Romans 8:1-2 — NO condemnation! FULL restoration!! (Bible study notes)

For video teaching of these notes click here:  Romans 8:1-2 — No Condemnation – Full Restoration!! (video)

I.   Intro

  • I love that Romans 8 begins with “no condemnation” and ends with “no separation.”
  • A popular Bible teacher in his book on Romans begins chapter 8 with “in Romans 7 Paul showed us that Christians still wrestle with remaining indwelling sin”
  • he goes on to say that “The Spirit of God has come in and transformed our “inner being” and self (7: 22) so we want God and holiness, but our “flesh” or “sinful nature” is still powerful enough to keep us from doing what our new desires want.”
  • If this is where you’re still at in your thinking, you haven’t understood what Paul was saying in chapter 6
  • We died with Him
  • Romans 6:5: Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was.
  • he’s talking about ALL mankind dying with Christ
  • also in 2 Cor 5:14: For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that One died for all, therefore all died.
  • When He was crucified we were crucified
  • Romans 6:6: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin
  • crucified – past tense fact that happened to us – we had no part in it; it was all God’s doing
  • also in Gal 2:20: I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. And that which I now live in the flesh, I live through faith from the Son of God, the One having loved me and having given up Himself for me.
  • the phrase, “have been crucified,” is in the perfect tense in the Greek, pointing to past action, completed action, with a resulting state of being.
  • 1 Cor 1:30 (Mirror): Of God’s doing are we in Christ. He is both the genesis and genius of our wisdom; a wisdom that reveals how righteous, sanctified and redeemed we already are in Him.
  • The sinful nature was eradicated at the Cross – NOT when we believed.
  • Romans 6:4: Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised up out from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we also should walk in newness of life.
  • newness of life is Christ’s resurrected life (v. 5)
  • Romans 6:6: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin
  • old self — in Adam; sin nature;
  • also in Col 3:9: “Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices.”
  • the old nature was laid aside (in Greek stripped off)
  • not telling us it’s something we need to do — v. 3 just said that we died and our life..our new identity (the word with) is hidden in Christ
  • hidden is concealed; to lay one on the other; with the idea of keeping something protected;
  • His life is my new identity
  • hidden is perfect indicative – completed fact; done deal; nothing I can do to be more in Christ – to have more of His nature;
  • Col 2:11: When you came to Christ, you were “circumcised,” but not by a physical procedure. Christ performed a spiritual circumcision–the cutting away of your sinful nature.
  • circumcised – past tense fact – happened to us; all His doing
  • cutting away is apekdusis which isn’t a partial put off but a whole removal; completely stripped off; same word in Col 3:9 that we just read
  • Having that understanding of Romans 6 automatically clears up Romans 7 for you — the fighting back of the sinful nature
  • you read it and begin to say “what sinful nature? The Cross took care of that. The fight is over, that old Adamic nature is dead… IT IS FINISHED”
  • But even before chapter 6, Paul was telling us in chapter 5 that this death was a reality for ALL of mankind
  • it is not just me, the individual believer, who died with Christ
  • Jesus didn’t just die for the church – those who would accept Him
  • He died vicariously as ALL mankind
  • the new nature was not ADDED ON to the old nature
  • their is no old nature to contend with
  • This is who we are — co-crucified, co-buried, co-resurrected, co-ascended, and co-seated with Him in heavenly places
  • our new life is His life, His nature in us;
  • the old nature in Adam died at the Cross – no part of Adam remained.
  • our life is ALL Christ in us

II.  NO Condemnation – FULL restoration!!

Romans 8:1-2 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (2) For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

Mirror: Now the decisive conclusion is this: in Christ, every bit of condemning evidence against us is cancelled. (2) The law of the Spirit is the liberating force of life in Christ. This leaves me with no further obligation to the law of sin and death. Spirit has superseded the sin enslaved senses as the principle law of our lives.

  • Some versions have added “who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the spirit”
  • this was not in the original text, but later copied probably from verse 4.
  • the addition is not supported by the oldest and most reliable Greek manuscripts.
  • having that added phrase changes the interpretation of this verse
  • Paul is not basing his declaration of no condemnation on a condition — IF YOU walk in the Spirit and not in the flesh; but ONLY upon our position IN CHRIST
  • there is no qualification required to being free from condemnation — it’s ours IN CHRIST
  • Therefore is linking to something he said earlier
  • 7:5-6: For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death. But now we have been released from the law, for we died to it and are no longer captive to its power. Now we can serve God, not in the old way of obeying the letter of the law, but in the new way of living in the Spirit.
  • He’s talking here of a nature change that took place on the Cross — when we were crucified with Christ
  • verse 5 – while we were living in the flesh – in the nature of adam; bound to the law
  • then verses 7-25 describes that life and it’s futility
  • verse 6 describes life after the Cross — all mankind no longer in adam but now in Christ with only His nature; living in freedom of the Spirit.
  • and Romans 8:1-39 describe this new life
  • So, Romans 8 begins with “therefore”
  • therefore is ara in Greek and is a word meaning to draw a conclusion — And so
  • he’s saying “and so, the conclusion is, under these circumstances in verse 6…..We’re released from the law, we died to it, no longer captive to it’s power…… there is NOW no condemnation in Christ Jesus.”
  • ALL and any condemnation has NOW been cancelled!
  • Condemnation is katakrina — kata intensifies “krina” which means the results of judgment after guilt has been pronounced; penalty; the root is to be judged worthy of punishment; to be judged guilty;
  • NO condemnation
  • no is ouden in Greek meaning “not one thing, nothing at all” it shuts the door and leaves no exceptions; another definition is cannot and never;
  • It’s a strong word… a strong NO
  • the idea literally is of judgment coming down on someone. Paul says God’s judgment is not going to come down upon you, not now, not ever!
  • Paul is saying as far as God is concerned there is no condemnation – nothing standing in the way of our oneness with Him in Christ.
  • it is an UNCONDITIONAL no…. nothing we need to do to qualify or earn it
  • it is IN CHRIST that there is no condemnation — no judgement of guilt
  • Why?
  • verse 2 tells us because the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set us free from the law of sin and death
  • the law of the Spirit is righteousness by faith which results in justification and life
  • Let’s back up and tie this in with what we learned in Romans 5
  • Romans 5:19: For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.
  • many means the greatest number — ALL
  • 2 men — Adam and Christ — represented ALL mankind
  • in Adam all were made sinners — having the nature of sin
  • in Christ ALL were made righteous — having His righteousness; having His nature
  • Romans 5:18: Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people.
  • Adam’s disobedience resulted in condemnation for ALL
  • Jesus’ obedience resulted in justification and life for ALL
  • The finished work of Christ cancelled that condemnation
  • all of Adam died at the cross
  • and all men were made righteous resulting in justification and life
  • Romans 5:1: Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
  • justified by faith is an aorist tense indicating a simple action that happened in the past
  • it’s in a passive voice meaning someone else did the action to the subject (us) — God justified us (Rom 8:33)
  • by faith isn’t by our faith
  • Romans 3:22 told us it was by Jesus’ faith that we were justified.
  • So Paul is saying, “We (ALL mankind) having already been declared and judged innocent and righteous; We having already been positioned just as if we’ve never sinned; We are in the same position as Jesus (the one who never sinned); We have peace through Jesus”
  • through Jesus — I love the word through in Greek! It is dia meaning to the other side; and implies successfully and completely.
  • Mankind has been declared and judged innocent and righteous; we all have been positioned just as if we’ve never sinned, same position as Jesus; successfully and completely because of the finished work of Jesus Christ!
  • Back to Romans 8:1-2 — In Christ ALL condemnation was canceled
  • the judgment of guilty was canceled for ALL men IN CHRIST
  • But what would that mean to Paul’s audience, an audience that was schooled in Hebrew thought patterns?
  • the Hebrew word that would’ve come to mind for them is mishpat and comes from the root word shaphat meaning to judge or to govern;
  • it is about ruling and judging, but the emphasis is not on punishment but rather on restoration of relationship
  • in Old Testament Scriptures the word judgement (mishpat) and righteousness are connected
  • to them Paul’s words wouldn’t have meant just a cancellation of a judgement of guilt
  • to them it would’ve meant first and foremost a restoration of relationship
  • which is what Romans 5:11 says — And not only that: we even take pride in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, the one through whom we now have a restored relationship with God.
  • that restored relationship with God is also called peace in Romans 5:1: Having been justified by faith (Jesus’ faith), we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ
  • peace is eirene in Greek meaning to join; it refers to the “dove-tail” joint in carpentry. It is to be joined or tied together into a whole; or set at one again;
  • “with” is pros which means face to face
  • the justification of mankind at the Cross joined ALL to Him; we were set at one again with Him; face to face in union with Him.
  • Romans 5:1 Paraphrased — we (ALL mankind) have been successfully and completely declared and pronounced innocent and righteous; we have been positioned just as if we’ve never sinned; in the same position as Jesus (the one who never sinned), and we have become one with God, face to face with Him because of the finished work of Jesus.
  • 1 Cor 5:18-19: All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: (19) that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.
  • All this is from God!
  • Paul is talking about v. 14 One died for ALL and therefore ALL died and v 17 in Christ, the new creation has come; the old (nature in Adam) is gone and the new (nature in Christ) is here (is born)!
  • A brand new re-born creation (mankind) IN CHRIST reconciled (restored) back into oneness with our Father!
  • All that’s left for us to do is to wake up to that truth and walk in and from that new identity!

III. Conclusion

  • Romans 8 is NOT about a Christians sanctification process
  • the process of becoming more like Christ
  • I think people end up with that understanding of Romans 8 because they went into it with an understanding of Romans 7 that we still have a sin nature that we struggle with
  • but if you do that you miss the whole point of Romans 8 which who we already ARE in Christ
  • we are free from the law of sin and death
  • we are no longer condemned — no longer in Adam
  • we have a new nature (Christ) and it was all God’s doing (1 Cor 5:18)
  • While it’s true we can learn to walk more fully in our new identity – in Christ
  • we don’t however, do that by being sin conscious – focusing on what to do and what not to do
  • the Jews did that under the law — they had 248 commandments to focus on doing and 365 commandments to avoid doing.
  • there whole focus was on what to do and not do in order to be right with God
  • Don’t get to chapter 8 and read it from a lens of doing — I have to walk in the Spirit so that I won’t have condemnation (v.1), so that I won’t set my mind on what the flesh desires (v.5), so that I won’t be in the realm of the flesh (v. 9), so that I will be a child of God (v. 14), etc.

Romans 8:1-2: There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (2) For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

  • Paul is saying condemnation NO LONGER EXISTS
  • it’s not waiting until you mess up… it’s not anywhere!
  • there is no more condemnation — it’s gone!
  • we are NOW reconciled to God
  • now is contrasting the new state (in Christ; in newness of life) with the old (in Adam; bound to the law of sin and death) which has passed away
  • Let’s study chapter 8 with the lens of being, keeping it in context of chapters 5, 6 and 7.
  • Knowing the things Paul told us to know in chapter 6
  • Knowing this (verses 6-7):
  • that Adam (the old man) was crucified 2000 years ago
  • that the body of sin (corporate Adam) was done away
  • and that we should no longer be slaves to sin
  • and knowing that (v. 9)
  • since Christ was raised from the dead, He dies no more
  • and death no longer has dominion over Him
  • Paul is talking about us getting a revelation of the finished work of Christ and what it meant for ALL mankind — where that truth becomes as much a part of our confession as breathing is to our everyday life
  • knowing that we WERE delivered – past tense – it happened at the cross
  • I’m not a slave of sin — I’ve NEVER been a slave of sin.
  • I was rescued from the power of death 2000 years ago.
  • death — it’s effects of sickness, disease, poverty, fear, etc has no dominion over me and NEVER has.
  • and reckoning ourselves dead to sin and alive to God!
  • we can not become more dead to sin or more alive to God then we already ARE
  • it’s true we can wake up and learn to walk more fully in that revelation
  • but we are and always have been FULLY in Christ
  • Col 2:9-10 says For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. (10) And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power
  • we are complete in Him – complete is filled to the full; filled to individual capacity;
  • perfect passive tense – completed action done to us; we had no part in making it happen and have no future part in maintaining or increasing it
  • It’s just who we are — IN CHRIST filled with the fullness of the Godheadxx
  • IN CHRIST and free from all condemnation — free from any judgement of guilt, free from the law of sin and death, fully restored to the Father in perfect oneness with Him IN CHRIST


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