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Volume 25 - Page 135 of 190 Index | Zoom | |
The apostle had learned that in his flesh dwelt no good thing, so that he did not look to
the flesh to accomplish anything that would be acceptable to God. What is said of the
flesh indwelt by sin, is said also of the mind of the flesh. It is enmity against God. It is
not subject to the law of God. It cannot please God. It seems, therefore, that the flesh
indwelt by sin, the members dominated by the law of sin, and the mind of the flesh which
cannot please God, are associated together as closely as the spirit, soul and body of one
We await the redemption of the body, which will take place at the resurrection, when
the sons of God shall be manifested, and we shall enter into the liberty of the glory of the
children of God. This is the adoption. We receive now the "spirit of adoption". We are
led by the spirit of God, and are thus indicated as sons of God here and now. And just as
we look for a literal and physical resurrection in the future, so the indwelling of the spirit
of Him that raised up Christ from the dead, gives us now the "spirit of adoption", and
quickens our mortal bodies. That this refers to "the life I now live in the flesh" the
apostle makes clear in Gal. 2: 20.
It is the blessed privilege of the believer in Eph. 2: 5 to be "quickened together with
Christ". This precedes the thought of being "raised together" and must be considered
separately. This does not, of course, exempt the saint from death--"the body is dead
because of sin". But without this quickening, "life unto God" before resurrection would
be impossible. "Walk in newness of life" follows being "raised up from the dead"
(Rom. 6: 4):--
"Yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members
as instruments of righteousness unto God" (Rom. 6: 13).
We would refer the reader back to #36 of this series where the key-word "Spirit" is
dealt with. The sphere of the new life is there seen to be "in spirit", its nature is seen to
be "resurrection", and its expression "sonship".
It is well for us to remember that, just as the law has no more claim upon us, so of
the flesh it can be said: "We are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh"
(Rom. 8: 12).
Let us now look at the two sections of Rom. 8: A | 1-4 and B | 5-15. We
observe that, in the first section, freedom from condemnation is associated with the "law
of the spirit of life"; and in the second section we read: "The spirit is life because of
righteousness." The positional teaching of Rom. 8: 1 and 2 is "In Christ Jesus", while
the positional teaching of the subsequent section is "The spirit of God dwelling in you".
Freedom from the "law of sin and death" permits the indwelling of the spirit of Him
"Who raised up Christ from the dead", to quicken even the mortal bodies of the saints.
The inability of the law because of the flesh (Section A) is linked up with the
incorrigible character of the mind of the flesh: "It is not subject to the law of God
(Section B). Walk according to the flesh and according to the spirit is seen to be largely
a result of the "mind", the mind of the flesh leading to death, the mind of the spirit
leading to life and peace.