“Wrestling With Romans”
No Condemnation (Chapter 8 Verses 1-17)
The truth that sin remains in the Christian has been established. Now Paul turns to the new life which is the believer’s, through the Person and work of the Holy Spirit in them. Even if you disagree with my exposition of chapter seven, verses fourteen to twenty five, thinking that Paul is referring to the non-Christian as opposed to the regenerate, well, you will agree with me here in chapter eight. Even though the Christian may yet be troubled by indwelling sin, they are not under condemnation from God (v1). It is not that our sins do not deserve condemnation, O yes they do. The only reason they are not condemned is because of our standing, our position, in Christ Jesus, everyone else who is not in that position is condemned, utterly so, for all, every one of their sins. We, as Christians are exempted. This concise exclamation is made by a Christian man who still after all these years, utterly thrills at what Jesus has done for him. There is no condemnation because the Lord Jesus has wiped out the sins of the Christian, every day and with an overflowing abundance they are forgiven, blotted out, extinguished in the precious blood of Jesus (1John 1.7).
But let us be sure just as to what no condemnation doesn’t mean, it is not freedom from indwelling sin. It is not freedom from God’s loving correction (Hebrews 12.4-13). It doesn’t mean freedom from an accusatory conscience (Romans 2.15). It doesn’t mean freedom from physical death (Hebrews 9.27). All these still stand and yet we are free, no condemnation. Even in the holiest life all these battles must be fought and won by faith, and yet this declaration stands, absolutely firm, no condemnation in Christ Jesus. Sin does not condemn us, the law does not condemn us, the curse does not condemn us, hell does not condemn us, and God does not condemn us. We are out from under all the weight of condemnation. And the one who has lifted that weight off our shoulders is the Man, the person of Jesus Christ we stand in all the benefits of his glorious victory. The witness of our Church is a joyous one, as we become more and more engrossed with this Person, who gives vibrancy and excitement to our lives, who has authority in heaven, earth and hell. We want to love him with an ever deepening passion, to serve him with an ever increasing faithfulness. We want to trust him absolutely, he has lifted the condemnation, he will do all the rest there is no question, no doubt about it (Romans 8.32).
(© James R Hamilton, written September, 1997)