the Law and Commandments which were against are nailed to the Cross, so it might be important to know which one we should claim. The T shaped cross being the only one of the three wherein the victims legs were broke gives us an undisputed clue to the type of cross Jesus was on (Jn 19:32-33). Adding the comments of Thomas, it becomes clear, it was a T shaped Cross.
Like Mark 16:16-18 we have choice before us, the evidence shows the verses are proper and needed as presented in the various Manuscripts (codex) and supportive materials, including other verses, thus we can believe, or find reasons not to. There are 2,800 different manuscripts, all dated prior to 1500 AD, excluding the Wycliff, Bishops and other texts. We can search the Scriptures in order to support our thinking, or search the Scriptures to have our thinking conform to the Word, or we can search and find some reason not to believe, all avenues have some support, but only the Believer who is in the Body can claim “shall be saved” if they continue to believe. We can use the words of man to override the Bible, or allow the Bible to define the Bible. Both use the words with the scholarly endeavors of man, both use the Bible, but only one of those allows the Bible to reign supreme over the words of man. When we elevate the intellect of man above the Bible we have made an idol of flesh and blood. If we have to trust in the intellect of man, we are in sad shape. The Teacher who teaches the teachers is still the Holy Ghost, He still teaches by comparing spiritual to spiritual (Jn 14:26 & I Cor 2:13-14).
All cult systems have three pillars, self-righteousness, corrupt end time thinking, and something they assume elevates them above the rest of the Body. The attempt to make the Cross of Jesus something it wasn’t is a prime example. If we hold to the I type of cross, we are saying Jesus failed at the Cross, thus we are yet lost. History does help in this matter, we find Constantine was a heathen Roman, who had a vision, which was so moving he converted to the faith. Some tell us Constantine used the sign of the T shaped Cross on his armor, but history shows he used the Greek CHI or X as a sign of Christ, rather than the sign of the Cross, thus giving us X for Christ, explaining the phrase “XMAS”, or Mass for Christ. Before Constantine converted he was a sun worshipper, so does it mean we should never use the name of Christ, since a sun worshiper like Constantine used the symbol of Christ? Jesus told us to follow Him, not men, thus following the concerns, or religious fears of man, is still following men.
There is the argument the Greek word used for Cross means an Upright stake, which it does, but it was part of the Cross. Jesus wasn’t hanging in mid air, the upright piece was there. The sign hung on the Cross was written in Hebrew, Greek and Latin, giving us the authority to use the Latin. The early church used the Latin word for the word Cross, the six panels of forty seven translators of the King James used several texts, including Jerome’s Latin Vulgate, the Latin word for Cross denotes two pieces of wood, not one. Jerome used Polycarp and others as witnesses, as well as his own personal evidence of the Persecution. The scriptures show Jesus hung on the Cross from the ninth hour until sunset, thereby providing more Scriptural evidence regarding the type of Cross.
The Wood can be one piece, as a tree with branches is one piece, thus it doesn’t mean one upright piece, but a connection of the pieces to form One Cross, and the Cross piece represents the Branches of the Tree.
Some tend to use Acts 19:19 as a support to denounce the T shaped Cross as some symbol of witchcraft; however, Acts 19:19 shows the items were Books of Curious Arts. The wording Curious Arts means books used to practice something, does it mean all our books used to gain the knowledge of God must be burned? Hardly, the books noted in Acts 19:19 had to do with the actual practice of witchcraft, including formulas and chants, thus they were working witchcraft manuals. The people burned their own books based on their own will, they were not ordered to. If Paul would have told these people to burn their books, he would have entered legalism. We can’t force our congregation to burn books, or tear down icons, it has to be the desire of the person to do what is right. Knowledge is the key, once knowledge is introduced, choice follows, but knowledge never allows us to force someone to do something. Liberty means Free, yet we have the choice to do what is right, or not, the choice is ours, the result in God’s hand.
Two sins of the Body from 300 AD to 1500 AD are noted as the worship of Icons and Simony, both came from Simon Magus (Acts 8). Simon Magus was noted by John and others in the early church as the father of all heretics. Although he was rejected from obtaining the baptism with the Holy Ghost, the man did believe the signs, he was baptized in water, thus he was a member of the Body. He remained natural, walking away from the Faith, but he was nonetheless water baptized. Is water baptism then evil? Of course not, is the baptism with the Holy Ghost evil? No, although Simon wanted to buy the power of the Holy Ghost, we know he was baptized in water, so do we now reject water baptism? The heart of Simon was not right before God, thus water baptism didn’t change his heart, it’s not suppose to. The New Man changes our character and nature based on being our New Heart. Simon Magus is an example of someone who believed the signs, engaged in water baptism, yet failed to look at his own heart, then attempted to get other people to do his prayer of repentance for him.
Now we allow brother Paul to put the finishing touches on this. The Greek word for Wood is Xulon meaning Fuel, but the Greek has many words for the English word Tree, depending on the type of tree. One of those is the Greek Dendron used in Revelation 7:1, then another for the Fig Tree, another compound word for Olive Tree, with two separate words denoting which type of Olive Tree. One meaning a Wild Olive Tree, the other meaning a Good Olive Tree, all words used by Paul. The Hebrew helps explain the types; Josephus uses the Hebrew Ets translated as Cross, telling there were many Jews crucified before Jesus came. Josephus records how the type of element for religious death was a Tree with Branches, or the sign of Tammuz. The Hebrew word Ets means Tree or Timber, but it’s always a plural, or more than the trunk itself. It comes from the Hebrew Atsah meaning to fasten, it was used in Deut 21:22-23 in the phrase, “Cursed is anyone who is hung on a tree”; therefore, in order to complete this Scripture the Tree has to be more than a trunk, it had to have at least one branch. The Vine without the Branches is not a Vine. This takes us to Galatians 3:13 where Paul used the Greek word Xulon for Tree, explaining Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree. This connects to Deuteronomy 21:22, showing the concept of the Cross Paul knew had a “branch”. Why did Paul use the word Xulon rather than Stauros? The Greek word for Cross is often Stauros, which comes from the Greek Stao meaning to Stand, from which we get the Greek Stauroo for Crucify. Again we know Jesus was on an upright piece, but his arms were held by the cross piece, thus Paul used a word conducive to the Scriptures, as Josephus concurred.
The word Cross then denotes the method of being Crucified, not the actual element upon which one is crucified. Paul’s use of Xulon shows it had to be more than one piece of wood in order to fit the Scripture. Taking us back to the Hebrew Ets, then to the Hebrew word Paraq (Crossway), as the intersecting of two things. The Cross represented the placement of the Street, the element joining two things. The kingdom of heaven is based in Mercy, metaphorically seen as water. The kingdom of heaven was operational before the Cross, but not the Kingdom of God, thus the Kingdom of God is based in the Blood of Jesus. As the Son of man Jesus introduced the direct Mercy of the Father, as the Son of God He granted us Grace, both Water and Blood. Therefore, if it was not a Tree with braches we are still under the curse of the Law, without hope.
The Jews related Ets with Paraq, thus the Cross also represented the Crossway, or the Street joining us to heaven. The root word for Paraq means to deliver, but in Daniel 9:24-25 it’s Rechowb meaning an Avenue, the concept is the same. The Street is a place between places, linking places, in this case it shows how the Cross of Jesus is not only able to deliver both Jew and Gentile from the snare of the enemy, but deliver them from the second death as well. The Cross of Jesus is the place where the Mercy of the Father meets the repentant heart of man, bringing mankind into the place of safety, where they can be sprinkled by the Blood of Jesus as they are saved by Grace through Faith.
Granted after 300 AD the Body began many traditions, and held many things not Christ in nature, even changing some traditions into doctrine, but prior to 300 AD the sign of the Cross was common, even among the Apostles, as well as the three forms of Baptism, Water (Mercy), Holy Ghost (Grace, Spirit), and Fire. In the First Century a noted saint and church leader known as Tertullian found it necessary to defend the Christians against the heathen charge of worshipping the Cross. This false charge came about when John the Apostle, the disciple whom Jesus loved was seen with a wooden cross. John did not have a Crucifix, but a cross. However, John used it as a teaching tool, he was never seen worshipping it. Tertullian explained how the Christian didn’t worship the Cross, rather they respected it; thereby giving us the difference between respect and worship.
In the First Century it was common to use olive oil on a subject by making the sign of the Cross on their forehead; however, in all this the Cross or the Oil were not subjects of worship, but symbols. Records show the making of the sign of the cross was done by many in the first century (Apol. c. 16 et al); the same records show the “sign of the cross” was used when anointing someone with olive oil on the forehead in the shape of a T. This act was done at water baptism after the person made their declaration of belief in the Cross, Death and Resurrection of Jesus.
The Crucifix was not introduced until much later, becoming an Icon, since it has a likeness of Jesus on it; however, it only becomes an Icon when it’s worshiped, prayed to, or used it as a source of power. The early church held small wooden Crosses with a cross piece near the top. Later they added the A for Alpha, then a W or O for Omega, an X or P for Christ, as well as introducing the Pope Cross which had three cross pieces. The three pieces of the Pope Cross referred to Father, Son and Holy Ghost. In Justin’s Dialogue With Trypho (110-165 AD) the description of Jesus on the Cross is compared with Moses holding his hands out to the side in the battle with Amalek. Justin notes how it took both Hur and Aaron to hold the hands of Moses out to the side during the battle, rather than holding them together in an upright position, thus Justin in the First Century equates the position of the arms of Jesus on the Cross as out stretched.
If all things were created by Jesus, then we should look to Him, not the item created. All those who have had experiences with symbols of Satanism, tell us there is one key to witchcraft; it’s the “worship of the symbol” not the mere possession (World Harvest School Of Continuous Learning, pp 60-64). If we can’t discern these things, we will form our own heresy attempting to avoid what we presume is heresy. We don’t need magic water, or an icon we have the Name of Jesus. Making things a god is a direct violation of Faith; we can even worship our theology, or knowledge, forgetting if God had not made Himself known to us, we would never know there was a God. Our theology can be more god than God, causing us to make our own translation to support our theology, rather than change our theology to fit God.
All this brings us down to the point, the Cross is the place of the imputed death of the flesh, as we are commanded to pick up our cross. It may sound like a small thing, after all if someone wants to change the type of Cross, so what? If we can alter the type of Cross Jesus was on, we can also alter our cross; ending in a self-crucified state, missing the purpose. We must submit to the Cross, not make up fables about its type. Rather than a Cross, we can use a tooth pick, or a pencil, then make ourselves special among the special. Rather than deny the self, we end exalting it. The issue is really accepting the conditions of the Cross, rather than change the Cross to fit our religious opinions. The Cross can be one piece, or fifty, if we haven’t accepted it fully by imputing the flesh dead, we have missed “deny yourself and pick up your cross”. We can see how the Romans missed the point, because they confused one element for another. In Romans Paul is going to instruct them what “being justified” consists of, as well as why we shouldn’t attempt to mix the Law of Moses into the Law of the Spirit. The importance of never imputing sins on people, or judging them, rather than discerning. We should not judge the cultist, the cult yes, not the cultist. We present the cultist choice, just the same as we do anyone. What they do with it is up to them, but at least they will have the Truth, and not a fable.
BOOK OF ROMANS WRITTEN 58 AD
The Book of Romans was written after 58 AD, also after Paul wrote First Corinthians, like Matthew and Mark, we find the Holy Ghost wanted Romans first, although it was not the first written. Paul calls the Romans “true Jews”, yet he also says they are Gentiles; therefore, there has to be a difference between a “Jew”, and someone of “Israel”. Israel is a nation, one could make a vague point pointing to the Kingdom of God is “spiritual Israel”, except the term, or the suggestion of “spiritual Israel” never appears in the Bible, rather it’s a nation and a land. The general term “Jews” appears in the Bible, yet the term “Jew” has become a generic term referring to anyone associated with the religious order of Israel, but the term only appears ten times in the Old Testament, eight of those in Esther. The first time the term Jews is used it refers to them being driven out of Elath, but as a person (Jew) Esther seems to be the predominate source. If the term Jew is supposed to relate to someone in the land of Israel, then calling both Esther and Mordecai “Jews” would be improper since both were under the hand of Ahasuerus the king of the Persian Empire.
Strangely enough the Book of Esther almost didn’t make it into the Bible, it’s the only Book in the Bible wherein we don’t find the name of God, but the Holy Ghost saw something else, since He is the Author it became included in the Canon of Scripture. Esther defines the festival of Purim, more important it assists us with understanding the term Jew. From Esther we find the term “Jew” does not mean one who lives in Israel, rather it denotes someone who is assigned to a Covenant of God. The mark of the Abrahamic Covenant is circumcision of the flesh, yet Paul will say the mark of the “true Jew” is circumcision of the heart, thus pointing to a Token defining Jew to a Covenant, rather than a nation. In the case of the flesh it was granted to a male child when they were eight days old, but for us it’s when we are baptized with the Holy Ghost to receive the Token as the Seal of the Holy Spirit granting us the right to enter the New Covenant.
An Israeli is someone who lives in Israel, but not all Jews live in Israel, thus a Jew who lives in another country is not an Israeli, so the term “true Israel” can only pertain to a physical nation on earth, not a person. The division will help us in this letter, the division between the circumcision of the flesh, and the circumcision of the heart divides many things for us, including Justification, as well as telling us to what, and by whom one is Justified. Romans gives us the division between one who holds the Token to enter the Abrahamic Covenant, and one who has the Token to enter the New Covenant. Since the male child is eight days old when they are circumcised of the flesh, how can they receive the Covenant? They can’t, but the Token grants them a right to receive the Covenant, it doesn’t automatically mean they have the Covenant. We find we are sealed by the Holy Spirit, but we can also grieve the Holy Spirit by Whom we are sealed (Eph 1:13 & 4:30).
The Romans were circumcised of heart, they felt they were better off than they had been, they were right. However, they used people they felt were below them to make the determination, thus the method was wrong. Any of us can search around until we find someone in the Body who has more problems than we, allowing us to feel superior based on their hardships, or struggles. It’s too close to, “I thank you God, I’m not a sinner like this man”, far too close. If we’re being conformed into the Image of God’s Son, then it’s a Process of molding, in the molding process there are those times of “rest”, but it’s not all Rest. Keeping a day is not The Rest, just as doing acts to make us feel better doesn’t mean we have God’s Righteousness. It’s not to say we have to do works making us miserable, it does mean we don’t trust in feelings to determine Righteousness, Holiness or Justification.
The Romans were “true Jews”, but since they were Gentiles they were outcasts from the Promise until Jesus opened the Door. The Romans didn’t open the door, the Law of Moses didn’t, the Ten Commandments didn’t, neither did Israel. The Romans forgot they were selected by God, it wasn’t based on their goodness, or greatness, rather it was because they responded to the Truth. However, without God presenting the Truth, they would have had noting to respond to. Self-righteousness is the product of doing something based on something we can take credit for, but it only lasts for the moment. If we do a deed from the Law of Moses we have right standing with the Law, but it doesn’t mean we have Right standing before God. We could be justified before the Law by an act of self-righteousness but it doesn’t mean we are justified before, or by God. The justification in the Law was momentary, as soon as it was granted, it was lost, meaning the effort had to begin all over again. The biggest problem with self-righteousness is having to use the flesh to obtain, which means the effort ends in pride, causing the Commandment Thou shall not covet to condemn the doer, meaning the person has to begin all over again. Even keeping a day is an act of the flesh; if we do no labor, what then is resting? The flesh, yet in our case the flesh is imputed dead. Of course chapter seven refers to a person who has yet to receive the Cross, or the Christ nature. Paul tells us in Colossians 2:14-16 the Cross of Jesus blotted out the Commandments and Law against us, yet in Chapter 7 he says the Commandment falls on us, thus chapter 7 is Saul before the Cross, Chapter 8 is Paul the Born Again saint.
On the same note, there would be no deed of the Law, if God hadn’t given the Law. Their would be no tithes paid, if God hadn’t supplied the Seed to sow. There would no good deed, if God hadn’t granted the goodness to do the deed. Self-righteousness seems to separate the deed from the ability to do the deed, then takes pride in the doing. We will find anything not done in faith is sin, but what is the basic tenet of faith? To please God, yet self-righteousness is always more concerned about being pleased, then it is in pleasing God. The act makes the person “feel better”, but feeling better about ourselves doesn’t mean we pleased God. This is the same premise of keeping the day unto the Lord, if we want to keep the day, fine, but we keep it unto the Lord. If we don’t keep it, fine, but it’s also unto the Lord. We never make it doctrine, cause others to keep it, or not keep it, neither do we expect some special favoritism from God for keeping it, or not keeping it. There is no Commandment in the Law of the Spirit for us to keep a day, nor is there one telling us not to, there is of course a strong caution regarding keeping the Law of Moses as Covenant. However, if keeping the day has placed us in bondage, then we are subject to the day, if not keeping the day has placed us in bondage, then we are still subject to the day, only in reverse. The Law of Moses was designed to bind the flesh, it was never designed to loose the person.
The Romans fell into trap, they were doing the same things as those they were judging. When we judge people, we fall into religious conceit, ending doing exactly what we are judging others of doing. The point Paul makes is the difference between Laws, the Law of Moses is designed to judge, the Law of the Spirit is designed to set us at Liberty. Our actions govern which Law we place ourselves under, if we judge others we have accepted the Law of Moses as our judge, but we also cause the Commandment to fall on us. Therefore, we judge things, not people. Discerning the words of a person is not the same as judging the person. Paul will judge the words of the Corinthians and Romans, but it doesn’t mean he is judging them or reading their minds. Unbelief is displayed in the words of the unbeliever, even if they say they are a Believer. However, there has to be a cause or a lust making one judge another person, if there is a lust, then the person is not “completely Innocent”, thus we are being Justified. If we make the mistake of thinking we are completely justified, then we slip we will end condemning ourselves, or thinking we were never saved from the world. Not so, we are saved from the world to enter Grace to reach the salvation of our souls through the Justification process.
The Report in heaven has many areas where God has made the declaration as if it’s done, but it’s the Witness on earth bringing it to pass. The Romans made an error, they knew the Report said they were Justified, they presumed it was complete, thus they stopped in the Process, in so doing they used their supposed position to judge others. By their actions they were moving from the Justification; when we judge people, we are judged, if we’re judged we’re hardly innocent.
Even before the Jews were dispersed among the Gentiles the Jewish people treated the Gentiles as outcasts, as soon as the Roman Gentiles entered the Body they couldn’t wait to Judge the Jew who failed to enter. What they hated, they became; it wasn’t the purpose for their entry into the Body.
We were either Gentile or Jew before we came to Jesus, in today’s world there really isn’t much difference, but back in the days when this Letter was written every Gentile was looked down upon by the religious Jews. The Gentiles had their temples of idols, but the Jew would remind them how the Jew held to the One living God. The Gentiles were called, “Goy”, or “unchosen” by those who held the circumcised of the flesh. However, then came the Cross with the phrase, “neither Jew of Gentile”. With the Gospel came the privilege to be justified by God, something not available to mankind prior to Jesus.
The word Justified means Innocent of all charges, but it carries with it the result, which is Remission of sin, meaning there is no evidence to bring an accusation. The first time Paul uses the word will be in Romans 3:4 in the phrase, “shall be justified”, showing a process to reach the goal. Then we find we are Being justified freely by God’s Grace (Rom 3:24), pointing to Process. Then we read, “being justified by faith” (Rom 3:28), but what faith? Galatians 2:16 tells us we are justified by the Faith of Christ, but Galatians 2:17 tells us, “to be justified by Christ”, again a process by Christ in us. First Timothy 3:16 says we are justified in the Spirit, but First Corinthians 6:11 says it’s in the Name of Jesus, yet Romans 5:9 says we are justified in the Blood of Jesus, all these connect in the New Birth. First John 1:9 says the Blood of Jesus is cleaning us from all unrighteousness, then we find all unrighteousness is sin (I Jn 5:17). If sin finds us guilty, yet the Blood is cleaning us from all unrighteousness, it’s a process. The mistake the Romans made was forgetting it was a process, they equated the work done, which left them using the old nature as a guide. The result was seeking out sin in others so they could feel Justified, but if we are Justified we don’t seek sin in others. The moment we seek error, we admit we are not justified, but a judge of people. The Romans weren’t doing the Law of Moses, but since they sought out sin, they placed themselves in the same position as the Law of Moses, they were in danger of falling from Grace, yet it was Grace justifying them.
If we follow the Law of the Spirit we look for Jesus, the Father, the Good, the Precious, the Holy Ghost, the Spirit, the Blood, Mercy, but we don’t impute sins on others; however, if we use the premise of the Law of Moses we will look for sin, or error, as we pronounce people guilty, then worthy of death. The problem is of course the Law of Moses is not of faith, yet we are justified by faith.
Theologically the definition would depend on ones denominational setting, generally the Greek word used is Dikaioo from the Greek Dikaios meaning Just, Righteous, or To Justify. Verbs which end in “oo” usually mean bringing out something a person desires, or has in them, in the case of being Justified by God it would be the New Man bringing the manifested state of the Righteousness and Holiness to the soul, as the soul turns from the flesh to being Spiritual. The false would be using the flesh to give the appearance of being justified, when they are not. In the classic sense it would mean a person would bear for himself his condemnation, judgment or punishment, but in our case we know Jesus did it for us. For us to be justified before God we must have an innocent character and nature, which can only come by being Born Again. Paul will show the only means open to be a “son of God” is to have the Spirit, then mind the things of the Spirit. In essence the theological premise would be, by Grace the divine activity in justification by our faith in the ability of God to justify us, thus we find the ungodly can be justified by God (Rom 4:5 & II Cor 5:19): it is not by works of the flesh, or by any natural ability (Rom 3:20 & Gal 3:11), or even by the law written in the heart of man (Rom 2:15), it is for the Remission of sins (Rom 3:25), to hold a Peace and Rest with God, to have access by the Faith of Jesus, to hold the hope (to be glorified – Rom 8:18, 5:1-2 & Eph 3:20); based on the Righteousness of God in us by the New Birth (Rom 3:22, 4:22, 5:17, II Cor 5:21, Eph 4:24 & Ph’l 3:9), which means we are justified as a result of being Born Again through the Faith of Christ (Gal 2:16), the purpose is for all men Jew or Gentile Unto justification (Rom 5:18), by the Spirit in us (Rom 5:5, 8:2-11 & Eph 2:18). To break it down, the New Man is forming us into sons of God, which process brings us into the Remission of sin, which finds us Innocent, Holy and Righteous before God. Our faith is important in this, but it is not the cause of Justification, it’s our confidence in God’s ability to complete the process as He promised. If we are not Justified, we can’t be glorified, our hope is to be glorified by the power of the Resurrection of Jesus. To make it real simple, when we entered the Body we were declared Just, yet the just live by faith, but faith is based on a future hope, thus we are being established in the Church by the Spirit in us, where only the Innocent sons of God dwell. There is a difference between we in Jesus, and Jesus in us.
In the very beginning of this letter Paul uses three prime words, Servant, Called and Separated. The word “separated” is the Greek Aphorizo, one might say, “so what?”, but it’s the same word used to describe a Pharisee, which Paul used to be. The intent shows the Romans were Gentiles but God separated them unto Himself, all they did was agree to the separation based on information God gave them. The word Called is the Greek Kletos meaning Invited, thus the two words show we were all Invited, then we accepted, then we were separated, but we could never have accepted, if we were not invited, it was still based on information God gave us.
Did the Romans make the Truth? Or accept it? If they accepted it, who presented it? What was in them causing them to accept it? God gave them the measure of faith, thus God presented, they merely accepted the call by a gift God gave them. Once they accepted the Truth the move was made, they were no longer under the hand of darkness, but delivered into the Light of Christ, as members of One Body. Once they entered the Body they held certain rights and obligations (v. 1). It was the obligations they forgot about, as do some of us from time to time. We all love to hear of our Rights in Christ, but in order to remain Equal we must also know our obligations.
Were they “masters”, or “servants”? We seem to think being a “king” in the kingdom makes us master of all. It makes us master of the rules granted in our kingdom, but we still have to answer to the King of kings. If we refuse mercy into our kingdom, it remains out. If we refuse the spirituals into our kingdom, they remain out. If we change the “faith of Christ” to “my faith” it’s a rule we will us to presume we are justified. We will comfortable, since the purpose of a kingdom is to carry out the will of the king; however, if it’s the case then we either refused to give up our will, or we lied to the Lord when we said we did. Our kingdom rules and principles must match those of the King of kings, or we are rebels. The Romans made their vow, they were in the Body, they had certain procedures they said they would follow, Mercy is one, not judging people another, not imputing sins on people another, the goal was to be formed into the Church.
Perhaps one of most perplexing and troublesome things befalling us is how anyone can hold a false Dogma, yet feel “comfortable” with it. They are kings, what they allow in to their kingdom, they allow, what they reject they reject. We are given the Keys, but even the key holder has responsibilities. The Bible is the rule book, if we fail to believe the rule book, we will make up our own rules. We can even say the rule book is correct, but written to a different people. The New Testament is written to saints, those in the Body of Christ. The Romans felt comfortable in judging others, they were using a Godly principle, but in an ungodly manner. We are to Judge, only in our case it’s to discern things, such as words and ways, not people. The Law of Moses was designed to judge people, it would use the Ten Commandments as a tally board, the momentary escape were the various sacrifices, but as soon as the sacrifice was given, the person was found guilty again. If we judge people guilty of sin, we are using the Law of Moses, but if we refuse to impute sin on people, we are using the Ministry of Reconciliation, which is the basis of, “to wit, God was in Jesus, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them, and has committed unto us the Word of Reconciliation, now then we are ambassadors for Christ” (II Cor 5:17-21). Whatever Law we use, we become subject to, it will become Paul’s point. The moment we apply the principles of the Law of Moses on someone, we become subject to the same Law. If we apply the Law of the Spirit, it’s the Law we become subject to.
The word Servant in verse 1 is the Greek Doulos meaning a bond-slave, or one who gives their self for service to another. In this case Paul knew he was a king, but he desired more to be a slave. If we remain king without being a slave we still dictate what rules we allow into our kingdom, but as a slave we will be using the same rules as the Master. However, if we are kings, who then are our subjects? Surely not people, since each of us are kings. Things are our subjects, if we allow unbelief to be a prince, it will set up a principality in our kingdom, or we can band it from our realm. We can allow discouragement to be a prince, or we can band it from our realm. We can even make the spirit of the world a prince, or we can band it from our realm. The same is true with anger, manipulation, deception, or the other rulers of darkness, we can give them place in our realm, yet they are masters of deception, we will soon find we are subject to them. It’s just as true we can give residence to Mercy, Grace, Love, Hope, Truth, finding our kingdom in order. The Kingdom of God is the New Man, we’re not going to rule in His Kingdom, but we do have souls, since this is for us, we find we can receive, or reject.
Verse 2 does not point to Paul being an apostle, it points to the Gospel. Long before Paul or the Romans were born God promised the Gospel of Peace by His prophets in the “Holy Scriptures” (v. 2). Here is our second lesson, the Bible does not interpret the Bible, rather the Bible says the Holy Ghost interprets the Scriptures (II Pet 2:20-21). The Bible defines itself, in so doing it defines itself as the Scriptures, then defines the “Word Of God” as Jesus. We call the Bible the Word of God, it’s not wrong, but if we limit it to the Only Word of God it becomes dogma, making it wrong. The Word in us is able to save our souls, the same Word is Christ in us (James 1:21 & Heb 4:12). If we presume all we have to do is read the Bible to be saved, we would be making the same error as the Pharisees (Jn 5:39).
In verses 3 and 4 we find the positions of Jesus as the Son of man and the Son of God, as well as which Token declared Him to which position. Concerning Jesus as the Son of man, we find He was made of the seed of David, if Made, He was not a “created being”. Jesus as the Word took on flesh, it wasn’t the other way around. As the Seed of David, Jesus had certain positional rights, one is the association to the kingly line to Israel. During the earthly ministry Jesus operated as the Son of man, although He made references to being the Son of God. However, the same Jesus was Declared the Son of God with Power, according to the Spirit of Holiness by the Resurrection from the dead. The word Declared is the Greek Horizo meaning To appoint or Determine, so wasn’t Jesus the Son of God before? Yes, but the Position became Evident by the Resurrection. This is vital when we read, “you must believe in your heart God raised Jesus from the dead”, with “the Spirit (of God) bears witness to our Spirit (that is of God) we are sons of God”. Simply being in the kingdom of heaven doesn’t make one a son of God, they can be a son of man via Mercy, but to be a son of God one must have the same Spirit in them who declared Jesus as the Son of God.
This is another area introducing us to the Comforter, and Another Comforter. The Holy Ghost deals with masses through us, appoints people to the Offices on behalf of Jesus, and deals with the world by reproving. The Holy Ghost can fill us more than once to deal with the masses as The Comforter. The Holy Ghost brings the Seed of God, which becomes the Spirit in us. The process leads to that Born of the Spirit is Spirit; if we look at our hand we can say, “that born of the flesh is flesh”, but if we are Born Again we know we our souls are becoming spiritual by the Spirit. Different contexts, the Spirit in us is forming our souls into Spirit so we can be Spiritual in nature continually. However, the phrase “Spirit bears witness” goes back to Corinthians, the Spirit of God, meaning the essence of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost bears witness with the New Man, thus the only way we are going to be children of God is to have the Same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead, thus no one was Born Again until the Resurrection.
This will be our first taste of the “We” and “They” positional order Paul uses, but we also find a paradox. It would seem as Paul on one hand is rebuking the Romans for judging, yet on the other it appears he is judging the Romans for judging; further judging others with the We and They divisional classifications. There is a difference, if we make a determination about someone, just so we can be exalted by their difficulties, or their position, or lack thereof, we have judged them “under” us. If we make a determination by the Spirit bringing clarity, or presenting Truth so the person can be bettered, or place us in a position to minister to them in a Godly manner, it’s discernment, not judging. The word “Hypocrisy” is a compound word meaning Under (Hypo), Judge (Crisy), thus we judge someone under us so we can feel exalted, making us hypocrites. The lust to be superior over people is defeated with we recall Jesus told us, “what do you care, you follow Me”.
The only reason we judge people lower than us is so we can feel superior, it’s the same lust driving cult systems, they want to be the special of the special, to have the special book, word, rite, act, something making them superior over the rest of the Body. We are One Body, made up from individuals, God will deal with us as individuals, but it doesn’t mean we impress Him, or He loves us more than the rest of the Body. Faith pleases God, it doesn’t impress Him (Heb 11:6).
What if we make the determination, then set out to force the person to fit our thinking? It would be control, yet control and discipleship are different, just because someone tells us something to do, it doesn’t mean they are controlling. A controlling person attempts to force people and events into their line of thinking for their self benefit: Discipleship is to better the disciple, allowing the person to make mistakes in order to learn. Some of us hate to be told anything, when someone does say something we say, “they are so controlling”. No, we are, because we are attempting to control everything concerning us. This is Paul’s point in verse 5, “we” have received Grace and Apostleship, who is the “we”? In Romans 16:22 we find, “I Tertius. Who wrote this epistle, salute you in the Lord”. Wow, we thought this was from Paul? Tertius penned the work as Paul spoke, but was Tertius one of the “we”? No, Paul is showing Leadership Unity, thus he as a human was as imperfect as any of us, but Paul as the Apostle was not. If we limit Paul to the human side, we will miss the spiritual content of the writings, but if we exalt him above measure, we will make a idol out of him, keep him in the position of honor, but not an idol.
The Holy Ghost moved Paul to speak the words, thus Paul is a scribe, not the Author, yet he used another scribe. Nonetheless one of the functions of the Apostle is to deliver Commandments to the body, it’s what Paul is doing here. His authority not only granted him the position, it demanded it. Like a prophet, they are not to make up things to say, but neither are they to hold back the Word.
This is clearer by the phrase in verse 5, “according to the Spirit of Holiness”, wait didn’t we just see that? Yes, back up in verse 4, the same Spirit who Raised Jesus was in Paul, just as you and I. The Holy Ghost speaks to the New Man, the New Man to Paul’s soul. The Office of Paul was speaking, yet no man makes Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors or Teachers, they are placed in the Offices by the Lord through the Holy Ghost, man merely confirms the calling (Acts 13:1-3). Paul is presenting his qualifications, showing the Romans had no position to judge anyone, except to judge their own selves.
Verse 5 continues with “for the obedience to the Faith”, which could also read, “to the obedience of the Faith”, both are correct. This is not obedience by faith, or obedience through faith this is Obedience To the faith, pointing to the Faith of Jesus. When we study the Faith of Jesus we find God’s Wisdom was a working element of His Faith (James 2:1-4). If we are obedient to the Faith we follow the Faith of Jesus in like manner.
Obedience is a quality, but we can be obedient to our religious conceit, and still not obedient to the Faith. We can be obedient to the Law of Moses, but disobedient to the Faith, or obedient to our points of carnal theology, yet be disobedient to the Faith. We can have a theology filled with unbelief, is it “of the faith”? No, Paul will address this very issue, by making a division we must all keep in mind. We are neither to judge others, but neither are we to be judged. Does it mean no one will judge us? Not hardly, the carnal minded judge people all the time, it means they have no authority to judge us, we are judged of the Lord. Does it mean we can’t teach about the Wicked? Not at all, it means we don’t pick a person, judge them inferior, so we can feel exalted.
The Faith of Jesus gives us boldness and access, simply because it’s competed the course. The same Faith saw past the Cross and Resurrection to the time when we would be with the Lord in heaven. The Faith of Jesus is proven, secure, and far better than our measure of faith. So, what good is the measure of faith? Without it we haven’t a chance, it’s by the measure the New Man is guiding us along the paved path the Faith of Jesus. Without the Faith of Jesus we would attempt to blaze our own path, finding ourselves without focus, guidance or awareness of why we are Born Again.
In the famed Faith chapter in Hebrews we read all about the attributes of the measure of faith, but we also see all those attributes were on the earth, they gained a good report, but still their faith was not enough to gain the Promise (Heb 11:39); however, the Faith of Jesus not only gained the Promise, it has left a path for us to follow by faith. Works of the Law can’t find the path or street, much less follow it, self-righteousness will attempt to make its own street, but our faith joined to the Faith, as faith to Faith allows the New Man to guide us on the Path of Justification to the place where we shall be Glorified.
Later Paul will talk about a falling away from The Faith, which is not a falling from the measure of faith, it’s falling from The Faith of Jesus. What is the difference? Our measure can be placed in most anything, but it should be in God allowing us to follow Jesus by faith. If we begin to change verses from “His Faith” or “faith of Christ”, to “our faith”, we remove the Path, thus we may do things in a religious tone, but they will all be earth related, binding ourselves to the earth. It’s the path the Romans were taking, they left the Process of Justification, as then were entering the Process of Judgmental thinking, binding themselves to the wrong Law.
Then at the end of verse 5 we find “for His Name”, not for Paul’s name, fame or popularity, but for the sake of the Authority of Jesus, the same Authority is instilled in the Body of Christ. This letter is for the entire Body, if the majority of the Body sits in unbelief, it causes the rest of the Body to suffer. The biggest sin any of us can fall into is unbelief, it keeps us from the Rest of God, it keeps us from knowing the things of God, really it keeps us from truly loving the Lord.
After all Paul narrows it down to, “whom are you also the called of Jesus Christ”. The word Called is the same word used in verse 1, although the Romans felt superior for being called, Paul shows they weren’t the only ones called. It wasn’t because of some holiness God saw in them, it was because the Faith of Jesus saw Jew and Gentile in the kingdom, then sent Paul to tell them about it.
Verse 7 then relates as we find, “called to be saints”, were they not saints? Wait, didn’t Paul also say, “called to be an Apostle” (v. 1)? Different Greek word? No, same one, yet this is well after Acts 13:1-3, perhaps Paul got fired? Or laid off, a work shortage? No, he is showing Process, although he had the position, his training in the position continued. We are Called, yet it’s not the end of the race, or the end of the training.
Paul is about to correct the Romans, but his motive is also to advise them how they have what it takes to correct the error. Correction without showing the method of recovery ends in judgmental condemnation. Here Paul shows how God is his witness, he prayed for the Romans, longed to be with them, not to condemn them, but to impart some Charisma so they may be established. Then he defines established as “may be comforted together”, which is the one Greek word Sumparakaleo meaning to Exhort at the same time together. This Charisma is also found in Romans 12 among the Charisma of Charis, or the Signs of Grace (Rom 12:8). This “spiritual gift” is not some mystic spoon bending, it refers to edifying one another in the Faith of Christ by the Spirit, rather than judging those on the outside by judging them (v. 11-12).
Verse 13 is not self-justification on Paul’s part, rather he shows how he personally desired to come to them, but the “calling” of the Office took him to other Gentiles. It should be good news to the Romans, there were problems far greater than those facing them requiring the Apostle’s office. This area shows Paul is not coming against them, he is not ashamed of them, they need some help and clarity. He knows once clarity comes, so will the correction unto perfection. When a lust is exposed, or God allows a lust to be exposed, guilt is the last thing we want. James says count it all a joy when we fall, but the reasoning is to free of the lust which caused us to fall. The Roman’s were playing with the lust of religious conceit, they felt the race was run, yet they haven’t even begun. Guilt leads to repentance, repentance to correction, correction to being free of the lust, but if we remain in guilt repentance never comes, neither does correction.
The word Debtor means one who is in service, obligated, or owes a debt. All of us are debtors, but we are not debtors to the Law of Moses, since the Law of Moses didn’t save us. If we are Debtors to Jesus, how does Paul say he is a debtor to both the Greek and Barbarian? Especially when a Jew considers the Greeks and Barbarians one in the same? Is there a difference, is Paul making a division? Yes, the Jew looked at the division of the Jew and Greek as two completely separate classes. To them anyone who was a Greek was a Barbarian, according to the Jew the Greeks were not of God, could not be, never would be. Paul makes a division in the division, not for “class” sake, but to show there are Greeks who seek God, and Barbarians who don’t, just as their are those of Israel who seek God, and those who call themselves of Israel, who are not. This then pertains to the “called”, many are called, thus if we’re called there is a plan set for us to finish the race, but it doesn’t mean God will beat us stupid to keep us in the plan. Does God know who will accept, and who will reject? Yes, but it doesn’t stop Him from presentation.
This area doesn’t mean Paul is a debtor to the Gentile, because the Gentile saved him, rather he shows his calling to the Gentiles is based on his debt to Jesus. Do we have a debt? Yes, the saying, “owe no man anything, but to love him” is a debt. However, is it a debt to man or God? Ahh, the debt is unto God, the service or being a debtor is unto man. If we confuse the issue, we will find ourselves making covenants with man. Our Covenant is with God, the service of the Covenant is first unto God, then unto man. Our First Love is always toward God, our Second toward man. If we confuse the two, we stand in danger, not faith.
The phrase Not Ashamed in verse 16 comes from the Greek word Epaischunomai, meaning To be sorry, To withdraw, or To be sad. The Gospel exposes the nature of man, it’s suppose to, but it also points to Salvation, showing how futile self-righteousness is. He also points out the Gospel isn’t Salvation, rather it’s the Power “unto” Salvation; however, it is only effective for those who Believe. The Gospel can’t save us, but it is a Power (Dunamis), how can it be? The Law of Moses has a power, it can bless or curse, thus when God implants His words into something the something gains authority and power to the limits of it’s intent. The Gospel is Power based on the Information it provides, as it displays the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus. In First Thessalonians 1:5 Paul said, “For our Gospel came not unto you in word (Logos) only, but also in Power (Dunamis) and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance”. There were elements promoting the Gospel in order for it to bring the Truth to the ear of hearer.
Verse 17 confirms this, for in us the Righteousness of God is revealed, “from faith to faith”, as it is written, “the Just shall live by faith” (v. 17). Where is it written? Here for one, plus two other places in the New Testament (Gal 3:1 & Heb 10:38), but Paul wasn’t talking about the New Testament, he was referring to the Old, which became a Revealed truth. Habakkuk 2:4 is the only Old Testament verse coming close, which says, “the Just shall live by His faith”. It doesn’t say, “the just shall live by faith”, but Paul notes, “from faith to faith”, giving us the revelation of who this “His” is. From our measure of faith to The Faith of Jesus, which Paul already spoke of (vs. 1:5 & 1:12).
The phrase “faith to faith” is not Paul using the Jewish form of superlative adjectives, as we find in the phrase “vanity of vanities”, rather it’s more akin to the term “holy of holies”. We know the Tabernacle had various holy places, but there was one place holier than the others. It’s his point here, we have our measure of faith, but there is the greater Faith of Jesus. Our measure of faith is natural, it’s based on earthly matters, but the Faith of Jesus is earthly and heavenly, thus by His Faith, not our measure of faith we are justified. Justified in a practical sense means something complete, yet we see the various wording showing a process, thus the Faith of Jesus has accomplished the task, our faith reaches to the result by the Spirit. We are not going to make our measure of faith greater than the measure, nor are we going to make the Faith of Jesus less, rather knowledge increases our awareness of how much faith holds for us.
Our Separation came because the Gospel made it clear, we believed based on the measure of faith, which is nonetheless a gift. Without God’s intervention and gifts we would never have made the choice, so why judge someone who has not yet heard, or has not yet made the decision?
The revelation of the “righteousness of God”, is a mystery to some, later in Romans 10:3 we find anyone who engages in self-righteousness is blind to the Righteousness of God. If we seek our own righteousness, not only does pride build, but we are involved in dead works. Paul tells Timothy how the Scriptures instruct us in Righteousness, but here it’s the Gospel, thus the Gospel begins with the basic premise, seek ye first the Kingdom of God and His Righteousness. Without seeking the Kingdom of God within, we have no basis for seeking the Righteousness of God. The context of Righteousness is the issue, granting us the position to be Justified, thus Paul is moving along the path of Process.
We found different aspects of holy, then two types of faith, surely there is more than one type of Righteousness. Self-righteousness is based on the mind of man determining some act on his part wherein he assumes the act grants him right standing. Unfortunately man uses his flesh to accomplish the goal, yet his mind takes the credit, which leads to pride in the effort, usually producing religious conceit. There are various types of self-righteousness as well, man can gain a standing before man, before the various positions of man in the world, but it doesn’t mean they have standing with God. Even right standing before the Law of Moses doesn’t mean one has right standing before God.
Self-righteousness will thank God, but it will steal the glory as well. Glory and “credit” relate, if we take the credit, we have taken the Glory, if we give man the credit, we have given man the glory. The old man is a thief, thus he will use wording to insert man’s supposed greatness, or the person’s supposed holiness and greatness into the act to steal the credit, whether it’s, “by my faith”, or “by my doing”, or the wonders of man, it’s still taking credit for the act, which is self-righteousness. When we view self-righteousness we must ask, Who obtained the glory? The person, not God. God becomes the tool, thus self-righteousness elevates the person. They use some deed God provided, but they insert something, supposing the act motivated God, thus they end elevating their own self far above measure. The minute we demand credit for our efforts, we have entered self-righteousness.
The real problem comes when we find the Righteousness of Christ is the Scepter to the Kingdom (Heb 1:8). Holding self-righteousness negates us from entering the Kingdom. A sad note, but if we accept the Cross, give our Token of water baptism, then run to self-righteousness we have negated everything the Gospel promises. It becomes clear when Paul shows how the Spirit bears witness to our Spirit, then he says we can be cut off because of unbelief. However, being cut-off doesn’t mean we are separated from the Love of Christ, it means our unbelief has separated us from the Tree. In order to be in the Love of Christ, one must be in Christ, thus no outside influence can separate us form the Love which is in Christ. This is a Covenant, God will provide all it takes and more, but it still depends on us doing our part without stealing the glory, or involving ourselves in acts of self-righteousness.
There is also Imputed righteousness, an area Paul will cover shortly, giving man right standing to enter Covenant with God based on something the person has. Abraham was the first to have imputed righteousness, but was he seeking to be righteous? No, he didn’t even know what it was, rather he believed God, then God imputed righteousness to him based on the continual belief, so it could be by faith. The phrase alone must show us how we begin with Belief, so it might be by Faith, rather than the other way around.
When we came to the Cross we were looking for the forgiveness of our sins, as well as being restored. God imputed a righteousness on us so we could enter, but we didn’t dance up to the Cross telling God we had right standing. Rather we came to the Cross because we knew we didn’t. It’s the problem with self-righteousness, the person doing an act based on something of the flesh, but the flesh is corrupt, timed and limited. Whatever the act was, it’s only for the moment, it has no long lasting effects, yet the Righteousness of God is always Alpha and Omega, without end.
Since the flesh is involved in self-righteousness, it also means the old nature is involved, indicating self-righteousness had to use the spirit lusting to envy, making the effort covetousness, causing the Commandment, Thou shall not covet to fall on the person, which in turn causes the act to be dead. It’s a vicious circle, do something to gain position for our self, but the effort is self based, ending in sin, we are then condemned by the same Law we sought standing before. What to do?
Submit to a Righteousness not ours but given to us, which leads us to the next type of righteousness. Imparted Righteousness or God’s Righteousness obtained from God, which belongs to God, yet it’s granted on the understanding we can’t earn it, rather we receive it. This form of Righteousness is something granted in the New Birth alone, as one of the elements of the New Man (Eph 4:24). This Righteousness must be in the Seed of God in order for us to have it, thus it grants us absolute standing based on the efforts of Jesus.
Here is a switch in the middle of the road, from “the power unto Salvation” to “the wrath of God”. Go figure? If this was a sermon most of us would be wondering if we fell asleep. “What happened?”, “What happened to the Gospel?”, “Who was the masked man, and what is his horse doing here?”.
The “we” and the “they”, and why it’s useless to put our focus on things not able to secure us in God’s Righteousness. The Corinthians were concerned about baptism, but for the wrong reasons. They weren’t concerned what it stood for, but whose was better. “I was baptized by this one”, “Oh, well, you know brother so-and-so baptized me”. It’s the same mess we get into over “name”, “which name?”, “the Name”, whether it’s the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, or “the Name” of Jesus, it’s the same Authority. What is the result? Do you know you are of the Body? Then the water baptism worked. Do you know God forgave your sins? Then the asking worked. If it’s the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, wouldn’t it stand the Son is Jesus? The Name of Jesus incorporates the Authority into the Body, but the Holy Ghost still brings the Power. We don’t need the authority of Jehovah, nor do we have to use the Greek or Hebrew pronunciation, it’s not whether we can pronounce the Name, it’s whether or not we are in the Name.
What are the elements we find here, “ungodliness”, okay, “unrighteousness”, oops, we just read about God’s Righteousness being revealed. The word unrighteousness is the Greek Adikia meaning Unrighteousness, Iniquity, or Unjust. When Paul, or any of the New Testament writers speak of Unjust, or Unrighteous it refers to a person who has the ability to be Just or Righteous, but they Un-do it by refusing to walk in what is available. It’s different from someone who either doesn’t know about it, or is incapable of doing it. This goes back to the “just shall live by faith”, but if one is Unjust are they also “not-just”? Sounds like it, yet by using the prefix “Un” it shows they had the opportunity to be Just by living by faith, but they made the choice to change the procedure, in so doing made their Just – Unjust. When we Undo something, we take what was established and reverse it. The Unjust do the same, Unjust is also found as one of the definitions of Iniquity. What would be the Iniquity? Failure to become among the Just when the ability to do is in hand. Iniquity leads to sin, thus in not doing something, we will end doing something we’re not suppose to. It’s the same context we find in Hebrews 10:38-39, the Just who believe unto the saving of the soul, then the unjust who draw back to perdition. If they draw back, it means they were in a position higher than what they drew back to, as a result of reversing the Just into Unjust. Which would we focus on? We have the knowledge of the Unjust, but do we focus on them? Or do we focus on “the saving of our souls”? If we get this wrong, we end judging people, meaning we become what we judge.
The Greek word for revealed is the same one in both verses (1:17 & 1:18), it’s the Greek Apokalupto meaning to uncover or disclose. It’s the same context as Jesus being revealed on the Last Day, the “revelation given to Jesus”, is not some information given to Jesus, it’s Jesus revealed to those who pierced Him, and those who wail because of Him (Rev 1:7). The word Revelation in the phrase “the Revelation of Jesus Christ” (Rev 1:1) is the Greek Apokalusis meaning Appearing, or Disclosure of Truth. Paul shows either we see the Revelation of God’s Righteousness, or face the Revealing of Jesus at the time of God’s wrath.
What is the main concept in verse 18 referring to the “unrighteousness”? Holding “the truth in unrighteousness”. How? Knowing the Gospel, but seeking their own self-righteousness, which would be unbalanced, or unequal. The Greek word for Hold is Katecho meaning to Resist, or hold back, thus by using self-righteousness they hinder the Righteousness of God in their own lives. It’s a far cry from someone who has never heard the Gospel, or someone who has never sought the Kingdom.
Verse 19 gives us the “Because”, in the wording “which may be known”, which is the Greek word Gnostos meaning information received and understood. This is not something manifest around them, over them, next to them, behind them, it’s “in them”, meaning in their minds, thus it was presented and accepted. The Seed was planted, what they did from there determines the outcome. So, why go into this? Judging others is not only a waste of time, it invokes self-righteousness, or comparing others to what we think we are. The Law of the Spirit tells us to judge ourselves and things, not people.
Generally if we judge people, it’s because we are insecure, thus rather than Judge, Paul is going to tell us to put our mind on the Spirit. Judging others is a sure sign we are seeking validation, we want to be better than others, we want God to accept us above all others, to give us some special “name”, something validating us above others. Leading us to self-justification by judging others below us to feel superior, of course we feel better about ourselves, yet it’s an illusion. Jesus in us makes us acceptable, we have the Righteousness of God; however, it’s like the love of God, we don’t earn it, we accept it.
God’s creations are found in many areas, the flower budding, yet how does it know to bud? The caterpillar turns into a butterfly, how does it know? Nature itself is an awareness of the Divinity. God placed laws into nature, even nature doesn’t attempt to change the law over it, thus God has shown if we follow the law assigned to us, we hold victory. It doesn’t mean God is a flower, it means God designed nature so everything produces after it’s own kind. If we are Born Again we know the premise is for the Spirit to form our souls into a Spiritual nature, making the two one. The one question man cannot answer without inserting the Power of God, “how does an apple tree know to be an apple tree?”. By design, we were designed to seek God, become Born Again, then walk with the Spirit. The old nature was designed to lead us into the second death by keeping us bound to the flesh. Man studies monkeys, but the monkeys don’t study man, it has to tell mankind something.
The New Birth is the revealing of Truth bringing Light, to produce Clarity. The New Man takes verses, applies them to Life by breathing the Truth of Christ into the words to make them applicable to us. Each time we gain a step, we become closer to the saving or our souls. When the revelation of that Born of the Spirit is Spirit begins to take shape, we will enter the change in natures with gladness. Our thinking begins to change from the carnal to the spiritual, from the natural intellect to the knowledge of God. We begin to gain clarity, seeing things as they are, division, separation, the Word being engrafted are all signs of Christ in us, the hope of glory. The change in nature is perhaps the biggest sign, we are no longer deceptive or manipulative; we no longer do many of the things we used to do. Not because we have forced ourselves not to do them, rather it’s because we simply don’t want to. The change from Saul the Christian hunter, to Paul the Apostle of Grace was not by will power, it was by God’s power.
The Manifest (v. 19) implies seeing things invisible in signs of Creation being made known by the Gospel. The Truth revels the differences between the Day and Night, we know there is a Gospel, because Jesus spoke the Truth, thus we saw it as truth. We found we were is sin, yet we also found there is a way out of sin. Those things were hidden, yet now revealed; notwithstanding the proof of Nature itself. If those things are past tense, they relate to our belief. There is no reason not to believe, the evidence is before us. This is even clearer in verse 20 where we find the word Godhead, meaning Divinity, or the obvious evidence showing there is a God. God made Himself known so we could have the foundation to believe, without belief we have no foundation. We walk by faith, but faith must have a stepping off place, it’s not saying belief is the unseen producing faith, rather it’s the foundation to support faith; therefore, faith without Godly knowledge and belief to guide it soon becomes self-based witchcraft.
Verse 21 begins with another “Because”, linking to “they are without excuse”. However we again see Paul speaking about the “them”, so why go through this? The Romans looked at “them” but glorified the “us”; Paul is leading to a point, giving us an example of judging righteously. Yes the wrath of God is coming, Yes there is Salvation for those of the Day, but is there a danger for those of the Day who judge the “them”?
Verse 21 shows the Because is based on they “knew God”, or had an awareness of God, but they didn’t glorify Him as God, neither were they Thankful, but became vain (proud) in their Imaginations, as their Foolish heart was Darkened. This “them” are the very ones the Romans were judging, so is Paul also judging? No, he is showing what happens when we judge people. The them judged the us, but if we judge the them we will become like “them”. The word Knew is the Greek Ginsoko meaning to Perceive or Understand, whether by knowledge or experience. It’s easy to look at someone who is a sinner, then boast in our Justification, but if we do, we are not justified, but under the wrong Law.
The wording “were thankful” is the Greek Eucharisteo meaning To feel thankful, or to Give thanks regarding their position. It’s the same Greek word found in the phrase, “Giving Thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Eph 5:20). Jude shows there are complainers, murmurers who walk after their own lusts, yet they also, “feast with you, feeding themselves without fear” (Jude 16 & 12). They have no fear of God, they confuse faith as a means to get what they want, when they want it. They are “self-based”, yet they had the same opportunity as the Spirit filled saint who rests in the Joy of the Lord. They didn’t want to do it God’s way, they formed their own agenda and rules, they held to their unbelief, they were cut off from the Tree, but they had the opportunity and ability to remain as a righteous branch.
As the heart believes, so goes a man; their foolish heart caused them to become fools (v. 22). However, we will find we must believe in our heart Jesus is raised from the dead. Two different premises, but the “heart” is involved in each. Two things will be required, information from which to believe, with a mind void of unbelief. The information is contained in the Bible, none of us were around in those days, none of us saw the grave clothes, really only a hand full of witnesses did, but those witnesses also had changed lives to prove their statements. Since we are a people of faith, it stands the “test of faith” is seen in the many manuscripts. We have the opportunity to believe, yet there are those who question the evidence, the choice is before us, do we make the choice to believe? Or not to? Which choice we make determines who we are.
The heart issue is a different story, Jesus said from the heart comes no good thing (Matt 15:18), Isaiah saw the people had transgressed and committed iniquities, conceiving and uttering falsehoods from their hearts (Isa 59:13). Ezekiel gave a prophecy for our time, as God said we would have a New Heart, as God would make us Pure with Clean Water, giving us a New Spirit (Ezek 36:25-27). Then the Palmist said, create in me a Clean heart oh God, and renew a right spirit within me (Ps 51:10). God did it in the New Birth, He gave us His Spirit, thus God is Spirit. We’re not God, but we have God in us of a truth forming our souls into a spiritual nature. In the New Birth we obtained a New heart, from the new heart we are able to Believe Jesus is raised from the dead, as the same Spirit who raised Jesus will raise us. If it’s the case and it is, then the Spirit in us is the “Spirit of Holiness” or Holy Spirit, something so New it took a New Covenant to bring it to pass. The premise is still the Resurrection, no one can have the Holy Spirit, neither the declaration until they first die. How? By imputing the flesh dead on the Cross of Jesus, then we travel to the grave to have the Power of the Resurrection as the Seal of the Holy Spirit is our assurance of the imputing taking effect. Now the problem, our souls were flesh related, they need a change in viewpoint, from a dead soul, to a living soul, to a becoming a quickening spirit. We cannot retain the same old heart, we must submit to the circumcision of the heart in order to be sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise. Paul is about to show the failure of natural man attempting to conduct spiritual matters. The second we brag in our natural intellect, discipleship, ability, talent or give man the glory we have coveted what belongs to God, causing the Commandment to fall on us, thus a New Heart gives us a fresh start, as it also grants us a viewpoint absent of the flesh.
Verse 23 is a warning about idol worship, but it also defines some interesting areas. God is Incorruptible, which means completely void of death, or decay. The “glory” refers to recognition, or who gets the honor or credit. Man does something, then man gives himself the recognition. However belief and faith know if it was Good, it came from God.
Mentor worship falls within this scope, our favorite person of God all of sudden is our “idol”. Of course we don’t say Idol, we say Hero, but if we exalt them above measure, we have made them an idol. Giving honor to the laborers of God is vital, making them idols is not.
Paul covered both Jew and Gentile, the Jew tended to elevate Moses to an equal to God, or elevated the Law of Moses above God. The Gentile took birds, and such and made them idols. An idol is an idol: whenever we take a creation, regardless of the creation then exalt it above measure, or form an idol by our hands, it’s all foolishness (v. 23). We can also see how the veneration of things was going on in Paul’s day, it wasn’t the item, but the worshiping of it causing the problem.
Giving man the glory is always dangerous, if man continues making man his god, he will soon fall for other lusts. Dishonoring their bodies, or changing the “Truth” of God into a lie, they worship and Serve the creature “more than the Creator”. This is not being void of God, it’s when they elevate things or people above what God has. Whether it’s the glory, the Law, the Body, the anointing, our worship, or some other item, we must keep all things in Order, since all things are under the Feet of Jesus.
Any of us can find ourselves chasing something of God, rather than diligently seeking God. Leaders can make the mistake of putting the ministry above God, yet the ministry is merely a tool used to display God. Paul wasn’t going to put the Gospel above God, rather he kept it in its rightful place. It has power, but where did the Power come from. The Gospel? Or God?
The term “vile affections” in verse 26 draws our interest, giving us a clue to the attitude and character causing the Truth to be held in unrighteousness; also displaying why Paul will rebuke the Romans so strongly over their “judgmental” attitude. The wording Vile Affections comes from two Greek words, the word Vile is the Greek Atimia meaning Without honor, or Dishonor, it’s the root used for a “vessel of dishonor”, which element Paul will speak on. The word Affections is the Greek Pathos meaning To suffer, or Hurt, it relates to a “diseased soul”, which shows the soul has rejected the Just position, becoming diseased.
An evil lust is based in some envy, the spirit lusting to envy not only produces them, it seeks them out. A lust will surface any way it can, it has a power as well, the power of darkness, but nonetheless a power. If not, it couldn’t control the fallen nature of man. The manifested evil from the lust may or may not be the actual lust, it will merely take advantage of the moment and opportunity. A lust for control could surface as a lust based in greed, or some other lustful area. Only the Spirit can discern, but Paul will show how idol worship stems from other lusts, judging others is merely making ourselves the idol, as the creation worships the creation by belittling others. All this would seem strange in light of James telling us to rejoice when we fall into divers temptations, but James points to recognition of the lust, Paul points to ignoring it.
If we presume the final result of all this Vile thinking is physical homosexuality we miss the point. Joining to members of our own sex to avoid joining to our mate is homosexuality, thus one can join to the things of the old nature, while refusing to become of the Body, thus becoming homosexual. The term “homosexual” means of the Same sex, if we remain natural we remain of the “same sex”, thus there is more to this than the physical aspect. Will the physical actual happen? Perhaps, the lust will surface, but we can’t limit it to one area, or the other. The manifestation does not necessarily identify the type of lust, we can knock all the apples off the tree, feeling better for the moment, but we have failed to removed the tree. The same fruit grows back, what we thought was under the Blood all of sudden reappears. The apples were removed, but the tree remained, because we took it upon ourselves to remove the lust. It takes the Spirit in us to discern, remove, and free us from the lust. Whether we call them “spirits” or “lusts” or “evils”, or “devils” doesn’t matter, if we don’t deal with the rulers of darkness by the Spirit we will find ourselves continually battling the same old evils time and again.
God allows the lust to surface so it can be dwelt with, not so we can play with it. The example is Peter, as Jesus allowed Satan to sift Peter, because the result would better Peter. Jesus never told Peter it was “sin”, because God was working with Peter. If we confuse the exposure as some demon working in us we miss the point. God didn’t produce the evil, He didn’t produce the lust, the lust is something twisted in the darkness to activate the flesh. God allows it to surface as a temptation, so it can be dwelt with, thus we rejoice, as James says. However, if we play with the lust, allow it to conceive, work it with to become sin, then continue to use it, we have rejected the exposure, allowing the lust to be our king. We have not because we want to consume the product on a lust.
The lust to be superior, the lust of acceptance, the lust of control are all deceptive elements; because they use deception to manifest. We attack the manifestation, but fail to deal with the source. This is not devil possession, it’s the lust of the flesh or eye; the lust seeks “pleasure”, or the feeling through unsaved emotions, even being a victim can be lust based, the lust of wanting to be the suffering martyr. Judging others is a lust manifested, the Romans were suffering from the lust of superiority by judging people inferior so they could feel superior. Cult leaders suffer from the same lust, they use the lust in them to seek others with the same lust, rather than deal with it, they exploit it. Paul is taking a teachers walk to the problem, as well as what the problem will develop into when we fail to deal with it.
How would this relate to the Wicked? They are called to be the “Bride”, but they are found in the bed of adultery with the Woman, same sex. They are termed “males” on the earth, yet they are found with the Beast of the Sea, another male, same sex. They may be diametrically opposed to physical homosexual acts, even to the point of giving long and serious sermons on the subject, but they are nonetheless sleeping in the wrong bed.
Whatever the teaching or sermon, there must be an escape. Judgmental attitudes leave no room for repentance, or escape, they paint people into a corner, find them guilty, then condemn them to death. Paul will present the Door to freedom before this is over.
The wording “Gave Up” in verse 26 means delivered over, the term “natural use” is the Greek phrase “Phusikos (yielding only to base instincts as a wild beast) Chresis (the act of using)”, showing the physical ways of sexual relationships, generally referring to husband and wife, but here we find a direct reference to homosexuality. What happen to choice? It’s there, God doesn’t turn them over because their name is on the “not to be saved” list. He turns them over because of the choices they make. God’s plan is for all to come to the saving knowledge of the Gospel, so none will be lost, but God will not force Salvation on us. If He did, surely all would be saved. If God’s desire is for none to be lost, then God has a plan for all to make it, but do all? If so why did Jesus tell the workers of Iniquity, “depart from me”? The Report takes the Witness to bring the Report to pass.
So then, was Paul judging? Did he fail to be Tolerant? The world confuses compromise with tolerance, as we can confuse judging the activity with judging the person. Paul does say “them”, but he also says God is the one who turns them over to vile affections, or better God simply gave them over to what they sought after. It began by the “them” holding the truth in unrighteousness when the opportunity to hold the truth in righteousness was in hand, thus their iniquity did lead them to sin. Clearly if they held the Truth, they were aware of the Truth. This is not pointing to the world, but to those who held the Truth in unrighteousness.
Paul told us Nature gives us signs of God, thus we can view the animals to determine which is proper, same sex, or male with female? God had a set plan, He isn’t going to change in mid-stream just to appease the lusts of man. It becomes the point, they attempted to change the plan of God, rather than “being justified” they make themselves justified in their own eyes. Rather than accepting the Righteousness of God, they use self-righteousness, yet call it holy. Rather than be Born Again, they use the he in the world, yet call themselves Christian. Therefore, we find this is not against the homosexual, it’s against the person who attempts to twist, or upset the Natural Order of God in reference to the Truth of the Gospel. The Natural way of God is not Natural as in soulish, rather it’s the plan of God; thus the lustful nature of man attempts to disrupt the Way of God. Those who worship the creation are in the process of disrupting the Ways of God.
People are offended when we preach on a “thing” when they have attached themselves to the “thing”. Whether it’s unbelief, forgiveness, or something else opposed to the Ways of God. There are differences between “you” and “it”, there is a difference between condemnation, and providing a means of escape.
If they are called, then accepted the conditions of being in the Body, yet desire to continue to hold the truth in unrighteousness, they become the “they”. Of course the next step would be the lust becoming their lord and guide, causing them to regress to following the spirit lusting to envy (old man), thus separating themselves from the Spirit, but they are still loved by Jesus. Jesus loved the rich man, yet watched him walk away.
The Bible speaks specifically against same sex marriages, or same sex sexual arrangements, whatever one desires to call them. Not only does this refer to the sexual activities, but it also refers to “social” activities as well. The Greek word “Pusikos” has a root word of Phusis meaning nature, or the natural condition, referring to the natural order of things, thus when someone says, “I was born this way”, they’re right, all of us were. We are born into the sin nature, no one escaped the dark cloud, but it doesn’t mean we have to stay there. None are righteous, no not one, but it doesn’t mean they can’t be. The escape is finding the manner in which they turned the Truth into unrighteousness, then correct the problem.
The lust of the flesh seems to surface in some sexual manner, it may include addiction to pornography, sexual behavior not conducive to “bone of my bone”, or other lusts physical in nature, including abusive behavior toward a mate, whether physical or verbal; however, it also shows the source of the lust may not be sexual, it may in be the person has accepted the Truth, but holds it in unrighteousness.
Hiding the tree isn’t going to help either, we first have to accept the premise, “every one is drawn away by their own lust”, we have to remove the thoughts of “it was the person”, or “the thing”, or “the way I am”, we can’t all of a sudden disown the lust which caused us to fall, as if it was in someone else. Next we have to recognize the manifested act may, or may not the cause. Then we have to allow the Spirit in us to clean us, bringing us to a point of freedom. Paul’s shows what happens when anyone attempts to change the Plan of God to fit their own agenda, ending in a lust being activated. The case here is how they were judging, it had to be based on a lust, if a lust then they were not as innocent as they thought. God will deliver someone over to their own “vile affections” when they change the Truth into a lie. Ahh, this doesn’t refer to mankind in general, but to those who held the Truth in unrighteousness.
The comparison to love the Lord, or to love idols is often the same, idol worship takes on many forms, we can make an idol out of our intellect, or out of a lust, or out of a person. The act of worship means we are submitting to what we worship, we can worship the Lord in church, yet worship the old nature the rest of the week. Praise is giving thanks, but any form of worship is a form of surrender to what we worship.
This separation is by God, but based on what man does, thus it’s based on the Them failing to conform to the Truth, rather they conformed to the world. The “them” are called, thus this connects to God forming the vessels of dishonor, showing He does so based on the choices made by the vessel. Clearly God delivers them over, thus they were in God’s order, and loved of the Lord. They said they wanted to serve, but really they wanted to be served. They cursed the lusts in others, but used their own lusts to do so. This is clearer by the use of the wording “the error which was meet” (v. 1:27). The word Meet is correct, it’s not “meant” or “mate”, it’s the Greek Dei meaning The course of nature, or the necessity brought on by circumstances. The word Reprobate means worthless, thus we don’t call them Raca, God does. The indication is how they treated God’ s Truth and Righteousness, is how God is treating them.
Paul listed many items, some we know by the mere word, some need a deeper understanding. Each of these areas show God delivered the person, because their ways left Him no choice. They had no fear of God, thus Paul is showing a righteous fear of God keeps us in the Plan. God is Just, the deliverance placed us in the position to be Just, yet to make the Just, Unjust is not the purpose of the Truth. The word Wickedness means Iniquity, it has the same context as spiritual wickedness. Spiritual wickedness is not a matter of doing some wicked spiritual, it’s a matter of failing to be spiritual when one has the ability, thus showing an Unequal position; it’s the same as having the Spirit, yet refusing to be spiritual.
After telling us the women gave up their natural affections, and the men did likewise, Paul then lists several things which don’t appear to us to be acts of homosexuality, they are nonetheless the results of holding the Truth in unrighteousness. The “natural” method of God’s Order is the point, homosexuality is the rebellious attack against the order. God said “it shall be this way”, the spirit lusting to envy captured someone by a lust then said, “on it won’t”. The person’s soul is the prize in all this, the person is the tool used of the enemy to attack God. The person usually hasn’t a clue, they seek the pleasure, or the feeling, but both the pleasure and feeling are flesh based, generated by a lust ruling the person. It’s the lust the enemy uses to destroy, the temptation is the means to activate the lust; however, the test is the way God will expose the lust, in order to get us to a point to be clean.
The word Debate is coupled with the term malicious, indicating one who uses debate as a method to exhibit a malicious manner, their point is not to win a person over, but to cause them harm, or make them look foolish. The intent of Persuasion is to win someone over, it may be harsh, or austere, but the purpose is still to save a soul.
Debate is opinion motivated, or pride based, an opinion is something we think to be true, but lack solid evidence to prove it so. One can debate for hours, yet without a Scripture to prove their point clearly, it’s still an opinion. Debate is centered on the reasoning of man, in order to make one feel superior over another. The harm is to prove another wrong, by belittling them, which is usually evident in many, if not all debates. Debate is the perversion of Persuasion, it’s a personal attack against the person, which is another form of judging them.
The word Whisperers means one who is a slanderer; which is based on the intent to cause harm to someone, or their reputation. Whether the information is factual or not doesn’t matter, the intent does. A Whisperer is not out to help someone, they are running around telling tales about someone. This is not the same as Libel, since Libel is based on an outright lie. From this we see how two people can say the same thing, one with the intent to restore, the other with the intent to do harm, the former is spiritual in nature, the latter is not. Whispering is a perversion of “speaking the truth in love”, rather it seeks to destroy, in order for the one doing the whispering to be exalted.
Jesus didn’t slander the Pharisees when He told them they were of their father the devil, rather He exposed their condition, yet allowed them the choice to change. Whereas, the Pharisees slandered Jesus based on their envy. They didn’t want Jesus to change for the “Good”, they wanted Him to stop doing Good based their own selfish self-interests.
A God hater is one who has made themselves destitute of God, they would be Ungodly or Raca. It doesn’t mean they don’t use the Name of Jesus, nor does it mean they won’t preach, rather it means they have rejected the purpose of Salvation, thus their rebellion placed them against the purposed order of God. Using the old man to replace the Spirit is also hating God, thus anything done Anti (opposed) to God falls into this realm.
Insolent means a persecutor of others, which includes coming against others, yet God calls for Mercy and restoration, insolent leads to being rude and disrespectful toward the people of God, or God’s plan.
Inventors of evil things, doesn’t mean creator of evil, it means “to make believe”, or devise fables, such as doctrines of men, or doctrines of devils. The doctrines of men seek to ignore the Commandment, the doctrines of devils are teachings based in unbelief. The doctrine, regardless of the doctrine has to fit the Doctrine of Christ. However, doctrines of men can come from well learned people, but it’s still their opinion on what they think is meant by the concept, but still desiring to ignore the Commandment. We must have plain Scripture, as we allow the Bible to define the Bible. Using the unbelief of a scholar still doesn’t excuse our unbelief, but we do find one person’s unbelief enticed another’s.
Implacable means to cause a state of war, connecting it to the term Slanderer. There are those who go about causing war, even their prayer life is causing war among the brethren (James 4:1-4). They also pray their will into the life of another, which is witchcraft. They cause wars among others, so they can be the great peacemaker. They make the war happen, then move in as the great counselor, to heal the wounded, then take the glory. One can disrupt peace without causing a state of war, thus they can simply bring discourse by asking questions challenging the Truth. One can also disrupt the peace in the Body, causing a state of war between denominations, which falls under Implacable.
We often look at the context of Romans 1:32 as pertaining to those who take pleasure in the acts of others; however, there is a type of pleasure we tend to overlook, it’s really the context of the Scripture. Paul just listed a bunch of things, all based in the fall nature, the Romans are going “yeah, amen”, but they were taking pleasure in the things they found in others. When we take pleasure in the evils of others, we are no better than “they”. Rejoicing in iniquity is still void of God’s love. Here we find they took pleasure in the failures of others, in order to exalt their own selves.
Reading this, then reading I Corinthians 2:15 it would appear as a contradiction of terms, or at least a contradiction of teaching; however, the context of both shows a connection, as the Greek words used give us the contextual connection. Here it appears judging is a sin regardless, but then in I Corinthians Paul says those who are spiritual judge things. If it’s a sin to judge, yet the spiritual do it, does it mean the spiritual are sinners? What happened? Did he change theology? Perhaps it’s different doctrines for different folks, or perhaps he is just saying what needs to be said to whatever group he is talking to? It can’t be right, it would be deception, no there is an answer, one connecting the two. Here the context is judging people for the purpose of exalting ourselves; in Corinthians it’s judging things, not people. There is a vast difference between the two. Judging flesh and blood, makes us flesh minded, but judging the “things” is seeking clarity in order to deal with the things in a Godly manner. Judging the words of a person tells us much about them, Jesus said from the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks, plus by our words we are either justified or condemned. The Romans were judging people, the Corinthians failed to judge their own selves. The teaching is still don’t judge people, judge things so you can help people.
The Roman’s were once Gentiles, but now they were seeking to be true Jews, but mixed the words Jew and Israel in the same box, ending giving honor to the wrong Law. To understand the term Jew, we must separate the term from its use today. In Paul’s day the tribes were still in order, thus he knew he was from the tribe of Benjamin; however, today the term Jew has become a generic term including all the Jewish people. The term Israel means the nation, an Israeli is someone who lives, or is from Israel. The term Jewish refers to the religion, the religion of the Jewish people refers to the Covenant of the Law of Moses, with the Abrahamic Covenant. If the Jewish people were forbidden from keeping the sabbath by some government, they still had circumcision of the flesh to show they were assigned to the Abrahamic Covenant. A Jewish person can be from any country in the world, but an Israeli is from Israel. It becomes an important division, since Paul will talk about circumcision as one being a true Jew, or one who is attached to the True Covenant. If we change the title to “true Israel” we error, rather than talk about a person, we change it to a nation. Later Paul will make the distinction clear when he talks about the “Israelites” who are born of the flesh into a nation (v. 9:4). We find any “true Israel” concept means one is still of the flesh. Hardly the position we seek. Amen?
This helps us understand why Paul tells the Galatians there is One Seed, which is Seed is Christ, yet here in Romans he tells us the seed of Abraham is many. Two different seeds, one natural, one spiritual. Although Abraham knew of the natural, he didn’t know of the spiritual. The actions of Abraham were laying out the course to the Cross, but God never told him the course. Abraham was looking for a son from he and Sara, with a land promised to his generations to follow. The inheritance to Abraham’s seed as many was the land, to Abraham it was the promised son. The inheritance to those of Christ is a Kingdom not of this earth.
Let’s look at how the Holy Ghost used all this, it began by Paul defining his position, then the We who serve by the Spirit, then the They who hold the Truth in unrighteousness, now it’s “You”. Verse 2:1 connects to 1:20 with the phrase “they are without excuse”, the connection shows the Romans are also without excuse, but why? They weren’t doing those things, they were judging them. They were taking pleasure in finding fault to exalt themselves, so they could feel superior, yet they were in the Body because of God, not their goodness. Paul wants to know if they judge these people inferior, why don’t they cast the net? Rather than spit in the water?
Without excuse means No defense, nothing can be said to justify the act. If the Romans are in the Body and Justified, how then can they be “without excuse”? Being Justified is a process, they stopped short to exalt their own selves, rather than grasp the concept of “being Justified”. They made the error of thinking the Report was the Witness, entering the illusion of their superiority over the masses.
The word Hypocrite is a compound word meaning to “under judge”, the word Hypo is known to us in the word Hypodermic needle. The suffix “dermic” refers to the skin (epidermis), thus a hypodermic needle is one going under the skin. Here we find it’s judging someone inferior, but by judging someone inferior, they became what they judged (v.1). In order to judge someone we must have a law allowing it, the only law allowing anyone to judge people is the Law of Moses, yet it’s the Law judging, not man. By their acts they moved themselves from the Law of the Spirit to the Law of Moses, yet in the process they found themselves guilty.
From judging others, to the Judgment of God, which is according to Truth. The Romans had no position to judge, they didn’t have the authority to allow it, they didn’t know what God had in store for the “them”. Judge the ways of a person, not their acts, or their personality. The steps from Justice to Mercy to Grace will be the route of recovery. Justice is getting what we deserve, Mercy is not getting what we deserve, and Grace is getting something we don’t deserve. The Romans had slipped into judgmental thinking, they needed to be restored back to the Process, by knowing it was a Process.
Verse 3 begins our path of Imputing, really the Romans were imputing, but in an ungodly manner. They considered others inferior, based on their own assumptions. The word Think is the Greek word Logizomai meaning Having the like force and effect of something, or To pass to ones account, in God’s case it’s looking at someone as if they have something based on some Truth He knows of. The word Belief is a good illustration, Abraham believed God, then God accounted or Imputed Righteousness to him. The Belief allowed God to make a connection to some Truth God was aware of, even if Abraham was not. We enter by Belief, Abraham was accounted something by his belief, which allowed God to impute righteousness, so it could be by faith. Faith is a now confidence in a future hope, to Abraham his hope was dependent on a Covenant, but his belief was based in what God said.
The imputed procedure is how God operates, we say we will forgive, God imputes His Mercy to us based on Jesus saying, “Father forgive them”. When we impute mercy on others, whether we feel like it, or not we enter the process to obtain the imparted Mercy of God. When we received the Spirit the imparted Mercy of God came to us in the Holiness found in the New Man as a living part of our New nature.
In one form or another Paul will use Logizomai in some 18 verses, it is an important concept, one we can easily misuse, as did the Romans. Paul will show how God imputes in a Godly manner, yet Paul will also show how the Romans imputed in an ungodly manner. The ministry of Reconciliation begins when we refuse to impute sins on people (II Cor 5:18-20), but the Romans were imputing sins on people, then judging them. They changed the natural order of Reconciliation to Condemnation.
It begins here in verse 3, the Romans imputed (think) by judging, if we Impute such things on the world, it’s because we have something in us still connected to the world. The old man imputes sin, fault, error on others, but our call is not to impute sin on others, thus there are things we impute, yet things we don’t impute. Paul is going to show the Romans how to deal with the issue, then set them free of their judgmental attitude, which in turn should place their minds on the Spirit and the Precious.
We begin to see the “we”, and the “they” are among the called, the Romans were standing at the gap between being a “we”, or a “they”. From all this we can see the difference between Paul judging the things of the Romans, then producing the means of escape, whereas the Romans were judging others, failing to provide a means of escape. If our words are laced with unbelief, yet someone judges our words, we may assume they are judging us, because we are connected to the unbelief, but in truth our words have exposed us. If we fail to discern, we will consider the exposure a personal attack, when in truth it’s exposure to bring us to the awareness of the source of our words, so we can be free of the sin which so easily besets us. On the same note, if we spoke as an oracle of God, yet they reacted to the words in a hostile manner as did the Pharisees, we nonetheless did our job. Not everyone is going to say, “Oh my God, you are right, I see it, thanks”; however, we must know we presented the Word as God intended. Paul is reaching out to the Romans, so they can enter the process again.
The key word in verse 4 is Goodness, which is the Greek Chrestotes in the first usage, a slight change in the second usage to Chrestos: Chrestotes means Integrity, whereas Chrestos means Mild, Kind, Pleasant or Benevolent, pointing more to the Character of God. The first usage points to the Riches of God’s goodness, the second to the actual goodness of God. Purpose is the real issue, the Romans have no idea what God is doing, or allowing, or ordaining, they are just looking at the now then making a self-determination. Do we do the same? Some do, but none of us should.
Paul is still on the “You”, showing how judging will either make our heart hard, or our judging is a sign of our lack of confidence in our position in the Body, in either case we if we judge people, it places us under the wrong Law. The word Impenitent is the Greek Ametanoetos meaning Unrepentant, another key to the source of their thinking. Some of us repent, but we only repent for things we are sure are sins, we fail to repent for our entire sinful past. Areas we felt were either not sin, or not important are still wiles of the darkness. Our past must be dead in Christ, the memories no, it’s silly, it would take a frontal lobe removal, but anything we did under the prince of the power of the air was sin based in some regard, thus we impute the old nature dead on the Cross, so we can become New in Christ.
The second step, perhaps just as important is to repent unto the Kingdom. We can repent from sin, yet fail to turn from the deeds of old man. The completeness of repentance is to turn and receive the Kingdom (New Man) in fullness to be clean through and through. Some of us go through the same things over and over, we repent for the moment, turn part way, then turn right back to using the ways of the old man to get what we want. We keep knocking the apples off the tree, but the tree remains. The New Man continues to correct us, yet all did was attack the fruit, rather than allow the tree to be uprooted. We go around and around the same old tree time and time again, because we have put so many religious masks on we can’t see the tree for the apples. Exposure is clarity, we must accept the exposure, it’s what Paul is doing here, granting exposure, then the means of escape, then the means of being restored to the process.
Verse 5 also defines the “Book of Revelation” as the Revealed Jesus, rather than some knowledge given to Jesus by the Father. When Jesus took the Cup in the Garden the Judgment was set, thus the Judgment is when Jesus is Revealed to all the souls on earth on the last day. It’s clearer in verse 6, “who will render to every man according to his deeds”; who then is the Judge? Jesus, we judge ourselves and things, not people, so we won’t be condemned ( judged) with the world.
The term “every man” doesn’t mean the Bride as well, since she is seen as New Jerusalem descending with Jesus, rather it means each and every one who stands before Him, whether Jew or Gentile. This is the same concept Paul will speak of in Corinthians, since they were carnal, he told them to pray their works get them through. It was really a sound rebuke, just as this is to the Romans.
If some hold the Truth in Unrighteousness, yet Jesus judges based in Righteous, then it’s clear holding the Truth in Unrighteousness is not a good thing. The only place we find the Greek word for “righteous judgment” is here in Romans 2:5. If they keep judging people as “sinners”, they are no better, since the Law they are using judges all people as sinners. Those in the world are not our enemies, the enemies of a man are of his own household. The Book of Romans being first in order is for good reason, it gives us a basis for the “judge thyself”. There is a fine line between judging and discerning, if we’re not sure where the line is, best not do either.
Now “to them” or those opposite of those seen in verses 5 and 6, these are those who are “patient continually in well doing”, which expands Repentance to more than a one time effort. The word Continually means to put oneself forward, to seek what is before them, connecting it to faith. If we walk by faith, then our feet are shod with the preparation for the Gospel of Peace, what would the metaphor Shod stand for? Continual repentance, and Belief? Yes, yet not a day goes by we don’t do something based on the goodness in us, for the most part we have no idea we did it. Some of us think what “good works” should be, then set to do them, others do good works by Nature, the latter is by the Spirit.
In Matthew there were some people who faced Jesus on the last day, they are told how they gave Him water, and the such, then they said, “When Lord?”. They never knew they did the works of mercy, although they did it to the least, they were nonetheless the acts by the measure of faith. Since Jesus judges as the Son of man, it stands He will judge acts of Mercy, not Grace. Therefore, we find the workers of iniquity lacked Mercy, when they had the ability, opportunity, and commandment to apply mercy. Their Acts were based on the Name of Jesus, the Authority of Jesus is designed to do Acts for anyone in the Body, but Mercy takes a choice on our part to freely give, what God has given us. Did Judas fail at Mercy? Or Grace? Had to be Mercy, Grace was not yet granted.
Any of us can use some wile of the old man, but it doesn’t mean we drew back to Perdition. We said something from anger, or did something, or used some manipulation, or something flesh based, we were convicted, repented, then continued on. However, if we allow the old man his way, we will think one of two things, either we’re lost and can never be restored, or our lust is some “gift of God”. We slipped, temptation came, the button was pushed, exposure was there. Rejoice, it’s time for a button removal experience. It’s what we’re seeing here, Paul is first bringing clarity, often clarity comes as a hammer to the stronghold. Almost an overkill to make the point, in order for them to see themselves as God does. Once it happens they have the choice to remain a “they”, or become a “we”.
Faith has an attribute we seldom consider, but one Paul used many times. Anticipation of the result, however, if we misplace the anticipation, we will fall into fear, or anger, rather than faith. Paul taught and prayed with the anticipation of a result to benefit God and the person. Clarity helps us keep the anticipation in the right area, just as we have to keep trust and faith in the right areas. On the other hand we can anticipate what we think God should do, when God doesn’t perform to our agenda, we get mad. God never told us the outcome, but faith doesn’t need to know the outcome, but it does need to accept it. At times we won’t do anything, unless we know there is a benefit just for us, in Paul’s case the anticipation was for the benefit of the other person.
The Holy Ghost is using Paul to make divisions, the Word is dividing and separating for clarity, from the clarity will come repentance, then restoration, then victory. Verse 8 goes back to the “they” again, “but unto Them who are contentious, and do not obey the Truth, but obey Unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, tribulation, and anguish, upon every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile”. Clear enough, but it also shows us the Judgment, just as we find in Revelation 20:11-15, which also explains the “every man” isn’t everybody, it’s Jew and Gentile the two classes of earthly people God recognizes. If we are neither Jew or Gentile we do not fit the two categories Paul just listed. Perhaps it’s the point, if they continue to Judge they are taking the place of the Law of Moses, making themselves subject to the Judgment. This is clearer in Revelation 20:12 where we find the Books opened, which Daniel defined as the Law, thus the Jew is first. After they are compared to the Law, they still must find their name in the Book of Life. Then comes Gentile (sea), they are judged according to their works (Rev 20:13). However, well before all this begins, and before the 1,000 years there is the finish of the First Resurrection which is the Rapture. Paul merely confirms John, as John confirms Paul, as the Holy Ghost guided them both.
Now those who pass the Books or hear “if you done it to the least”, glory, honor, and peace to every man who works good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile”. Indicating there are people who walk in Mercy, perhaps they were robbed of being baptized in the Holy Ghost, but they did operate in the Mercy granted them, they would be those who Sleep in Jesus through the Night. However, for those who know the Truth, there is no excuse, they submit to the baptism of the Holy Ghost, receive the Spirit as the Kingdom of God within, mind the Spirit, enter the Process to be partakers of the First Resurrection.
God separated Abraham from the Sea so there could be a Sand of the Sea (Amos 3:2). The Gentiles have “families” within, but they are still one group, no matter how many sub-class nations man applies to the group. Now we can see why the concept of Eternal Judgment is a foundational element to the Doctrine of Christ, if there is Eternal Judgment there must be Eternal Salvation. Next if there is Eternal Judgment, there is a Judgment, meaning Salvation must be first. God is not going to bring Judgment out of time, this is the Day, the dispensation of Grace, the time of recovery. The Romans were applying a Night time endeavor out of order.
There is no respect of persons with God, we must keep the saying in context with these words (v. 10). Here Paul shows whether Jew or Gentile, all will be judged according to their ways (deeds of mercy). Just as Jew or Gentile all have the opportunity to escape the Judgment. If they are Jew or Gentile, if they have done good (mercy), then glory and honor, if they are Jew or Gentile and have done evil then tribulation and anguish, is not God equal?
The phrase “no Respect of persons” doesn’t mean what God did for someone else, He must do for us. There is an attribute of the Wisdom of God which assists us in defining this phrase. The Wisdom of God has many attributes, among them is, “without partiality, and without hypocrisy” (James 4:17). The Faith of Jesus showed us many things, among them was, “have not the Faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons….for if there come unto you assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment; and you have respect to him who wears the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit you here in a good place, and say to the poor, Stand you there, or sit here under my footstool: are you not then Partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts”: “but if you have respect of persons, you commit sin” (James 2:1-4 & 2:9). God is not partial, all have a opportunity, whether they take it or not; however, the Romans were being partial, thus in their judging they sinned. The Law of the Spirit is not sin based, the Law of Moses seeks out sin, thus if we seek out sin we placed ourselves under the wrong Law. The danger of course is what Paul just mentioned, the Judgment. Jesus will not judge by the Law of the Spirit, rather those who do the Law of Moses (books) shall be judged by the Law.
So what is Partial? Didn’t Jesus have His three of the twelve? Didn’t He deal with the Pharisees in a different manner than He did His disciples? Was He partial? No, Partial is giving favor based on the good it does us. God gave Paul special power, but not to Peter, yet Peter’s shadow healed people, but John didn’t have the healing shadow ministry, or the special power, so was John evil? No, of course not, but some of us think if God allowed Paul to have special power, He must give it to us. However, Paul gained the power just before his indoor prison ministry.
Giving someone special favor because they can do us some good, or judging someone because it makes us feel better about who we are is wrong. Even taking joy in having power over devils isn’t good, rather rejoice for our names are written in heaven (Luke 10:17-20). Iniquity is being unbalanced or unequal, but God is always equal (Ezek 18:25-27), if a wicked man changes by becoming righteousness, God will treat him as righteous, but if a righteous man changes by becoming wicked, then God will treat him as wicked, is God not equal? Being Equal isn’t the same as “You did it for them, You must do it for me”. It simply means God is balanced, He doesn’t neglect one thing for another, or does He do one thing to avoid another. Faith pleases God, it doesn’t impress Him.
We know many evil things are removed from us, but how? By God bringing good things into us. The Light dissipates darkness; however, we still have the keys in this, we can stop at the Cross, refuse the grave, or accept the grave yet refuse the power of the Resurrection. We can accept the Report, yet refuse the Witness, or we can accept the Report and the Witness to complete the Report in our lives by the Spirit.
On the same note, if a Gentile holds the Truth in unrighteousness they can be cut from the olive tree, just as the Jew, is God equal? Yes, it keeps our fear of God in the right perspective. In reference to this Paul shows “as many as have sinned without the law shall also perish”, which shows the “many” as Gentile, but then he adds, “as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law”, showing the judging by the “books”, thus giving us the context of the phrase, “for there is no respect of persons with God”.
Verse 13 could be misconstrued to mean if they do the Law of Moses, they are Just, but it’s not the context. Those who have sinned without the Law, also have the opposite, those who have done good without the Law. Who would they be? Those who walk in Mercy, which Jesus termed the least Commandments He gave on the Mount of Olives. Acts of Mercy are like Belief, they are open to anyone, Jew or Gentile, Grace is only for those who have the Kingdom of God within.
Verse 14 shows how the Gentile (not the Barbarian) who are not under the Law of Moses, have a Law unto themselves. The word standing out is “nature”, what are the elements of the Law? By nature they keep the sabbath day? No, they operate in the measure of faith, which is given to all men. Paul will show the measure of faith is a gift, if a gift from God then it was designed to do good. The Law of Faith is operating in Mercy, thus they keep the things of nature in their proper order, they don’t make birds idols, they don’t change the course of things to fit a self-desire, they apply Mercy, even if they lack the knowledge of the Gospel. They still have to stand before Jesus, Mercy doesn’t avoid the premise; however, we find there are those who do the Law of faith, without knowing it. Neither does it mean they can reject the Gospel, then apply Mercy, since it would be holding the Truth in unrighteousness. The context here points to those who have no knowledge of the Law, yet do by nature the heart of the Law.
This has to be taken into context with other verses in this same letter, “by the deeds of the Law there shall no flesh be justified” (v. 3:20). “Where is boasting them? It is excluded. By what Law? Of works? Nay, but by the law of faith” (v. 3:27). The Law of Faith pertains to the measure of Faith: the Law of the Spirit pertains to Grace. The only place we find the phrase, “law of faith” is here in Romans 3:27, as it pertains to those who operate in the measure of faith as intended. The Doer of the Word is someone who is subject to the Law of the Spirit, but the measure of faith has attributes from God as well. Only two groups have vacated the measure of faith, the Wicked who have twisted it into mind power, and the unreasonable who are the unteachable.
Giving someone a glass of water is a good thing, but it doesn’t mean the person is a Doer of the Word. The word Doer is the same one James uses in the phrase “doer of the Word” (James 1:22), James shows the Word (Logos) is in us (James 1:21), thus showing it’s by Nature, or by the Engrafted Word. The Greek word for Doer is Poietes meaning a Poet, it was translated as Doer 5 times and Poet once. Which really doesn’t help until we find a Poet in classical ancient Greece means One with beautiful thoughts, or one who has a beauty of expression; we would term it one who seeks the Precious. Our word Poet comes from the Greek Poietes, originally it was applied to a former of words, or composer, in the classic sense their works centered on “one who demonstrates beauty of expression which is pleasing to the viewer”. A Doer of the Word is one who by nature does the things of Christ by the Engrafted Word in them, which things are Beautiful in the sight of God. The doer of the measure of faith by the law of faith has ways of mercy, as they help others without regard for personal glory. However, we must divide the Doer by Nature, from the Doer of the Word, or we will get lost.
The term Gentile has to be taken into context with the term “Barbarian”, prior Paul separated the two, a Barbarian is a Gentile who has not accepted the Truth. Place the Doer by Nature, with “their conscience also bearing witness”, we can define the group who does the Law of faith without knowing the Law (v. 15). Paul is showing the Romans even those who listen to the measure of faith have the ability to apply mercy, why then can’t these Romans who are of the Body? Why Judge people? Only Jesus can judge mankind, also the Law of Moses judges the Doer. The Romans presumed if they had Christ in them, they could judge; but Peter felt he could protect the Lord as well, both were wrong.
Verse 16 again defines the Revealed Jesus as the Revelation Of Jesus, the time of judgment when those who pierced Him, and those who wail because of Him look upon Him as He is Revealed to them; linking all this together, judge things, not people. It’s not an easy task, at times we can move from judging the things to judging the person, but we must repent immediately correcting the error in our own minds. The key to this is still separating the Doers by Nature referring to the measure of faith, from those who are the Doers of the Word based on the Word in them.
Now Paul turns from the Gentile to the Jew, or is it a Gentile turned Jew, or a Jew turned Gentile? Ahh, a Jew, prior Paul talked about the Gentiles, now he is still talking to the Romans, who are Gentiles. How can this be? This is still the area of, “for there is no respect of persons with God”. Paul told us in verse 1:13 how the Romans were Gentiles, now he says they call themselves Jew, what gives? This refers to those who have place to enter Covenant, they are Gentiles, but the correct usage of the term Jew shows a person has right to enter Covenant. Have these Romans really left the Barbarian mind? Have they also trusted in self-righteousness, or become as unbelieving as the unsaved Jews they judge?
This area keeps us from judging the world, or judging members in the Body. The Romans were once Barbarians, they are now Jews in the sense of receiving a Covenant presented by God. However, unbelief takes on many forms, one is thinking God can’t call anyone into the Body unless we allow it. “Oh they can’t be Christian”, why not? We are. The temptation to separate someone from the Body, just so we can judge them is still self-based. To discern their ways in order to deal with them in a Godly manner, is not the same as judging. If we judged them inferior, so we can feel superior, it’s much different from discerning.
What are these attributes in verses 18-20, Know the Will of God, Know the things of Christ are More excellent, confident in being a light, an instructor of the foolish, a teacher of Babes; however, we find “you therefore which teach another, teach not yourself?”. Ouch! What adultery? We didn’t do anything like that. Wait, the Jew is called to the Cross, the same as the Gentile, this is the Season of Opportunity, not the Season of Judgment. Today the Jew or Gentile we judge, could be Christian tomorrow. Adultery is committed by a person who is married, or espoused to be married, yet they continue to use the old man as their guide after they have committed themselves to the Marriage of the Lamb. Fornication is an act by someone who is either not married, or who has rejected their vows regarding marriage (meaning they consider themselves single).
The word sacrilege means robbing the temple, but what sacrilege is this talking about? Using the old nature to judge the foolish, or babe, so we can feel exalted in our temple. The Law of Moses had two sides, blessing and cursing, the Romans were considering themselves Blessed, others they Cursed, thus they boasted in the Law, but were found wanton by the same Law (vs. 22-23).
Now he speaks of the Authority or Name of God (v. 24), for it is written, “for circumcision profits, if one keeps the Law, but if they are a breaker of the Law, then their circumcision becomes un-circumcision”. Apply this to being Righteous, if we keep the Law of the Spirit then the Righteousness avails us in the process of justification, but if we refuse the Law of the Spirit then our righteousness, becomes unrighteousness, we end holding the Truth in unrighteousness (vs. 26-27). Ahh, hold it, he said it was blasphemed among the Gentiles, what gives? The classes, the Gentiles were not given the Law, thus the Jews looked down on the Gentiles, but in retaliation after the Gentiles were accepted by God they attacked the Jews. Both groups were acting under the fall nature, but the Romans were acting like Jews circumcised of the flesh, by looking down on others, it would generate those being judged inferior to blaspheme the Name of God, is it why God saved the Romans? Or was it for them to present the Gospel to save the world?
Verse 28 defines the term Jew, the outwardly would be circumcision of the flesh, the inward circumcision of the heart, placing this in context with the prior verses. If we are Jews circumcised of the heart, we keep the Law of the Spirit, but if we refuse to keep the Law of the Spirit, our circumcision then becomes un-circumcision, as we grieve the Holy Spirit by whom we are sealed (v. 29 & Eph 4:30).
Verse 26 is another place where we find “Imputed”, only it’s translated “be counted”, thus if our circumcision of the heart can become un-circumcision, surely this is a Process. They missed the concept of imputed, thinking it was imparted when they accepted the Cross. God imputed Justification on us based on the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus, but imputed and imparted are different. Mixing the two is error, imparted is the finished result, yet the Spirit was still working with them. The Babe needs to be instructed, but if we are still judging people we need to be taught again the rudiments of Christ (Heb 6:1-2).
This can be seen as Paul applying the mirror of God as well, what the Romans judged evil in others; the Romans themselves were doing. They were in a better position, but they were taking pride in the position, rather than appreciating it.
Paul didn’t wake up some morning and decide to correct the Romans, he is coming against a stronghold fortified, it will take Truth after Truth after Truth, all presented in love: Truth is still a hammer to the stronghold. This is discernment at work, not a judgmental attitude. The Holy Ghost is exposing, so correction can take place, allowing Restoration to happen, allowing them to continue in the Growth.
The path had a they, a we and a you, it also shows all men are given the measure of faith, the measure if given has a law God applied when He gave it. Regardless of the gift from God, there is a law applied. A rose cannot become an apple tree, it is under a law defined by “everything produces after its own kind”. The measure of faith was given in the created soul to reach the New Birth to complete the prophecy, “let us make man in our image”. Paul shows us while we were in the world, whether Jew or Gentile God gave us the measure of faith, God is no respecter of persons.
The Romans have entered a self-deceived position, their religious conceit has entered a false thinking on predestination (Rom 8:29-30). It’s interesting the first letter of correction exposes religious conceit; thereby showing our first battle will be against the stronghold of religious conceit. Religious conceit forms a false illusion of “confidence” making it over confident and prideful, rather than a confidence in God. Religious conceit tends to look at the people in the world as enemies, but the people in the world are the “fish”, thus Jesus made us Fishers of men. Don’t curse the net or the catch, it’s was used to bring us into the kingdom. Don’t confuse the Report with the Witness either, one does produce the other, but they are different (I Jn 5:7-8).
Instead of denying the self, they entered self denial. They looked to the flesh as an indicator of being moral, yet they were circumcised of heart, not the flesh. It’s not to say the flesh shouldn’t be healed, rather we desire to place the focus on the Spirit, have our souls saved, then we can prosper as our souls prosper. Using the flesh as an indicator of holiness is an illusion forming a false image, producing confidence in the wrong area. One can be morally correct, but hold a corrupt soul, or heart.
Paul uses a road map of the self to expose the self-nature of the Romans. He started by saying they are called to be saints, rather than calling them saints. Then he explained how the measure of faith was a gift, which they had while they were yet the un-circumcised of heart. The premise shows God did the calling, thus if God called He had a plan in hand for their justification, if they are justified, they will be glorified. The problem was they were forming their own agenda, or formulating their own standards. God expects us to submit to the Witness as we follow the Process.
If faith has a law, then it has components; Jesus said, “have faith in God”, thus faith also means we trust in who we put our measure of faith in. It also means we understand how Mercy was a component used by the disciples and others before the Cross, adding how many times Jesus said, “your faith has healed you”, yet it was the granted Mercy by Jesus forgiving the person. Therefore, whether Jesus said, “raise up and walk”, or “your sins are forgiven”, Mercy was applied, but the measure of faith had to accept the Word spoken.
This also shows the Wicked are formed into vessels of dishonor only because they lack giving Mercy, meaning they also lacked faith in God (Rom 9:21-23). They may desire God to perform for them, they may pray to get their own way, but when events don’t turn out the way they desire, their lack of faith is evident.
The Romans were judging others as sinners, rather than applying Mercy. Those who do the Law of faith without knowing it, are those who apply mercy by nature. Paul approaches the various laws, there is the law of faith (measure of faith) before the Law of Moses, as Abel and Noah prove, then the Law of Moses before the Law of the Spirit. The Law of Moses is a result of God’s Mercy, but if came because Moses asked God to have Mercy on the people. Clearly the children in the wilderness lacked faith, since they also lacked belief, yet they had both faith and belief when they crossed the Red Sea. Paul keeps using the word “law”, but many times we don’t know which Law he is talking about, to some it would seem he is saying the Law of Moses will justify us, yet he also says it can’t. This is merely the Holy Ghost’s way to show, because we say “Law” it doesn’t define the Law, rather the Law will define itself. The Romans could not make entry unless there was something in them to draw them to the Cross, the something was the gift of the measure of faith. They didn’t create the measure of faith, they didn’t dream it up, it was given by God so they could make entry: what then gives them the right to judge anyone?
Chapter three will show the Law of faith, and the Law of Moses, both are from God, both granted to natural people. Romans chapter 3 spins around Romans 1:32, did the Law of Moses expose sin by the transgression alone? Or did it expose sin because there was a doer of the Law? If one did the Law of Moses, they admitted sin, if not, why do the Law? If the entire nation of Israel didn’t do the deeds of the Law, or keep the sabbath day, they were considered unholy by the Law; however, by keeping the sabbath day with doing the deeds they were considered a sinner by the same Law. Holiness based in the Law, and holiness before God are much different. Just as being justified before the Law, is different than being justified by God. The illusion in the mind of man felt by doing a deed they eradicated sin, when all they did was kill something innocent to balance their sin for the moment, not do away with it.
We saw the “we”, and the “them”, so if someone says they don’t believe in God, does it mean there is no God? Not hardly, for if some didn’t believe, it didn’t disturb God’s Faith, but it did remove the unbeliever from the Faith. This division shows God not only has Faith, but the law of faith is generated from God. God gave the Law to Moses, then Moses gave it to the people based on the unbelief of the people. The evidence of the wilderness proved it, they gained the Law of Moses based on their unbelief, not their holiness. The Law of Moses looks for a violation of the Ten Commandments, if the person gives the offering, the violation is paid, for the moment, if they don’t then the curse is applied as punishment. The Law of Moses defines sin, it can’t do away with it.
In the wilderness, even with the unbelief of the children the promise to Abraham went on, even if no one joined it, thus there are some who don’t believe, does it mean God failed? Hardly, God can’t fail, thus the law of faith goes on, even if no one enters in.
When God called Jeremiah, it was Jeremiah who felt God had made an error, but God knew Jeremiah would take the call to complete the course. It was Jeremiah who didn’t know, and at times doubted. When God presents a vision, the call, the plan or a prophecy it’s complete in heaven, it’s on the earth where the battle takes place. “Well gee I don’t feel called”, feeling has nothing to do with it, it’s obedience to the call. Jeremiah didn’t feel called, Moses didn’t feel called, but they obeyed finding they were called.
Verse 3 is another area where Paul equates Jesus as God the Son, it was The Faith, which is also the Faith of Jesus, yet there is the measure of Faith, but there is also One Faith. Oh my, what to do? Our measure of faith can do many things, but in order for it to be Godly, it must be in God. The Faith of Jesus is the pathway to the Throne, thus it’s still One Faith with one purpose all in all. This also supports the concept of many being One, the measure of faith plus the Faith of Jesus is still One in purpose.
Unbelief is the position God is not able to begin, but doubt is the position God is not able to finish what He has begun. Verses 3 and 4 tie belief to faith, showing the danger of unbelief. If some don’t think God is able to begin, does it mean those who have believed cannot enter? No, not at all. The Romans were looking at unbelievers, but what about the faith of the Romans? Did they have faith in God? If so they wouldn’t judge, since God knows the events of tomorrow, the Romans do not.
As it is written, “that you might be justified in your saying, and might overcome when you are judged” (v. 4). The quote comes from Psalm 51, indicating repentance is the key, yet the Just live by faith (Rom 1:17). If the Just live, they live by the Life of Christ, thus they are the Just, being Justified. So what law are they under? Here the change is taking place to “Grace” pointing to the Law of the Spirit. Back in 3:27 it was the Law of faith, all these “might” areas show the Process, “might be justified” is the key, this area helps us see the difference between belief and faith. We believed then made entry, but faith must take over, thus if faith is looking to a future hope, then this is a process (v. 4).
Righteousness is now connected to the belief issue, if we fail to believe what does it do to the imputed righteousness? Would holding the Truth in unrighteousness negate the Righteousness of God? No, neither does it mean God is unrighteous. Because we twist the Righteousness of God into some self-serving lust doesn’t mean God is unrighteous.
This is leading to Grace, to the Jew the only justification was before the Law, although it was for the moment, showing they were not really justified at all. The only righteousness one had in doing the Law of Moses was self-righteousness, which is negated by the self. Paul admits some have judged him by saying even, “slanderously” he preached Grace as some sort of “let us do evil, that good many come”. However, it was not what he is saying at all, rather it’s allowing the Good of God to reign in us by the Spirit to remove the evil.
There is no way Jesus as the Son of man can judge the world if He lacks the Righteousness to do so. There is no way He can judge lacking Truth, for years the Jew held themselves out as the chosen ones, but Paul shows God is no Respecter of Persons, the Jew shall come out of the Law by faith, the Gentile around the Law by faith, but faith is still the key for both.
Was doing the Law of Moses able to remove one from being a sinner? No, it pointed out they were sinners. Was the Law of Faith pointing out sin? No, it was focused on Mercy, making Mercy the ability to enter the kingdom. What then? Are we the better? No, in no wise, for without Jesus, His Cross, His Blood, His Faith, His Righteousness, His Grace, the Father’s Mercy, the Holy Ghost bringing us the Seed and the Power, with all the things connected therein we fall within, “there is none righteous, no not one” (vs. 10-11). The Truth says we are better, but it also says we are better by Christ in us, not by some personal goodness we presume we hold.
Verses 9 through 12 again show God is no Respecter, all have come short whether Jew or Gentile, whether one does the Law of Moses or not. There is none righteous, not one, all have gone out of the way. From the heart the mouth speaks, all have fallen short, all are under the fall nature, thus all speak in fear of death, from the foundation of death (sepulcher), there is none who understands the Righteousness or the Grace of God. They have no idea what the Spirit of God is doing, so they seek the Law of Moses or social endeavors to feel good about themselves (vs. 3:14 & 3:9). Not good, what to do? There must be some example for us, some hope.
Wait, if there is none righteous, how then could God view Abraham as righteous? It becomes the point, Abraham the man wasn’t, but God saw something about the man, which allowed God to impute righteousness on the something, yet the man received. Abraham believed what God said; however, his belief was not for a day, not just in the good times, it was continual over a long span of time. Since Abraham believed God was able, it allowed God to “view” the belief of Abraham as having right standing, thus the man received the imputed righteousness, although the man himself lacked righteousness. The same premise became the action behind the Law of Moses, the person did a deed, the deed was looking upon as righteous, not the person. The person kept the day, meaning the day was holy, but the person was a non-entity.
Imputing means to give credit to a person based on something, to the natural mind it is one of the most difficult concepts of God to grasp. The natural mind confuses imputed as imparted, presuming it has something when it doesn’t. Imputed has many areas, one can impute sin on someone, based on the nature of the person, or then can impute favor based on the calling of God. All have come short, all have failed, so we could impute sin on everyone, but at the same time there is an escape by faith, thus we can also refuse to impute sin on people based on the possible escape set before all mankind. In Abraham’s case Paul was right, all have come short, but the belief of Abraham earned the imputed righteousness, so it could be by faith.
However, if God said nothing, Abraham would never come close to the imputed righteousness. Did Abraham work on his belief to impress God? No, did he work on his belief to gain right standing? No, God spoke, Abraham believed. From the belief Abraham gained imputed righteousness, so he could enter Covenant, so it might be by faith. Then the man held his hope, knowing whatever God promised, God was fully able to bring to pass. The hope was unseen, no evidence to prove it, other than the Word of the Lord. The belief of the man was the platform for his faith, the unseen hope based on the Word of the Lord was the producer of his faith. Unless he believed what God said, he was not going to enter faith in God. Belief become the Rhema ear, yet belief and faith are different, but connected in the Now, we need one to reach the other.
When one seeks after their own self-righteousness, whether it’s deeds of the Law, or some other attribute given them by God, or simply doing something to gain favor before man or God, they are motivated by ego and pride, not faith (v. 11). As soon as they begin to brag on their goodness, or their endeavor the Commandment falls and they are imputed dead.
The phrase “gone out of the way” is the one Greek word Ekklino meaning To move from the progressive right course. This shows how self-righteousness blinds us to the Righteousness of God. Self-righteousness is an outward act, to gain an inward feeling, God’s Righteousness is granted in the New Birth, thus by the New Man we have the Righteousness of God. Therefore, rather than earn it, we submit to it. The same is true with God’s Love, if we are Born Again we have it, thus rather than earn it, we receive it.
Verses 13 through 18 are somewhat revealing, “their throat is an open sepulcher”, a sepulcher is a grave, or something pertaining to death. Their tongues have “used deceit”, the poison of asps (serpents) are on their lips; whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness, whose feet are swift to shed blood, destruction and misery are in their ways, the way of Peace they have not known, there is no fear of God before their eyes. Yuck. Wait, isn’t he judging? No, it’s at the line, but not over it. Rather Paul is showing they were called to be the Oracles of God, they did the Law of Moses, they were separated from the Gentiles, yet look at them; did the Law of Moses make them any better? No, their own minds formed an illusion, there was no change in the person’s nature, they were still using the fallen nature in a religious endeavor. They were religious, but they were also nasty, backbiting and unbelieving. Just because we entered the kingdom of heaven, doesn’t mean the race if over, there is still a work to be done by the New Man.
This is the key to predestination, God knew what they would do, they didn’t. If we miss the point we will assume God will force us to accept, or make us reject the call; which would be against the nature the God, and completely against the Purpose of Jesus: “But as many as received Him, to them gave He Power to become the sons of God” (Jn 1:12). Clearly anyone has the opportunity to Receive Him is given the Power. Predestination is the acceptance of the Plan by having the Witness completing the effort. Predestination is a hope, if we are called, the plan for us is complete, all we need do is have the Witness to finish it.
Now we know, we are no longer ignorant, the things the Law says, it says to them under it who still use the nature of fallen man, they are those ruled by the spirit lusting to envy, since the Law of Moses was designed for the fallen nature. However, if one has the Nature of Christ, they are no longer subject to the Law of Moses, they have died on the Cross to live by Christ. Therefore, the Law of Moses nailed to the Cross, there it must remain: it served its purpose, it judged us as sinners, called us guilty and condemned us to death, so we agreed by accepting the Cross of Jesus to receive the death. Are we dead? Imputed, therefore we must understand the principle of imputing.
“These six things does the Lord hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto Him: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands shedding innocent blood, a heart devising wicked imaginations, feet swift in running to mischief, a false witness speaking lies, he who sows discord among the brethren” (Prov 6:16-17). These things are attached to people, but does God hate the person, or what the person does? These are ways, thus if the person is connected to the ways, we find God judges the ways, not people, so why would we judge people? The true Judgment of God is a matter of division, those who attach to certain ways fall into a group defined by the ways, those who attach to mercy in another group. God is no Respecter of persons, since He judges ways.
The obvious conclusion, “we have all sinned, and there is none righteous, no not one” (excluding Jesus), which also defines how both those of Israel, and the Gentile failed at the Righteousness of God, whether they did the Law of Moses or not (v. 3:10).
Verses 19 and 20 lay out a premise, the Law speaks to those under the Law, regardless of the Law. The Law of Moses spelled out the law of sin and death, pointing to all sin, pronouncing those to whom the sin was attached guilty. There is no excuse, the Law has spoken, thus the Law of Moses is Justice, as such it cannot truly justify. No Law designed to find someone guilty, can also find them innocent. The term Justification is really a legal term, meaning to remove guilt, remission means to remove what caused the guilt. Justification is an act, thus the New Man is not created after God’s Justification, rather we find the New Man is after God’s True Holiness and Righteousness, the Righteousness gives us standing to be Justified, the Holiness the method used.
Once Justification is Declared there is no condemnation, in order for it to by faith, but it’s predicated on one walking in the Spirit, not after the flesh (Rom 8:1). It begins with the Righteousness of Jesus being imputed, which is an act of Mercy, but if we are Born Again we have God’s Righteousness within, or imparted. From within is where the work takes place to find our souls innocent, since we imputed the flesh dead. The soul was not the problem, it was created by God, rather it accepted the problem, becoming associated to the problem (flesh).
The Righteousness of God was not created when God gave the Law to Moses, rather God’s Righteousness was displayed before the very beginning then manifested when God involved Himself in the affairs of man, confirmed in the manner in which He dwelt with the children, recorded in the Law and Prophets for anyone to see and study (v. 22). The Righteousness of God is seen over and over again, He knows exactly how to deal with people in a manner void of hypocrisy or partially.
The Righteousness of God, which comes to us by the faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon (imputed) who believe, for there is no difference between Jew and Gentile (v. 23). This connects to, “But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become sons of God, even to them who believe on His Name: which were born not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God” (Jn 1:12-13). It begins with the imputing Upon, rather than in, the New Birth imparts within, rather than upon. If the New Man is created after the Righteousness of God, and if the Righteousness of Jesus is the Scepter to the Kingdom, then it’s not a matter of earning the Righteousness, but a matter of receiving it in the New Birth (v. 21-23).
The Glory is the result of being Glorified, how can one become glorified, unless they are first justified, but they can’t be justified while the sin nature or the Law of Moses is condemning them guilty (v. 23). The declaration of Justification finds the price is paid by imputing death on the Cross, but the real work begins afterward to remove the tares and deeds relating to the old man.
In verse 24 we move to Grace, as it’s based in the Spirit and New Covenant. From the Law of faith pointing to entry, to sustaining in the Faith by the Law of the Spirit. The Law of faith was not part of the Law of Moses, since the Law of Moses was based on the unbelief of the children, having nothing to do with faith. The Abrahamic Covenant became part of the Law of Moses, as did the tithe of Jacob. The Law of faith is based in the measure of faith, but the measure of faith was unable to obtain the promise (Heb 11:39). It was reaching, but didn’t know what it was reaching to. It’s evident in the disciples, they heard Jesus speak of the Cross and Resurrection, but before they were Born Again they had no idea what they pertained to (Mark 9:32). Even after we have the Spirit there is a work, as the letters to the Corinthians show.
The key to verse 24 is the wording “being justified freely”, the word Being shows the Process, the activity is the Justification, freely also explains it ‘s by Grace. The word Freely is the Greek Dorean one of the many words used for Gift, it is not Charis (Grace), but how the gift of Charis is given, Dorean means freely given to the person without cause by the person, with a purpose benefiting the receiver. There was no cause, or reason within us for God to give us Charis, except for what Jesus did, therein lays the Cause.
Verse 25 isn’t talking about us, rather Jesus is the propitiation, it’s His Blood producing the process. With the New Man we are able to declare His Righteousness for the Remission of sins. The sins are past, thus we are forgiven, the Justification brings us to a place where the sin conscientiousness is of the past, there will be no remembrance of sin when we are Glorified. This connects us to the Blood of Jesus cleaning us from all unrighteousness, the Blood is the New Covenant, the New Covenant is Grace. Pointing to Remission, or the concept of placing us in a position where sin is not at issue, or a consideration. We know the Gloried position is Salvation, even the Salvation of our souls complete. This verse also gives us direction, if it’s by faith, then it’s a now confidence on a future hope. The Declaration is made, the process is on going.
The word Redemption is the Greek Apolutrosis meaning A releasing effected by a payment of a ransom, or the liberation effected by the paying of a ransom. A ransom is a release of property or a person in exchange for a payment, theologically it has been defined as a payment for the release of each and every person on the earth since the fall to the end of time from sin and it’s consequences by the Blood of Jesus. This connects to Hebrews 10:38-39 where the word “saved” is the Greek Peripoiesis meaning to obtain a purchased possession. When we received Jesus we accepted the premise of being bought with a price, the process of Grace is the means Jesus uses to purify the purchased possession (Eph 5:26-27).
The word Propitiation is the Greek Hilasterion meaning the Mercy Seat, it was used in reference to the cover of the ark of the covenant in the Holy of Holies, which was sprinkled with the blood of the expiatory victim on the annual day of atonement (this rite signifying the life of the people, the loss of which they had merited by their sins, was offered to God in the blood as the life of the victim, and the Law by this ceremony was appeased). Jesus as the Son of man is the place of Mercy unto Grace, as the Son of God by His faithfulness gains us access. To accomplish this we obtained the New Man (Spirit of Truth) as our Passport, which is Grace provided through the Blood of Jesus, thus Grace is the only means one has to do the things of Grace.
We declare His Righteousness, by the work of the Righteousness in us. This is leading to having the Spirit; without the Righteousness of God, there is no justification. By the New Birth we have the Understanding of how the Just live by faith. All this so we might be the Just, yet the Justifier is Jesus in us, based on our belief in what He said, and our faith in what He will do. The Process is not a mind game, it’s real, we believe the Report, our faith is squarely in God to do complete what He promised (v. 26).
Having seen this is all God, and God alone, where can we boast? What issue can we say, “by my faith”? Where can we puff out our chest and march up and down telling everyone how we were able to obtain? By what goodness on our part? None, there is none righteous, no not one.
We are justified by the faith of Christ, our faith is in the ability of Jesus to justify us. The premise is based on what Jesus did, thus the Faith of Christ overcame death, hell and the grave, presenting us the victory in the New Birth.
The Jews came out of the Law by faith, the Gentile around the Law through faith, but the point is centered on faith, showing the measure of faith is given to all men, Jew or Gentile (v. 29-30).
The Law proved itself, it pointed at all mankind as it identified the sin nature, showing how man’s self-righteousness ended as a mind game, yet God’s Righteousness is holy. There is no way man’s self-righteousness is going to justify them before God, what form of Righteousness is God going to call equal to His? His, the same Righteousness we have in the New Birth.
When we saw the Law of Moses for it’s purpose, we agreed, we picked up our cross imputing the flesh dead on the Cross. Therein ends the Law of Moses for us, it is nailed to the Cross with the Ten Commandments, those writings were against us.
All this ties together, showing how much Jesus did for us. If He took on the sins of times past, times present and times future, don’t we think He can handle ours? If He died for all mankind, won’t His Faithfulness, Righteousness, Justification, Redemption, Propitiation and Blood be more than enough to get us through this? However, we need something, we need the evidence of the Faithfulness, Faith, Righteousness, Justified Position, Redeeming ability, Mercy, and Blood in a Covenant. The New Man or Holy Spirit is the seal to the Covenant as our confidence, we know this is real by the signs of the spiritual activity in our lives. However, any of us can reach back and obtain some wile from the old man, or retain some wile. The cleaning process is in effect, but we must join it for it to be effective in our lives. The process is changing our souls from flesh centered to Spirit centered, in the process there are times when we pick up something we should not, the Holy Spirit will quicken or convict us, getting us back in the process.
Abraham believed God, based on the belief, God was able to make Covenant with him, but what was the basis of belief? Something Abraham made up? No, he heard, then believed God. Verse 2 also shows Abraham was justified, so was he innocent? No, how then could he be justified? He believed, it began the Process to reach the promise presented; therefore, Abraham was considered Just based his continual belief. God called something a not to Abraham as a were to God, so God could enter Covenant with Abraham, thus pointing to a future event completely Holy to bring Justification to mankind, it’s what the Romans forgot.
This is Abraham pertaining to the flesh, thus the righteousness and justification work together, since Paul equates justified and right standing with the belief of Abraham, it shows these are not efforts of the flesh, but things within the person, something Paul will address in chapter 7. This also shows Abraham was justified to enter Covenant, it didn’t mean he was Justified in the same manner as we. The wording “were justified” in verse 2 is the Greek Dikaioo which means to have, or to be considered to have a right standing, or position. The justification for Abraham was based on the imputed righteousness to grant him a position to make Covenant with God relating to earth and mankind. The heavenly purpose was not known to Abraham, since he was earthly in nature. The justification Abraham received was imputed as was the righteousness, yet it was a preview or shadow of the Justification we go through, but not the same.
The Gospel was presented to us, we believed based on the information provided, but the source of our belief was still information provided by God, the purpose is to establish a foundation so it could be by faith. We have nothing to brag in, neither did Abraham. If Abraham would have given sacrifice without God telling him, or circumcise himself without God telling him, he would have something to brag in, but not in God.
The one who brings the Covenant lays out the duties of the Covenant, God brought Covenant to Abraham, the man believed as he accepted the terms, he didn’t attempt to change the nature of God to fit his thinking, he didn’t insert his agenda into the Covenant.
Verse 4 again brings in the Imputed Doctrine, the word Reckoned means Imputed, thus the Reward is not Imputed by works, but by Grace. Here again we find Grace is the issue, the Blood of Jesus allows the Imputing by God upon us. We imputed the flesh with the old nature dead on the Cross, then God imputed us Justified by our belief and faith in the Blood of Jesus to clean us from all unrighteousness.
It begins with God making the decision to impute Righteousness on us because we believed the presented Truth. The ability for us to impute the old nature dead is based on what Jesus did, we do not impute ourselves justified, God does, we receive it. When we received what the Father told us, He then made another decision based on the words of Jesus, “Father forgive them”, we became blessed because our iniquities were forgiven, and our sins covered; however, it doesn’t mean they are Remitted, we are forgiven and covered so we could make entry. This Mercy requirement is based on the Cross, we are to forgive as we are forgiven. Seems like a work, but in truth it’s not. We are not forgiving based on our works, we are forgiving based on being forgiven.
God made the choice not to “impute sin” on us; so, did God play a big mind game? No, it’s based on what Jesus did for us, our acceptance placed us in a different position, it’s still nothing to brag in. The information, Cross, measure of faith, knowledge and truth were all supplied by God. The Law of Faith brought us to the Cross, then the Process began, but God called those things which were not to us, as finished to Him. We agreed, but it didn’t mean they were finished, rather it granted us a faith position to reach to. Paul also connects belief to faith, Abraham believed, God imputed the righteousness, then faith became the issue (v. 5).
This all connects back to 3:24, we are being justified freely by God’s Grace, not our works, but through the Redemption In Jesus Christ, thus we must be in Jesus, as He is in us by Grace. Verse 3:26 points to the Righteousness of God, not man’s self-righteousness, yet the only way to obtain the Righteousness is to be Born Again (Eph 4:24). A person is then Justified by faith, without the deeds of the Law of Moses (v. 3:28). Then we find God is not a Respecter, since both Jew and Gentile have the ability to come to the Lord. Verse 3:30 shows the Jew of the circumcision is justified by faith, showing they came out of the Law, but the Gentile or un-circumcised through faith, or around the Law of Moses by faith.
From the prior verses one might wrongfully conclude God hated all those in the Shadow, since they all lacked His Righteousness, but it’s not the case at all. They could not obtain the Righteousness of God, which is different from someone who uses self-righteousness rather than the provided Righteousness of God.
Chapter 4 could be entitled the “Imputed Chapter”, the Greek word will show up several times as the English “imputed”, “counted”, or “reckoned”, laying out the premise of being able to say “we’re Justified” when we’re still in the Process. Faith often looks to the result, as it speaks of the result of the Hope as being fact. It’s not wrong, or out of character, God not only allowed Abram to call himself Abraham, God ordained it, yet the man didn’t live up to either name (Abram – exalted father, or father of many, Abraham – father of many nations, or multitude). How could this be? Did God allow a lie? No, Faith to the Hope, is the promise. If we said, “I’m going to the store and buy some milk”, would it be prophetic or faith? Really neither, but it does show the principle. Our hope is there is a store when we get there, adding we hope the store has milk, plus we hope the milk is good. It’s not faith since it’s predicated on knowledge and performance, but it does show we have many areas giving us the lessons of faith. The same is true with the light switch, the performance is for the light switch to work, it’s not faith, but knowledge regarding performance. Faith is the evidence of something not seen, if we have seen a light switch work, we then have a working knowledge of its past performance, indicating it’s based on belief, not faith, if it were faith the light would go on every time, yet we know they burn out.
Our Knowledge regarding the Holy Ghost tells us this is a vital area, from the words of Paul we gain the knowledge of imputing, we must believe the Cross was real, the Resurrection did happen, plus believing all the circumstances as reported. If we allow one area of unbelief to enter, it will work its way into the vital “organ” of our belief, soon we will form other areas of unbelief. Our imputed action calls for continual belief in something we have not seen, yet we know happened. The day wherein we believe it didn’t work, is the day we believe in unbelief, the old man will resuscitate himself based on our unbelief. The voice of the stranger says, “it didn’t work”, faith must respond with, “it is working”. Abraham knew the promise was firm, but he also knew he had to join to it, or miss it, thus he knew it was a process, the test of his faith proved it.
Abraham is the father of circumcision, the father of multitudes, or many nations, but he is not the “father of faith”. The metaphor “father” means one who starts something, or is head over it, surely Abraham didn’t begin faith. Abraham is not the father of the measure of faith either, but nonetheless he is a vital lesson regarding belief connected to faith. Let’s not make the mistake in the process of our learning of elevating the man above what God has. Abraham was a human being, just like the rest of us, the man was not Born Again, but he did have the same measure of faith we do, thus if he obtained, so can we. James looks at the test of Abraham after he obtained the Promise: same Abraham two different lessons. Here in Romans 4 we view how God imputed something to Abraham, and how it applies to the ability for both Jew and Gentile to enter in.
If Abraham obtained his status with God through works, then the man had a position in which he could brag, but not before God (v. 2). Our Justification is by God, any justification one obtained before the Law was earthly, feeble and momentary.
It was God who made the Covenant with Abraham, then it was God who did the imputing. God presented the means by which Abraham could believe, thus Abraham believed the word spoken. If God never talked to Abraham, never gave the man evidence of God’s existence, then Abram would still be looking at those dumb idols. However, Abraham knew idols were mute and void of action, but God promised, it was all the man needed. The belief of Abraham had roots, Noah for one; nonetheless Noah’s experience and God promising Abraham were much different. Noah had to build the Ark, God didn’t make Noah’s arms water-wings. With Abraham it appeared impossible, yet God said it was possible. The Covenant with Noah required a token on God’s part, not Noah’s. Noah was obedient, thus God gave the Token, but with Abraham, God had Abraham provide the token. Both indicate the Doctrine of baptisms, we give a token, so does the Holy Ghost.
Abraham’s “justification” is far different from ours, in his case it was granting him a position form where he could enter Covenant regarding the offspring of a nation, for us it’s because we have entered a Covenant no human has a the ability to obtain on their own. Nonetheless, the foundation was the same, Belief unto Faith. The issue is the very focus of Mark 16:16-18, it wasn’t the signs, but the continual Belief. The same is true with John’s account in the Gospel, so we might Believe, the foundation connects to our faith to keep us stable and sure looking to the Hope God has set before us.
Okay, how did we get from “Abraham believed God, to it was counted unto him as righteousness” to “justification”? Three words of interest, Righteousness, Justification, and Sanctification, they are interconnected, but mean different things. Righteousness we know means someone who has observed the Laws regarding a higher authority to the point they have a Right to stand in the presence of the higher authority. Self-righteousness under the Law of Moses, gained a person the right to stand before the Law, but not before God (Gal 3:11). Justification is being found, or imputed as innocent of the accusation, or better declared not guilty, whether they did it or not. This is the concept behind the phrase, “innocent until proven guilty”, regardless of the facts in the accusation. Sanctified is holy, or being separated by God in order for God to deal with us as children. There is no way any of us could receive the Spirit of Christ while we are accused, found guilty, and under the condemnation of sin. There is no way we could obtain the Spirit while the Law of Moses still pronounced us guilty, thus the Cross became the place where it begins. The Law of Moses and the Ten Commandments are nailed to the Cross (Col 2:14-16). We impute our flesh, old nature, old man, as the person we were dead on the Cross by what Jesus did for us. Making the Cross a place of death, which is our side of the Covenant. God is the God of the Living, He will not impute us dead, but He will give us the authority and ability to impute ourselves dead by the Cross of Jesus. Then we obtain a new body in Christ, opening the door for our Justification, we are then proclaimed not guilty by Jesus through the Resurrection, but the result of Justification connects to Remission (Rom 3:25), yet Remission is the declaration of complete innocence, so much so the concept of sin is removed from the equation, yet it’s still by association to what Jesus did for us.
Paul is explaining how it can happen, John confirmed it. The Record in heaven is the written account of all things in a past tense medium, the Record consists of the Father, Word and Holy Ghost (I Jn 5:7). The Witness is different, it’s the means by which the Record is being carried out, the Water relates to the Mercy of the Father, the Blood to the Grace of the Word, the Spirit in us is the gift of the Holy Ghost. God has “declared” us justified, righteous, innocent, free of guilt, free of accusations and glorified when we believed in Jesus. If it were not the case, then God could not grant us the Spirit, but since God considers us dead to be free of the Law, then we can obtain the same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead. Therefore, if God will not impute sin on us, our sins are covered, meaning we cannot impute sin on others, but it’s still not Remission.
Abraham didn’t know a thing about the Cross, but he believed God was able to do something, God imputed righteousness toward the man’s belief, thus Paul was correct when he said there is none righteous, no not one, thus God imputed righteousness to an ”it” or something the man did, not the man (vs. 3). The same is true with us, our belief is an “it”, God accepts our imputed death on the Cross based on the “it”. Giving God the ability to apply His Mercy, we in turn forgive, causing the Mercy to be imparted as part of our nature. From there we move to the grave, then the Power of His Resurrection, yet we live, but the life we live is by the Faith of the Son of God.
Once we are dead on the Cross (so to speak), then we can receive the Seed of God. The Spirit is a product of the Seed, by the Mercy, Grace and Spirit the Report is being carried out in the Process until we reach the Hope of being Glorified.
This takes us back to Romans 3:22, “the Righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them who believe”. The Righteousness of God is by the Faith of Jesus; however it’s “upon” and “unto”, not “In”, indicating Imputed. When we believe the Righteousness of God is upon us, then comes the New Birth which imparts God’s Righteousness in us.
Belief is the first step, after we obtain the Spirit then we walk by faith as the Spirit leads us in the footsteps of Jesus. Those footsteps are pure Righteousness and Holiness based on the Faith of Jesus, thus the New Man is created after God’s True Holiness and Righteousness. Our faith in God allows us to Follow Jesus by the Spirit to reach the same Place Jesus waits for us.
The declaration and the granting are different, God makes the declaration based on our belief, but the impartation comes based on faith. When we believed in the Cross God didn’t look at us and say, “Oh my, I have never seen such great belief, oh I am so impressed”; rather He saw, “Father forgive them, they know now what they do”, coupled with our belief allowing God to impute Mercy on us. We then entered the process and made a decision to forgive as we are forgiven, then God’s mercy was imparted to complete the decision. We then asked for the Spirit, wherein God imputed the seal of the Holy Spirit by the Holy Ghost giving us the Seed, which moved from our faith in God would, to our belief we have received. The Seed then took root, and grew until we were Born Again. The New Man became our guide and means to bring the justification and righteousness into reality. All this still fits to you are saved by Grace through Faith, not of your own, it is The Gift of God. It’s our belief in God bringing the foundation to have Faith in God, to bring the result of the hope set before us, thus the Gift is having the Spirit.
Did we work to earn the favor? No, for those who work the reward is Not imputed (reckoned) of Grace, but of debt. We think God owes us because we did something, putting us in bondage, not Grace. The Law of Moses was of debt, one did an act, the Law owed them. To those who work not, but Believe, on them God moves to Justify them by the Spirit based on faith. What is all this, more important where? The Law of Moses called for works of the flesh, but once the flesh was used, sin was again declared, making their self-righteousness unrighteous. We believed inside, we imputed ourselves dead by an act of our souls (inside), our measure of faith is inside, the Seed unto the Spirit is inside, the work is inside, nothing is by the flesh, thus we are free of the condemnation as long as we know the work is internal producing an external result, not the other way around. Once Jesus displayed the Righteousness of God, all other forms of righteousness became unrighteousness, therefore they became sin (I Jn 5:17).
Without the imputing, there is no way an Impartation can take place in our lives. We would remain flesh until death took hold, but at the time it would be our own death, making us debtors without hope. We simply agree with the Law of Moses, allow the death of Jesus to be our death, moving on with the Spirit to become partakers of the First Resurrection.
There is even a process to the process, first we receive the Revelation, apply our belief to the information, God imputes, we act on the imputing by forgiving (an internal endeavor), then Mercy is imparted. We ask to be baptized with the Holy Ghost, we believe we receive by watering the Seed with the imparted Mercy, still an internal act manifested. The New Birth is a promise, our faith receives the promise to the end of the Process, even the salvation of our souls. All this is found in the saying, “the Just shall live by faith, but if any man fall back My soul shall have no pleasure in him, but we are not of them who draw back to perdition, but of them who believe unto the saving of the soul”.
Paul points to David as a prophet, moving from the Law testifying of Jesus, to Abraham’s faith, to the Prophets testifying of Jesus, thereby bringing the hammer to the stronghold by the Truth of Scripture. David was king and prophet, thus he becomes a voice regarding God’s views pointing to the Forgiveness of sins, not the Remission. We know the Righteousness of Jesus is found in the New Man (Eph 4:24), this has to pertain to God Imputing righteousness upon us giving us permission and standing to enter the New Covenant until the time we reach the New Birth.
Abraham is the example of Imputing, but we one might be prone to say, “yeah, well it’s all a big mind game, saying someone has something when the they don’t”. It would be true except for some facts, God made sure the Promise was of faith when He called the man Abraham, thus it wasn’t what God saw in the man, it was what God saw for the man. The same is true based with our belief, God doesn’t grant a thing regarding Mercy or Grace based on what He sees in us, it’s based on what He sees for us in Jesus.
Imputing on our part is based on granted permission promised by God for us, based on what Jesus did. David couldn’t impute himself dead, the Cross was not a fact for him, it was still prophetic in nature. No one is going to be Resurrected until they die first, it was the Resurrection declaring Jesus as the Son of God (Rom 1:3-4). How then can we say we are sons of God, if we don’t have the same Spirit who raised Jesus? We can’t, but the impossible has been made possible by the Godly act of Imputing. The concept is based on the declaration of God, then the performance of God to bring the declaration into being. This is the same premise as “let there be light”, was there? No, but because of the declaration the light manifested. Our belief is no different, we believe in what God said, He looks at the belief (not us), then operates based on our belief. Then our faith declares God is fully able to produce in us what He said He could.
Before we are Born Again God saw us as if we were Born Again, if not He could never grant us the Spirit. The imputing action of each of us taking the Cross of Jesus is both a belief and faith issue. The Cross is past tense, becoming an issue of belief, yet it might be by faith, projecting the death to the Life found in Christ, thus Paul tells us we must believe Jesus is raised from the dead. The evidence is when we accept the death of Jesus in our place, faith then moves to the Resurrection and the declaration. Then we receive the Spirit based on the Power of the Resurrection, then the declaration is being completed by the Witness proclaiming us as sons of God.
The clarity will show self-righteousness is something someone continually works to obtain, the second they have it, it’s lost, then they have to begin all over again. Jesus never worked to obtain righteousness, He operated from it. It will be the central thrust here, we don’t work to obtain, we do things because we have obtained.
Verses 7 begins with “Blessed are they”, not “blessed are we”, so the prophecy is not limited to the Jew alone, but to any who fit the “they”. Then the key, “whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not Impute sin” (v. 7-8). Both Iniquities and Sins are seen here, but the sins are not forgiven, they are covered. What gives? The Greek means to Cover over, which is what our belief does when we believe God has forgiven us. Until we pass the Cross and enter the Remission process of Justification we are still sinners, sold under sin, thus God has to view us in a way granting us permission to accept the Cross and the Spirit. The permission is the “it”, by our belief in Jesus, the Father can invoke the words “Father forgive them” on us which is a covering, or unction. Then we move into the Cross, impute the old nature dead, along with the old man, his deeds, and the flesh. Once we are dead, we then live by the Mercy of the Father, to reach the place to obtain the Spirit to have Life more abundantly. Rather than being a soul joined to the flesh, we are a soul being saved by the Spirit to be Spirit, since the flesh is imputed dead. We have Faith in the Blood of Jesus to clean us, bringing us into the fullness of the New Covenant. Once we believe, the Father views the Blood and Water as a covering on us until we move from imputed to imparted. Very complex, very impossible for man, but not for God. The premise is still our souls being regenerated by the Spirit to become Spiritual in nature. The soul is a creation of God, God is Spirit, the purpose is to bring the soul back to its Spiritual roots, bringing to pass the saying, “make man in our image”.
We find, “for we say faith was reckoned (imputed) to Abraham for righteousness” (v. 9). Hello Paul, how can faith be imputed? Wasn’t it the belief of Abraham causing the imputed righteousness? Ahh, the man’s belief enabled God to impute the righteousness, once it happened then it could be by faith, yet it started with the man’s belief, thus the Covenant gave the man evidenced hope, which involved faith. The same is true with us, we believe, God imputes His Righteousness on us, then faith can be added toward the hope. Yet, without a Covenant secured in God we have no hope, thus belief is the door for entry, so it can be by faith. This is the importance of continual belief, once belief slips, faith will soon follow.
Without the Imputing process we have nothing, we would not be able to impute death based on the Cross of Jesus, God would not be able to impute righteousness on us, nor Mercy, or the Seed, there would be no one in the New Covenant.
Imputing is a vital procedure to the New Covenant, but it must be kept within the confines of its intended purpose. Do we have anything to brag in? Well we did believe, but God gave the information for us to believe. All this is based on the Plan, God has the Design for each of us defined in the Report in heaven, the Witness is carrying out the plan in us.
Now we look at Abraham, when was the righteousness reckoned (imputed), after he was circumcised, or before? Before, the Token of the covenant came after, thus when God imputed righteousness to Abraham, the man was still among the uncircumcised. How about Noah, when did God produce the Token, before or after the flood? After, so what about our water baptism, is it before or after the Death and Resurrection of Jesus? After, thus we believe, when we entered the water we accepted the Mercy of God, which means we allowed God to impute Mercy on us. Our token was the acceptance of the procedure of loosing God’s Mercy. The same is true with circumcision of the flesh, it’s a token allowing the person to accept the conditions of the Covenant.
Paul isn’t saying Abraham was righteous, rather he shows by an act based on information from God causing the man to believe, thus it was the belief allowing God to impute something to the belief, yet he man gained. What about the children in the wilderness? The complete opposite, God had to give them a law to keep from looking at them.
Noah was saved to preserve the future, yet among the people of the time Noah was the best available. Among the people of Abraham’s day God found one who had a need, who was willing to believe God was able to fill the need.
The circumcision of Abraham didn’t impute righteousness on him, neither did it bring the belief or faith, it was a token after the fact for those of the future to know the process which brought Abraham into the covenant (V. 11). The same is true for us, the token of water baptism doesn’t mean we produced the Mercy of the Father, it means we accepted it. The token of being baptized with the Holy Ghost doesn’t mean we caused the Holy Ghost to bring the Seed, it means we believe we received.
Here in verse 11 is the reason we don’t call Abraham the father of faith, the reason for the token is so he could be the father of them who believe, though they are not circumcised, the righteousness might be imputed on them also. So, who would the they be? The Gentiles, this points to those who are not circumcised, showing when we believed God imputed Righteousness to them as well, so it could be by faith to reach the impartation. It’s still a belief issue, so it might be by faith. Circumcision regarding a Covenant began with Abraham; this is clear in verse 12 telling us Abraham is the “father of circumcision”, regardless of how many other nations or people use circumcision, the only person who did it as a Token regarding a Covenant with God was Abraham. By the belief and imputed righteousness we can view the belief of Abraham, showing how it might be by faith, to the end of the promise, which Abraham showed us before he was circumcised. This pertains to us, the circumcision of the heart is after we are granted entry into the Body.
This is interesting since it shows the Promise was not to Abraham, since it involved the world, including both Jew and Gentile, but it might be “through the Righteousness of faith”, this doesn’t say the righteousness by faith, rather this points to the Faith of Jesus, as He obtained the position for us so the Father could impute Righteousness upon us.
For if the Promise was only to those under the Law, then it wasn’t to the world, thus it couldn’t be by faith, yet it was not to them of the Law, because the Law works the wrath of God, but Faith seeks the Grace of God (vs. 14-16).
Paul’s point is valid, we can see why God gave us this letter to the Romans as our first book of Order and Establishment. In verse 16 we find this is a Process, “to the end the promise might be sure”, then we see the “faith of Abraham”, which also gives us process. It was his belief, then the imputed righteousness, so it might be by faith. This still doesn’t say he is the father of faith, only he was the first person to whom righteousness was imputed, as he became the “father of us all”. If it’s the case, what about God? This is the beginning of the process; we believe, God imputes, we move to faith, it’s possible thorough God.
Verse 17 shows the meaning of the name Abraham, although the Hebrew shows it’s “father of a multitude”, God said, “I have made thee a father of many nations”, which would include Jew and Gentile. If we leave it, “father of a multitude” it would only mean the Jews, who define it so, but if we listen to God, we can see it includes the Gentiles, which is Paul’s point.
All this shows when we came into this, the groundwork was done, the preview set, the efforts done, all we did was allow the given measure of faith to work. If we did nothing but allow what God gave us to do what God said it would, why then do we brag? It’s God who quickened the dead, we are the dead who imputed death by the Cross of Jesus, whom God has quickened by the Spirit.
Here in verse 17 we find the imputed theory, God calls what we can be, done, which is reflected in the Report. Does it mean it’s done? No, it’s the mistake of the Romans, assuming they were Justified by the Declaration, while avoiding the procedure.
Abraham was faced with facts, so are we. How can anyone be dead, yet live? How can anyone be Born Again? The same dilemma Nicodemus faced. We have to be dead to be Resurrected, but if we are going to be Resurrected as Jesus, we must have the same Spirit of Holiness, but how? We have all come short, how can this be? By God calling something which is not to us, as a were to Him based on what He sees for us in Jesus. We then believe what God said, regardless of the evidence at hand or the facts. This doesn’t mean we do the talking, it means we do the receiving of what God said.
There was no hope for Abraham, other than the hope God gave him. Abraham believed in hope, leading to his faith. Without belief, our faith has no foundation for the unseen, we will toss our faith around like a bucket of water. The unseen hope produced a target for faith, but the information produced the belief, it was the belief producing the imputed righteousness. The wording of God to the man Abraham was, “so shall thy seed be”, it was not “if things turn out okay, maybe your seed”, or “who how’s what the future holds, maybe”, it was “shall”, just as Jesus told us if we continue to believe, the phrase, “shall be saved” applies (v. 18).
Now from belief to faith, the process of faith reaches to the hope, being not weak in faith, considering the facts of this own body, with the evidence of those facts, he staggered not at the promise thorough unbelief (questioning the promise given), but was strong in faith (reaching to the hope), as he gave God the glory (vs. 19-20). Coupling belief and faith, the two elements in the Now keeping us on the path of Righteousness. The main Hope is to be glorified, but Abraham gained the promise while still in the flesh, thus showing we have many hopes within the hope.
Being fully persuaded in what God said as well as what God was able to complete is the key to all this. We imputed the old nature dead, but is it? We said so, do we believe the Cross is able? We asked for the Spirit to get us through this, but did we believe it? Our faith will show if we did or not. We work on faith, but we must also work on belief.
The wording Being fully persuaded is the Greek word Plerophoreo meaning he held to the conclusion of the promise, not the things between. Adding, “Therefore it was imputed to him for Righteousness”, it wasn’t what God saw then, it was what God saw in the future, thus when Abraham believed, God saw the man being fully persuaded, holding tight to the words spoken, “so shall thy seed be”, until the Promise was in hand (v. 22).
Was it just for the man alone? No, it was written for us, so we may have the same opportunity to know what Imputed means, how it works, and why it works (v. 22-23). If we believe on Him who raised Jesus from the dead, if we believe Jesus was delivered for our offenses, and was raised Again (ascended) for our Justification, then we enter the Process knowing God is fully able to bring the Report to pass in our lives.
Later Paul will talk more about this showing belief is a heart issue, not intellectual. We need a New Heart, one with established capability to grant us the Belief to couple with the Faith to reach the end of the Promise, even the salvation of our souls.
The lesson of Abraham is vital, his faith was able to override the facts, thus faith and fact are different, the world looks at facts to make a guess at Truth, or determines Faith as someone’s religious connection. Something can be a Fact, but not Truth, mind power is never of faith. A counterfeit fifty dollar bill is a fact, but it’s a lie since it’s an unlawful copy of the original, thus it lacks Truth. The counterfeit can be seen, in some cases used, but it’s also evidence against the offender. The enemy comes against us with Facts, not Truths. We were sinners, a fact, but truth says blessed are those to whom God will not impute sin.
Abraham had points to his stand, 1) he staggered not at the Promise through unbelief, 2) he was strong in faith, by giving glory to God, and 3) he was fully persuaded what God promised, God was able to perform. Belief is the first step, then came the imputed righteousness, then faith reaching to the hope. Remove the belief, you remove the imputed righteousness, removing “it might be through faith”. However, remove the promise, and you have to remove everything. We have a promise presented by the Father, secured by the Son, enforced by the Holy Ghost.
When adversity came Abraham didn’t run off looking for another promise, or run about seeking another word. Some of the acts of the man proved his love for God, without him having to go around telling everyone. Before righteousness was imputed he had to venture into Egypt, face his fears, make decisions to end strife, rescue Lot, faced the king of Sodom, found Melchizedek the priest of the most High, all before righteousness was imputed, yet we just found the imputed righteousness was based on what the man would do, not what he did do. However, the experiences all benefited his belief.
The Romans forgot this was a process, they removed the word “being” from the phrase “being justified”, thinking their faith was so powerful and wonderful they were completely innocent, ye they judged others, which is evidence showing they weren’t innocent. The innocent never impute sin on people, they treat people in the same manner as God treats them, innocent.
In the concept of predestination we find Justification, Paul now talks about the Justification of God, a process no one can enter without faith in God, yet no one can finish without the New Birth. The “Therefore” continues the thought of being delivered by the Cross, yet it’s the Justification is by the Power of the Resurrection. The phrase “being justified’ declares a process, yet God has imputed us Justified. Based on what? The potential of the New Man to get us to the promised goal. The Word in us is separating and dividing, it’s fully able to save ours souls, allowing us to stand before God (Heb 4:12-13 & James 1:21). Our Peace with God is a sign of the Process, but Peace with God, without a fear of God leads to a false confidence, rather than a true confidence. (v. 1).
Verses 1 and 2 would make it seem as if we have access by our faith, but in Ephesians we find we have access by the one Spirit unto the Father (Eph 2:18), and we have access and boldness with confidence by the Faith of Jesus (Eph 3:12). Here it’s “into this Grace” wherein we stand, thus our measure of faith brought us to the place to enter Grace, to be justified by God’s Grace.
Tribulations work patience, patience gains the experience, the experience leads to the hope, surely we can see this is a Process (vs. 4-5). It’s the Hope making us not ashamed, but hope seen is not hope at all. The Hope is before us, faith then reaches to the Hope, thus the path of training and experience builds our faith. Our hope is sustained in us by the New Man, for the Love of God is shed abroad in our hearts, by the Holy Ghost, which indicates the New Birth (circumcised heart). The word Abroad means Poured out, much like the prophecy of Joel.
Verse 6 points to the Cross, showing how Jesus died for the ungodly, which would include both Jew and Gentile. The allegory shows people die for causes, but Jesus died for people. Verse 7 shows it was by God’s love, not our good works, or even our potential good works causing Jesus to die on the Cross, for we were ungodly sinners, found guilty by the Law of sin and death, then condemned to death, yet Jesus redeemed us from death by paying the price for us.
Verse 9 says we are being Justified by His Blood, which joins to His Faith. The Blood is the New Covenant, thus in the New Covenant of Grace we are saved from the wrath of God, insuring us Peace with God. It’s not our blood, it atones for nothing, but the precious Blood of Jesus grants us the power of the Resurrection.
Once we were freed from the snare of the devil, God began a process unto the salvation of our souls. The best evidence of Grace at work is exposure, when the old roots, the wiles of strongman, strongholds, and the other self-traits binding us to the earth are made manifest we can be assured the Word is in us dividing and separating, cleaning and bringing us to the process of being Justified by Christ in us, the hope of glory.
This exposure is within, the deception of unbelief, the illusion of the deeds of the old man keep us blinded, but praise the Lord, the New Man is not blinded. Often we can see faults in others, long before we even suspect we have any faults. The New Man knows our faults, He is searching out the Leaven on a daily basis, not to be belittle us, or accuse us, but to set us free.
The concept of working for our justification, or allowing the Spirit to work through us unto justification is made clear in the letter to the Galatians. We can’t be justified before God by the works of the Law, or the works of the flesh, even if those works are religious in nature. We have believed in Jesus, to be justified by the Faith of Christ, not by the works of the Law (Gal 2:16-17). Our belief isn’t going to justify us, but our belief and faith in God brings us into the process.
Grace is the Ability, Salvation the goal, thus God saw the goal, gave us the Ability, when we accepted the Covenant. It all began when God saw the potential of Christ in us, then imputed us as righteous based on the Christ potential. It’s not Automatic, we must make the decision to enter. Therefore, it’s what Jesus has done, what the Father has done, what the Spirit is doing. Now we find why we are called the Body of Christ, the old body id dead, the New is Christ. Yet, the minute we attempt to reach our own justification we are enter self-righteousness, which is unrighteousness, placing ourselves back under the Law of Moses (Gal 2:17-18).
“Wow, we just sit around and do nothing?”. Hardly, we Hear, we Do, there are some things God shouldn’t have to tell us. Mercy is one, we hold Mercy in all events. Love is another, we Love regardless. Faith is another, we are expected to walk by faith. Belief is yet another, we have more than enough evidence to Believe. These are areas Expected of us, if God has to tell us to “Give them Mercy”, it’s a sure sign we’re out of Mercy. Mercy and Grace are aspects of the New nature, the Process brings us into the nature, where we do good works by nature.
Verse 10 speaks of being Reconciled with God, in Second Corinthians Paul defined the term for us, it fits here. “To wit, God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and has committed unto us the word of Reconciliation” (II Cor 5:19). God did not impute sin on us, we are not to impute sin on others, so what were the Romans doing? Imputing sin, fault and error on others, which is the context of judging others.
We “shall be saved” by the Life of Christ, which Life is in us by the New Birth (v. 10), thus from Death to the Resurrection, the very Token of our water baptism. Water baptism didn’t grant us the Spirit, rather water baptism is our Token accepting the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus, with all they entail. Our Joy and Peace are found in Jesus, not our works, in Him is “atonement”. The word Atonement is the Greek Katallage which is another legal term, meaning Reconciliation. If we are going to be Reconciled to God it must be by the New Birth, found in the New Covenant based on the Blood of Jesus.
Verses 12 shows why the fall took place in the manner it did, Adam male and Adam female were one, as they acted as one, thus by one man sin entered the world, thus before the time there was no sin in the world. Adam was given the attribute of choice, it takes choice to sin, or not to. This answers many questions for us, death as a result of sin, yet a flower dying are much different. There was no death by sin before Adam, yet there had to be death since God called the seeds forth from the ground (Gen 1:11). Death by sin was introduced to man by the fallen angel, accepted by man, yet man had the power and authority to resist, but did not. The death was a cloud passed onto all men through the reproduction of the flesh, thus all of us were flesh minded, as our souls joined to the flesh to accomplish what the soul desired, yet it developed into sin. The Law of Moses proves man is more prone to sin, then do good. The Law of the Spirit forms us into a nature which is free of the flesh making us prone to do good.
Verse 12 shows the Law defined sin, as well as the law of imputing. Without a basis there is no imputing, any attempt to impute anything without a basis is a mind game. The first thing we find is the Law imputed sin on us, because the nature of man was sinful. Although the Law defined sin, although sin could not be imputed until the Law, we find death as the result of sin reigned from Adam to Moses, even over all those with the nature (vs. 12-13). The death was a figure of who was to come, not saying Jesus is death, rather Jesus died so we might have life (Heb 2:14).
Verse 15 shows the offense was by one man, yet all men suffer, thus God’s plan was for one Jesus to save all mankind. If the Plan called for each of us to begin in the Garden, then we would all need a separate Jesus. However, it’s not in the Plan, there is only one Cross, one Jesus, one Way to the Father. Grace grants much more than Adam lost, Adam was earthly, a living soul, not a quickening spirit. Grace grants us something so New, it was never before. Back in verse 5 we found the Love of God is shed, here in verse 15 we find the Grace of God by the Gift of Grace (New Man) comes by one man Jesus Christ. Grace has abounded unto many, both Jew and Gentile, because God is no Respecter of persons. The wording “has abounded” is the Greek Perisseuo meaning Abundantly, or More than required, or To exceed in excellence. Grace then becomes Life more Abundantly, making Mercy Life. The word Gift in the phrase “the free gift” in verse 15 is the Greek Charisma, the action of Grace, which Paul will define for us in chapter 12. The word Gift in the phrase “the gift of Grace” is the Greek Dorea, meaning a free gift with the emphasis on its gratuitous character. The gift of Grace is the Gift the Holy Ghost brings us, thus the Justification is based on being Born Again through the Spirit of Truth.
On the same note the Judgment is based on the same principle, by one man sin entered, the debt of sin is death, the result of death is the Judgment. Therefore, if there is a condemnation (the guilty found guilty), there must also be a Justification to remove the guilt, is God not Equal? (v. 16).
From 4:17 to 5:17 is a parenthetical phrase explaining “that it might be by Grace” (v. 4:16). If we removed the phrase it would read, “it might be by Grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not only which is of the law, but to all which are of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all (4:16). By the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the Righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto Justification of life” (5:18). Without the parenthetical phrase we would think Abraham was the one who brought us justification, or faith. Abraham believed, God imputed righteousness, so it could be by faith. If God had not imputed righteousness, there would be no Covenant, meaning no hope, meaning no where for faith. The belief of a natural man, who was under the sin nature brought about by Adam was able to receive the imputed righteousness, how much more can we have by the Cross of Jesus?
The misnomer of Abraham being the “father of faith” is derived from these verses, but we find Abraham the father of “us all”, but we also see “the faith of Abraham”, it doesn’t say Abraham invented faith, or started it, rather it was by faith based on his belief.
The Judgment came on all men by the offence of one, thus the Justification is also by the Righteousness of God the free Gift upon All Men Unto Justification of life, after they receive the Gift (v. 19). The Plan has room for all mankind, the reality of the Plan knows who will receive and who won’t. The twisted concept of Predestination says God picks who will receive and who won’t, here we find God presented it to all, but God “knows” who will receive and who won’t. The twisted view becomes an excuse, “well God didn’t pick me”, not so, we find the Grace of God for the Justification is “upon all men” (v. 18).
From the offense to the disobedience, indicating it was the disobedience bringing the offense. In Ephesians Paul shows all mankind are under the fall nature as the “children of disobedience”, over them is the prince of the power (authority) of the air (Eph 2:2). Yet over all things is Jesus, in Whom we are (Eph 1:20-23). Because all mankind is under disobedience they are also children of disobedience, but we also find upon all is the hope to have the Righteousness of God by the New Birth. The Romans felt they were special, they were, but they felt the specialness was something they alone could have, which is the twisted concept of predestination (v. 19).
Verse 20 shows the Law entered because of the offense, thus the Law defined sin, projecting it to all mankind. Mankind accepted the premise by forming natural laws based on the punishment of man’s sin against man. Although the Law of Moses was for the Jews, the defined sin abounded to all mankind. But where sin did abound, much more the Grace of God to Jew or Gentile (v. 20). If sin reigns unto death, and it does, then Grace reigns Through Righteousness unto eternal Life by Jesus Christ our Lord (v. 21).
Paul didn’t just show the opposites of Adam and Jesus, he showed us the Plan was in effect before the Beginning.
So, if the work of Grace is internal, should we just let the flesh run wild? No, under the condemnation the soul was servant to the flesh, the lust of the flesh sought the feelings of pleasure, as the soul sought to appease the flesh. If the flesh is imputed dead, it has no feelings. The darkness of the flesh seeks the darkness of the prince of the power of the air, the soul knew no other means than the flesh, until the Spirit of Truth entered. Grace is the Justification of God, there is a means in which it works. The Law of Moses is flesh based, it considers the flesh, not the soul, thus the works of the Law of Moses are flesh based. Two completely different methods for two completely different Laws, yet from the same God. The Law of Moses defines sin, it doesn’t do away with it: the Law of the Spirit does away with sin through the process of Justification.
If we are dead to sin, or better have completed the course of sin by the imputed death, why would we continue in sin? Before we accepted the Cross sin had power over us, the Cross reversed it, sin no longer has power over us, since the power of sin is in the flesh. The means is the Authority of Jesus, the Cross granted us the Name of Jesus, the Name (Authority) above all names.
Now we establish the Free Gift status, all we need do is accept it, then walk in it. The next three chapters are important, one will not understand chapter 7 unless they grasp chapter 6. They won’t appreciate chapter 8, unless they understand chapter 7. There are some key words found in the next few verses, we begin with “Shall we continue in sin?”, it doesn’t mean we won’t slip, it means continuing in sin as a way of life, or nature.
Verse 2 shows we are dead, so if we are, how are we reading this? Imputed death, now we know the importance of being able to impute our old Psuche life dead. We were the walking dead, all we did was finish the course somewhat early by imputing death on the Cross. However, it can’t stop there, we must move on to obtain the power of Christ by the Spirit. Our Water Baptism was our token for our induction into the Body, thus the Body identifies us with the Death and Resurrection of Jesus, but why Death and Resurrection? Without the Resurrection we lack the Spiritual nature to overcome, the Resurrection is Life more abundantly, the place of Grace by the Spirit. Verse 4 displays the Mercy we gained at the Cross by the wording, “Glory of the Father”, something the Romans forgot.
The identification process of baptism is first into the Death, before anyone can be Resurrected, they must die. We now have a Newness of life, but verse 4 shows, “we also should walk in newness of life”, we’re not forced to. The word Newness is the Greek Kainotes it doesn’t mean an experience similar to the past, like something rejuvenated, rather it means something qualitatively different, so new it was never before.
Three elements are obvious, dead, burial and raised. Our water baptism didn’t perform the tasks, it was our token to identify us to the place where the tasks take place. It’s the baptism with the Holy Ghost bringing the means to accomplish the tasks. Bringing in the Doctrine of baptisms, the Resurrection is connected to the Spirit, giving us not only water baptism, but the baptism with the Holy Ghost to receive the Spirit.
Verse 5 gives us the clue in the word Likeness which is the Greek Homoioma meaning a figure of something, or similitude which represents something; the acceptance of the death of Jesus coupled with all it represented. Then a like figure is the death (v. 4), being buried (planted v. 5), then resurrected (v. 5), all areas fitting the Doctrine of Baptisms. The death removed “continuing in sin”, the grave put the flesh to rest, the Resurrection is the process to bring a change in natures. The old nature was born of the flesh, it was earthly, soulish and sensual. The New Nature is Spirit, thus our souls are making the change in the process from the flesh to the Spirit. We can force the flesh to obey the touch not, do not, we can close the eye gate, shut the ear gate, slam the nose gate, but those are matters of minding the flesh, they have nothing to do with minding the Spirit.
Verse 6 tells us, “knowing this, our old man is crucified with Him”; as the first premise to gain authority over the flesh. The flesh is the means by which sin operates, once the flesh is imputed dead, the authority of the enemy is defeated, useless, and inoperative. If we fail to consider (impute) the old nature dead, we can ‘t gain the Power of the Resurrection. We must impute the old man dead, no two ways about it. We must believe what we said, and stop believing the old man: “I am not dead, do you hear me?, I am not”. Words of darkness should not move us from the Light. The key? “the body of sin Might be Destroyed”, which is a Grave issue pointing to the process, (might be). We cannot be deceived into thinking we are justified now, the power to sin is defeated, but the process is the cleaning by the Blood of Jesus coupled with the washing of the Water by the Word. When God is cleaning it’s not for us to sin, but to remove hindrances to keep us from falling.
Imputing takes authority, position and something from God allowing us to impute. We imputed the old man dead, crucified with Christ, so what does the old man do? Use unlawful imputing claiming he is resurrected. Is he? No, lacks authority. Will he say he is? Yes, he is a liar like his father. Do we have to believe him? No, not at all, we believe what we said, he is imputed dead. Evidenced by the word Destroyed in verse 6, which is the Greek Katargeo meaning To render inactive it comes from the Greek Kata indicating a motion from upward to downward, coupled with the Greek Argeo meaning To be inactive, or To abolish. The old man is no longer effective in our lives, he will say he is, but it’s just the voice of the stranger.
If we’ve imputed the old nature dead, along with the deeds, then we are no longer under bondage to serve sin. It doesn’t mean we won’t miss it from time to time, it means we won’t Serve sin, much different. The word Serve is the Greek Douleuo, the same word we find in the phrase “we should serve in newness of Spirit” (Rom 7:6). The word means to be subject to, or in service to, it could mean in bondage to, depending on what one is under. We as kings have been given power over sin, over the wiles of the enemy, we can tread on serpents and all the works of the enemy. However, from time to time we hear the old man boast in himself, we answer, “Huh? Yeah, okay, sounds right”. We must have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying, as we are able to discern the wiles of the enemy, from the Ways of Grace. Will Grace use deceptive means to make a point? No, will Grace use manipulation, or domination to control people? No, will Grace allow anger to control it? No. The old nature is crucified, hanging on the Cross with the Law; leave them there and move on to the Power of His Resurrection.
The false twisted concept saying once we receive the Cross we will not fail produces three things, religious conceit, false assurance, and condemnation on others, which in turn produces condemnation on us. When someone slips the religious conceited attack, “Oh you were not saved”, “but I asked, I prayed, I begged, you said I was”, “yeah, well you missed it, you are not saved”, “what then does it take?”. God exposed, yet someone told us we weren’t saved, yet the exposure is a sure sign we are saved from the world to be saved by the Grace of God. Without understanding how Justification brings Experiences, as the Experiences give us Patience, we never know why we are to Rejoice when we fall into divers temptations (James 1:2). Why Patience? It’s a process (or did we say that?).
Then this phrase in Verse 7, “for he who is dead is freed from sin”. If we are dead by the Cross of Jesus, the Law of Moses has then served its purpose, it is nailed to the Cross, it’s no longer effective. It can’t accuse us, neither can the devil, unless we give him place; in some cases we give the devil opportunity by using some deed in the Law of Moses to benefit by. However, we have the power to either give place to the devil, or not, meaning if we do give place, we can take it back; showing we have the authority and power. Deception will trip us from time to time, but it’s no reason to travel around the tree fifty times to find out it’s a tree. We discern to learn, so we won’t burn.
The word Freed has to be the opposite of bondage, we find it’s the Greek word Dikaioo meaning To render righteous, which really opens this up. We accepted the Cross, God imputed His Righteousness on us, giving us the ability to impute the old man dead, opening the door for the Impartation of God’s Righteousness by the New Man. The Impartation will not take full effect until we believe the imputing was effective. Like Mercy, we ask, God imputes, we give, God imparts. The very reason for “believe you receive” is to change the imputing to impartation.
This is Mark 11:22-26, there are many things the old man can’t do, some he simply refuses to do, forgiveness is one of those. When we forgive based on the Mercy of God it’s like driving fifty million nails into the old man. The old nature will fight it tooth and nail, “what forgive them, are you crazy? Look at what they did”, “Okay so you’re going to forgive them fine, but what about those who allowed it? We need some retribution”, or, “they need to apologize”, or the classic, “we must have some recognition of the wrong done to us”. No we don’t, some of us want to make sure the other person knows we forgave them, but it’s still condemning them. We forgive in prayer, or reconcile through Mercy. “Well I have to take a step of faith by telling them what they did”, still seeking validation by setting the other person in condemnation, which in turn shows we lack forgiveness. We’re not going to be free of the unforgiveness if we continue to play mind games with the premise.
The exception to the rule would be “faults” done one to another as James notes (James 5:16); then it’s not telling someone what they did wrong, but seeking restoration regardless of who is right or wrong. The premise is still prayer, pray for one another so we may be healed (James 5:16). You have not because you ask not, or you have not because you want to consume it on a lust (James 4:1-4). Some will pray to forgive someone, then tell them, “I forgive you, because I’m a child of God”. Please, introducing pride by seeking validation removes us from Mercy. The only reason we told them was to exalt ourselves, or condemn them. The key here in Romans connects to the Ingress Aires, imputing the old man dead on the cross is denying the self, but it doesn’t end there, we have to pick up the cross to affirm the death by forgiving as God for Christ sake has forgiven us. We have to do the same as Jesus, we forgive through the Mercy of the Father. This is all made clearer in Verse 8, “Now”, which means Now, becomes the place where our belief and faith meet: “if we be dead with Christ, we believe we shall also live with (by) Him”. A present tense concept, it’s not unto to Him, but With (By) Him Now. The death of the old man leads to the Resurrection, this is the same as “we must believe in our heart God raised Him from the dead”; as a belief issue, not a faith issue. This is based on the Promise and Procedure in the presented information, meaning we acquire a sinless body called the Body of Christ.
This issue of believing is always important, we hear a lot about Faith, but little about belief, yet belief is a mainstay. We are called “Believers”, yet we are faith people. One doesn’t out weigh the other, but we can become unequal if we lean toward faith and forget belief. Verse 9 is a Belief issue, “knowing”, a past tense issue of knowledge, which is the basis for belief. Verse 9 continues, “Christ being raised from the dead dies no more; death has no more dominion over Him”. A past tense issue as well, yet the premise is we impute the old nature dead once, then believe what we said, by minding the Spirit; knowing we have the same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead. Our confidence is not what we do, it’s what Jesus did for us.
Verse 10 continues the thought, for if He died, He died unto sin Once; but He lives unto God. This begins with “if”, but it’s paradoxical, for on the other hand if He didn’t, then all is lost, thus we must firmly believe, as a man believes so is he. This is our example and basis of belief, if we imputed the old man dead, he is dead. If we received the Spirit, we are alive in Christ, but the faith issue has to be “lives unto God”. If we are in this to live unto ourselves, we have taken the Cross in vain.
Verse 11 again points to Imputing, “Likewise reckon (impute) you also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord”. This is two areas of imputing, both count. The first is to impute ourselves dead to sin, which would be the next step after we imputed the old man dead. Then we have to impute ourselves alive unto God Through Jesus, therefore the imputing is based on something God said plus what Jesus did. We can’t impute ourselves alive by our deeds, or by the Law of Moses, or by keeping a day, or by not keeping a day, it has to be through Jesus.
The Law of Moses didn’t make it through the Cross, for if it did, then it, not Jesus would bring our justification. The Law stopped at the Cross, it couldn’t enter the kingdom of heaven, much less the Kingdom of God.
Verse 12 is the result of the imputing, the word Reign is the Greek Basileuo meaning to be a king or ruler. This also pertains to the rulers of darkness, anger, pride, natural reasoning regarding spiritual matters, but they have a realm in which they operate as rulers. We have a realm wherein we operate as kings, the purpose of a kingdom is to carry out the will of the king. If we are kings, we have authority in our realm, the rulers of darkness have no authority in the Light.
Verse 13 then tells us not to yield, which means we have the power to yield our members as instruments (weapons) of unrighteousness, or not to. The manner of warfare is not to fight the unrighteousness, but to yield ourselves unto God. How? By the Spirit, it will be the point. The weapons of our warfare are mighty through God, here is one method, we submit to God allowing the Spirit to apply the Righteousness of God.
Verse 14 answers the question, “what shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin so Grace may abound?”. “Sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the Law but under Grace”. If we use the methods of the Law of Moses, we are giving sin dominion over us, since the Law defines sin. However, if we allow Grace to operate in our lives we will find sin has no dominion over us.
Verse 15 asks another question, “What then? Shall we sin, because we are not under the Law, but under Grace?”. The power is in our hands, we are the kings, whatever we yield to, becomes ruler over us. If we “obey” the call of the lusts, we will serve them. The illusion of a lust dominating us is when the lust tells us it will serve us, yet the lust seeks to dominate and control. We begin by thinking we are using the lust for our benefit, but then it becomes ruler dominating our thinking. Sin has power over the flesh, but if the flesh is dead, sin no longer has power. How? The woman saw the tree was good for food (lust of the flesh), pleasant to the eyes (lust of the eye) to be desired to make one wise (pride of life), the flesh took of the fruit, the soul became corrupt because of the flesh. The paradox is seen when someone yields to sin, they are entering an area of disobedience, the result is death. However, if they yield, or submit to the New Man it becomes obedience “unto Righteousness” (v. 16). Again we see this is a Process, even the Righteousness leads to Justification is a growth Process.
We can read these verses, yet leave off the word “Experience”, then condemn ourselves to the bone every time we make a miss step. This is not to condemn us, but it’s leading to the only possible way a person in the Body of Christ can be free. Clearly if Paul says they are under Grace, they have entered the Process, but then he adds they can yield to be servants of sin, or they can be servants of God. It’s still choice, showing the Predestination is not God making the choice, but God honoring the choices made. Jude, Peter, John and Paul show we have the keys, God knows, but it doesn’t mean God causes. We know the sun will raise, but we didn’t cause it to rise, yet in the Process we have choices many.
Verse 17 shows we were servants of sin, yet sin has all sorts of elements, pride is a sin, exalting people or things above measure is idol worship, a sin. We tend to think, “well gee, I haven’t murdered anyone, I try to appear good, so I must be good”, wrong it’s still pride based in our efforts, a subject Paul will soon approach.
The Heart is the issue again, not the intellect. We can believe intellectually, but it doesn’t mean we believe in our hearts. We need the circumcision of heart to have a heart capable of belief. We are made free from sin, taking us back to “were made sinners”, then “be made righteous” (v. 5:19). In 5:19 the wording “were made” is the Greek Kathistemi meaning to appoint a ruler, or to cause one to rule. The word Made in the phrase “be made righteous” is the same Greek word, showing one or the other will rule. However, the wording “made free” in verse 6:18 is the Greek Eleutheroo meaning Delivered, or Set at liberty. Prior it was we rule, now we see we accepted Grace to be made free from sin by Grace. Yet in verse 19 we find he is speaking in the manner of men, or giving logical simple answers, because of the infirmity of the flesh. Wait, he just said, “you have obeyed”, and “you became the servants of Righteousness”, or is it what they should have been?
The infirmity, or weakness of the flesh is what sin uses, now Paul tells the Romans how anyone can yield their members servants to uncleanness, and iniquity unto iniquity, however, we have the power and authority to reverse it, we can Now yield our members as servants to righteousness and holiness (v. 19). However, if they were already justified why say “Now”? They were judging so they could feel superior, or be validated, thus they yielded their members to unrighteousness. They entered error, yet they were not lost, rather they need to “put on the New Man” by yielding to the Spirit.
Verse 20 gives us the dilemma, we must yield to one or the other, it can’t be both at the same time. If we yield to the flesh, or mind the flesh we end as servants to sin, even if we’re in the Body. However, if we mind the Spirit, or yield to the Spirit we are then servants of Righteousness unto Justification.
What then is the evidence? The Fruit of the tree tells us what type of tree we are. If we are using manipulation or deception to make ourselves seem superior over others, we are yielding to the wrong tree. This points to a way of life, religious conceit always has fruit to identify it, being Judgmental is one. Paul didn’t read their minds, although the Holy Ghost will read the secrets of a person’s heart (I Cor 14:24-25), rather their acts told the story. Removing all this from a mind game, we have the example, the prior information on imputing, we know God did it with Abraham giving us the preview. We also know Jesus is raised from the dead, so His faith is proven. We know this is right, this is God, this is not something we made up, or someone else made up, this is the basis of being able to reach the Hope of God; it’s evidenced by the Seal of the Holy Spirit.
Verse 22 confirms it, now we are free from sin, free from the law, into a process to bring about the hope and desires, our fruit will be “unto holiness”, the result will surely be everlasting life, which is the same as being glorified.
The result of which path we take, if we mind the flesh then we are still under the Law, the result will be death. However, if we mind the Spirit the gift is eternal Life Through Jesus Christ. So if the Law of Moses came from God, how can it end in death? Answered for us in Chapter 7.
Paul now changes from those under Grace, to those who Know the Law of Moses; pointing to the Romans. If they were judging, they placed themselves under the Law of Moses. If we are imputed Innocent, we view things from the perspective of the Law of the Spirit. If sin has dominion, then the Law of Moses also does, it’s the same Greek word used in the phrase, “death has no more dominion over Him” (v. 6:9). It would seem like we have a contradiction of terms, the Law of Moses cannot justify us before God, since it came to separate us from God. The Law of Moses is designed to give man long life on the earth, but it doesn’t do away with sin, it merely balances it by allowing a sacrifice of an innocent animal to balance the person’s guilt. The Law of Moses then defines sin, once defined it points to the result, death. Death as a result of sin reigned from Adam to Moses, but the defining of sin came with the Law of Moses.
Going back to 6:8 we find we who are baptized (identified) into the Body are dead, so if we are dead, the Law no more has dominion over us. This shows the Law defines sin, thus sin had dominion over us, the Law saw sin, then took dominion over us as well. Simply, by imputing ourselves dead we finished the purpose of the Law of Moses.
Did God make a provision for all this? Yes, it’s in the Law. The New Law could not nullify the Old, the Old has a realm where it operates, but it had to make a provision for the New, without granting it. For a woman who has a husband is Bound (under dominion) by the Law to her husband as long as he lives, but if the old man (husband, no pun intended) is dead, then the woman is Loosed from the Old , she can then Lawfully seek the new (v. 2). This verse clearly points to Loosing and Binding, showing how the Gentile was under the Jew, the Jew under the Law, placing the Law over Jew and Gentile making both in bondage to sin. The same Law was only effective until a death took place, here Paul uses the Law to show the woman is Loosed from the Law if a death occurs.
So then, if while her first husband exists, yet she marries another, then she is in sin, bound by the Law, subject to punishment for being an adulteress; but if her husband is dead, then the Law no longer has dominion over her, she is Free to marry another, thus there is no condemnation on her (v. 3). The allegory would make it seem like we are calling the Law dead, but it’s not the case. We as the woman impute the old dead on the Cross, which lawfully allows us to accept the New. On the same note, we can seek one like the one who died, or seek one granting us Life. The conclusion is we have become dead to the Law to enter the Body of Christ, so our souls can join to the Spirit where our hope of a incorruptible body waits. When we put on the incorruptible body, then we are Glorified, as the Glory in us will be revealed. Until then we’re “being justified” by God.
For when we are in the flesh we were under the hand of the old man, the motions, or passions of sin ruled us. The Law defined sin, which in turn actually identified sin at work in our members, bringing forth death, thus the Law defined “sin and death” acknowledging “the you eat thereof you shall die” (v. 5). The word Motions is the Greek Pathema meaning a misfortune, a suffering, in this case it shows sin ruled over us, thus sin taking occasion brought death to fallen man’s flesh.
However, it’s then, this is Now, thus Now we are delivered from the Law, where we were held by the threat of death. Being imputed dead we are really free, having completed the purpose of the Law. Now, let us seek the Spirit, not the flesh, for even imputing the old man dead doesn’t mean we have the Spirit. We are baptized into the Body, but there remains other baptisms as well. We accepted the Body and the premises therein, but the baptism with the Holy Ghost means we are accepted by Christ into the work of justification by the Spirit in us.
So, does it mean the Law of Moses is sin? No, it means it defined it. The Law of Moses didn’t produce the lusts in us, it identified them. It’s in conjunction with James as he tells us about the spirit lusting to envy being the old nature, thus the Law defined it, made it known, but man was sold under the fall nature, as lusts ruled his life (v. 7).
Paul shows us the Law and the Ten Commandments are incorporated one into the other, the Commandment Thou shall not covet is the key here, indicating the spirit lusting to envy will break the Commandment continually (James 4:1-5). In order for the Law to deal with sin, it had to be defined, but as soon as sin was defined it was known as well. Jesus said “if I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin” (Jn 15:22). The Law of Moses defined sin, the Law of the Spirit exposes it: the Law of Moses gives a covering, the Law of the Spirit an escape.
Once sin was defined by the Law, the old man taking the opportunity used the same lusts to do the deeds of the Law, thus the result was pride, envy, or religious conceit. The Envy desired a Righteousness, yet man is incapable of having a Right Standing, they used self-righteousness in the place of God’s Righteousness, thus the Commandment “Thou shall not covet” would condemn them. The second they put the flesh to work to gain a position, they failed, since the flesh was the problem, the spirit lusting to envy would take credit for the act, pride would enter, then religious conceit, the person would them be condemned by the Commandment, the Law would then find them guilty, and around and around and around they would go.
What about the person who follows the Law? It is a Law without regard for the person, rather it points to the Letter (what is written). The Law came from God, but the Law has no heart, no compassion, it does have the power to bless the doer, or curse those who fail at doing. Okay, what about a man like Saul (Paul) who was a Pharisee of Pharisees, a man well educated in the Law, one who was discipled, trained by one of the most well known teachers of the Law in his day? A man whose intellect regarding the Law was far above those of others, a scholar of renown. What about him, huh? The dilemma is still there, even a person who desired to serve God in their mind, had to employ the flesh, thus they used the old man to perform the deed, in so doing their lust in the flesh would rob God of the glory. The Commandment being the Power of the Letter looked on the doer, defining the sin of self-righteousness as the pride of life, the lust of the eye, or the lust of the flesh, causing the Commandment, “Thou shall not Covet” to convict them, meaning they were imputed dead by the Law. How would it fit the Gentile? Or even these Romans? We just saw how mankind uses social laws fashioned after the knowledge of sin, how did they gain the knowledge? The Ten Commandments making all mankind subject to sin. The Romans were judging others, something only the Law of Moses can do, thus they placed themselves in the Law by association, causing the Commandment to fall on them.
Men like Saul (Paul) wanted to serve God, their mind centered on God, but as soon as they spoke, or acted, sin would take hold. When Paul was Saul the Christian hunter he carried letters giving him authority to capture Christians, at the time he felt he was doing God a service until Jesus appeared to him (Acts 9:1-8). What he wanted to do, he couldn’t since the law of sin reigned in his mortal body. The same is true with anyone who lacks the Spirit, they may want to serve God, they may be discipled, well educated, they may even be considered a scholar, but they are still using the flesh by the old man in a religious nature, the Commandment will condemn them. They are taking a Right standing, without the ability to do so, meaning they covet the Standing, but lack the position to obtain it. Those with the Spirit on the other hand have the Standing by the New Man, thus it’s not a matter of seeking, but a matter of yielding to what they have.
Before Paul knew the Law he didn’t know sin, he held a soul life as all men. Once sin was defined, the Commandment would fall finding him dead. Was God’s purpose for the Commandment to bring death? No, it points to Life, thus it points to the nature of the Newness of Life we obtain in the New Birth (v. 10).
The Law is holy, the Commandment is holy, they came from God, they are good, but the people they were sent to were not. Man had to know who he was, in order to seek what he could be in Christ (v. 12).
Paul goes back in time, showing he has “been there, done that”. Don’t forget Paul was a Pharisee of Pharisees, a learned man in the Scriptures, knowing the Law in all it’s points. However, he also knows the Law is holy, the doer is sinful, ending in a illusion brought about by self-righteousness. The doer felt since they were doing a holy Law, they were holy, but they forgot the Law was holy, the person doing it was not. The person was doing the Law for the Law’s sake means they admitted they were sold under sin. They may have felt good about their endeavors, but they were still under the dominion of sin. Feeling good about something we do is not a sign of holiness, having God deal with us as children is.
The person sought after a Righteousness by deed, but Righteousness was imputed to their father Abraham because of belief, not deed. Did Abraham have deeds to his credit before the imputed righteousness? Yes, he heard from God and obeyed: he rescued Lot, he gave to the man of God, yet he did none of those things to gain favor from God, his position of continual belief, not deeds produced the imputed righteousness (Gen 15:6). From the belief God would impute righteousness, from the righteousness God granted the Covenant, then Abraham had a platform for faith called Hope.
The doer of the Law was attempting to obtain the blessing by deed, yet by attempting to gain Righteousness they engaged in an act of covetousness, causing the Commandment Thou shall not Covet to fall, thereby negating the deed, with the benefits. Which means the person had to start all over again, with the same result, having to start over again, with the same result (vs. 8-13). Why did it produce death? Because the person was assigned to death, sold under the law of sin and death. The Commandments pointed to Life, but the person was incapable of performance. The result? Death.
The Law was spiritual, since it came from a Spiritual source, pointing to its own completion being the advancement from the Law to something Spiritual; however, the doer was carnal, so the Law contained carnal ordinances. To be carnally minded is death, so the carnal mind is still “sin conscience”. What did it make the Corinthians? Carnal, yet with the Spirit, but they were not spiritual, they were on the edge of death, thus Paul told them they were under the Law, subject to the provisions of the Law ( v.14 & I Cor 14:34).
The conclusion? For the carnal minded who desire to serve God, it becomes obvious, even if they want to, they can’t, since they have to apply their desire through the flesh by the old man, negating the effort before it begins. The carnal mind attempting to do spiritual deeds ends in religious conceit, pride and arrogance. Religious conceit places itself above all others, even those in the Body. It judges, uses occasion to exalt itself, when exposed it will either retaliate to show it’s supposed power, or reject the exposure. Paul is faced with a very difficult situation, the judgmental mind will be judging the person bringing the correction. Paul has to show their position is not what they suppose it is, the danger is before them if they neglect the warning.
When Paul was Saul he wanted to serve God, but he interpreted the service through the old man, ending killing Christians thinking he was doing God a service (Acts 8:1). What he didn’t want to do, was sin, but since his efforts were through the old man, it’s exactly what he did do; a no win situation (vs. 15-16).
He is not excusing the sin nature, rather he is showing the idea may be good, even Godly, but the application will always be by “sin dwelling in me”. Pride, self-based thinking, wrong thinking, absence of Mercy, void of Grace, thus the person used what they had, since sin had dominion over them they operated through the sin nature (v. 17).
At least he was aware no good thing dwells in the flesh, for to do good is always present with the one who desires to serve God, but the ability is not, they end doing evil, thinking it’s good (vs. 18-19). This is not the heathen, but one who desires to serve God, but lacks the Spirit. It would be true if they were Jew or Gentile; the idea may have been good, the application was not.
As long as the flesh remains in power, the old man was in control, a law was present in the members, death is the result, sin the means to get there (vs. 20-21). The only way to serve God was to die first, yet if it happens, they can’t serve God. What to do? What to do?
We in the Body have a set procedure, a method for each member, the particulars may be different, but the premise is the same, Justification by God, so we can be Glorified. However we find many love God, or desire to do good, but unless we are Born Again we lack the ability. Although they think they are impressing God, or gaining God’s attention by their efforts, the Commandment Thou shall not Covet falls on them, placing them in death, yet God is the God of the living, not the dead (vs. 21-22).
Every time someone comes up with something to make them the special of the special, the best of the Body, some deed from the Law of Moses, a special book, some self-imposed revelation making them superior over the rest of the Body, they are using the spirit lusting to envy, the delusion is they think they are superior or better than the rest of the Body of Christ. Because the source is the spirit lusting to envy, the Commandment Thou shall not covet will fall on them. They were coveting to be better than those who had God’s Spirit, yet they are using a fleshly effort or carnal product of their own to do it, which is coveting. What if they had the Spirit? So what, so did the Corinthians.
As for the rest who lacked the Spirit, even those in the world who go about “doing good”, are still using the spirit of man causing the Commandment will fall on them. The only exception is the person who operates in Mercy, who has no idea they are doing the law of faith by their measure of faith.
When we give the glory to man for any effort we think is “good”, we have robbed God of the glory. If we do something on our own, assuming it was “good” we will take the glory, meaning we have robbed God. No hope, what to do? Where to go? The sin nature is there, it will remain until we die, it controls, dictates, destroys anything which could possibly be good by inserting the self. Oh what wretched people we are: who can deliver us from this death? Who can bring us to a point where we can serve God? Must we die before we can serve God? We thank God Through Jesus Christ our Lord, there is an answer, one provided wherein we can impute death, finishing the course of the Law, while we yet live. So then we can serve God with the Mind through the Law of the Spirit by the Righteousness and Holiness of God in us. It’s all predicated on imputing the flesh dead, then minding the Spirit. Then we can say, We are crucified with Christ (Gal 2:20).
Yet is there more? Yes, once we entered this area, can we be tricked into doing deeds to accomplish something although we imputed the flesh dead? Under the sin nature the flesh was god, now it’s a dead tool. Yet, can we be so foolish as to forget the Spirit, then attempt to use the same flesh to crucify the flesh? Do we still have this flesh? Yes, it’s there, but the sin nature is ineffective, but can we use it to get our own way? Now, the issue, if we serve God with the mind, then certainly any sin joining the mind by the flesh is not allowable. The mind wasn’t the problem, it was the performance becoming the problem. However, serving God in the mind alone is not the same as serving Him in deed. Even speaking is a deed, thus the mind desired, but the flesh became the means, therein lays the problem. Anyone, must be Born Again, with the evidences thereof.
Here Paul is showing the flesh is imputed dead, it has reached it’s end, we simply consider ourselves Resurrected with Jesus. If pride enters then we’re right back under the Law again.
How then can a Gentile get back under the Law, if the Gentile was never subject to it? Once we entered the Body of Christ we moved to a separated area, we were set apart, we are expected to follow the procedures given by God. If we attempt to use the “methods” of the Law of Moses to control the flesh, surely we don’t believe in the imputing process. If we refuse to walk in the Spirit, we haven’t imputed the flesh dead. Using the elements of the Law of Moses makes us subject to the law of sin and death. Not real wise, not wise at all. So are there indicators? Yes, read on.
We went from the “They”, to the “We”, to the “Me”, now the “Us”, we can’t discount there are two types of people in Christ, both the Romans and Corinthians show us there are those in Christ who walk not after the Spirit, but after the flesh. However, Paul, John, and others show us there are also those who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. If one “walks after” it means they follow in the traits thereof, so how is it done? Does it have to do with the “mind”? Is minding something, following it? Could be. If we follow a taste not, touch not, or equate the flesh, or appearance thereof as sign of holiness, we are flesh minded. If we view natural intellect as a sign of Godly wisdom, we are carnal minded. It doesn’t take long to see there are those who equate holiness to the flesh, if they appear “holy” by controlling their flesh, they think they are holy; however, if we impute the flesh dead, yet use the flesh as a guide, we have given the flesh power. “Oh, so we just sin”, no we don’t, it’s the point. Will the Spirit of Truth sin? Not hardly, thus if we place our minds on the Spirit, the Spirit will focus on us. The more we mind the Spirit, the more Spirit we become internally. Our soul and mind then begin to think and act like the Spirit. The more we walk in the Spirit more of the attributes of the Spirit begin to manifest in our souls, making the two, one.
Paul will show the difference between the methods of the Law of Moses and method of the Law of God. Explaining how one should not confuse the Law of God with the Law of Moses. Each has a purpose, the Law of Moses leads one to death, the Law of the Spirit brings Life. Here in Romans Paul will show to be carnal minded is death, yet he clearly shows the Corinthians were carnal, thus this not only pertains to two groups in Christ, but shows a danger of holding to the old nature which ends in the feeble attempt to save the old man. Making the old man religious is not being Christian, it takes a change in natures by the Spirit to produce a Christian.
How does one follow the flesh? How about doing the Law of Moses? Yes, how about using mind power to give the appearance of holiness? Yes, how about being worried about what you eat making you unholy? Yes. How about being weak in the faith, by holding a touch not, taste not theology? Yes, all areas of “holding the Truth in unrighteousness”, since all these pertain to the person attempting to obtain their own righteousness. If we don’t like a food, don’t eat it, but don’t think the eating, or not is a sign of holiness. If we want to keep a day, fine, but don’t think by keeping or not keeping a day makes us holy. Above all never think our Office position makes us any more holy than any other Born Again member of the Body.
If one follows the flesh they are judged by the flesh, found in condemnation, but if they Follow the Spirit they are free of condemnation. Those who enter the kingdom of heaven, yet use mind power to make the flesh appear righteous, are minding the flesh, they are still under the condemnation of the flesh. However, if they follow, or mind the Spirit, the flesh will lose its power (method of operation), becoming a non-issue. We will see the word “mind”, as it applies to all this, don’t forget none of this can be entered into unless we are Born Again.
The word Mind can have several meanings, we “mind mom and dad”, which means we Obey them. We have a Mind we can put on the flesh, or on the Spirit. The word Mind or Minding is the Greek Phroneo meaning to be Like minded or of the same Mind, which changes the view somewhat. The flesh glories in having the appearance of holiness, thus the mind who attempts to make the flesh appear holy centers in the same glory, but the result is pride, or religious conceit. The person who Minds the Spirit, follows, or submits to the Spirit making them servant, meaning they are well on their way to being Spirit.
Instead of saying, “the day will come when we will be free”, Paul says Now there is no Condemnation (sentence of damnation) to them which “are in Christ Jesus”; however, it doesn’t end with just those in Christ Jesus, one must add “who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit”. If we “walk” we are in a Process, yet the beginning is “in Christ Jesus” (Body), we have to add “after the Spirit” (Blood, New Covenant). There are those in Christ Jesus who don’t have the Spirit, those who have the Spirit, but refuse to walk after the Spirit, yet there are those who do walk after the Spirit. All in the Body, the letters to the Romans and Corinthians prove the premise.
The question then becomes, Which do we follow? Whichever we follow there is our treasure, where our treasure is, so are we. This is a tough area, one coupling our belief with faith. We imputed the flesh dead, the old man uses lusts of the flesh as his enticing tool, so even if we chase after holiness based on the flesh we are still following the old man, rather then crucified, we have resuscitated the flesh. Breathing air into a dead rat is hardly freedom.
Those who walk after, seek after, place their thoughts upon, have a like mind as, or submit to serve the Spirit are Free from the law of sin and death, but subject to the Law of the Spirit. Paul will begin to define the word “Spiritual”, not as the world defines it, but as God does. The world views the supernatural as “spiritual”, but it’s hardly the case, Paul defines the word to mean one who follows the Spirit of Christ. If the Holy Ghost teaches comparing spiritual to spiritual then the only ones on this earth who are Spiritual, are those who are Born Again. According to the New Testament the term “spiritual” can only refer to one who operates by the Spirit of Christ. We know from Corinthians one can have the Spirit, yet not be spiritual, thus it takes a following (minding) of the Spirit to enter the spiritual mindset.
The evidence is found in the nature of the person, do they have a “I don’t believe” nature, or “I believe” nature? Do they question God? Or accept Him? What do their words indicate? Are they fearful of the world? Or confident in God? Do they compare the appearance of the flesh to holiness? Do they still love the feelings of pride, or self-righteousness? Or do they Love God, but hate iniquity?
Going back to Romans 1:11 we recall how Paul wanted to impart some “spiritual gift” to the Romans, here he is doing it. The Spiritual gift was the Charisma of the Charis to reach the Rhema. The Romans had to make a choice, would they follow the Spirit? Or would they continue to seek their own righteousness by minding the flesh? The Holy Ghost teaches the spiritual things of God to a spiritual element, which is the New Man, thus the New Man teaches us, but if we are carnal, what will we learn?
Verse 2 gives us the Law of God, rather than be in bondage to the flesh, we imputed death to the old man, then moved to the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus, which “has made” us free from the Law of sin and death (Law of Moses). In order for God to justify us we must be free of the Law of sin and death. What good would it do to proclaim to be innocent if there was a Law from God proclaiming us guilty? The danger in mixing Laws, if we do a deed from the Law of Moses to gain favor before God, or benefit from the Law, we are also allowing the same Law to find us guilty.
Most of us were Gentiles who were never under the Law of Moses, but as humans we were under the law of sin and death. The biggest danger for a converted Gentile in the days of Paul, as today is the thought of going back to some deed in the Law of Moses to gain favor from the Law of Moses. The second danger is thinking we have some special book, writing, or revelation making us superior over the other members of the Body.
The separation is found in four words, Spirit, flesh, carnal, and mind, with the mind as the key. The Greek word for Mind is not the same as we find for soul, yet it pertains to an aspect of the soul. Reviewing, the Greek Phronema or Phroneo connects to obedience, thus one can obey the sin nature, ending minding the flesh. The first step is imputing the flesh dead, the second is having the Spirit. Therefore, to whatever one submits, it becomes what they will obey. If we think making our flesh appear holy, we are holy, we are sadly mistaken. If our Holiness is found in the internal New Man, surely our holiness begins internally. Holiness is more than appearance, it’s a way of life.
This same principle is found in the Love of God, Paul lists eight things the Love of God will do, then eight things the Love of God is incapable of doing. We can put our mind on not doing the eight incapable areas, yet never do the eight attributes. We can say, “okay I won’t envy, will not vaunt myself, won’t be puffed up, won’t behave unseemly, will not seek my own, nor rejoice in iniquity”, accomplishing it all, yet never, “rejoice in the Truth, bear all things, believe all things, hope all things, endure, and never fail” (I Cor 13:3-8). If we put our minds on doing the eight attributes, we don’t have to be concerned about doing the incapables, we simply won’t do them. The same is true here, we can put our minds on controlling the flesh, we will mind the flesh, yet never enter the Spirit. We can put our minds on following and obeying the Spirit, meaning the flesh becomes a non-issue, incapable of sin, since it’s considered ineffective. Therefore, the holiness flows from within. To the Jew the lust was a physical act, but Jesus told us the lust gives birth in the mind, the physical act is the sin. James concurs, here Paul tells us the Spirit is cleaning us from the tares and lusts implanted by the enemy. It’s not a matter of allowing the flesh to run wild, it’s a matter of imputing the flesh dead, then allowing the Spirit to save us.
As soon as we apply ourselves to making the flesh appear holy, the flesh will dominate us, allowing the Commandment to fall, taking us right back to where we started. There is a vast difference between the Commandment imputing us dead in sin, and we imputing ourselves dead by the Cross of Jesus. The Commandment isn’t concerned with the Cross, it will not put us on the Cross, rather it will judge us dead because we used the deeds of the flesh, thus both the Law of Moses and the Commandments are against us, yet they are nailed to the Cross (Col 2:14-16). The world thinks they can “try” the Ten Commandments, they even presume they live by them, they do not, because they cannot. No natural person can, the second we think we have, we have fallen prey to “Thou shall not Covet”. If one minds the flesh, they are living an illusion, they cannot please God by the flesh, even if it looks morally correct (vs. 1-8).
We have to ask, if “the Spirit bears witness to our Spirit”, where then is the Holy Ghost fit? In Corinthians Paul will show us the “spirit of man” knows the things of man, but doesn’t have a clue regarding the things of God, only the Spirit of God knows the things of God (I Cor 2:11). He also says the “spirit of the world” is opposed to the “Spirit that is of God” (I Cor 2:12). It’s the same context here, the Spirit of God refers to the entire Report, as God is Spirit. We accepted the Mercy of the Father, the Holy Ghost brought the Seed of God, which is the Word in us, when birth takes place the New Man surfaces as our new heart, or the Spirit that is of God. The Spirit of God is the Mercy of the Father, the Grace and Blood of the Word (Son), with the Power of the Holy Ghost. Therefore, the Spirit of God bears witness with the Spirit that is of God in us saying we are children of God.
If the Spirit dwells in us, we are doing the Law of God, if the flesh reigns we will do the Law of Moses, we can’t do both. Simply because the Law of Moses only pertains until the result of death takes place, the Law of God (Spirit) is only effective for those who imputed the flesh dead in order to have the Spirit based on the Power of the Resurrection. One Law leads to the other, but they do not involve one another. The evidence is the changed nature in the Justification Process going on inside us. If we are still viewing natural intellect, still using scholars to tell us what the Bible says for us as individuals, we lack internal guidance. Teachers tell us what the Bible says, but not what it says to individuals, rather it takes the Spirit manifested (I Cor 12:1-11).
The carnal mind seeks intellectual endeavors of the flesh to prove its religious stand, yet it takes pride in the effort, thus the carnal mind can never be subject to the Law of God, but it does become subject to the law of sin and death. The carnal mind cannot conceive of the spiritual, thus it ends fighting the Law of God, to be carnally minded is death. The carnal mind cannot make the separation between the carnal things of the world, and the things of the Spirit. This is the very reason Jesus told His disciples not to speak on the Cross or Resurrection, they lacked position, spiritual matters are foolishness to the natural mind. The words of the natural mind are the evidence of the source, we discern the words to know the source.
If one minds the Flesh, they are still born of the Flesh, but if they mind the Spirit, they are Born Again. Paul will point to the carnal mind, then the flesh, then the body of flesh, as they all relate to the old nature, but then he shows the Spirit, the Mind of Christ, as the Spiritual relates to the New nature, thus dividing by definition two realms he just told us were in Christ Jesus.
The real issue is yet to come, how does one become a “son of God”? By controlling the flesh? Or walking in the Spirit? Jesus told us a son of man centers in walking in Mercy, something we do when we accept the Mercy of the Father. Paul is taking us further into the area of “Ye must be Born Again”. It doesn’t negate Mercy, it adds to it to complete the call. There are those who receive the forgiveness (not remission) of sins, as they walk in Mercy, presuming they are Born Again, but they are still natural in their thinking. Mercy is vital, but it was meant to be coupled with Grace to bring the Living Water.
Paul will use the term “after the flesh”, then “in the flesh”, they are different. The term “after the flesh” shows the person is chasing something of the flesh, the term “in the flesh” means they retained the old nature as they do the things of the flesh in a religious sense, thus their thoughts are concerned with the flesh. They have doctrines relating to the flesh, they are concerned with the things of the flesh, their holiness is trusting in the flesh.
Paul will tell us if we keep one day above another, or if we don’t, we do either unto the Lord. Meaning we keep it to ourselves, we neither judge others for keeping the day, or not, and we never make it a doctrine. The same is true with food, if we feel eating pork, or not eating pork makes us holy, we are mistaken. God used the food products to gain obedience, not as a menu of holiness. The food and days were tools, obedience was the purpose, those who mind the flesh, use things pertaining to the flesh (Jere 7:21-23).
We also see the terms, “after the Spirit”, and “in the Spirit”, the term “after the Spirit” means one is chasing after the Spirit, the term “in the Spirit” means one is following the Spirit, the combination shows one has the Spirit that is of God yet is seeking the things of the Spirit of God.
We have to see there are those in Christ who “walk” after the flesh, they seek their own righteousness, yet they hold the Truth. We also find those in Christ who “walk” after the Spirit, who have received the Imparted Righteousness of God. Two groups, same Body (vs. 1-11).
Paul is also using an allegory, by showing the two natures, the Isaac nature, and the Ishmael nature, as the Ishmael nature wars against the Isaac nature. Walking after the flesh while in Christ Jesus doesn’t mean one is still in bondage to the sin nature, it means they are following manners of the flesh to determine what is holy, or what is not, yet it’s still self-righteousness in their attempt to gain some special favor from God, or to impress God, which is still holding the Truth in unrighteousness. First John shows two brothers, both say they are in the Light, one is, the other hates (slanders) his brother, thus he remains in darkness, regardless of what he says. It’s the same context here, brothers, both have given their Token of water baptism, one is of the Promise, the other is avoiding the promise by holding to the flesh. Paul is showing the Romans were they were, but at the same time showing them where they should be.
Was Adam a living soul before? Or after the fall? Before, he lost his living position for the flesh aspect at the fall; entered “in dying you shall die”. We obtain a Living Soul condition at the Cross, but the goal is to be a Quickening Spirit. The Greek word for Body is Soma, but the Greek word for flesh is Sarx, thus giving us two elements. We gave up the old Sarx to enter the Soma of Christ, thus if we put our minds on the Sarx, we are Sarx minded.
All this centers on having the Spirit, if one lacks the Spirit they are stuck with using mind power in some feeble attempt to control the flesh in order to appear religious. Paul began this by showing we have nothing to brag in, here he points out if we put our mind on the flesh, we will end bragging about it, but negating the entire process of justification.
The obvious conclusion? We are in the Body of Christ, we are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit. If so, the Spirit of God dwells in us by the Spirit that is of God (Spirit of Christ). The Spirit of God will then witness to the Spirit that is of God saying we are children of God. The Spirit that is of God is the same Spirit of Holiness who declared Jesus as the Son of God by the Resurrection. The Cross is the place we begin, but this is a Process. The Living Water doesn’t come from Mercy, as a product of Mercy with Life coming from the Spirit within. Without the Spirit we will have the Water (Mercy), but it’s only part of the Witness, we must have the Blood (Grace), and the Spirit to bring it all together to be the proclaimed sons of God.
Therefore, if any man has not the Spirit of Christ, they have no part in the Justification process. Those who mind the flesh are depending on the flesh to justify them, yet the flesh can’t even justify itself. This helps us understand the Predestination process as well, in order to fit the Predestination Plan we must have the Water, Blood and Spirit. Clearly Paul is telling us once we enter the Body we have the choice to accept or deny the Spirit. If Predestination means God forces us to accept the premise, then Paul is wrong. If Predestination means God has an A list, and a B list, then the term “whosoever” is wrong. Simply God knows all things, but it’s not His Salvation at issue. We make the choice, God forms us according to the choices made; the misconstrued thought process of God making the determination of who can be saved, and who can’t is a an excuse to blame God. Here we find God has made provision for all to be saved, thus we have the Keys, all we need do is follow the process.
The change in context divides those who mind the flesh, from those who mind the Spirit. We started toward the Cross, we knew the Commandment claimed we were dead. We accepted the Cross, we gave our Token of water baptism to identify with the death and resurrection of Jesus. Jesus breathed on us (Ingress Aries), we asked for the forgiveness of sins. The Father imputed Mercy on us, we then forgave as we are forgiven, as the Mercy was imparted. Then we entered the grave the place where death battles the process, then we were raised in Newness of life by the baptism with the Holy Ghost wherein we received the Seed of God (Word of God). The Seed grew and one day we found we were once flesh, born of the flesh, but now we are Spirit because of the Spirit. Then we began the Process by minding the Spirit, the more we minded the Spirit, the more the flesh ceased to be a factor. The end of the race would will be the day we receive the White Robe washed in the Blood of the Lamb. All these areas have tests, experiences, and joys.
We must be dead in Christ to obtain the Spirit of Christ, then we can claim we are being justified. If the Spirit is in us, then Christ is in us, as we are in Christ (Soma), making the old body dead because of sin, but the Spirit is Life because of the Righteousness of God. This seems like Paul is beating a dead horse, but it’s vital. If we received the Imputed Righteousness of God, it was based on our belief to reach the Imparted Righteousness found in the New Man. However, if we run off attempting to impress God, or others, even ourselves with our works to control the flesh we have exchanged the Righteousness of Christ for self-righteousness, which means we are going backward, not forward.
The entire Justification process is to get us into the First Resurrection which is the time we will be Glorified before the 1,000 years of the Night begins. We have the same Spirit who raised Jesus, or we have no basis to “believe in our hearts”. The Spirit of Holiness who raised Jesus dwells in the person who is Born Again, thus the Imparted power of the Resurrection is within waiting for the day when we will meet Jesus in the Air.
It also stands, we were imputed dead in Christ, but the impartation comes when the debt is paid. The Spirit within is the evidence of the imputed death of the flesh, as the Token, or Seal of the Holy Spirit assures us we were serious, we can make it to the finish. God would not have imputed righteousness on Abraham, if the Predestined future of Abraham was to fail. We found the imputed righteousness was not merely on the man’s belief at the point when God imputed, but the man’s continued belief. The Spirit in us is our assurance of the seriousness of our decision, although there are times when we doubt, the New Man never does.
The goal of the New Man is centered on one thing, saving our souls through the justification process to get us into heaven. If there is an enemy in this, it’s us. Either by a lack of knowledge, or by fighting the process. No devil can stop us once we mind the Spirit as we submit to the New Man, we then obtain what has obtained us (Ph’l 3:12-16).
The however is next, we are not debtors to the flesh, we owe it nothing, it owes us nothing, so why live after the flesh? Why put our minds daily on the flesh? Why put our minds on the flesh of others? Are they dressed right? How about their hair? Long? Short? None? Make-up? Too much? Not enough? Surely they’re not holy. To be flesh minded involves using religious conceit, which judges holiness by the flesh, it’s vanity and a waste of time. The next error is to be carnally minded, which means we are impressed with our thinking, or use our minds alone to judge by. If we are carnal minded, we need carnal ordinances to guide us, the only Law God gave with carnal ordinances is the Law of Moses (Heb 9:12). This has to take us back to “Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whosoever you are who judges: for wherein you judge another, you condemn yourself” (v. 2:1), with “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit” (v. 8:1). It’s difficult, if not impossible to hold to “holiness” while using the flesh as the determining factor regarding holiness. Whenever anyone uses natural reasoning as a guide to spiritual matters, they will end judging people, rather than things; ending a legalist, or religiously conceited. So, does it mean no will judge us? Not hardly, but it means they have no position from which to judge us. We judge “things”, much different, we need to pay attention to what they say, we may gain a clue to what we have been saying. However, if they make it personal, then they are carnal, lacking any position from which to judge.
Verse 13 begins with “you”, as those in Christ Jesus, the Romans were minding the flesh, they became the very example of, “weak through the flesh”, but it need not be so. In the Greek Verse 13 reads, “For according to the flesh if you live, you are about to die”, thus it depends on to what or Whom we live to. If they are “about to die”, they are still under the law of sin and death, surely they are not dead in Christ. Putting our mind on the flesh for the determination of righteousness or holiness means we have yet to impute the flesh dead on the Cross, it also means we have yet to pick up our cross, which means we have yet to deny the self, since it’s the self we’re attempting to promote.
If the flesh has paid the debt under the Law of Moses, we are no more debtors to the flesh, but if we live by the Power of Christ we are debtors toward God. Verses 12 and 13 open the controversy; those of the flesh cannot see how you simply put your mind on the Spirit. However, it’s the context, it’s not ignoring the flesh, it’s standing with the principle of imputing. It’s the method one uses, they can either mind the flesh like a watch dog, while using mind power to control the flesh, or they can impute the flesh dead by minding the Spirit. The word Debtors in verse 12 is the Greek Opheiletes meaning a person who owes another, or is bound by debt to another. The wording “to live” in the phrase “to live after the flesh” is the Greek Zao which usually means To quicken, or to be among the living, it would see on the surface Paul used the wrong word, but it does fit. The use of Zao shows there are those in Christ who accepted the Cross, as living souls they are not quickening spirits, thus they mind the flesh, presuming the flesh will gain Life. Here Paul shows it’s an illusion of the flesh, if we Zao after the flesh, we won’t find Life, since the condemnation on the flesh is already written, we shall die, and not Live.
Verse 13 shows this is process, if we’ve imputed the old nature dead on the Cross, why would we mortify the deeds through the Spirit? It would seem if dead, then dead. However, he didn’t say we “mortify the flesh”, it’s the “deeds”, therein lays the mystery. The word Mortify is the Greek Thanatoo meaning To put to death, or To cause to die. The word Deeds is the Greek Praxis meaning The mode of operation, or the Manner in which one acts. It’s the same concept we find in Ephesians, we don’t need to battle the devil, but we do battle the Wiles of the devil. The word Wiles means the mode of operation, or the manner in which the devil uses to entice, trap, or snare his victims. If we put off the old man, we must put off his deeds as well.
The entire thing looks like maybe we should use the flesh, after all we are to Mortify the deeds of the Body (v. 13). Oh wait, “through the Spirit”, much different. The word Mortify means to die, thus we imputed death, the process of justification is working in us meaning the imputed death is working in our souls, cleaning us from the tares, wiles, pains and old mind, bringing us into a spiritual nature to be free indeed.
Verse 14 shows if we mind the Spirit, then we will be “led” by the Spirit of God through the Spirit of Christ in us, thus by the New Man we will become spiritual in nature. The New Man calls the Father, ABBA, the soul being saved calls the Father, Father, thus this is the Living Water. The Father connects to Mercy, the Spirit to the Living, together we find rivers of Living Waters flowing from within.
The wording “are led” is the Greek word Ago meaning To led by laying hold of, it connects to minding, thus to mind is to submit to. If we mind the flesh, we will submit to the desires of the flesh, while we presume we’re controlling it, but it’s an illusion, we are really submitting to the pride of life which is still worldly in nature.
The “spirit of bondage” is the spirit of man, or the spirit lusting to envy, but the key to verse 15 is the wording, “again to fear”. This shows they entered to be set free, but turned and received Again the spirit of the world. The flesh deceived them, they were minding the flesh, they entered a taste not, do not, theology, then they began to judge others based on their own interpretations of holiness. What Spirit did they receive? Wait, if they received the Spirit, how could they receive another spirit? Are they devil possessed? No, it’s not the meaning, the minding of the flesh turns them from the Spirit and Justification to the flesh (spirit lusting to envy) in a feeble attempt to save their own souls through acts of self-righteousness.
Rather than look at the flesh, they should have minded the Spirit, then their eyes would have been on the Father. Our Adoption process is an induction into a family we had no right to, yet we left an old family order before we could be Adopted. The old family order had a “nature”, the New has a Nature. The old spirit of bondage was the master behind the old family order, but we died on the Cross of Jesus when we imputed the old nature dead. We were then without family, but since we accepted the Cross God adopted us by the granting of the Spirit. (v. 15).
The Greek word for Adoption is only used five times in the New Testament, all five by Paul (vs. 8:15, 8:23, 9:4, Gal 4:5 & Eph 1:5). Adoption is unique among the Jews, it refers to one who has a distant connection, yet is removed from the inner workings of the family. To us the word Adoption means someone who has no family connection, but to the Jew it means someone who is related in some distant fashion. We find the context Paul is using shows our souls being a creation of God are distantly related, but the flesh being a reproduction is not, thus God is not going to adopt the flesh. The means God uses for Adoption is the Spirit in us, the soul joins by submission, the flesh is accounted ineffective or without Covenant. The basis is found in the story of Ruth, she had family ties until death occurred, then she was considered Adopted when Naomi called her “daughter” (Ruth 3:1).
Abba Father is a term reserved for those of close family order, thus the Adoption goes a step further, our souls call out “Father”, the New Man “ABBA”, we are joined to the Father by having the Spirit of Christ, or as Paul will later point out, the Spirit that is of God; granting us the position by Adoption to enter the place to call out, ABBA Father.
Verse 16 is not speaking of the Holy Ghost, this is the Spirit of God, the translators used the lower case for the novice, so they could tell the differences. This connects back to verse 11, the Spirit of God bears witness with the Spirit of Christ in us saying we are children of God. How? The same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in us; therefore, to be a “son of God” one needs the Declaration of the Holy Spirit in them. Self-righteousness is the person making the declaration, they may be a son of man, but it doesn’t mean they are a son of God. We can make all the declarations we want to about being a son of God, the only one counting is the one the Spirit makes. The Spirit of God is not going to bear witness to our flesh, or our souls, the Witness is based on the Water, Blood and Spirit. Therefore, the Spirit of God in this context is the complete Report of the Father, Word and Holy Ghost, showing why Paul didn’t say, “The Holy Ghost bears witness to our Spirit we are sons of God”. If it were the case, then the Holy Ghost would be bearing witness of Himself, since He brought the Seed to us.
This is another clue to the Process, this is after Adoption is acquired. If we are children, then we are heirs, if heirs we will grow to become heirs of God by the Adoption, then we grow to become a joint-heir with Christ as a true and Living son of God. However, it also means if we suffer with Christ, we may be also Glorified together (v. 17). The suffering part pertains to the flesh, the Spirit and flesh are enemies. The key words are “may be”, and “Glorified”, the Justification is to get us to the Glorified state, but the wording “may be” means there is a Process to reach the Glorified state.
If all this was automatic, or secured at the Cross, then the teaching would be much different, rather than “may be”, it would be “already are”, rather than flesh, it would be “there is none in the Body who mind the flesh”, but those are not phrases used here, or anywhere else. When we fall for the illusion of false security, rather than the confidence of the Spirit, we will enter pride, religious conceit and become critical and condescending about “people” rather than judge things.
Verse 18 gives us “reckon” or impute again, in this case it relates to the “sufferings” just noted. This verse also shows the Glory is within, it’s found in the New Man. Many of the sufferings are internal, as the birthing and growing process moves our souls from flesh to Spirit.
Why chase all over looking for the Glory? The very Glory of God is already in us, thus if we are seen running to some mountain top waiting for the “Glory to fall”, it’s a sure sign we don’t believe we have the Glory in us (v. 18). What Glory could compare to the Glory of the Resurrected Jesus? None, thus if we believe Jesus is raised from the Dead, then we have the Glory in us now.
Verse 19 shows this “manifestation” is not The Son of God, but the “sons” of God, with the Plural usage we know it speaks of those who are Born Again, who mind the Spirit. The word Manifestation is the Greek Apolkalupsis meaning the Unveiling, or Uncovering, or something expressly seen, it’s a different word than the one Paul uses in the “manifestation of the Spirit” in First Corinthians 12:7. This word shows us the change from being Justified to the Glorified position is internal. However, if we are not Born Again none of this works, yet it was when Jesus was Glorified by the Resurrection it became possible for us. We always keep in mind, “If it were not for Jesus”, the simple premise keeps us from glorying in the self.
The word Creature is the Greek Ktisis meaning a Creation, but more important is also means The act of creating, or the Purpose of creating. The same word was used in the rabbinical sense to refer to a person converted from idolatry, thus this is the process of conversion unto the New Creation (New Birth). The New Man has the earnest expectation waiting for the day for the Glorification to take place. The wording “earnest expectation” is the Greek Apokaradokeeah a compound word meaning The head is watching with excitement, thus showing the purpose of creation is for us to be Glorified with Christ. The meaning points to Jesus as the Head of the Body connecting to the Spirit in us to bring all this to a Godly conclusion.
In verse 20 we find the reason we impute the flesh dead, in order for the Spirit to mortify the deeds of the body. In verse 20 it was, “For the creature”, in verse 21 it’s, “Because the creature” itself, or the soul which is neither male of female, shall be delivered form the bondage of corruption (death) into the Glorious Liberty of the children of God. We are sons of God by the Spirit, but the result is to have the Glorified body.
The whole creation, groans and travails in pain together, until Now, the Now goes back to “there is therefore Now no condemnation”; this will also connect to the “groanings” unable to be uttered. The connection of groaning and travailing point to Birth, the entire purpose is for us to be Born Again, so we can be Glorified. Not just the Romans, or the Apostles, or the Corinthians, or the people next door, but all of mankind is in the Plan, it’s man who makes the decision. However, the confidence we have is the Spirit to accomplish the task, thus God would not give us the Spirit unless He knew we could make it.
Verse 23 confirms this, for we groan within as the Firstfruits of the Spirit, not the firstfruits of the flesh. The Redemption of the Body, is not the body of flesh, since we imputed it dead, this Body is the Body (Soma) of Christ. We partake of the Body of Christ as a symbol of being in His Body, since our old body of the flesh is imputed dead.
For we are saved by hope, what? are we not saved by Grace? Has the man changed theology? No, the Hope is still ahead, our faith is reaching toward the Hope by the Grace in us. This still connects to the allegory of Abraham, until Abraham had the Covenant of God’s assurance his was unable to engage in faith. We have the New Covenant the premise is to save our souls, our Hope is real, our Patience by Faith waits for the Hope (vs. 24-25).
Likewise the Spirit in us also helps with our infirmities (weaknesses v. 8:3), for we know not what to pray, for our hope is unseen, yet the Spirit with earnest expectation does, as the Spirit makes intercession for us with “groanings which cannot be uttered” (v. 26). If these groanings can’t be uttered, they can’t be. This goes right back to the groanings connecting to the travailing within, the pains and sufferings to bring about the Birth process. This is not the same as speaking in either New or Unknown tongues, both of those are uttered, this area is internal. The word Groanings is the Greek Stenagmos meaning a sign, the phrase “cannot be uttered” is the Greek Alaetos meaning cannot be expressed in words, or cannot be spoken. This is in conjunction with “travail in pain” as a groaning unto the fullness of the Birth. However, those are not the key words in this verse. Keep in mind this Spirit is the New Man, there is a growth process unto the Full corn in the ear.
Romans 8:26 is one of the most profound verses in all of Paul’s writings regarding how we walk in the Spirit by the New Birth. This verse has some interesting words, especially when we view the Greek language. The word Infirmities is the Greek Astheneia meaning a weakness of the body, in this case it’s a weakness of the flesh (v. 8:3). The flesh wants to be the center of attention, it desires to be the mark of holiness, yet it can never be. It also desires to exploit the lusts of the flesh, it wants us to mind (pay attention) to it, it wants the glory, thus if we mind the flesh we end exalting the self by holding the truth in unrighteousness. This reference does connect to the praying, since the phrase is, “we know not what we should pray”, so all this centers on Helping us mind the Spirit. However, we also see the word Help, it’s a compound Greek word which was first used here in Romans, later by Luke in his account. Wait, now, Luke comes before Romans in the Bible. True, but it was written after Romans, thus the first time this unique Greek word was written is here in Romans. The one word not only shows how the Spirit “helps” but shows how the carnal mind works against the process. Unless we impute the old man dead, and have the Spirit this Help is not going to word for us. If we have the Spirit yet remain carnal or unbelieving the Help will turn and work in a manner not pleasing to us. The three Greek words are Sun–Anti–Lambanomai; Sun (pronounced Som) means a partnership or a corporation between two persons to complete a task neither can complete on their own; Sun holds two main thoughts, Responsibility and Corporation, without the Responsibility, the Corporation can’t take place, thus it refers to us putting our minds on the Spirit by submission. It’s a Plan in action, thus the victory in the Plan is found in the Spirit. The word in the middle of this compound word is Anti, meaning opposed to, or against. It depends on what the Anti is connected to, thus in the title “antichrist” means opposed to Christ, but here it’s “anti-lambanomai” which we will find is much different.
This verse is one of the few places where we find the word Anti as it relates to God, only in this case it means Opposed to, rather than against. Once we made the decision to enter or Press into the Kingdom, the Spirit then begins the process, yet He is anti anything in the way, which includes us, if we get in the way. On one hand the Spirit will work with us to enter in, on the other, if we get in His way by falling back to using the flesh, we become His enemy. This latter process explains how Isaiah’s words were prophetic in nature, they vexed (grieved) the Holy Spirit, as He turned to be their enemy (Isa 63:10-11). To be carnal minded also grieves the Spirit, since the carnal mind cannot understand the things of the Spirit, the two elements of the flesh and carnal mind must be put off before we can be led of the Spirit. How does this fit with “nothing can separate us from the love in Christ”? Perfect, since here we’re not talking about the Love in Christ, but the Spirit in the process of Justification. Also Paul says, “Who can”, then he lists a bunch of things, but the question is not answered until one gets to Romans 9:21-23.
We will find three words in reference to this process, the Greek Katalambanos meaning something from above, which Paul shows is the activity of Jesus; then Lambanos which Paul shows is our activity reaching toward Jesus by the Spirit. Sunantilambanomai (or Sumantilambano) as the Holy Spirit (New Man) acting on our behalf with a powerful effectiveness being secured by the submissive and corporation of our soul, thus the Spirit is Anti anything standing between the Now and the Earnest expectation. This joins to the concept of the flesh being weak, but the Spirit willing, the Scripture doesn’t say, the Spirit will, rather we find the Spirit is Willing, which points to the Spirit having the Ability, yet waiting for us to submit. For some reason the soul wanting to be the dominate factor uses the flesh to gets it’s own way, showing the flesh is weak. The change in process is for the soul to become servant to the Spirit, no longer attempting to master the flesh.
This is not to be confused with the Unction of God over the Body, the protection over the Body is for every member, whether they mind the flesh or mind the Spirit. Here Paul is talking about the Spirit that is of God in us, just as James will.
Further understanding of the Greek word Lambano we find it’s a compound Greek word used to describe a person so obsessed with a desire they are dangerous, it means “I have a mission, no one is going to stop me”; thereby bringing into play “take it by force”, showing we don’t take the Kingdom, the Holy Ghost brings us into the Kingdom by granting us the Seed, the Seed is the Word in us, the Holy Spirit we are sealed by. Once the New Man is in place He will do things, one is of course the Manifestation of the Spirit, then the saving of our souls, but another is found here. The groanings which can’t be uttered unto the Birth, the Seed is growing, we do travail within, the war is on, on one hand there is the flesh, the old nature, the lusts of the flesh calling us, on the other the Seed in us is growing removing us from the old nature; therefore the imputing came before the impartation for the process of the Spirit converting our souls to a Spiritual nature.
Parts of the Greek Sunantilambanomai will be used by Paul in some of his other letters, showing the work of Christ in our lives. It’s very important to know all the work is being done on the spiritual level by the Spirit, since it keeps us from presuming some deed we do in the flesh is going to equal the effort. When we save someone from a fire, we don’t expect them to put the fire out. We’re doing the saving, they’re not, but we do expect them to cooperate with the saving. We would think someone was out of their mind, if we wanted to save them, yet they said, “No, fire is good, I was cold anyway”. We cooperate with the Process, we didn’t cause it to happen.
The spirit lusting to envy will tempt us to save ourselves, knowing it’s impossible. We are the ones drawn away, how are we going to remove those deceptive masks? “Oh the Lord gave me some words”, it’s not words, but the Word in us. We fall into divers temptations, then use the same lust in our feeble attempt to save ourselves, making the wound bigger, adding the probability of failing greater. We knock all the apples off the tree, then think we’re healed, or we paint them all purple calling them grapes. It takes the groanings to bring the fullness of the New Birth, not our acts of the flesh. If we’ve every felt those groanings inside, it’s a sure sign we are on the path of Justification.
The process of Sun-Anti-Lambanomai is the Spirit in us working to bring all this to past, all He needs is our cooperation by Faith and Belief. Part of our Belief and Faith is holding to the Mercy and Blood of Jesus knowing the process is ordained by God.
If we know it was Katalambano Jesus used to get our attention, we also know He is Katalambano after us, thus we can be Lambano after Him, with the Spirit in us working in SunAntiLambanomai to get us through to the lawful conclusion, we can then stop fighting God, as we begin to enjoy the Process. All this shows us how the New Man is so bent on His mission to save our souls He is like a crazy man, He will fight anything in the way of the lawful goal, even if the anything is our rebellion, unbelief, doubt, minding the flesh, or carnal mind. Later Paul will call this the “chastening” of the Lord, with the purpose of bringing us back into God’s Righteousness. We’re the ones who made the commitment, God is merely honoring our prayers.
Putting all three words together we gain a type and shadow of the Trinity, as well as the Spirit Helping us. The Greek Sun shows the position of the Spirit, He is The Guide in this race, we’re not; the Greek Anti shows His Attitude, He is bent on helping us, He is ready and willing to do battle in any matter arising which hinders us from the fullness of the Christ nature, thereby showing the Armor of God still belongs to God. The Greek Lambano is the driving desire, when we couple it with the Spirit, we find He will fight for us, but it still takes our cooperation (Sun) as the cheering section, rather than turn on the process and find ourselves grieving the same Holy Spirit we are sealed by.
Since we find the word “Desire” is used, it also stands our Desire is also important. We Lambano as well, thus our desire must be to please God, yet we please God by faith, yet our faith must have a Joy knowing God is a Rewarder of those who Diligently seek Him. Ahh, Diligently seek, a form of Lambano, if we do what the rule book says, we will win, God said so, He has given us all it takes to win, the purpose of our faith is still the salvation of our souls, God has a plan for us just waiting for us to join in (I Pet 1:9).
The word Intercession explains the entire process. There are four areas to the word Intercession, the word itself means to enter into a ditch with somebody else, for the specific purpose of saving them from the ditch. It doesn’t mean to climb down in the ditch, feel sorry for the person, then leave them there; neither does it mean to climb down in the ditch then stay there with them a pity party. Compassion means to stand with someone in their infirmity until there is no longer an infirmity, rather than leaving them in the same state. Some show pity when it suits them, but it’s what the world does. Others leave people in their infirmities, saying they will live a useful, or productive life, but they left them in the ditch. The type of Compassion Paul is talking about is much different, it holds to the upper ground, while reaching to the lower, for the purpose of raising the person from the lower to the higher. Jesus felt the pain of others, but He never used their pain for self-benefit. Some have a great deal of pity, but the only reason they show pity, is to look holy before men, a carnal mind game, nothing more. This is vital piece of knowledge, if Jesus came across us and said, “well by your faith you are a sinner, and I am going to leave you that way”, we would have no hope. The Holy Spirit has the same driving compassion as Jesus, He will not leave us as long as we Mind the Spirit.
Intercession also desires to meet someone in a common experience; to feel and share the emotions and frustrations of another, but only as a driving force to see them free. It doesn’t mean we use their emotions or frustrations as a means to be another victim. Intercession often feels the pain of another, but only as a means of identifying the problem, giving us a target for prayer. Lastly it means to step in a place where the other person is lacking. This last area explains the Intercession of the Spirit, without the Spirit we are left with the flesh, but the flesh is so weak it can’t understand the things of God, it only digs the pit deeper. The Spirit is fully able to save our souls, the Righteousness and Holiness of God are part of the Word in us. Will it take Groanings, or Travailing? Yes, birth usual does.
It’s the carnal mind fighting the process, so how do we become free of the carnal mind? We simply submit to the Spirit, allowing the change to take place. When the event is not pleasing, Praise the Lord. “Well, I tell you one thing, bless God, I will praise the Lord through it, but I will never praise Him for it”, the confession of a carnal mind displaying how its displeased with the way things are going. The carnal mind demands for God to please it, rather than it pleasing God. The carnal mind defines all things based on it’s pleasures, if it’s happy, it assumes God is. If it’s displeased, it assumes God is, it was the same error of the Pharisees made, and the same one the children in the wilderness made.
Most of us are “hung by the tongue” when we make statements presuming they were fact, when they were imaginations, or words based in unbelief, or words from a carnal source attempting to act spiritual. The unsaved soul, or carnal mind takes a fact, adds an opinion, then adds an imagination, calling it “Truth”. None of us really have the ability to examine our own words, we say things thinking we were so wise, so clever, yet we were sensual, earthly and devilish. The New Man being the Word, examines words, giving us the source of the intent (James 1:21 & Heb 4:12). Once we find the source of the intent, the battle begins, but the Spirit has the victory in hand before the first shot is fired. This “Help” shows the New Man is based in the same Holiness and Righteousness as God, there is no darkness, wile of the enemy, or enemy who can stand against the Greater He in us.
This also explains the two types of tongues, with the groanings; first the groanings can’t be uttered; whereas, tongues are uttered. If the Groanings Can’t be Uttered, they are internal but Tongues are an Utterance. This is very important, some think things which can’t be uttered are uttered. Not so, this is the Word in us dividing and separating the internal areas, there are times when what we thought was a Perfect Wheat, is seem by the Word in us as a Tare, it must be discarded, it’s a hindrance to our walk.
New Tongues are tongues of Mercy Love and Forgiveness, rather than speaking from the spirit of bondage, we speak from the Mercy of the Cross. Unknown tongues is when the Spirit in us speaks, Paul said it’s God who speaks, thus the Spirit that is of God is the source, our vocal cords are the means (I Cor 2:12 & 14:21). There is no commandment telling us we have to speak in unknown tongues, but there is one telling us not to hinder anyone from speaking in unknown tongues (I Cor 14:37-39). New Tongues are a matter of condition and position in the kingdom of heaven, groanings lead us into the Kingdom of God, unknown tongues coupled with prophecy are evidences of the Spirit within (Acts 15:8, 10:46 & 11:15-17).
Prior to the Cross the disciples used supernatural power, they couldn’t use spiritual Power, since they were not spiritual in nature, thus Pentecost brought a Greater Power, or Power added to the power of Mercy, as Grace was added to Mercy; however, there are some who operate in the courtyard, they reject Mercy, thus their ability is found in the authority of the Name of Jesus, but it doesn’t mean they have the Name in them. They not only mind the flesh, they use it. Jesus said some will come to Him on that Day who refused to do the will of the Father, yet they cast out devils in the Name of Jesus, they prophesied in the Name of Jesus, they did many wonderful works in the Name of Jesus (Matt 7:21-23). It’s not what they did, but what they failed to do causing their iniquity, thus the Name of Jesus will work during the Day for anyone who has entered the kingdom of heaven, but it doesn’t make them a “son of God”. One can accept the Cross, yet retain the old nature, attempting to make the old man religious in nature, thus they also attempt to control and dictate their religion, but they are holding the truth in unrighteousness.
Romans 8:1 through 8:27 give us the road map to victory, Romans 8:28 gives us the Hope. When we pray in accordance with Romans 8:26-27, then we trust in all things coming together for Good to those who love God, but the intercession brings about Good to those who are also called according to His purpose, thereby producing Good in the Purpose of God. It doesn’t mean the Good will happen immediately, neither does it mean we have the ability to equate what the Good might be, but this we know, if we’re in the hand of God, any event is for our benefit.
We then find two different words used for Intercession in Romans 8:26 and 8:27. In Romans 8:26 it’s the Greek Huperentugehano, meaning to intercede for, but it entails a cooperation. In Romans 8:27 it’s the Greek Entugehano, which does not require the person being prayed for to be involved. The only difference between the two words is the Greek Huper meaning the cooperation or involvement of the other party. So, what is our involvement? Belief and submission, knowing the Spirit in us is working toward the salvation of our souls. This also shows it’s far better to pray for people by the will of the Spirit, rather than using the will of the flesh.
Romans 8:28 tells us we Know all things work together for good, thus a matter of our faith is knowing All Things are working to good, whether we like them or not, whether we understand them or not. Next we find two groups wherein this premise applies, those who Love God, and those “called according to His purpose”. This connects to James, and the Rejoicing when we fall into divers temptations. Why rejoice? We’re in the hand of God, when a lust is allowed to surface, it’s there to be dealt with, not played with. Often the Groanings are seeking out those things we felt were treasures, or abilities, or confidence builders, but in truth they were hindrances to the calling.
In verse 8:30 we find the word “called”, but we also find two different Greek words (wouldn’t you know it). In Romans 8:28 it’s the Greek Kletos meaning Called to an office, or position, but in Romans 8:30 it’s the Greek Kaleo meaning A divine invitation. In Romans 8:28 it points to those who Love the Lord, and all those called into a position, but in 8:28 it’s the divine invitation to all mankind to accept the Grace of God.
Paul’s call to the Romans is simply enter the realm of the Spirit by seeking to be spiritual in nature, then enter the area of the spiritual ability by being submissive to the Spirit, thus intercession is not what we can do for the Spirit, but what He does for us, with us, and through us; therefore, how can we continue to use unbelief, resist the power, or attempt to activate our personal agenda, yet think we are minding the Spirit? How can we walk in the Righteousness of Jesus, if we are running around doing works of religion building our own righteousness? If we have imputed our flesh dead, and the Spirit has accounted our flesh dead, yet we go about centering on the flesh, doesn’t it make one or the other a liar? Yes, the Spirit says our flesh is dead, we say No, it doesn’t take long to figure out which one is lying. We are either going to agree with God, or our flesh, which we agree to, we follow. Each has a plan, each plan has a result. God’s plan is to form us into God’s son. The flesh on the other hand desires to keep us earth bound, with our souls attached to the corrupt flesh. The Witness of the Water, Blood and Spirit will complete the plan of God, the witness of the sensual, earthly and devilish will complete the plan of the flesh. Which one do we desire?
The unsaved soul tends to enter it’s own plan, the Spirit works with us to enter the Predestinated plan God has for us. It’s our faith and submission bringing the result unto a Good ending, not our deeds of the flesh, natural intellect or church standing. This area is very important, if we continue to use our will, we are idol worshipers, if we use our will power to control the flesh, we are idol makers, if we fail to become servant of God, we are condemned. There are some who claim to be servant, yet they are still using their minds to determine the type of servitude, thus they are still the master of their own servant, it’s still idol worship.
The Promise is evidenced by the Spirit in us, God works with us through His love, but views us through the Promise. Once we are Born Again the personal work of the Grace begins, when we are Full Age, or a “father” then we will Know Him who was from the Beginning. The soul must join to the New Man, it’s not the other way around, if it was, then there would be no battle. The New Man is patient, He won’t give up easily, but when the Holy Ghost goes, so does the “New Man”, if we are in any area of the submission process, we go as well. God is not going to say, “Well I brought the testing, but gee, it’s time to go, see ya”. Jesus didn’t tell Peter, “Satan is going to swift you, and you’re going to hell”, Jesus didn’t even say what Peter did was a sin, although it’s clear Satan did the sifting. Why? Jesus allowed the event, it was something Good for Peter. At the time Peter didn’t think so, but judging the event by the event tells us nothing. The result tells the story, thus the event may seem horrid, but the result is for our good, we will always learn if we want to, thus Peter is a perfect example of Romans 8:28.
Our deliverance from the system of the world is proof of God’s ability to set us in the Plan. God called, we answered, thus there had to be something in us to answer the call. The measure of faith, the gift from God, showing we can’t brag, it was predestinated, or in the plan. The purpose is always for us to be Formed (not created) into the image of God’s son, any other conclusion is not of God; showing the Forming process is the Justification process, which is the purpose of the Adoption process, which is taking us into the area where we can be “sons of God”, rather than merely talk about it.
This is still a process, each area calls for belief, faith, and submission, thus the Plan was there, we answered the Invitation, then the Justification began, the Just still live by faith. The glorification cannot take place until the Justification takes place, if we have Faith, we also Know all things work together for Good. The Romans answered the call, but failed to enter the justification process through Faith. The Plan was there, the hope was there, but they were the ones with the Keys.
The English word Predestinate comes from the Greek Proorizo meaning To decide beforehand, or To have exact knowledge beforehand, this would connect to the Report in heaven. It was used in Acts 4:28, here in Romans, in I Corinthians 2:7, and Ephesians 1:5 and 1:11. God has planned for us to be with Him, He has a plan for all to come to the knowledge of the Gospel so all can be saved, so none will be lost, we also know God has given man free moral choice, Judas being the example. In order to bring the Report into being, God gave us the Witness of the Water, Blood and Spirit. Hyper-Predestination is the attempt to call the Report complete on earth without the Witness, or to put the blame on God for man’s rejection of the Plan, it’s not what Paul is telling us. God doesn’t have an A list, and a B list, “ahh I see you pray, have the Spirit, and walk in Mercy, and oops, I also see you are on the B list, sorry”. Paul just told us the free gift was upon All men unto Justification (v. 5:18), it’s the receiving the free gift putting one into the Plan.
There is a difference between opportunity presented, and forcing someone to accept the gift. The Hope in Predestination is knowing if we are called, God has a plan fully set forth, there is no guessing, or last second changes; all the events are taken care of before we know they are events. The entire plan has been recorded in heaven, but for us to fit the Plan we need the Witness.
The false concept of Predestination being a list in heaven of people God refuses to grant entry, negates why the Father sent the Son to begin with. John 3:16 doesn’t say, “God so loved some of the world, He sent His son to save the few, but reject the rest”. The truth remains Many are called, Few are chosen, because the Few make the choice to be the Chosen; however, it’s just as true the Holy Ghost sows the Seed on all sorts of Grounds, some reject, some misuse, yet some treasure the free gift, but He still grants opportunity (Mark 4:13-20). Predestination simply means God knows, but history shows God knows, yet still grants opportunity.
God picked Moses because God knew Moses would do the work, but Moses didn’t know, he even argued with God about the wisdom of the calling. God knew what Adam was going to do, He knew what the devil was going to do, but granted them the opportunity to do what was good, or what was evil. God even knew Isaiah, Jeremiah, and the other prophets would finish the call, but none of them knew. However, it doesn’t mean God forced any of them to complete His will, it merely shows God knew, thus they carried out the will of God.
Verse 29 shows God’s foreknowledge, but look at the tenses, the reason He predestinated was for the person to be conformed into the Image His Son. The use of the word “might” shows this is not God forcing the Plan into action, rather it’s dependent on the acceptance. Verse 30 is a change in tenses, in verse 29 it was might, in 30 it’s all past tense, or seen as done. The Plan is for us, not against us, but the Law of Moses is against us, not for us.
Verses 31 through 33 show what God did to present the Plan, the evidence of the Plan shows God is for us, if for us, we should be for Him. God spared not His Son, thus His Son died for us, so we could impute the flesh dead, but did we? The Purpose was to freely give us all things by placing them under us, not over us. Then we find it is God who Justifies, not the Law, not the flesh, not our intellect, it’s God by the Spirit.
Verse 34 asks another question, who then condemns? It is Christ who died, yea rather, who is risen again, He is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. Not only the groanings, not only the New Man, but the Blood of Jesus makes continual intercession. All this shows the Plan, and how much is entailed for us to reach the goal.
Verse 35 asks another question, but where is the answer? The question is “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ”, then he lists a bunch of things, all these things are under the feet of Jesus, not over us, or Jesus, thus if we are of the Body, therein is the Love of Christ for us. Tribulation, Distress, Persecution, Famine, Nakedness, Peril and Sword are all things, let’s face it they are not “good things” as man would see them, but where is the Who? These being things does fit “all things” work together for Good. They all help us in the travailing unto birth, “for His sake we are killed all the Day long” (v. 36). We are more than conquerors in “all these things”; “through Him who loved (past tense) us” (v. 37). Verse 37 would also fit with, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the Faith of the Son of God, who Loved me, and gave Himself for me” (Gal 2:20). If Jesus loved him, does it mean Jesus no longer loves him? No, it means the Love Jesus retained on the Cross lives on in the Spirit. If we get mad, kick the cat, toss the computer out the window, yell at the moon, give up, it’s still doesn’t mean Jesus will say, “that’s it, no love for you”. His Love is still there, the key to this is found in two places, here in verse 37 it’s “through Him who loved us”, meaning we must be in Him to know the Love. In verse 38 we find angels maybe the who? It’s still in the area of death, life, principalities, powers, things present, not things to come. In verse 39 we find this Love is the Love of God “which is in Christ Jesus our Lord”, therein lays the mystery. In order to have this Love, really in order not to be separated from it, one must have the Spirit as they are In Christ by having Christ. This shows those who mind the flesh, cannot make this claim, although the Plan says they can if they receive the Spirit. Wait in verse 39 it says, “any other creature” so it must include the “who”. Except the word in the context refers to the building or ordinance, or the conversion of a person, but it still doesn’t define the Who.
Accordingly where do we find God’s Love? In the flesh? No, in the Law of Moses? No, in the flowers in the field? No, in the homemade jam? No, in Christ Jesus our Lord, the only place to find the Love in our Season (v. 8:39). No one can call Jesus Lord, but by the Holy Ghost (I Cor 12:3). In order to fit these verses the prerequisite is to be Born Again, as we mind the Spirit. However, we are still looking for this Who, perhaps the Who will show up in the next chapter.
Well, well, here it is, from nothing can separate us, to there are some who separate themselves, the two concepts must be placed together, or we will enter religious conceit thinking we can do whatever, yet never lose our position. The position is still IN Christ as Christ IN us. Here we find if one minds the flesh the Who becomes the person who holds to their unbelief. On the same note we just found God will never send anything, or anyone against us to separate us from His Love, but it doesn’t stop us from tossing it away (perdition) by refusing to believe. Jude says there are some who separate themselves, Hebrews talks about those who draw back to perdition, here it’s the same, but it’s also just as obvious they lack the desire to believe. They want religion, not the responsibility (Jude 4, 19 & Heb 10:38-39). There is a vast difference between something separating us, and separating ourselves, thus failure is a decision to fail by refusing to follow the procedure, it has nothing to do with a lack of the wherewithal to finish. It’s the decision to follow the flesh continually by rejecting the call to either mind the Spirit, or walk in Mercy.
Whether one has the Spirit or not, if they are in the Body they have the ability to walk in Mercy. Pride works to establish itself as the messiah to the Messiah, it has it’s own plan of redemption, one wherein it desires to make the old man the savior. In essence the Plan of God for us is so perfect we have to Work continually to reject it. This was made clear when we found the Spirit in us will fight to get us to the place where Jesus waits, yet if we hold to the flesh we will fight the New Man. We will be bitter, angry, never happy, nasty, unbelieving and fearful.
This is a call for the Romans to make their decision, to submit to the Spirit, by allowing their strongholds to be broken. No crown is going to fit the head who hasn’t laid against the Cross. God has designed a cross just for us, after we deny the self, we pick up our cross. The cross is designed unto death of the old nature, with the deeds of the old nature. No one can enjoy the Life of Christ, until they have tasted the death of the old man.
Paul will show the longsuffering of God, the time and elements of the plan, yet God knows and is ready to complete His overall plan in spite of man’s unbelief. God merely works man’s unbelief into the general plan, just as He works our belief into the personal plans He has for us. This is a hope, perhaps we fought the plan for years, yet God by His Love was there waiting, He had it in the plan, the time when the clay would break, yield, and allow the Water to soften us was in the plan. The day came when it all made sense, we turned by repenting, then we turned to the Kingdom to be formed into God’s son.
Prior Paul spoke of the belief of Abraham unto hope, but now he moves to the birth of the nations. Not all called Israel are of Israel, just as not all who call themselves Christian are Christian. Simply calling ourselves Christian, doesn’t mean we are Christ Like, it’s by the Witness is in the Water, Blood and Spirit, not the soul, flesh and old man.
Paul then defines the “true Jew”, separating it from Israel, by showing the nation contains the “children of the flesh”, but they are not the “children of God”, thus we find why he said “children” are called to be heirs, then comes the time when one accepts Jesus to be an Heir with God, then they are Born Again to become joint-heirs. If they are “children of the flesh” they mind the things of the flesh, many of those things pertain to the Law of Moses, which is flesh based. Does it mean they are not heirs? Of course not, he already said they were “called to be heirs”. Which also explains why we as angels (messengers) are sent to those who Shall be heirs of Salvation, not those who are heirs.
The evidence was before them in their history, the nation wasn’t from Abraham, rather God said “In Isaac shall thy seed be called” (v. 7). In Jesus shall the Seed of God be called, so those of the Seed can be formed into the Image of God’s Son, so the Son can have many brethren (v. 8:30).
There are children of the nation, children of the house, and children of God, all different. Each has an inheritance, but the inheritance differs based on the position. We know this premise from the wills of man, one gets this, one gets more, and another gets something else, some get nothing. All are heirs, but differ based on their relationship with Him who formed the will. There are the heirs of Abraham and Moses, but there are also heirs of God.
How can anyone reject how God gave the Jews the promise for the Adoption (v. 4), or the Law, or many other things? Therefore, the correlation shows the Romans were also given many things from God, so what is the difference? Ahh, the mystery as the hammer hits the stronghold. This area regarding the Jews is after Pentecost, the subject is the Olive Tree, not the Fig Tree. The Olive Tree refers to the Mercy anointing, the Fig Tree to the religious order of Israel. In order for the Oil of the Olive to be used, the olive has to be prepared, here it’s branches of the Tree. God made room for all of the Jews, or He would not have called them. Jesus never said, “I have come for some of you”.
Some of the Jews rejected the Promise through unbelief, yet God through His foreknowledge made room in the Plan, the door to Gentile was opened, thus the unbelief of the Jews was seen before the foundation of the world, but becomes a warning to us. This goes right back to Abraham believing God, then righteousness was imputed.
The Fig Tree will not produce fruit, but the leaves have a Season. The subject here is still the Olive Tree, thus here Paul isn’t speaking of the Law of Moses, but how the person who did the Law was so involved in their own righteousness, they missed the Proceeding Word of God, yet they accepted the Cross to be part of the Olive Tree, as the Olive Tree connects to the Mount of Olives, the place where Jesus spoke of the Commandments of Mercy. This shows the natural branches received the Cross, but continued to strive for their own righteousness, they held the truth in unrighteousness.
Paul followed a progression of the promise, from Abraham, to Sara, to Rebecca and Isaac, thus the allegory shows Grace is also progressive. God knew what Esau and Jacob would be like before they were born, but neither Esau or Jacob did. These Scriptures give us many truths, sin does not enter us when we are in the womb, since neither Esau or Jacob did good or evil, yet they were born under the sin nature. God knew what each would do, but it doesn’t mean God made them do it.
Natural man’s potential is more to do evil based on the lusts of the flesh, than do good. However, in the case of Esau we have an added element placing all this together. Esau never respected his Birthright, to him it was something to bargain with. This shows there is a difference between the sin nature, and doing sin. True, none are righteous, all have come short of the glory of God, but it’s different than selling your birthright. Being born under the sin nature, and committing sin are different, if not, Paul could not say, “neither having done any good or evil” (v. 11). These scriptures have been twisted to the point some use the excuse “God didn’t pick me, it’s not my fault”; however, the scriptures show both Esau and Jacob had the same beginning, came from the same womb, had the same opportunity, same potential, but the decisions of each were known before the foundation of the world, thus before they made their decisions God knew the decision, but God didn’t make their decisions for them. No one forced Esau to sell his birthright, later in Hebrews we will find it’s what caused God to hate him. Giving away a birthright Jesus died for is not going to please the Father. Therefore, excuses fall short when we ignore the premise of the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus, thus God deals with us according to the decision by forming us into a vessel of honor or dishonor. It’s the same lump of clay, not many different ones. The Cross gives us the ability to reject the Esau nature, so we can be formed into the Image of God’s Son, but if the clay rebels, or rejects the Water, it will still be formed, only into a vessel of dishonor.
Esau was told not to pick his wife from the wicked, yet he did. Jacob was told where to pick his wife, and he obeyed. Esau made a decision to rebel, Jacob to obey, it was the obedience provoking God to pick Jacob, yet Jacob was anything but a “saint”, yet he obeyed, becoming the basis from which God could work with him. This also connects to Abraham, the man believed, then God imputed righteousness on him, so it could be by faith. In the case of Jacob the man obeyed, thus God was able to use him.
The verse doesn’t say God hates the ways of Esau, it says God hated Esau. The ways of Esau identified Esau, yet his attitude toward his birthright was the cause, but it was Esau who made the decision after he obtained the birthright. It’s the key to the entire passage, it had nothing to do Esau not having the wherewithal, it had to do with him having the promise in hand, yet rejecting it for the flesh. Esau loved his flesh, more than he loved the Promise or Gift. Paul shows the unrighteousness wasn’t with God, it was with Esau. It wasn’t based on God putting Esau on the “rejected list”, it was based on the decisions of Esau, as the man made the choice to give up his birthright to enjoy the pleasures of the flesh for the moment. The same example seen when one gives up their birthright in Grace for the flesh, they are cut off from the Olive Tree (Heb 12:15-16).
Unrighteousness? Must be the key to the text; Esau was from the same womb as Jacob, had the same father and mother, held the promise in hand, yet he held those truths in unrighteousness, which is a type of those who hold the Truth in unrighteousness. The clues to the character of Esau were found in his ways, he was told one thing, but did another, it ended when he failed to give due respect to his birthright. Did Jacob cause Esau to be Esau? Did the distress? No, it was Esau’s attitude toward the things of God.
The concept shows God provided for all who were born into Israel to be Israel, it was the person, not God who made the decision to hold unbelief, thus God still formed the vessel by the decisions made, not some preordained unrighteousness God instilled in them. The shadow shows all who come to the Cross are given the same opportunity, God is no Respecter of persons. The Wicked make the decision to hold to the old man to become the workers of Iniquity, they had the same opportunity to be among the Just, as they did to become Unjust.
Now wait, if all this is true, what about the “sheep” in Matthew 25, they did works, and were called “righteous” (Matt 25:37)? True, but from the context of Matthew 25 we find a mystery, those sheep didn’t do the works for righteousness sake, if they had, then they wouldn’t be surprised when Jesus tells them all they did. What did they say? “Oh Yes, we know, we did it for righteousness”? No, they asked “when?”, thus they did the works based on mercy through the measure of faith. They gave without considering gaining righteousness, the same attitude Abraham had, thus they did the Law of faith without knowing it. Esau on the other hand cared for Esau, what he wanted, he figured a way to get it regardless of the consequences. Once he found what he gave away, he repented with many tears, but it was too late (Heb 12:17).
Did Jacob fight the calling? Yes, but in the end he submitted. This is an Allegory, it doesn’t mean the actual people were Born Again or in the kingdom of heaven, no more than Hagar was the Mount, nor was she the actual city of Jerusalem of the earth (Gal 4:22-25). Jacob is a type of one who hears, then does as they are told, Esau a type of the bad fish. Jacob a type of one we have compassion on making a difference, Esau a type who retains the spots on their garment (Jude 22-23). We entered this to be Wheat, good fish, the called, chosen and victors, the Plan says we will make it by the Witness taking us to the place where we will be Glorified, but we will face the Esau types on the path, at times we will find an Esau tare being exposed in us.
Jacob’s desire to obtain his promised wife is also a symbol of the type of patience Paul held in talking to the Romans. Paul didn’t know if they would receive the correction or not, but he writes as if they not only received it, but moved to the Spirit to complete the promise. Truly this letter is an example of Paul seeking the Precious, it shows his hope in the Truth winning out. His prayers were the same, he had confidence in his prayer life, because he knew the will of the Spirit.
Verses 11 through 14 tell us God’s foreknowledge is not used to form someone against their will. Before either Jacob or Esau did either good or evil God told Rebecca “the elder shall serve the younger”, in Malachi God said Jacob He “has” loved, Esau He has hated (Gen 25:23 & Mal 1:2-3). Because God saw the future and said it, does it make Him unrighteous? No, for He also said to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and compassion on whom I will have compassion”, is not God equal? So then, it is not man who wills, nor he who runs the race, but God showing Mercy, when He grants us Mercy, He expects us to grant it unto others.
The Romans, or anyone in the Body had no position to say who God must make into a vessel of honor or dishonor, or who can enter the Body, and who can’t. This area is also based on Mercy, not Grace. This is before one gains the Spirit, God has Mercy and compassion on whom He will, we don’t dictate if God must have Mercy on us, or someone else. It’s we who vowed to give God’s Mercy after we received it. Therefore, God gives us Mercy, we apply it, God gives us Grace we walk in it, God gave us the Spirit, we submit to Him. Everything to gain the Result was given to us by God, not one thing by our own fleshy, natural intellectual carnal endeavors. The reality shows only God knows the heart of a person, they may seem like a vessel of honor, but they are really one unto dishonor. The king of Egypt made the decision to have the children killed, God didn’t (Ex 1:15-16). Since Pharaoh refused to give Mercy, he also blocked himself from receiving Mercy, thus God hardened his heart. Yet, the heart of Pharaoh was already hard, God saw if from the foundation of the world. God knew the heart of Pharaoh, when God did signs to give His people hope and belief, the same signs hardened Pharaoh’s heart. We see the same today, signs come, some rejoice, some get mad. This is how God formed the vessel, by allowing the vessel to form itself by either believing, or falling into unbelief. The Mercy of God was presented to all, Pharaoh simply refused it. The result was the king dying, yet the children entering the wilderness. We find God “raised” Pharaoh, what Pharaoh a “son of God”? Not hardly, God kept Pharaoh alive for the purpose of showing God’s power to the children, so the children could have a foundation for their belief. The word Raised is the Greek Exegeiro which is a compound word meaning To allow to wake up, which really makes no sense, until we take it to classical Greek. There we find it means to allow to come to exist, thus God didn’t do a thing to change Pharaoh, but He did protect him for the purpose.
Judas is a warning, he was within the ministry, he was not a Roman, he was not a Pharisee, he was an ordained apostle of Jesus Christ. Yet, Jesus called him a “devil” (Jn 6:70). Did God know devils would exist? Yes, but it doesn’t mean God tempted them to be devils, it merely means God allowed them free choice, they made the wrong one. Then God worked their evil choice into the plan for the benefit of those who Love God, and are called according to His purpose. Nonetheless the devils and Judas end in the lake of fire, with all those who follow them.
Pharaoh felt he was king over all, when he was told about the Lord he said, “Who is the Lord, that I should obey His voice to let Israel go?” (Ex 5:2). No respect, neither a fear of God, thus when God moved to give His people signs, the natural wickedness of Pharaoh surfaced. So then, if God saw it, why did He allow the children to be placed in bondage to begin with? To prove His power of deliverance, the same reason we will find ourselves under the hand of ungodly from time to time. There are times we need to be reminded of all God is doing for us.
The children had two areas, the first was seeing the great delivering power of God, thus they knew the power delivered them, when they were unable to deliver themselves. It’s our first step of appreciation for being delivered from the snare of the devil. Next came the test in the wilderness, would they continue with the same belief and faith they held when they crossed the Sea? They still had signs in the wilderness, but they didn’t like the manner in which God was training them. They allowed unbelief to rule their minds, did God know it? Yes, Paul tells the Corinthians it was written for our sakes, a warning to us regarding the destruction of holding unbelief.
We just saw how God shows Mercy on whom He will, but we know the only way we get Mercy from God is to make the decision to forgive others. The concept shows we must make the decision to give Mercy, but it’s God who gives us the Mercy to give. If we are blinded by the darkness, it’s all we see. Instead of finding God in the event, we will find the evil. The problem is, what we find, we tend to promote.
Pharaoh was not from the house of Israel, but God nonetheless used him to show God’s power. Man has no position from which to question God’s choice, God alone knows the ways of a person’s heart, man in and of himself doesn’t even know his own heart.
It’s not God who rejects man, it’s man who rejects God, this isn’t restricted to the concept of the world, it includes the kingdom of heaven. The problem is not without, all the metaphors of the good and bad fish, the wheat and tares, the tree and the birds, are seen within. We found in John’s Account how the vessel was clean, then filled with Water, then the Water turned to Wine. The Water is a metaphor for Mercy, thus the Mercy brought the Wine. However, we also know from our bellies shall flow Living Water, ahh Mercy unto Life. On the same note we also know there is bitter water, coming from the old man, the Living Water from the New.
Did God talk to Pharaoh? Yes through the prophet; not only did God pick Pharaoh, He picked the prophet from the foundation of the world as well. Pharaoh was in the plan, yet at the point in time Pharaoh considered himself a god over the gods. God’s delivering power was a display showing how God was over all things, always able to deliver His own. Pharaoh was just another “thing” to benefit the called of God, although at the time the called didn’t think so.
God told Abraham about the captivity many years before it happened, God also told Abraham about the release of the children, thus the deliverance was the hope, we know the children were looking for a “deliverer”. It’s the result making the difference, the captivity not only showed Pharaoh the might of God, but it showed the children the Power of God. We can be under the hand of Pharaoh, yet God will allow the event to show His Power of deliverance, don’t forget it. The children in the wilderness did.
Once the children were delivered, they refused to continue in their belief, or hold the same faith they had when they crossed the sea. They rebelled causing their rebellion to turn to murmuring and complaining, then turning to tempting God, then challenging the man of God, all this after they were delivered. We can enter based on Deliverance, but forget the purpose.
God begins the formation with the same lump of clay, not two different lumps, a lump is a creation ready to be Formed. The lump becomes one of dishonor when it makes the decision to reject Mercy. The lump made entry based on two things, God’s Love and Mercy, a refusal to give Mercy brings dishonor to the Lord, thus the Will of the Father is for us to be merciful as He is merciful. This is the same context as Matthew 7:21-23, the workers of iniquity are vessels of dishonor, thus the warning to the Romans was telling them how holding the truth in unrighteousness is dangerous.
Did God know the Wicked would become vessels of dishonor? Yes, but it doesn’t mean God enjoys forming them, neither does it mean God caused them to reject mercy. It means God works with what we present Him. The purpose of the Plan was to form all the clay into the image of God’s Son, it was the clay who determined the forming process, the Potter merely formed the clay into the vessel the material allowed. What was the prophecy? “Let us make man in Our image”, it was not, “Let us make some in our Image, and some in the devil’s and the rest in plan B”. The Plan assures us God has set His purpose for us to be sons of God by the Witness in us.
Paul uses the line from Abraham to Isaac to Jacob to show God’s longsuffering, as well as the progression. God not using Abraham to bring all twelve tribes from Sara shows God has a plan which is progressive in nature. Mercy and Grace are progressive, Peter will show how we build one attribute on another. Don’t think we can wake up and make the decision to walk in Mercy or Love, then be complete from then on. We will make mistakes, we will fall, but the mistakes and falling in the Kingdom are learning tools, not destruction. Patience must have her perfect work.
There is real danger in rejecting Mercy, it may cause one to attack other members in the Body, especially when they don’t agree. The old excuse of, “well I didn’t see much anointing on them anyway”, or, “well I’m not sure they are of the Body” are both attempts to be the god over the Body. When we come against flesh and blood, we could be coming against a vessel of honor in the making, or a vessel of honor God is using to correct us, or disciple us. Correction unto perfection could be saving a vessel from becoming one of dishonor, much different than attacking flesh and blood. Judge the ways, and words, not the person.
God hones the vessel to become one of honor, if they show Mercy, while we are showing our attacking unbelief, we’re in big trouble. This is evident in some of the so-called Christian debates, we see one person jump all over another, call them heretic, cultist, or whatever, yet the so-called heretic, or cultist is showing mercy, while the other is attacking with a vengeance. Who then is the heretic? Who then is the vessel of dishonor? The other person’s teaching may be faulty, they may be in an area they have no business in, but they are still showing Mercy. It’s difficult to call someone not of the Body, when they show more mercy than we do.
The vessel of honor is one unto Mercy, not Grace, thus the context in this area is Mercy. Here are the keys, we have the ability to use them, or not to use them, but they are nonetheless in our hands. The very second God forgives us, we have the power of Mercy in hand. If we use the keys in a Godly manner, we walk in Mercy. If not, we will end a vessel of dishonor. Is it what God wants for us? No, is it in the Plan? Yes. Did God know there would be those who are the drunken going into the Night? Yes, is it His will? No, is it in the Plan? Yes. Will there be enemies of Jesus? Yes, is it the Will of God? No, is it in the Plan? Yes. God knows, but it doesn’t mean God forces someone into the position. If there were the case, we would not have the Keys.
The Plan is nonetheless our confidence, it shows God saw every stronghold, hurt, soulish trait, natural process, wile of the enemy, everything our souls needed to be healed, and saved, the Plan took care of everything. We are the product of the plan, not the tool, or the engineer. The source is the New Man, the engineer God. If we force changes in the plan, it’s we, not the plan or the engineer causing the problems. A dead fish floats downstream, a live fish can swim downstream missing the rocks and hindrances.
The word Destruction can also be translated as Perdition, thereby showing the sons of perdition lack Mercy, it takes a work to force change in the plan. Mercy becomes the glue to Grace, in Grace the Just life by faith, as they are being justified by God. However, we must see Grace is not the issue in the vessel forming, it’s Mercy (Water).
When we give Mercy, we are allowing God to form us into a vessel of honor, when we slander, hate or attack people, we give God no choice, but to form us into vessels of dishonor. “Oh yeah, I tell you one thing, I gave a someone mercy, and they went around telling everyone how I bowed to him”. Yes, vessels of dishonor do, since they lack any concept of Mercy, but it still doesn’t change our call to give Mercy. If they lack Mercy what to you think they would say? “Oh the saint showed me so much Mercy, I’m so convicted”? If they did, then they repented, meaning they are back on the right track. If they twisted our Mercy into some self-exalting act for their own egos, they are on the road to destruction, but since we gave Mercy, we are not, it becomes the point.
All this goes back to, “if we are separated from the Love of God, who did it?”. Surely it wasn’t persecution, affliction, principalities, death, life, powers, things present, things to come, height, depth, or any other creature, nor someone who taught false doctrine. What was it? A failure to give Mercy, while holding unbelief, causing them to reject the birthright. We all have the same opportunity, we all have the same ability in the New Man. There is no reason for failure, other than the continual decision to remain in unbelief. We can’t presume this means nothing can separate us, since we found unbelief will cause us to be cut off, but we are the ones who can either believe, or not. Both unbelief and belief are based in choice, we view the evidence we make the decision. We know the Scriptures are true, yet we see two people presented the same evidence, one says, “wow, I see it”, the other says, “well I don’t see it”, choice.
Not only did God call the Jews, but also the Gentiles (v. 24). Then Paul presents the Old Testament evidence to prove God’s foreknowledge, first in Hosea, a people who were not God’s people, will become God’s people, referring to the Gentiles (v. 25). Then it shall come to pass in the place where is was said unto them, you are not My people, there shall they be called the children of the living God, referring to the Jews who accepted the Cross and Resurrection (v. 26).
Isaiah also said, though a number of children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved, referring to the Night as the Remnant of the Seed of the Woman (v. 27). For God shall finish the work, and cut it short in Righteousness: because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth (v. 28), referring to the Judgment, since the Judgment is based in Righteousness (v. 2:5). The Remnant are also seen as the Seed left for the work of Judgment (v. 29). Again showing God’s foreknowledge, it will be, no man can stop it, but mankind can avoid it.
Now we have another Law, the one of Righteousness, but is it the Law, or the person doing the Law? The Gentile who was not under the Law, had not attainted Righteousness, even the Righteousness of faith, is God unrighteous then? No, so what about Israel, which followed after the righteousness of the Law of Moses, yet has not attained the Righteousness of Faith? Is God unequal? No, each made the choice when God presented the Gospel to all people, God is no Respecter of persons (vs. 30-32).
How then? Because God refused some? Nay, because some sought it not by faith, but by the works of the flesh, for they stumbled at the stumbling stone (v. 32). As it is written, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone, a rock of offense: and whosoever believes on Him shall not be ashamed (confounded – v. 33). But to those who believe not, the same Stone becomes a stumbling stone, so we find it’s the person, not some Plan A or Plan B hidden by God in heaven. We have to consider the evidence, we are in the Body, we have the same opportunity as Paul, Peter, John, Philip, or any other person in the Body, the Power hasn’t changed, the opportunity hasn’t changed either.
Paul is making a simple equation, the Jews did the Law of Moses with a zeal seeking self-righteousness, but in so doing they missed the Righteousness of God. The Knowledge of God is written, the evidence of who Jesus is was written for the Jew and Gentile, receiving it was a matter of choice. This proves, if we do the Law of Moses, we will not find the Righteousness of Jesus. When Jesus told us to deny the self, it included the concept of denying any form of self-righteousness. The self desires self-righteousness, it feels good, it puffs up, it makes the emotions happy, but it also slaps Jesus in the face.
Belief doesn’t stop at receiving, it continues on in the process in a lawful manner. Christ is the end of the law of self-righteousness, but only to those who believe. For those who believe not, the Law of sin and death remains.
Moses gave the requirements regarding the Law of Moses, the righteousness in the Law is not only based on the person doing the deeds, but living in them. However, the Righteousness by faith, speaks as well, it tells us our faith in God to Justify us by the Spirit makes us Justified before God. Do we each need some personal Jesus to die for us alone? Can any of us say Who will ascend into heaven? or Who will go to hell? Seeking to have Jesus appear from heaven, or demanding to see the defeat of the devil are products of control and unbelief. These things have happened, they need not happen again just so we can believe. Faith knows God has a Plan for us, the purpose is to save us. If we demand some special event just so we can believe in order to have faith, we have already made up our minds we are not going to believe. The Pharisees wanted a sign to fit their theological concepts, yet there were signs falling about them daily. They made up their choice not to believe, anyone who uses the unbelief of another as an excuse to hold their own unbelief, is still an unbeliever. We have the Bible, regardless of the translation we still know, Ye must be Born Again.
Do we have to see Christ on the Cross and raised again? Faith doesn’t, faith knows the same Spirit who raised Jesus is us raising us daily. What says the Word? The Word is near unto us, even in our mouths, and in our hearts, if we are Born Again. It’s the same Word of faith Paul preached to the Romans, and to us via the Scriptures. We confess with our mouths the Lord Jesus, knowing no one calls Jesus Lord, but by the Holy Ghost (v. 9 & I Cor 12:3). We must believe in our heart God has raised Jesus from the dead, without needing some special evidence, then we shall be saved. This is the same context as Mark 16:16-18, with the same tense for the word Believe. We cannot be like the children, who crossed the sea by faith, yet entered unbelief in the testing.
In verse 9 it was confess, then believe, in verse 10 it’s believe unto Righteousness, then with the mouth confession is made “unto salvation”. This gives us steps, this is not speaking to believe, it’s speaking what we believe. It begins with making a decision to believe, then putting our trust in God, then seeking after the Spirit, then putting our mind on the Spirit as we put our faith in God. The same word of faith Paul preaches, is in our mouths, from the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The circumcised Heart is the place of Righteousness and Truth; this is the Righteousness of faith, not the self-righteousness of the Law of Moses, nor is it minding the flesh. This Righteousness is found in the New Man, it’s the foundation for the Justification, the very means God uses to Justify us.
For the Scripture says, Whosoever believes on Him, shall not be ashamed (v. 11 & Isa 28:16, 49:23 and Jere 17:7). This also connects back to 9:33 to the stumbling stone, whosoever believes shall not be ashamed. The tense for the word Believe in 9:33 is the Present Participle, expressing a continuous action. In verse 9 the word Believe in the phrase believe in our hearts is the Aorist Subjunctive referring to a simple, undefined action, which means it’s based in the New Man, who is the Word, or Seed which can’t be seen. This area along with verse 14, plus the Aorist tense for believe means one who believes before the imputing, just as Abraham. We can’t say, “well I will impute then I will believe”, it won’t work, it ends as a mind game. We must believe before we act, these verses show a progression of belief to faith, centered in the Word of Faith.
Verse 13 tells us about calling on the Lord, the concept is one who calls on the Lord to save them. It entails applied belief in the Lord’s ability to accomplish the act, then faith in the Lord to deliver them to a safe place. All the prior verses show the Patience, or the continuous act of belief in all Jesus promised, then our faith in the ability of the Lord to complete what He promised.
Confessing Jesus as Lord, shows we are servants, if we are servants we don’t force our agenda on the Lord, neither do we engage in self-righteousness, nor do we demand how God must operate. Trusting in God to perform for us, and putting our Trust in God are different.
If we believe in our heart God raised Jesus from the dead, we must also believe in the Trinity. Jesus said He had the power to raise Himself (Jn 2:19-21), Paul said it was the Glory of God raising Jesus, he also said it was the Spirit (of God), then he said it was the Father (Gal 1:1, vs. 8:11, 4:24-25, 6:4, 6:9 & 7:4), Peter said the Spirit (of God) raised Jesus from the dead (I Pet 1:21), one God all in all.
A lack of faith is thinking they can usher Jesus out of heaven? Doesn’t our faith know God is in control, it’s God who raised Jesus, it’s God who dictates the return of Jesus, we cannot and will not tell God what He can and cannot do, faith begins with a belief of, “God Is”, rather than “God You have to”. Before we can get to the Rewarder of those who diligently seek God, we have to be established in “God Is” belief thinking.
When Truth comes, we receive it, than comes the Faith to submit to the New Man in order to apply what we heard. Without the New Man we will fall right into the acts of self-righteousness, then sink knee deep in the law of sin and death. Think back to the time we received, all we did was receive the Truth, God did the rest. It hasn’t changed, the Ability came in the New Man. Therefore, Belief must include the Receiving, if we Received, we hold to what we have Received, giving us a platform for faith.
The Gospel is Peace, not war; Love, not hate; Good things and Tidings, not bad things. The Sound went out, but not all believed; therefore, faith came, but only some received. Faith always comes, it’s the receiving of Faith bringing the benefit. If faith came, could all receive? Yes, but did all? No, some made the decision not to receive, another clue to how Predestination is not God forcing us to belief, or refusing to allow us to believe. When faith comes do we receive it? Here we find the Word of Faith is spoken, but does the person hear and believe? We did then, we can now.
Paul goes back to Romans 1:18-24, showing the sound of the Word has gone out (past tense), but only those who sought the Truth in the Righteousness of Jesus obtained the Faith. If one was seeking to build on their own self-righteousness, they missed the Truth of God’s Righteousness.
We are suppose to provoke Israel to jealousy, not become a source of their jokes. Jesus was found among Israel, but they rejected Him, since they were not of faith, but He was Manifested to those who are not of Israel, who sought after Him; therefore, if one seeks the Truth, it will find them allowing them to believe.
Does God give up easy? Not hardly, He stretched forth His “hands”, on the last day they will ask “where did You get those wounds?”. This also shows when we lay hands on people, we are really giving them the Hand of God, as we act in the place of God. We are not hindered by a Veil, or a Yoke; we can pass through to the Holiest of All wherein lays the Mercy Seat so we can bring Truth, Light, Love and Hope to a dying world.
There are the people waiting, but how shall they hear? Someone has to tell them, but does anyone go? Only those Sent, but how shall they be Sent? Even if they are Sent, will all believe? No, for Isaiah said, “Lord who will believe our report”, so then Faith comes by hearing, but the hearing comes by the Word (Rhema) of God. Jesus said the Words (Rhema) He spoke were Life and Spirit (Jn 6:63). Ears set on the Rhema seek to believe the words of faith, the words of faith are based on Life and the Spirit.
Paul warns us not to cut off the Remnant, neither should we assume we are the Jewish Remnant. Cult systems claim Jesus, they also seek their own self-righteousness, they project some special element they think sets them above the Body of Christ, which defines the word “Cult”. An easy way to define a cult is any person or system who seeks their own righteousness, while holding to some special element they think sets them above the rest of the Body of Christ, coupled with corrupt end time thinking, thus they know the Truth, but hold it in unrighteousness. They want to impress God, or have us impressed by them, they desire to do some work of the flesh to be among some “special” group, to hold the secret truth, yet they fail to be what God has called them to be. Some seek to be the 144,000, some think they are the end time saints (which is the same thing), but in any case they are really minding the flesh, seeking to be better than the entire Body of Christ. Their source is the lust of acceptance, validation or superiority, based in the spirit lusting to envy. We are not of them, we seek the Lord, we mind the Spirit, we obey the word of faith.
Those who mind the flesh usually want to be exalted in some fashion by their own doing, or they attempt to impress God with works of the flesh, or deeds from the Law of Moses. However, if they know about the Cross of Jesus, or they have received the Truth of Jesus, their pride makes them hold the Truth in unrighteousness. There are cultist thinking people in cults, there are those seeking truth caught in cult systems. If one is seeking the Truth, then faith will find them, they will be set free, if they believe.
Have they not heard? Yes, so faith comes, but it still takes a Rhema ear (v. 18). As Isaiah said, “I was found of them who sought Me not, I was made manifest unto them who asked not after Me”. There are those who really don’t want to know, but there are those who really want to know. The same Net catches the good fish, also catches the bad (Jude 22-23). The same is true here in Romans, it’s not to discourage us, but to let us know not everyone is going to jump for joy over the Word of faith.
Whether Jew or Gentile, the only reason one is cut off from the Olive Tree, is based on their unbelief. Unbelief stops God from working with us, it’s not saying the Power of God is weak, or unbelief is greater than God’s Power. Rather God will not force Himself on us, we must Enter in. To assume since “God is stronger than unbelief” God will work with us regardless of our unbelief is foolishness. If it were the case then the first generation of the children in the wilderness would have made it to the Promised Land (Jude 5). Unbelief and Doubt are Great Walls around strongholds separating us from God. If we say we love God, yet hold unbelief, we lie, and the truth is not in us. We must war against the evil of unbelief, by making the decision to believe.
The Lord has worked with Israel for years, He continues to, until the work is done. Paul tells us to Look, is Israel still here? If so, God is not through with them. Go find some Edomite. Can’t, God is through with them. The Fig Tree remains, the branches being cut off from the Olive Tree are not to be confused with the Leaves from the Fig Tree. The branches from the Olive Tree were cut off because of their unbelief. It was not God’s rejection, but their refusal to believe. It’s the same warning Paul is giving the Romans, they too could be cut off because of unbelief.
Hold it, wait, didn’t this same man say nothing can separate us from the Love of God? Yes, but we must keep the verses in context. Their unbelief caused them to be cut off, the Love of God is found in Christ, if removed from the Tree, they caused the separation. There is no commandment telling us “thou shall know the Lord loves thee”, nor is there one saying, “because the Lord loves thee, thou shall not fail”. The call is for us to Love the Lord, if we Love Him, we will do as He said, which begins with deny the self and pick up our cross.
If the leaves of the Fig Tree are still there, it’s due to them being blinded to the Gospel for the Season to come. There are others who have veiled their selves by their own unbelief, others who veil themselves by seeking the self-righteousness in the Law. Therefore, some may appear to be separated from the Cross, but in truth it was God who has separated them from the Truth for their purpose. What purpose? The judgment of God in the Night. It stands if they know the Truth, yet are appointed to be the Remnant, then they would be holding the Truth in unrighteousness, meaning God can’t use them. However, if they are blinded by God, it’s different; neither does it excuse those who veil themselves by their own unbelief, merely showing we can’t tell the difference, don’t judge, we may be judging the Remnant.
Has God rejected those who are Israel? Seven thousand are reserved, John shows in the Book of Revelation the seven thousand are the Jewish remnant (Rev 11:13). Now wait, John says they are 144,000. True, but both numbers are metaphoric in nature, the 7,000 refers to the prophets in the caves, or those God has reserved. The 144,000 are taken from the thousands, in our case we are ten thousand times ten thousand, two numbers, two flocks, for different purposes (v. 4).
There is the Remnant appointed to the nation Israel, who are the leaves of the Fig Tree, there is also a Remnant according to Grace which are termed the Few who walk with Jesus in White (v. 5). Two Remnants, not to be confused or mixed one into the other, one is Day related, the other is Night related. Those of the Day are appointed Salvation, those of the Night are appointed to bring the Judgment.
If it is by Grace, then it’s no longer by works, otherwise Grace is no more Grace. If we mind the flesh we are not in Grace, if we mind the Spirit we are (v. 6). It has to be one or the other, therein lays the evidence. When they entered the Body it was by God’s Mercy, this issue is Grace. If one is working to obtain their self-righteousness, they are not in Grace, if one works from the Righteousness in them it is of Grace. We must consider the flesh as dead, then receive the Spirit, then walk in the Spirit in order to be raised by the Spirit at the Rapture. Does it mean we float around like a cloud? No, it means we try, we attempt to mind the Spirit, if we fail, we know it’s a lesson, not destruction.
Did Israel lose the calling to be the Elect to the Gentiles? God has blinded them by giving them a “spirit of slumber” for a purpose, not for us to mock, or sit back saying, “I thank God I’m not like you unbelieving Jew”; but to bring in the promise of the Time of Comfort. The goal is the same, the means to reach it are different.
The Jew will be raised on the last day unto life, pass the Books, find their name in the Book of Life, then hear Come up hither. We are raised because we have Life, they will be raised Unto Life, two different means, two different resurrections. However, for us the goal is to be a Partaker in the First Resurrection; those who are partakers of the First Resurrection know their names are written in the Book of Life, they need not pass the books (Law of Moses).
There is a purpose, God did not make them fall into unbelief, but He took advantage of it. Because of their stumbling the door was open to the Gentile to receive Grace unto Salvation (vs. 8-11). David prophesied how his own people would reject the Lord, because of the rejection God would place the eyes of darkness on them, but it doesn’t mean God caused them to fall, it means God has a purpose in the process. Even the vessels of dishonor have a purpose, God doesn’t waste a thing, even the rind gets used. Even if they gain the riches of the world in the Time of Comfort, does it mean we lost our purpose? Hardly, the riches of this world never determine one’s position with God. Only a thief attempts to gain entry through the Window, a son enters by the Door.
Paul now brings it back to the Gentile Age, as we provoke by Mercy, Love and Grace. The Promise is the Spirit, even the Jew knows the sign of the Spirit is Love. Paul isn’t speaking against the Jews, but showing the process of salvation for the Jew and the Gentile is connected to the Spirit for the Day, as the Law of Moses goes into the Night, whereas the Law of the Spirit ends on earth at the close of the Day. The Jew has a saying, scratch a Christian, you will find a pagan. When we fail to walk in Mercy, we fail at Grace, if we fail at Grace, we fail at being a Witness for Jesus.
This is still speaking of the Olive Tree, not the Fig Tree. Here we find the Gospel was presented to the Jew first, but their unbelief produced religious conceit causing them to be cut off. Jesus healed many, many followed Him, but when the test came, they turned and walked with Him no more (Jn 6:66). If the Gospel was presented to the Jew, does it mean the Root wasn’t Holy? Hardly, the Root is still holy, but it takes a decision from the branch to be a partaker. The warning? Don’t say one word about the broken branches, they were broken off for our sakes, they made room for us. They are still in God’s hands, their time is coming.
The same holds true with the sons of perdition, don’t attack them, walk in Love and Mercy. One trick of the enemy is to get us to use the same weapons against him, as he uses against us. The devil could care less if we curse him, or attack him, as long as we use his means to do so. However, when we use the weapons of our warfare, which are mighty through God causing the darkness to beat a path as far from us as possible.
Here in these verses we can put an end to the false concept of predestination being a matter of Selection. They were not cut off because of selection, nor because they failed to do the Law of Moses, but because of unbelief; thus believe or not to is a choice we make. The “selection”, if there was one, is not God selecting them to fail, rather they selected to remain in unbelief, causing the cutting off. Since this is a “cutting off”, we also find if we are circumcised at heart, we are grafted in, but if we refuse to be circumcised of heart, we are a wild branch without connection. The circumcision of heart is a removal from one aspect, yet a grafting on to another. James says the Engrafted Word is able to save our souls (James 1:21).
In order to Continue we must Continue in Belief, it’s not the baptism alone, but our continual belief bringing “shall be saved”. Paul’s teaching supports Mark 16:16-18, showing it’s not a one time confession, or a moment of belief, but a continual effort. It’s a walk and a race, not a stop and wait. This surely breaks the stronghold of holding a false sense of security; if the Branches of the Olive Tree were broken off because of Unbelief, then Paul warns the Romans the same can happen to them, thus being saved from the world is not the end of the race. If they are on the Olive Tree, they had the anointing of Mercy, yet the they failed to continue to believe. However, we are still of those who fit the command we continually believe, the reason we take Communion is to Remember, thus Remembering supports our belief. Adding Hebrews 11:1 (in those days there was no chapter or verse numbers) to Hebrews 10:38 and 39 we see faith is the evidence of things not seen, but it’s still an evidence. From the manner of faith we can tell what the unseen is, if the Spirit, then Jesus is the center of attention, if the flesh then the self becomes the center of attention.
In order to have a Continual Belief one needs a heart capable to stand in those times when unbelief attempts to invade. Believing Jesus is raised from the dead entails much, if we believe then we also believe the imputed power we used to claim the old nature dead: if we believe, then we believe sin has no dominion over us, if we believe then we believe we are free from the Law of Moses and the Ten Commandments, if we believe, then we believe God has a plan perfect of us, if we believe, we also believe God is fully able, then our faith takes over reaching to the result.
Then comes the warning again, if they were cut off because of their failure to believe, what makes us so conceited to think once we are saved from the world, we will always be saved? What makes us think we can hold tenets of unbelief, reject the spiritual, and attempt to call Jesus down from heaven, yet remain on the Tree? Religious conceit is a stronghold, the Romans assumed they were so engrafted to the Olive Tree nothing could cut them off, not even their own unbelief, yet they are found holding the Truth in unrighteousness, the result was a judgmental attitude, placing them in danger.
Faith says we cannot dictate what God will do, or will not do, we submit to what God is doing. This is an aspect of faith we can’t miss, especially if we presume our faith is a tool for us to get what we want, when we want it. Neither Faith or Belief ever attempts to call Jesus down from heaven, nor do we demand some personal sign before we believe.
Some failed to discern the purpose of their calling, when we fail to discern, we will judge others, rather then discern the things. The contrast here shows Paul was discerning, but the Romans were judging, yet it appears to the carnal mind one is the same as the other, but they are not the same.
There is a fullness of the Gentiles before the Remnant of the Jews have their time, thus we can’t joke, mock or consider ourselves so great because some are blinded to the Gospel of Peace. On the other hand there were those who accepted the premise, but because of their unbelief we obtained Mercy, now our Mercy must be upon all, including the unbelieving as well as the believing. Mercy remains a key element to our walk, thus even Faith without Mercy leaves us unequal.
It’s always the mind of the Lord, not just the Mind of Christ, we have the Mind of Christ (anointing), not the Mind of God, or the Mind of the Lord, we can’t confuse them into one mind (I Cor 2:16). The Mind of Christ receives its information from the Mind of the Lord, as Paul points out, but one cannot have the mind of Christ without the New Man.
There must a recourse for the Romans, or anyone else who is caught in religious conceit. Those who walk by the flesh refuse to give themselves as living sacrifices, they want to gain the reward of the Sacrifice, but they don’t want to be one. In order to be a living sacrifice one must have life, thus this pertains only to those who have gained Mercy. If it’s the case, then we can add this to our “priestly order”: to whom do we give ourselves? To the Lord, but how? By being a sacrifice as we submit to the New Man. This will be clearer in a few verses when we learn of the Charisma of Charis.
We’ve already looked at being Conformed to this world, we know Transformed used here is the same Greek word translated as Transfigured, but for review we find it’s submission to the Spirit to be Transfigured, not the act of Transforming ourselves. Self-transformation is based in self-righteousness, to form the flesh into a façade of holiness, yet inside pride reigns. The translators didn’t make a mistake, the verse shows we submit ourselves as a living sacrifice, which means it’s a matter of choice after being transformed by Mercy. If we reject the Transfiguration by Christ to produce Living Water, we will be conformed to worldly ways again. Prior it was walking in the flesh, here it’s a conforming to the ways of the world, thus the warning here points to being formed into a vessel of dishonor, by using the flesh to accomplish our goals.
If we are going to Renew our mind, it means we need a mind to be renewed to. So what mind? We know this means a Renovation (a changing and cleaning process), since chapter 8 told us about minding the flesh, or minding the Spirit, we find the Renovation is a doing away with any concept of self-righteousness, deeds of the flesh, the false concept of remaining natural, as well as putting away the use of natural reasoning to define the spiritual, which simply means we stop minding the flesh. We need an entirely different thought process, one firm in the Mind of Christ. This renewing isn’t going back to the world, it’s to renew our mind to the Spirit, yet the renovation means things have to be removed. When we move into the Mind of Christ, we will be able to do all the Things of Christ, by Christ. It’s still a process centered on walking in the Spirit.
We can’t give ourselves a living sacrifice, then transfigure ourselves, it’s impossible. It would mean we went back to the flesh to perform something for God, which God said He would do. Our fleshly effort is a sign of unbelief, leading to bitterness, yet the root of bitterness will defile us.
This draws on the belief of Abraham, who refused to trust in his flesh to bring the promise to pass, rather he trusted in God. The paradox of course is seeing the flesh of Abraham was part of the equation, thus the man could trust in God to perform, yet he could also trust in his flesh, but he didn’t, neither should we. Therefore like Belief, we find we make the choice to mind the Spirit, yet we still use the flesh to move about, do labor, as well as other things, but we don’t trust in the flesh as our deliverer or savior.
The measure of faith is a limited amount of faith, yet it’s still Given, or a Gift, we can’t even take credit for our puny faith. We can’t think we are the Faith of Jesus, rather we put our faith in Jesus, knowing His Faith has accomplished the task. We will never control the Faith of Jesus, we can’t dictate what the Faith of Jesus can do, has done, or will do, we Submit to it through the New Man. Pride attempts to control, meekness submits.
In verses 3-5 we find areas where the word “every” is used. We find, “every man among you”, with “to every man” is given the measure of faith (Rom 12:3). It would seem only those who “are among you” have the measure. Then we find, “and every one members of one another” in Romans 12:5, which is a direct reference to the Body. So, what gives? Ahh, three different Greek words for the word “every”. In the phrase “every man among you” it’s the Greek Pas meaning the whole of what is talked about. In the phrase “every one members” it’s the Greek Kata meaning What is joined to make the total. However, in the phrase “God has dealt to every man the measure of faith” it’s the Greek Hekastos meaning everyone, regardless. One could view these different words as Pas meaning only the apples, yet the text gives us apples, oranges and grapes. Kata means the basket in which the apples are joined, whether the apples are good or bad. However, Hekastos means in the basket, or out, grape, orange or apple, it doesn’t matter, it’s all inclusive. The only ones who lack faith are the wicked and the unreasonable, as the unteachable, only because they twisted their measure of faith into a self-centered, self-motivated type of self-confidence (pride of life).
In the Book of Hebrews we find many who had faith before the Cross, thus the measure of faith was around, it was the measure of faith God granted to Adam. In the measure was Agapao love, yet Jesus told us there are some who Agapao the darkness. If one can twist Agapao love to love the darkness, then they can twist the measure of faith to mind power. Our purpose is to walk in the Spirit, keep the Agapao Love as God intended, until Agape Love is birthed in us. We use our measure of faith as commanded, have Faith in God.
The reason it’s by Measure is also a vital element, if it’s by measure, we can put some here, some there, some in this person, some in our talent, some in our ability, some in the world, then put what is left in God, then wonder why we lack power. We can gain from the measure given, for what measure you give, is the same measure you get back. If we put a little of our measure in God, when the event comes, we will fail, end angry, crying, begging for prayer, wondering what happened, kicking the cat, barking louder than the dog, or thinking the devil just ripped our heart out. We have one commandment regarding the placement of the measure of faith, “have faith in God”.
Paul now speaks of the gifts of the Spirit, as they are given to benefit the Body, not merely to benefit the individual with the gift. These are the Charisma of Charis, the working elements of the nature we received by being Born Again, or attributes of the New Nature. These are not pick a gift here or there, they are signs we find coming from the New Nature. Paul lists 7 qualities: prophecy, ministry, teaching, exhortation, giving, ruling and mercy, the number 7 points to rest and completeness. These are not separate gifts, where one believer may have prophecy, then giving, or mercy, or discipling (teaching), thus these are attributes of the New Testament Gift of Grace. The warning, if there is one, shows we don’t go beyond the gift, we keep things in order. The prophecy is not according to the office, but it is according to “I wish for you all to give prophesy”. This is the area of comfort, exhortation and edification: the Office of Prophet is much different.
If it’s prophecy, then let it be to the proportion of faith, or within the boundaries of The Faith. It’s easy to let the old man add his thoughts to the prophecy, or what we think should be said, or say something just to appease the person, but we must stop when the Spirit is done. With ministry, wait until the Spirit is ready to minister, don’t enter, “I tell you what I think”, or attempt to minister from our pains or hurts, we end needing ministry. On teaching, let it be within the confines of Discipleship, not as the Office of Teacher. On Exhortation, let it remain as Exhortation, which may include a rebuke to set someone back on the path of faith. On mercy, always with cheerfulness. On giving, as a cheerful giver. On Ruling, let it not be as the Barbarian, but by example. These are areas where the nature of Christ is evident, all these attributes are in every Born Again believer. Since these are attributes, or Ways. Add the Wisdom of God to the ways and you have The Faith in operation within the Born Again saint. Some look for the supernatural, but we should also be looking for the Charisma of Charis as an active part of our nature.
However, we are still the ones who can place a Yoke, or Veil on the Vessel, or attempt to fake these areas. It’s difficult at best to see “living water” flow, when we keep putting stones of abuse on the mouth of the Well. Living Water? New Tongues? Yes, it’s what we find here, these areas of Charisma are coming from the well (Spirit) within. When we speak of these “gifts”, we must keep in mind they are gifts coming from us as a result of being Born Again, these are elements of the grow in the process of Justification.
Paul lists both Agape and Phileo love as vehicles to having the gifts work with effectiveness. He then tells us how these areas work; love is the first position, being fervent in Grace is the second, rejoicing in the hope third, patient in tribulation is next, then distributing to the need of the saints, given to hospitality, bless and never, never curse anyone. These gifts are in the Born Again saint for the Body, they are not the same as the Manifestation of the Spirit found in Corinthians chapter 12.
Heaping coals of fire is not the same as telling someone they are a jerk, rather the context goes to the Jewish tradition of carrying the coals from the fire the night before, to start the next fire, thus instead of rendering evil, do good to those who hate you, give to those who use you, pray for those who persecute you, cast off the desire of vengeance by giving Mercy. All this is being a Blessing, as heaping coals is not the thought of, “oh yeah I’m going to do you some good, and you’ll be sorry, you jerk, God will get you, but as for me, look how holy I am, here have another coal”. No, this means our nature is to Bless, because our New Nature made us a Blessing. It’s not easy, since the old man of cursing is waiting in the wings to bring his opinion into this. If we refuse to mind the flesh, the chore does become easier. We learn to mind the Spirit, which also means we listen before we speak.
Chapter 13 doesn’t end the call to Mercy, it continues. Paul’s use of “every soul” goes further than simply a gesture to submit. We can’t submit our souls to other humans after we submitted ourselves to God, thus we give ourselves to God, then we can submit one to another without the danger of developing soul ties. A “soul tie” is what the damsel in Acts 16:16-19 was attempting, it’s when we give our minds to another, allowing them to control us. If we have given our souls to Jesus, how can anyone form a soul tie with us? They can’t, but if we retain our souls, then surely someone who engages in witchcraft will attempt to form a soul tie. Really the only way it can happen is when we enter mentor worship, as we end being our minds to them, rather than to God. Cults use soul-ties, Christians seek the saving of the soul.
Paul also shows the Romans had the knowledge, but Hosea said it was a lack of knowledge causing us to be cut off? Hosea doesn’t say the knowledge was kept from the people, rather he points out, it was presented, then rejected (Hosea 4:5-6 & Hab 2:4). It becomes Paul’s point, the Knowledge is there, it’s plain, don’t reject it. This area of submission keeps us from forming the “special of the special” thinking, it begins with submission to any power (authority) we’re under. When the Centurion spoke on this subject Jesus said it was Great Faith, thus submission is a product of faith. This can only be done when we know we are over the powers of the world; yet, if we presume they are over us, how can we believe we are over them? This shows we can submit because we are of the Body, we are under the Name of Jesus, making it a choice, not a forced submission; we are not captive to the world, slaves are forced to submit.
All Power (Authority) is of God, whoever resists the Power, resists God, producing vessels of dishonor. Paul shows even a power in the world is still ordained by God, it would seem as if God has ordained evil, not so, the powers in the world expose evil, often the evil exposed is in the one doing the evil. This connects back to Pharaoh, God allowed the man to reign for a purpose, the evil was exposed, then dealt with by God.
There are also good kings in the Kingdom, of which Paul was. By his position he is bringing the correction by exposing through the Authority (power) of God, to resist the correction is the rejection of knowledge, surely they will be cut off (destroyed). This is made clear by the use of the phrase, “he is a minister of God”. A Minister of God is a Minister of mercy, this area is pointing to those whom God sends or places in our life to bring correction unto perfection by the Mercies of God.
There is a separation here, a Ruler of Life brings Truth, a ruler of darkness brings envy, strife and division, a ruler of the world exposes evil, at times by being evil, yet all are known by God, all are worked into the plan. The Judgment comes because of man, thus the evil is displayed, man can see it, it’s not hidden. If man continues in it, then man becomes the very evil he sees.
The context of Owe no man anything, but to love him goes hand in hand with Mercy. One could take these verses and render evil for evil, yet Paul just finished saying it produces more evil than the evil we come against. If we know to do Good, yet render evil to one who knows nothing but evil, who then is more evil? We are, we Bless and curse not, yet if we run off and curse someone, it makes us more the evil doer.
The context here is still being a Minister of God, if the Minister of God gives us spiritual blessings, is it wrong to give them tribute? They brought the Word, they owe us nothing, they are not in debt to the Law, or man. When someone renders us Mercy, and we reject it, we owe them. We render Mercy by love, in so doing we owe no man. This goes right back to judging people, if we judge people, we owe them, we are in debt to them, if we render Mercy by love we owe them nothing.
This is minding the Spirit, if we mind the Spirit, we walk in the Charisma of Grace. We will not mind the flesh, we will complete the idea behind the commandments, thus if we walk in Love the fruit of Love is always good, why would we do the deeds of the Law of Moses, if we do Good by Nature? If we Put On Jesus we have Put On the New Man, who is created (formed same Greek word) after the true holiness and righteousness of God, not self-righteousness, or the assumed holiness of those who mind the flesh.
Verse 13:12 points to the Night, the wording “far spent” doesn’t mean behind, or done, rather it’s the Greek Prokopto meaning To drive forward, or what is just ahead, but then he shows the Day is at hand, the works of the Day are unto Salvation by the Spirit, the Night brings the Judgment. Why tell them this? Their judging, they were minding the flesh, not the Spirit, yet the Spirit is the means to accomplish the reason for entering the Body to begin with.
Now what about those who do some things from the Law of Moses, yet are in a learning process? The weak in the faith doesn’t necessarily mean they are babes, it means they are weak because of the flesh. There is no faith in the flesh, thus if they mind the flesh, they will be weak in the Faith. They focus on acts of touch not, taste not, if we are truly spiritual in nature we know the Truth, but we can also fall to the flesh by using the flesh as basis of holiness or righteousness. The second we hear ourselves brag in our victory, or knowledge, we are in the flesh. As for those weak in the flesh, we exhort them, we don’t judge them.
This grouping of the “weak” are still looking to the flesh as their guide to holiness, but we can’t dispute or debate with them, it only adds resolve to their weakness. The second we debate with them, their souls presume they are right, or they are being persecuted, which only adds to their weakness, they will work the harder attempting to secure their own righteousness. Teach them the truth, let the Holy Ghost guide, but don’t debate, or belittle the weaker ones.
The context here is two-fold, we don’t judge the person because they keep a day, but neither can they judge us if we don’t. They are servant’s of God, it’s God who will judge them. Whatever they do in reference to these matters of weakness, they do unto the Lord. Meaning they keep it between them and the Lord, it also means they should not expect any special favor from God for the doing, or for not doing. They are not to go about telling people what they are doing, or not doing; they are not to make these areas doctrine, or points of their theology, or make them points of holiness.
Bondage and conviction produced by soulish words produce more bondage and rejection, not freedom. None of us live to ourselves, nor did we die to ourselves, it would be self-denial, not denying the self. Christ died, rose and revived, so He might be Lord of the living and the dead, for those who are Christ’s and those who belong to Christ.
If we refuse to “deny the self”, yet attempt to impute our flesh dead, we will not enter Justification. If the flesh is dead, it can no longer seek self-righteousness, nor can it project its own opinions, thus if one is weak in the faith, they have yet to impute the flesh dead, rather they are still trusting in acts of the flesh as points of righteousness and holiness. Showing they are immature in the Lord, they have yet to see the Truth in God’s Righteousness. Pray for them, don’t beat them up with our “Liberty”. We judge ourselves, it’s enough for anyone: judging others is a waste of time, judging others produces seeds of Pharisaical thinking.
The Word of Faith is the evidence, not food or drink. If we judge someone by food or drink, we are weak in the faith, or if they assume the Kingdom of God is food, drink, or a dress code, they are walking in the flesh, yet we who are spiritual can’t judge them. Help them gain in the Faith, yes, judge them, no.
Thinking we can impress God by our actions is carnal at best, allowing God to impress His Will on us is spiritual. Paul goes through all this; then it appears as if he is judging those who hold food and drink as a means of pleasing God, yet it’s not the case at all. If we eat or drink we do it in faith, if in faith it can’t be by the Law of Moses, since the Law of Moses is not of faith. The more we walk in faith, the less food and drink become the issue, righteousness and holiness in Jesus become the issue. If we eat, or eat not, we do so unto the Lord, not unto man, or the self, or the flesh, or as a point of righteousness. Whatever we do, if it’s not by faith in God, it’s sin nonetheless.
Paul confirms this by saying, “not to please ourselves”, a very profound statement. Most all aspects of the deeds of the flesh are to first please ourselves, or gain validation for our existence, or to feel better about ourselves, but faith pleases God, whether we’re pleased or not. If we desire to please ourselves, how can we please God? We can’t, pleasing the self is a sign of the carnal mind; if we are set to please ourselves, we have yet to deny the self.
Paul continues with the thoughts of faith versus the flesh; the food and drink cannot be the subject of pleasing God, since Faith pleases God, food and drink are merely symbols of obedience; however, if we concern ourselves over food and drink for the flesh’s sake, we are minding the flesh, not the Spirit. It includes using food or drink as signs of holiness, or worry. If a Jew was unsure what the food product was, they would refuse to eat it for worry sake. Some of us worry more about what the world says, than we do in what God says. Thinking we can bless our food and drink, and have it kill is us is not in line with the faith. If we can’t gave thanksgiving for it, don’t eat it.
Things written, are written for our learning, if have learned anything, it’s the division of Seasons. The Day has it’s time and timing, the Night it’s time and timing. We also learned we receive the Righteousness of Jesus in the New Birth, but we must allow it to manifest. We learned how to impute the flesh dead and why, as well as how to mind the Spirit. We also found Judgment is for the Night, it’s suppose to be, it’s also suppose to remain there. The Law of Moses was around before the children entered the promised land, all their eating habits still couldn’t keep the wicked out, neither could keeping the sabbath day secure them in the Promised Land. It takes something above the realm of the Law of Moses, it takes the Law of the Spirit. If we attempt to gain favor from God based on our deeds, we end with Pride as our king, ego as our prince, religious conceit as our theology, as we hold the Truth in unrighteousness.
We can begin by faith, then run to the deeds of the flesh assuming we are pleasing God, when we are building a stronghold of religious conceit. If we started in Faith, let us continue and finish in Faith. Jesus confirmed the promises unto the fathers, we didn’t. The Promise for us is the Spirit, our Promised Land is the Kingdom of God.
Paul goes right back to Mercy, indicating Mercy is the glue to our faith. We Glorify God for His Mercy, we rejoice with His people, we don’t judge them, or use the weakness of another to exalt ourselves. Whatever we do, do in faith, whatever we say, say by faith, in this we praise the Lord for His Mercy, for His Mercy endures forever, thereby showing Mercy is an substantial part of Faith.
Verse 13 tells us about Hope, Joy, Peace and the Power of the Holy Ghost, thus our Hope will fill us with Joy, our Believing brings Peace, and through the Power (New Man) from the Holy Ghost we will have the confidence to endure until the end.
Paul makes reference to the Root of Jesse, taking us back to chapter 1, relating to Jesus as the Son of man, again pointing to Mercy. In this case we find the Gentiles will trust the Root, but the Root of Jesse is not David, since David came from Jesse, the Root is before Jesse, which Root is Christ, thus even if the branch is cut off, the Root is still holy. The Gentiles were promised the entrance by the prophets of Old, the Door was opened by the Holy Ghost, if opened by the Holy Ghost it still takes the Spirit to maintain.
Paul now shows the process is the Holy Ghost, yet didn’t the Seed come form the Holy Ghost? It’s the point, we are “being” (process) sanctified by the Holy Ghost (v. 16), but we also find the Power of the Spirit (New Man v. 19). The conjunction of the Comforter and Another Comforter, showing the reward when we mind the Spirit. How will we operate in the Spirit, if we mind the flesh?
Paul’s boldness is correction unto perfection indicates he is the Minister of Jesus to the Gentiles, as a true Minister of God, saying what needs to be said. Paul was sanctified by the Holy Ghost, not the Law of Moses. It’s through Jesus we glory, not through the Law of Moses. Didn’t Paul do some points of the Law of Moses? Yes, but not to please God, rather it was to gain entry into the Jewish synagogues, a much different reason. The Law of Moses never produced the signs and wonders of Grace; holding to the Law of Moses, or entering a judgmental attitude removes us from being used of the Spirit, or filled by the Holy Ghost to bring signs and wonders to the masses, the signs and wonders follow Believers, they don’t follow doers of the Law.
Paul closes his letter showing he was in the process of going to Jerusalem to preach to the Jews, thus he was not against them, but for them, he was upset over Christians who entered judgmental thinking placing themselves under the Law of Moses. The obvious conclusion to the Jew was, what’s the difference? They say they are Christian, but they judge as the Law does.
Paul wanted to be delivered from the unbelievers in Judea, but accepted by the saints in Jerusalem. He was accepted by the saints, but delivered into the hands of unbelievers. Did it mean the prayer didn’t work? No, for we found Paul was told not to go to Jerusalem, yet he went anyway; therefore, it’s never the man, but the Power behind the man we listen to. We honor the person with the gift, not the flesh and blood of the one who has the gift and calling. It’s easy to change our honor into mentor worship, we guard against such activity, as much as we guard against receiving it. In the next lesson we will view Paul’s thorn in the flesh, yet he considered it a means to keep people from exalting him above measure.
The ending of the letter gives various instructions to the Romans, including receiving Phebe a Sister and Servant of the church in Cenchrea. The Greek word for Servant is Diakonos, meaning a Minister or Deacon, thus Phebe was a female Deacon and follow Minister, denoting her as Sister, means Paul ordained her.
Paul then addresses Priscilla and Aquila with the female given first place in the calling, again he is putting to rest the religious conceit of the Romans. Mary and others are also mentioned, all of which labor in the Lord. Also he speaks of Andronicus and Junia as “my kinsmen, and my fellow prisoners who are note among the apostles” (v. 7). Junia is a female, there is some indication Andronicus was her husband, like the husband and wife team of Priscilla and Aquila. Showing Paul was not opposed to “women”, he was opposed. His comments regarding “silly women”, is a metaphor for a Jewish teacher of the Law, who knows nothing of Grace. In verse 12 he speaks of Tryphena and Persis, both Christian women who Labor in the Lord, supporting the concept of him allowing woman to conduct ministry duties.
Then he points to those who bring division, as those who operate from the flesh for their own sake, deceiving the hearts of the simple. This is not the same as someone who is weak in the faith, this group uses the flesh to their advantage, as they place others in bondage, so they can feel superior.
Paul ends this letter by pointing to the Obedience of the Faith, rather than the obedience to the Law of Moses. The Romans suffered from religious conceit, but the Corinthians suffered from another problem, one of carnal complacency. They had the Spirit, but they were not minding the Spirit, rather they used strife and envy through their carnal minds. The Corinthians will show us one can have the Spirit, yet remain carnal. Confirming Romans 8:1 showing some in the Body (kingdom of heaven) mind the flesh. A danger any of us can fall into, until we Mind the Spirit by entering the saving of our soul as the old nature is imputed dead on the Cross.
By Rev. G. E. Newmyer – s.b.i.les22rev7/ © 2003