By Norman P. Grubb
A FRUSTRATING COMPLICATION
Now comes the burning question. If the new relationship has replaced the old, and given us fully-satisfying life, rich fruit, happy service, loving union and communion, and the conscious ability to be who we long to be and help others to be the same, why doesn’t it happen? What is wrong? Where is this completion in Christ, loving as He loved, walking as he walked with the faith that overcomes, being more than conquerors, easily living out the Sermon on the Mount as Jesus said we would, as lights in the world? Hasn’t Paul made it plain to us that we have been crucified, raised, and ascended with Jesus and inwardly confirmed by the Spirit? Then where is the snag?
This burning question has greatly disturbed and seemingly disrupted our first faith statements, by which Paul told us to “reckon ourselves dead indeed unto sin and alive unto God.” It has also caused many sincere, born again, Bible rooted believers to use a nice little cliché – our position in Christ is one thing, but our condition in its outworking is quite another. And they usually add, “Of course, our condition does not level up to our position.” But this is precisely what Paul says does level up! Our position in Christ and our condition in living this Christ-Life are one and the same.
Next Paul reaches the least understood and most misused section of his Romans letter, or of all his writings. But when understood through Paul’s own explanation and experienced by the inner confirmation of the Spirit, this section gives the desperate believer the one key that turns the lock and the whole freedom he seeks. In his need, the believer must find the full and final meaning of life, for which he was created and is now redeemed by grace. This extends from Romans 7:7 through 7:24 and then is fulfilled in Romans 7:25 right through chapter 8.
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