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A Brand New Spirit for a Brand New You

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A Brand New Spirit for a Brand New You

Spirit, Flesh, Sanctification, Condemnation, Ownership, Heirs,

ROBC

Introduction In 7:1-25 – “The Battle for the Heart” – the dismal wail v 24: 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death?  Then the hopeful “I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” How? What did Christ add? How did he change the picture? By dying on the cross, paying the price for sin and so freeing the believer from sin.   Now C 8 begins: “Therefore there is no condemnation” Basic Exegesis 101: “Wherefore the therefore?” Answer: the work of Christ on the cross, in 7:25.   Now the theme must be developed. How can this ‘No condemnation’ stick?   In the previous seven chapters, the Holy Spirit is mentioned one time – at 1:4. Romans 1:4 (NIV) 4 and who through the Spirit of holiness was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord.  In this chapter, 8 - at least 20 times. Clearly, the author means to make a major statement about the person and work of the Holy Spirit, in the context of the Christian life.  Here we discover the crucial role of the Holy Spirit in applying this work to the believer, producing in him the fruit of holiness and with it the freedom from fear and condemnation. Let’s walk with Paul through the various ways in which the Spirit makes a difference. I.     THE SPIRIT FOSTERS A NEW OWNERSHIP A.     We are in Christ Jesus – v1 B.     We are indwelt by the Spirit – v9 C.      We belong to Christ – v9 D.     We are adopted – vv 15-17 As proof of this adoption we cry “Abba” – “Daddy” “Papa” – intimate belonging. [Ever watch a child in full possession of her father? She has no fear about the kinds of steps she can take with him. And in all of that she is assured that he will not reject her.]   NB: God assigns the adoption, the status of full adulthood – one can walk in confidence of belonging, even when just on the first few steps of the walk. It is not a matter of years – but of possession – and God grants that immediately! Making the believers full, adult sons, with the full rights of adulthood; “full right of sons (Gal 4:5); adopted as his sons (Eph 1:5) *Heirs* NB: in Jewish law, the firstborn got a double portion. Under Roman law all children benefitted equally. Here Paul is pressing the Roman notion; clinching it by saying we are co-heirs, joint heirs – no one getting more than the other. Everyone gets a full inheritance. Everyone can walk in confidence.   II.   A FRESH START 8:1 – Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, Exegesis 101: “Wherefore the ‘therefore’ ” Romans 7:25 (NIV) 25 Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!  Here the acknowledgment that Jesus Christ, through his work on the cross, provided the needed release from sin and its condemnation. John 3:17 (NIV) 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.  John 8:10-11 (NIV) 10 Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”  11 “No one, sir,” she said.  “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”    No condemnation   a.      Many people feel the drag of condemnation 1.      By self – again unable to do right or good – as in Rom 7 2.      By others – as the perpetual loser: “Don’t play Christian with me. I know who you are and what you used to do.” Some people do well until an accuser or someone who puts them down enter the picture. They freeze up – unable to think or talk or do. 3.      Some feel condemned by God – sinful, worthy of death This condemnation this well deserved.  Ø  It fulfills a divine mandate – “the soul that sins, it shall die.” Ø  In God’s court, we’ve been judged and found guilty – and condemnation, punishment is the result b.      Then  Jesus Christ wipes the slate clean, gives a fresh start – “no condemnation” 1.   Not regarded as guilty of sin 2.   Not subject to abandonment by God 3.   Not cast aside as a bad risk, as useless 4.   Not subject to punishment for sin   The story is told of two brothers, convicted of stealing sheep, who were branded on the forehead with the letters ST, to indicate “sheep thief.” The one couldn’t bear the stigma, became bitter, and moved away. Eventually he died and was forgotten. The other brother chose a different course. He said, “I can’t run from what I did, so I’ll stay here and win back the respect of my neighbors and myself.” As the years passed, he built a solid reputation for integrity. One day a stranger saw him, now an old man, with the letters on his forehead. He asked a townsman what they signified. “It happened a long time ago,” said the villager. “I’ve forgotten the particulars, but I think the letters are an abbreviation for ‘saint’”.[1]    God says “No condemnation” Lift up your head and walk in confidence!     III.   A BRAND NEW OPERATING SYSTEM The operating system determines how equipment, computers and so on operate. We all have an operating system and it sets the limits on our operation. We have to interact with it behave within its boundaries.   A.     The old operating system is called ‘the sinful nature” – or “the flesh” This old operating nature has an entirely downward pull to it. It takes even the good and makes it bad. It made the law of God completely weak, because it prevented us from fulfilling it. (v3) B.     The old operating system completely dominated human nature and action 1.   People set their minds on the desires of sinful nature v 5 [Waking, sleeping, eating, walking, talking – obsessed. Not accidental, but deliberate programming] /People are not caught up accidentally in the vices the Bible condemns. They have made a deliberate choice./ 2.    People dominated by the flesh have declared open warfare      against God – v7 – their mind is hostile toward God.  3.   People dominated by the flesh do not submit to the law of God and cannot please God – vv7-8 C.      God, through the Spirit, installs a new operating system and new programming –  1.   The liberating power of the law of life in Christ Jesus – v 1 – completely knocks out the law of sin and death 2.   The conquering power of the cross overcomes the power of sin – v3 Romans 8:3 (NIV) 3 For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man, *Here’s the new operating system at work:* The Holy Spirit lives in us – v9, 11 Is he truly at home in you? /Do you realize how much he wants this to be a personal, relational indwelling?/   We live according to the Spirit – v5 Ø  We listen to the Spirit – directly and through the Word Ø  We let him program our thought Ø  We obey the Spirit’s leading /Thus, one never lives on automatic pilot. It is a matter of constantly reaffirming and reasserting the yieldedness to Jesus Christ.  You do not drift through the life in the Spirit. You live it – consciously, volitionally./ We have our minds set on what the Spirit desires – v5 Ø  Not the things of the flesh Ø  Not the other man’s wife Ø  Not the company’s cash Ø  Not the choice words we’ll use as we give someone a piece of our mind We truly experience life and peace – v6 Ø  Those in sin are in death – though they think they are really living Ø  The mind controlled by the spirit is life – and peace! Truly alive – full, free and enjoyable. Now, under the dominion of the Spirit of God, we have been released from the gravitational pull of the old principle. We have been given a power that is able to overcome all of the weaknesses inherent in the old principle.    IV.   A REVOLUTIONARY NEW ASSIGNMENT A.     An obligation – not an option – v12 We owe nothing to the old sinful nature it only brought trouble and sin and condemnation. We are obligated to God – who brought life B.     A crucial assignment - By the Spirit put to death the misdeeds of the body – /“Kill sin, or it will kill you.”/ C.      Live out of the new identity and relationship: 1.   The spirit of fear does not belong – it did not come from God 2.   The Spirit of sonship belongs – God gave it to you 3.   By the Spirit of adoption – you have rights and authority – You can move in confidence, doing what you’re wired to do /Again, the Christian life is not lived on autopilot. It is a considered, deliberate relational exercise, in which the relationship and decisions are constantly affirmed and reaffirmed./ /Sons of God/ – Here it gets personal and intimate. We are brought into the family of God, as members of that family – and we let that belonging shape our character and our actions.   Conclusion The Holy Spirit is a brand new power and operation system – for you. He makes everything new – and he makes it stick. Feed on the Spirit Live with the Spirit Breathe the Spirit      
---- [1]Galaxie Software: /10,000 Sermon Illustrations/. Biblical Studies Press, 2002; 2002

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