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15 What then? Shall we sin, because we are not under

16 the law, but under grace? God forbid. Know ye not, that to whom ye present yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are whom ye obey? Whether of sin unto

17 death, or of obedience unto righteousness? But thanks be to God, that whereas ye were the servants of sin, ye have now obeyed from the heart the form of doctrine into

18 which ye have been delivered. Being then set free from

19 sin, ye are become the servants of righteousness. I speak after the manner of men, because of the weakness of your flesh. As ye have presented your members servants to uncleanness and iniquity, unto iniquity, so now present your members servants of righteousness, unto holiness.

20 For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from

21 righteousness. What fruit had ye then from those things whereof ye are now ashamed? For the end of those

22 things is death. But now being made free from sin, and

only shews sin, without enabling you to conquer it; but under grace—Under the merciful dispensation of the gospel, which brings complete victory over it, to every one who is under the powerful influences of the Spirit of Christ.

V. 17. The form of doctrine into which ye have been delivered—Literally it is, The mould into which ye have been delivered: which, as it contains a beautiful allusion, conveys also a very instructive admonition: intimating that our minds, all pliant and ductile, should be conformed to the gospel precepts, as liquid metals take the figure of the mould into which they are cast.

V. 18. Being then set free from sin—We may see the apostle's method thus far at one view :—

1. Bondage to sin, C. iii. 9.

2. The knowledge of sin by the law; a sense of God's wrath;

inward death, C. iii. 20.

3. The revelation of the righteousness of God in Christ

through the gospel, C. iii. 31.

4. The center of all, faith, embracing that righteousness, C. iii. 33.

5. Justification, whereby God forgives all past sin, and freely

accepts the sinner, C. iii. 34.

6. The gift of the Holy Ghost; a sense of God's love; new,

inward life, C. v. 5. C. vi. 4.

7. The free service of righteousness, C. vi. 13. V. 19. I speak after the manner of men—Thus it is necessary that the

Scripture should let itself down to the language of men; because of the weakness of yourflesh—Slowness of understanding flows from the weakness of the flesh, that is, of human nature. As ye have presented your members servants to uncleanness and iniquity unto iniquity, so now present your members servants of righteousness unto holinessIniquity (whereof uncleauness is an eminent part,) is here opposed to righteousness. And unto iniquity, is the opposite of unto holiness. Righteousness here is, a conformity to the divine will; holiness, to the whole divine nature. Observe! they who are servants of righteousness, go on to holiness; but they who are servants to iniquity, get no further. Righteousness is service, because we live according to the will of another; but liberty, because of our inclination to it, and delight in it.

V. 20. When ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness—In all reason, therefore, ye ought now to be free from uurighteousness; to be as uniform and zealous in serving God, as ye were in serving the devil.

V. 31. Those things—He speaks of them as afar «ff.

become servants to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, 93 and the end everlasting life. For death is the wages of sin; but eternal life is the gift of God, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

CHAP. VII. 1. Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) that the law hath dominion

2 over a man, as long as it liveth? For the married woman is bound to her husband while he is alive; but if her husband be dead, she is freed from the law of her husband.

3 Therefore if she marry another man while her husband liveth, she will be called an adultress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law, so as to be no adultress,

4 though she marry another man. Therefore ye also, my brethren, are become dead to the law by the body of Christ: that ye might be married to another, even to him who was raised from the dead, that we may bring forth

5 fruit to God. For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, wrought in our members,

6 so as to bring forth fruit unto death. But now we are freed from the law, being dead unto that whereby we were held, so that we serve in newness of spirit, and not

7 in the oldness of the letter. What shall we say then?

V. 23. Death—Temporal, spiritual, and eternal, is the due wages of sin. But eternal life is the gift of God—The difference is remarkable. Evil works merit the reward they receive; good works do not. The former demand «ages, the latter accept a free gift.

CHAP. VII. Ver. 1. The apostle continues the comparison between the former and the present state of a believer, and, at the same time, endeavours to wean the Jewish believers from their fondness for the Mosaic law. I speak to them that know the law—To the Jews chiefly here. As long—So long, and no longer, as it liveth—The law is here spoken of (by a common figure,) as a person, to which, as to an husband, life and death are ascribed. But he speaks indifferently of the law being dead to us, or we to it, the sense being the same.

V. 2. She is freed from the law of her husband—From that law which gave him a peculiar property in her.

V. 4. Therefore ye also—Are now as free from the Mosaic law, as an husband is when his wife is dead. By the body of Christ—Offered up; that is, by the merits of his death, that law expiring with him.

V. 5. When ye were in the flesh—carnally minded, in a state of nature; before we believed in Christ. Our sins which were by the law—Accidentally occasioned, or irritated thereby. Wrought in our members—Spread themselves all over the whole man.

V. 6. Being dead to that whereby we were held—To our old husband, the law, that we might serve in newness of spirit—in a new, spiritual manner, and not in the oldness of the letter—Not in a bare literal, external way, as we did before.

V. 7. What shall we say then—This is a kind of digression, (to the beginning of the next chapter,) wherein the apostle, in order to shew in the most lively manner the weakness and inefficacy of the law, changes the person, and speaks That the law is sin? God forbid. Yea, I should not have known sin, but for the law. I had not known lust,

8 unless the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of desire; for without the law, sin was dead.

9 And I was once alive without the law; but when the

10 commandment came, sin revived, and I died. And the commandment, which was intended for life, this I found

11 unto death. For sin, taking occasion by the command

12 ment, deceived me, and by it slew me. So that the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.

13 Was then that which is good made death to me? God forbid: but sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good: so that sin might by the

as of himself, concerning the misery of one under the law. This St. Paul frequently does, when he is not speaking of his own person, but only assuming another character, Rom. iii, 6, 1 Cor. x. 30, chap. iv. 6. The character here assumed is that of a man, first, ignorant of the law, then under it, and sincerely but ineffectually striving to serve God. To have spoken this of himself, or any true believer, would have been foreign to the whole scope of his discourse; nay, utterly contrary thereto, as well as to what is expressly asserted, chap. viii. 2. Is the law sin-'-Sinful in itself, or a promoter of sin. I had not known lust—That is, evil desire. I had not known it to be a sin. Nay, perhaps I should not have known that any such desire was in me. It did not appear, till it was stirred up by the prohibition.

V. 8. But sin—My inbred corruption, taking occasion by the commandment —Forbidding, but not subduing it, was only fretted, and wrought in me so much the more all manner of evil desire. For while I was without the knowledge of the law, sin was dead: neither so apparent, nor so active; nor was I under the least apprehensions of any danger from it.

V. 9. And I was once alive without the law—Without the close application of it. I had much life, wisdom, virtue, strength. So I thought. But when the commandment—That is, the law, a part put for the whole; but this expression particularly intimates its compulsive force, which restrains, enjoins, urges, forbids, threatens, came—In its spiritual meaning, to my heart, with the power of God, sin revived, and I died—My inbred sin took fire, and all my virtue and strength died away. And I then saw myself to be dead in sin, and liable to death eternal.

V. 10. The commandment which was intended for life—Doubtless it was originally intended by God, as a grand means of preserving and increasing spiritual life, and leading to life everlasting.

V. 11. Deceived me—While I expected life by the law, sin came upon me unawares, and slew all my hopes.

V. 12. The commandment—That is, every branch of the law, is holy, just, and good—It springs from, and partakes of, the holy nature of God: it is every way just and right in itself: it is designed wholly for the good of man.

V. 13. Was then that which is good made the cause of evil to me—Yea, of death, which is the greatest of evils? Not so. But it was sin, which was made death to me, inasmuch as it wrought death in me even by that which is good—By the good law, so that sin by the commandment became exceeding sinful—The consequence of which was, that inbred sin, thus driving furiously in spite of the commandment, became exceeding sinful; the guilt thereof being greatly aggravated.

14 commandment become exceeding sinful. We know that the law is spiritual; but I am carnal, sold under sin.

15 For that which I do, I approve not; for I do not practise

16 what I would, but what I hate, that I do. If then I do what I would not, I consent to the law, that it is good.

17 Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth

18 in me. For I know that in me, that is, in my flesh, dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me,

19 but how to perform what is good, I find not. For the good that I would, I do not; but the evil which I would

20 not, that I do. Now if I do that which I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

81 I find then a law, that when I would do good, evil is

22 present with me. For I delight in the law of God, after

23 the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and captivating me

24 to the law of sin, which is in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of

25 this death? I thank God, through Jesus Christ our

V. 14. / am carnal—St. Paul having compared together the past and present state of believers, that in the flesh, ver. 5, and that in the spirit, ver. 6, in answering two objections, (Is then the law sin? ver. 7, and, Is the law death? ver. 13,) interweaves the whole process of a man reasoning, groaning, striving, and escaping from the legal to the evangelical state. This he does from ver. 7, to the end of this chapter. Sold under sin—Totally enslaved; slaves bought with money were absolutely at their master's disposal.

V. 16. It is good—This single word implies all the three that were used before,' ver. 12, holy, just, and good.

V. 17. It is no more I that can properly be said to do it, but rather sin that dwelleth in me—That makes, as it were, another person, and tyrannizes over Be.

V. 18. In my flesh—The flesh here signifies, the whole man as he is by nature.

V. 21. I find then a law—An inward, constraining power, flowing from the dictates of corrupt nature.

V. 22. For I delight in the law of God—This is more than 7 consent to, Ver. 16. The day of liberty draws near. The inward man—Called the mind, ver. 23, and 25.

V. 23. But I see another law in my members—Another inward, constraining power, of evil inclinations and bodily appetites, warring against the law of my mind—The dictate of my mind, which delights in the law of God, and captivating me—In spite of all my resistance.'

V. 24. Wretched man that I am—The struggle is now come to the height; and the man, finding there is no help in himself, begins almost unawares to pray, Who shall deliver me? He then seeks and looks for deliverance, till God in Christ appears to answer his question. The word which we translate deliver, implies force. And, indeed, without this there can be no deliverance. The body of this death—That is, this body of death: this mass of sin leading to death eternal, and cleaving as close to me, as my body to my soul. We may observe, the deliverance is not wrought yet.

V. 2&. / thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord—That is, God will deliver me through Christ. But the apostle, (as his frequent manner is,) 'heantifully interweaves his assertion with thaaksgiving: the hymn of, praise


Lord. So then I myself with my mind serve the law of
God, but with my flesh the law of sin.

CHAP. VIII. 1. Therefore there is now no condemnation to those that are in Christ Jesus, who walk not

2 after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, hath freed me from the law

3 of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God hath done: sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, to be a sacrifice

4 for sin, he hath condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who

5 walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. They that are after the flesh, mind the things of the flesh; but they

6 that are after the Spirit, the things of the Spirit. Now

answering, in a manner, to the voice of sorrow, Wretched man that I am.t So then—He here sums up the whole, and concludes what he began, ver. 7I myself —Or rather, that I, (the person whom I am personating,) till this deliverance is wrought, serve the law of God with my mind—My reason and conscience declare for God; but with my flesh the law of sin—But my corrupt passions and appetites still rebel. The man is now utterly weary of his bondage, and upon the brink of liberty.

CHAP. VIII. Ver. 1. There is therefore now no condemnation— Either for things present or past. Now he comes to deliverance and liberty. The apostle here resumes the thread of his discourse, which was interrupted, chap. vii. 7.

V. 2. The law of the Spirit—That is, the gospel, hath freed me from the lava of sin and death—That is, the Mosaic dispensation.

V. 3. For what the law—0{ Moses, could not do, fin that it was weak through the flesh—Incapable of conquering our evil nature,) if it could, God needed not to have sent his own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh—We with our sinful flesh were devoted to death. But God sending his own Son, in the likeness of that flesh, though pure from sin, condemned that sin which was in our flesh: gave sentence, that sin should be destroyed, and the believer wholly delivered from it.

V. * That the righteousness of the law—The holiness it required, described ver. 5—11, might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit—Who are guided in all our thoughts, words, and actions, not by corrupt nature, but by the Spirit of God. From this place St.Panl describes primarily the state of believers, and that of unbelievers, only to illustrate this.

V. 5. They that are after the flesh—Who remain under the guidance of corrupt nature; mind the things of the flesh—Have their thoughts and affections fixed on such things as gratify corrupt nature, namely, on thing* visible and temporal, on things of the earth, on pleasure, (of sense or imagination,) praise, or riches. But they who are after the Spirit—Who are under his guidance, mind the things of the Spirit—Think of, relish, love, things invisible, eternal, the things which the Spirit hath revealed, which he works in us; moves us to, and promises to give us.

V. 6. For to be carnally minded—That is, to mind the things of the flesh, is death—The sure mark of spiritual death, and the way to death everlasting: but to be spiritually minded—That is, to mind the things of the Spirit, is life— A sure mark of spiritual life, .and the way to life everlasting; and attended

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