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Bible Commentaries
Romans 7

Garner-Howes Baptist CommentaryGarner-Howes

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Verse 1

1) "Know ye not brethren," (e agnoeite, adelphoi) "Or are you all ignorant, brethren;" Do you all (as a church) not recognize?

2) "(For I speak to them that know -the law)," (ginoskousin gar nomon lolo) "For I speak to. those knowing the law," familiar with the Law of Moses, Romans 2:17-18, and with the principal of law in general.

3) "How that the law hath dominion over a man," (hoti ho nomos kurieuei tou anthropou eph’) "That the law lord’s it over a man," has jurisdiction over a man;

4) "As long as he liveth," (hoson Chronon ze) "Such a time (as) he lives," or as long as he lives, during his natural lifetime? and no longer. At death he is liberated from the law. The law binds living men, not dead men, whatever law they may be under.

Verse 2

1) "For the woman which hath an husband," (he gar hupandros gune) "For the married woman," "the woman to a husband," attached woman (by law) to an husband, for example, Matthew 19:4-6.

2) "Is bound by the law to her husband," (deditai nomo) "Has been bound by law;" to her husband, by the Divine order of family law and of Moses Law, Genesis 1:27; Genesis 2:24; and called "their name Adam," the "twain one flesh," to be or to exist, Ephesians 5:31.

3) "So long as he liveth," (to zonti) "While he lives," or "as long as he lives." This is the Divine marriage law principle. Although exceptions were made under Moses Law, because of the hardness of men’s hearts, Matthew 19:6; Matthew 19:8.

4) "But if the husband be dead," (ean de apothane ho aner) "But if the husband should die," "if the husband be dead;" deceased.

5) "She is loosed from the law of her husband," (Katergetai apo tou nomou tou andros) "She has been released, discharged, or set free from the law of her husband," to whom she had been married. She is free to be married again, only in the Lord, 1 Corinthians 7:39; 2 Corinthians 6:14. From the beginning of marriage, by Divine order, no divorce was planned or provided, Matthew 19:6; Matthew 19:8.

Verse 3

1) "So then if, while her husband liveth," (ara oun zontos tou andros) "Therefore, while the husband lives," to whom she has been married; 1 Corinthians 7:10, "Let not the wife depart from her husband if she depart, let her remain unmarried or let her be reconciled to her husband." 1 Corinthians 7:11.

2) "She be married to another man," (ean genetai andri hetero) "if she become married to another (a different) man," Luke 16:18.

3) "She shall be called an adulteress," (moichalis chrematisei) "She shall be called an adulteress," or publicly referred to as an adulteress, Matthew 5:32; Matthew 19:9.

4) "But if her husband be dead," (ean de apothane ho aner) "But if the husband (her husband) dies."

5) "She is free from that law," (eleuthera estin apo tou nomou) "She is free (released) from the law;" 1 Corinthians 7:39.

6) "So that she is no adulteress," (tou me einai auten moichalida) "So that she is not (exist not as) an adulteress;" but is free, released from life-marital bonds, Romans 7:2.

7) "Though she be married to another man," (genomenen andri hetero) "When she has become married to another (a different) husband," or a new husband, 2 Corinthians 6:14.

Verse 4

1) "Wherefore, my brethren," (hoste adelphoi mou) "So my brethren;" In the light of this illustration, the law is dead, fulfilled, set aside, Matthew 5:19-20; Luke 16:16; Luke 24:44.

2) "Ye also are become dead to the law," (kai humeis ethanatothete to nomon) "You all were also put to death to the law," to the obligations to the law, to follow or practice its rites and ceremonies, which were abolished in the death of Christ, 2 Corinthians 3:7-11; Galatians 3:19-25; Colossians 2:14-17.

3) "By the body of Christ," (dia tou somatos tou Christou) "Through the body of Christ," the cross body of Christ, through which first, Salvation was bought for every man; and second, the church was bought as a new service and worship agency of Jesus Christ; Colossians 1:20-22; 1 Peter 2:24; Acts 20:28; Ephesians 5:25.

4) "That ye should be married to another," (eis to genesthai humas hetero) "That you all might be married or bound to another, of a different kind," the church, as the agency of Christ (his body of worship and service, a new law or principle of worship and service, of a different kind from the law.

5) "Even to him who is raised from the dead," (to ek nekron egerthenti) "To Jesus Christ, the one who is raised from the dead," not to Moses. Today believers in Jesus Christ, children of God, become espoused to be married, (joined) to Christ in Worship and Service obligations, when they are baptized, into the fellowship of his church, John 3:28-29; 2 Corinthians 11:1-2; Ephesians 3:21.

6) "That we should bring forth fruit unto God," (hina kaparphoresomen to theo) "in order that we may bear fruit to God;" in this new manner, as followers of Christ --not Moses --Working, serving, and worshipping under the commands of Christ, thru the church, not Moses, thru the Law. John 14:15; John 15:14; John 20:21; Ephesians 3:21.

Verse 5

1) "For when we were in the flesh," (hote gar hemen en te sarki) "Because when we were in the flesh," the bonds of an unregenerate state, in slavery-possession to the old nature, children of the Devil, Ephesians 2:1; John 8:44.

2) "The motions of sins," (ta pathemata ton hamartion) "The passions of sins," the inherent disposition to lust, inclination to greed, selfishness etc., James 1:15; Psalms 58:3.

3) "Which were by the Law," (ta dia tou nomou) "Which through (the administration) of the law"; Were declared or measured by the law as sinful, offensive to God and holiness, by occasion of the law, Galatians 3:19; Exodus 20:1-17.

4) "Did work in our members," (energeito en tois melesin hemon) "Operated in our body-members," from the crown of our head to the soles of our feet, Isaiah 1:4-6; Romans 3:9-19.

5) "To bring forth fruit unto death," (eis to karpophoretai to thanato) "To produce fruit to or toward death"; Death is here personified as the arch-enemy of man who is stalked by the inherent passions of lust, to the sting of sin in death, James 1:15; 1 Corinthians 15:55-56. Death is the fruit of sin inherent in every human, Romans 5:12; Romans 5:14; Romans 5:17; Hebrews 9:27.

Verse 6

1) "But now we are delivered from the law," (nuni de katergethemen apo tou nomou) "But now and for hereafter, we were discharged (released) from the obligations of law worship and service," though under the inherent law of sin and physical death, Galatians 3:13.

2) "That being dead wherein we were held," (apothanotes en ho kateichometha) "Having died (became barren) to that (law) in which we were held fast," or obligated until the coming and death of Christ --Dead, no longer obligated to the old law of sin in the body, or to the law of Mosaic Worship, John 8:36; Romans 7:4; Galatians 2:19.

3) "That we should serve in newness of Spirit " (hoste douleuein (hemas) en kainoteti pneumatos) "So that we might serve in newness of Spirit," both in the new nature of the believer and serve thru the new order of worship and service (the church), Matthew 28:18-20; Acts 20:28; Ephesians 3:21.

4) "And not in the oldness of the letter," (kai ou palaioteti grammatos) "And not in oldness of letter," the letter of the law worship and service program, 1 Corinthians 3:6; Galatians 5:25; Hebrews 8:13.

Verse 7

1) "What shall we say then?" (ti oun eroumen); ’What therefore shall we say;- shall we condemn the law, as if it were wrong-? No, in obeying Jesus Christ, as believers, we fulfill the moral and ethical requirements of the Law, Matthew 5:19-20.

2) "Is the law sin?" (ho nomos hamartia) "is the law sin?" or sinful in nature? was something wrong with the Law of Moses which God gave? Psalms 119:160; the law was by Nature good, when accepted and used lawfully, 1 Timothy 1:8.

3) "God forbid," (me genoito) "May it not be so," or "may it not be considered as sinful." Really the law was holy and just and good, reflecting the very nature and attributes of God who gave it, Exodus 20:1-2; Romans 7:12; Psalms 19:8.

4) "Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law," (alla ten hamartian ouk egnon ei me dia nomou) "But I did not recognize sin, except through the law;" The law was a yardstick, a measuring rod, that revealed what sin was in desires? and dead in comparison with holiness, Galatians 3:19; Galatians 3:22; Galatians 3:24; Romans 3:20.

5) "For I had not known lust," (ten te gar epithumian ouk edein) "Because I did not recognize lust," and would not have, except I had been told it by the Law. The law did not create lust, pride, greed, etc., but it did reveal that the desire of lust, pride, greed etc., were wrong. Romans 13:9.

6) "Except the law had said, thou shalt not covet," (ei me ho nomos elegen ouk epithumeseis) "Except the law declared thou shalt not lust or covet," that which belongs to another, Exodus 20:17. It was not the law that was sinful, weak, or bad, but the nature and disposition or inclination of the inherent will of man that was declared by the law to be sinful. Deuteronomy 5:21; Acts 20:33.

Verse 8

1) "But sin, taking occasion by the commandment," (aphormen de labousa he hamartia dia tes entoles) "But lawless-sin taking occasion through the commandment;” by or through the commandment that forbad lust, covetousness, pride, greed, etc. revealed that I was a transgressor, 1 John 3:4.

2) "Wrought in me," (kateirgasato en emoi) "Wrought (down) in me"; the motions of even covetous lust, working like maggots, in the carnal nature, works as sinfulness in every man, Matthew 5:27-28, Proverbs 6:25; Matthew 15:18-19.

3) "All manner of concupiscence," (pasan epithumian) "Every kind or manner of lust," all forms of covetousness, greed, etc. Deuteronomy 5:21; Romans 5:12-13

4) "For without the law sin was dead," (Choris gar nomou hamartia nekra) "For apart from (the jurisdiction of) law, sin (exists as) dead;" unrealized, unrecognized as wrong or evil, with no conscious recognition of its holy and just and good standards, Romans 4:15; Romans 5:20; Romans 7:12. It is said by explorers that many black tribes of the Islands have been discovered who did not know they were black until after they had seen white men. Discovery and recognition of each other as white and black did not make them so --it only revealed to them what they were. So was the law to man.

Verse 9

1) "For I was alive without the law once," (ego de ezon Choris nomou pote) "And I was living then, apart from jurisdiction of (the) law;" Not Spiritually responsible until I became mature in mind and comprehension to know the difference between right and wrong. This is the State of every immature infant or youth and the mentally unaccountable --they have a soul alive to God, protected by the death of Christ, till they come to know what sin is, John 1:29; 1 Timothy 4:10; Hebrews 2:9.

2) "But when the commandment came," (elthouses de tes entoles) "But when the commandment came (of its own accord)," came to make me recognize that I was a covetous, selfish, adulterous law-breaker --when its import or meaning was revealed by the Spirit to condemn my conscience of former self -righteousness, that I was a sinner, condemned under the law, Luke 13:3; Luke 13:5; Mark 1:15; Acts 17:30-31.

3) "Sin revived," (he hamartia anezesin) "The Sin (rebellion, covetous will) rose up, revived;" actively, obstinately resisted the revelation of who and what I was, a moral and ethical enemy of holiness, justice, and goodness, Romans 3:23; Romans 6:23; Inherent sin brings Spiritual Separation from God, that requires the applied blood of Christ for Salvation, James 1:13-15.

4) "And I died," (ego de apethanon) "And (then), at that point, I died;" I was Spiritually, accountably, cut off from all Spiritual benefits, and protection from the consequence of sin in me, Isaiah 53:6; Isaiah 59:2; Ephesians 2:1-2. I accountably realized that I was exposed to, in danger of, eternal death, John 3:18; John 3:36,

Verse 10

1) "And the commandment," (kai he entole) "And (then even) the commandment;" the commandment not to covet or lust (the king of all sins) the reigning, selfish, emotional passion, that is the causative factor of all deeds of wrong committed by men, Genesis 20:17; Deuteronomy 5:21.

2) "Which was ordained to life," (moi he eis zoen) "Which was (designed or meant) to me unto life," Spiritual life, to Salvation, to indict me to confess guilt and ask for pardon, Isaiah 55:6-7; Romans 2:4; 2 Corinthians 7:11; 2 Peter 3:9.

3) “I found to be unto death," (heurethe haute eis thanaton) I found (experienced) this (commandment) unto death;- because of his self-righteous attitude, thinking his keeping the law of Moses and its ceremonies and rites would save him. The law against coveting or selfishness is the tenth (the last) the foundation, of all the law of Moses. One would never, never, never break either of the other nine commandments, if he was not covetous, lustful, or selfish by nature, in the first place, see!

To say "no" to God’s call to Salvation, to repentance and faith, is a fruit on one’s selfish, covetous nature, to have his own way, 2 Corinthians 6:2; Hebrews 4:7.

Verse 11

1) "For sin, taking occasion," (he gar hamartia aphormen labousa) “For sin (deeds of wrong) took occasion;" 1 Kings 8:46; "for there is no man that sinneth not," Ecclesiastes 7:20; Jeremiah 17:9.

2) "By the commandment," (dia tes entoles) "through the commandment;" perhaps the 10th, "Thou shalt not covet," Exodus 20:17. The idea is that the sin nature, inherent in Paul, inflamed or incited him to acts of sin, as it does all responsible human beings in breaking the first of the nine commandments so often because of first breaking the 10th, the King of all sins, Romans 3:23.

3) "Deceived me," (ebsepatesen me) "deceived or deluded me," as its nature is, allured me by its lusts, 1 John 2:16-17; James 1:15. The God’s commands are "do" and "do not," the deceitfulness of sin through covetousness, (self-will) caused Paul to reject the call of God and turn to murder, Genesis 3:1-4; 2 Corinthians 11:3.

4) "And by it slew me," (kai di autes apektein en) "and through it killed (me)," cut off my life, or slew me, brought me into conscious condemnation in my willful and selfish rejection of Jesus Christ.

Verse 12

1) "Wherefore the law is holy " (hoste ho men nomos hagios) "So the law is (exists as) holy;" this conclusion is the one with which Paul’s premise or argument began, Romans 7:7. It is holy because it reveals to man what he is by nature and the exceeding sinfulness of his deeds, Deuteronomy 4:8; Deuteronomy 10:13.

2) "And the commandment holy" (Kai he entole hagia) "and the commandment (is) holy," referring specifically to the tenth commandment, the one regarding lust of the old covetous nature, the will to do as one wills or pleases in general, and all the commandments it undergirds, as the bottom one. John 7:7; Psalms 19:7-11; Psalms 119:160; Romans 3:19.

3) "And just and good," (kai dikaia kai hagiathe) "And (the law is) just and good;" reflecting the attributes and character of the giver of the Law, Exodus 20:1; 1 Timothy 1:18. The specific intent or purpose of the law was to show how bad sin is, before the holiness of God, and why and how man may find pardon and deliverance from the consequence of his guilt of sin, and find strength and help to live usefully as a child of God, while still in the sinful body.

Verse 13

1) "Was then that which is good made death unto me?" (to oun agathon emoi egeneto thanatos); "Did the (thing) therefore (that was meant for) good to or toward me become death (to me)?" did something meant for my good, itself become sinful - no, the law was not sinful any more than a yardstick is sinful in giving proper measurement.

2) "God forbid," (me genoito) "May it not be;" no, the law did not cause death to Paul. It was an occasion for him to recognize what he was, a sinner, "dead in trespasses and in sin," Galatians 3:24.

3) "But sin, that it might appear sin," (Alla he hamartia hira phane hamartia) "But sin, in order that it might appear sin;" that each might "become guilty before God," the law was given, Romans 3:19.

4) "Working death in me, by that which is good," (through the good to ’me working death;" the law operated, not to cause physical or spiritual death in a person, but to reveal to him the existence of sin in him and how it might be pardoned, Isaiah 53:4-11; Isaiah 55:6-7.

5) "That sin by the commandments," (hira he marptia dia tes entoles) "in order that the sin through (media of) the commandment;" the body of Moses law in general, and through the foundation-commandment (the one on the bottom), forbidding covetousness, James 1:13-15.

6) "Might become exceeding sinful," (genetai kath huperbolen hamartolos) "might become (recognized as) excessively sinful;- Exodus 20:17; no person would break any of the first nine commandments, if he did not first break the tenth, by lustful, self -willed-covetousness to have his own way, Deuteronomy 5:21; Mark 7:22; Luke 12:15; Hebrews 13:5.

Verse 14

1) "For we know," (gar oidamen) "For we perceive, know, or recognize;" regarding this matter at hand, his and their sin-bodies as related to salvation and the law.

2) "That the law is spiritual," (hoti ho nomos pneumatikos estin) "That the law is (exists as) spiritual;" Galatians 6:1; 1 Corinthians 3:1; spiritual and holy in nature and work, and demands a spiritual mind, in harmony with the believers divine, spiritual nature, to do the spiritual will of God, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 1 Corinthians 9:26-27; Romans 12:1-2; Galatians 5:25.

3) "But I am carnal," (ego de sarkinos eimi) "But I am fleshly;" as opposed to the holy character of the Law that expresses the holy attributes of God; Paul confessed here the sinful, carnal character of his old nature, the old man, which still housed his soul, after salvation, Romans 7:20.

4) "Sold under sin," (pepramenos hupo ten hamartian) "Having been sold under sin," referring to the inescapable depravity of the body and mind of man, so wrought with and susceptible to the passions and temptations of sin in every child of God until death. In this state there has never existed a born-again person who did not commit sin, 1 Kings 8:46; Ecclesiastes 7:20; 1 John 1:8-9; Romans 7:25.

Verse 15

1) "For that which I do," (ho gar katergazomai) "For what I work," or do - This is a contrast between the two natures of the child of God; these two war with, are in conflict, one with the other, a condition that continues until death, 1 Corinthians 15:57-58.

2) "I allow not:" (Ou ginosko) "I know (recognize) not;" or do not have a knowing will to do it, but do it by the continuing sin-slave nature with which I battle, while trying to bring the body," under subjection," to the Spirit, 1 Corinthians 9:26-27; Galatians 5:25.

3) "For what I would, that do I not," (ou gar ho thelo touto prasso) "For I practice (repeatedly do) not what I wish," again and again, Paul admitted he did wrong. He did not claim personal perfection, Romans 7:21; Romans 7:23; Romans 7:25.

4) "But what I hate, that do I," (all’ ho miso touto poio) "But what I hate, this I do;- Paul, like all human beings, even Christians, was sometimes overtaken by sin, to think evil and foolish thoughts, to imagine evil, and impulsively to do wrong, each of which is a sin, of the old carnal nature, Genesis 6:5; Proverbs 24:9; Matthew 12:36.

Verse 16

1) "If then I do that which I would not," (ei de ho ou thelo touto poio) "But if (then) I do that which I wish not (to do)," and he did, as he conceded or affirmed, and as every child of God does, having included: (1) Moses who smote the rock, (2) Abraham who lied about his wife Sara, (3) David and his great sins, (4) Peter and his cursing, etc.

2) “I consent unto the law - (sumphemi to nomo) "I agree (consent) or concur with the law;" The law is good, I concede because it condemns sins of saints and sinners, calls men to confession, repentance, and faith, Psalms 51:1-12; Acts 17:30-31; Romans 2:4; Romans 3:23; Romans 6:23; Romans 10:8-13.

3) "That it is good," (hoti kalos) "That it (exists as) good;" Like the God who gave the law was holy and just in his nature and character, so is the law that came from his mouth, Paul affirms. Yet he did not consider it ever to have been a savior, but a guiding principle to point men to the Savior, to whom he himself was long blinded, 2 Corinthians 3:3-4; Acts 26:9-10; Galatians 3:19-25.

Verse 17

1) "Now then it is no more I that do it," (nuni de ouketi ego katergazomai auto) "But now (and hereafter) it is not any more I that do it;" Sin that in me overmasters me and my better self at times and will always be trying to do so, this is why I the new creature must always be alert to recognize and resist compulsions and lusts still existing in me; James 4:5; James 4:7-8; 1 Peter 5:7-10; Romans 12:1-2.

2) "But sin that dwelleth in me," (alla he enoikousa en emoi hamartia) "But the sin (which) indwells me," Sin is an indwelling state, into which one is conceived and born, and a state or condition from which he is never completely liberated until death, Psalms 51:5; Ephesians 2:2; James 1:15; 1 Corinthians 15:55-57; 1 John 1:8-9. Whatever weakness Paul had, whatever sins of the flesh he was heir to, to desire repeatedly to do, to covet after, he did not blame such on the law or on God as being unholy or unjust; he did not justify or defend sin in his own life. He admitted it, leaving us an example of humility and confession and need of dependence upon God for daily spiritual strength, to war against the world, the flesh, and the Devil, Ephesians 6:11-18; 1 John 2:15-17.

Verse 18

1) "For I know that in me," (oida gar hoti en emoi) "For I Perceive, know, or recognize that in me;" He knew by the word of God and by experience, 1 Kings 8:46; Ecclesiastes 7:20; Isaiah 53:6; Jeremiah 17:9.

2) "That is, in my flesh ", (tout F estin en to sarki mou) "This (that) is in my flesh;" what I am I am by moral nature of natural birth.

3) "Dwelleth no good thing," (ouk oikei agathon) "Dwells not that which is good," by nature; From the crown of his head to the sole of his feet, Paul confessed to be a sinner by nature still, though an apostle, Isaiah 1:4-5; Romans 3:9-23.

4) "For to will is present with me," (gar thelein parakeitai moi) "For to will (in a godly way) is present with me;- he had a new nature, had been made a partaker of the new nature, the divine nature, 2 Peter 1:4; 2 Corinthians 8:12.

5) "But how to perform that which is good I find not," (to de katergazesthai to kalon ou) "But (how) to work the good I do not find," in the sense of often falling short of finding or reaching the desired goal of holiness in life and service; yet in Christ he pressed on toward it, 1 Corinthians 15:58; Philippians 3:13-14; Philippians 4:13; Philippians 4:19.

Verse 19

1) "For the good that I would I do not", (Ou gar ho thelo poio agathon) "For what good I strongly desire (to do), I do not;" his desire to serve Christ and his achievements in service, like Christians today, seemed often to be far apart. He was that human, yet divine in desire and will, to go on serving Jesus Christ, as a good steward, 1 Corinthians 4:2; Romans 1:13-15; Romans 15:24-32.

2) "But the evil which I would not," (alla ho ou thelo kakon) "But the evil (devilish things) I strongly wish not (to do)" to imagine, to think, to speak idly or evil of others, though by inspiration of the Spirit he condemned such, "Speak evil of no man," Titus 3:2; Ephesians 4:31; 1 Corinthians 13:5; 1 Thessalonians 5:15; 1 Thessalonians 5:22.

3) "That I do," (touto prasso) "This I practice," or repeatedly do, find myself doing, again and again, even fruits of -the flesh - finding not in myself power to repress always the impulsive passions of covetous inclinations for the carnal things that are to be put away; again and again he buffeted his body, to bring it into subjection to such, 1 Corinthians 9:26-27; Galatians 5:17-21.


The barometer indicates approaching changes of weather-not by the high and low stand of the mercury in its tube, but by the rising or failing of the mercury in a poor Christian, surrounded by disadvantages and drawbacks, as by an atmosphere affording too little oxygen and lacking in pressure, displays to his own despondent self-examination a very low barometer of moral character and attainment. For his comfort we say, "Do not be discouraged; but take many reading, and find out whether the mercury is rising. It is not a high, but a rising barometer that should give you joy."

Christian World Pulpit

Verse 20

1) "Now if I do that I would not," (ei de ho ou thelo ego touto poio) "But if I do what I wish not to do so badly," and he did - this is the very admission of weakness and imperfection that he is both confessing and affirming, as an actual Christian experience.

2) "It is no more I that do it," (ouketi ego katergazomai auto) "No more (is) it I that do it," the regenerated "I", the apostle "I", the servant, steward, and minister "I" of the new Spirit nature, Romans 8:11; Romans 8:14; Romans 8:16; 1 Corinthians 2:14-16; Colossians 3:1-3.

3) "But sin that dwelleth in me," (alla he oikousa en emoi hamartia)- "But the sin (nature) dwelling in me," in the flesh, old carnal-born nature in which I dwell and tabernacle until death, predetermined in and thru Adam, Romans 5:12; Romans 5:14; Romans 5:17; Hebrews 9:27. Paul, who held the Spirit of God in him, still recognized that he was in a sinful tabernacle, groaning for deliverance because of his implanted new nature, 2 Corinthians 5:1-11.

Verse 21

1) “I find then a law," (heurisko ara ton nomon) "I find then the law," the existing principal, the sin sting and sin stain in me, as an existing, abiding, compulsive, morally venomous power, Psalms 51:5; Jeremiah 17:9; Matthew 12:34; Matthew 15:19; Mark 7:21.

2) "That, when I would do good," (to thelonti emoi poiein to kalon) "That when I would do good (deeds)," Evil, harm, obstruction, distraction, etc. lurks, crouches in my life; James 4:1-2; Romans 13:11-14.

3) "Evil is present with me," (hoti emoi to kakon parakeitai) "That to or toward me the evil is present," in my own nature, confronts me on every hand, from evil desires within and evil temptations without; 1 Corinthians 10:13; 1 Corinthians 10:31; Romans 12:21; 2 Peter 2:19.


The compass on board an iron vessel is very subject to aberrations; yet, for all that, its evident desire is to be true to the pole. True hearts in this wicked world, and in this fleshly body, are all to apt to swerve, but they still show their inward and persistent tendency to point towards heaven and God. On board iron vessels it is a common thing to see a compass placed aloft, to be as much away from the cause of aberration as possible; a wise hint to us to elevate our affections and desires; the nearer to God the less swayed by worldly influence.


Verse 22

1) "For I delight in the law of God," (sunedomai gar to nomo tou theou) "For I delight in the law of God," which is "true from the beginning," Psalms 119:160. True people of God rejoice in and feast on his word and divine law and guide they are under, Psalms 119:1-5; Psalms 119:130; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; 1 Peter 3:15; Hebrews 4:12.

2) "After the inward man," (kata ton eso anthropon) "According to the (nature of) the inner man;" the new creature, 2 Corinthians 5:21. Spiritual things are spiritually discerned - this is why the redeemed delight in prayer, fellowship one with another, songs of praise, worshipping in Spirit and truth and giving to God’s cause, John 4:24; 1 John 4:15; Romans 5:5; John 16:24; Romans 8:1-2. "The Way Upward." - Beecher.

Verse 23

1) "But I see another law in my members " (Blepo de heteron nomon en tois melesin mon) "But I see a different kind (of) law (principle) in my (body) members." At a blink of the eye Paul recognized another law of his members, recognized by his intelligence; it was the old principle of self first, covetousness, carnal lust, look out for self first, as Adam and Eve did, passed it on, Romans 5:12; Romans 5:14; Romans 5:17.

2) "Warring against the law of my mind," (antistrateuomenon to nomo teu noos mou) "Warring against the law-principle of my mind (spiritual mind)." The new man, the new nature is a battleground - a territory never to be surrendered to Satan - shall the old or the new mind have dominance (jurisdiction) over the body members? 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; Romans 12:1-2.

3) "And bringing me into captivity," (Kai aichmalotizonta) "And captivating me," or "taking me captive," often seizing control of me, to the extent I become a servant of the Devil - yet the child of God is to resist and battle against his control, by or through the word and spirit, Romans 6:14-15; Ephesians 6:11-18.

4) "To the law of sin which is in my members," (en to nomo tes hamartias to onti en tois melesin mou) "in (to) the law of. sin (captivity), the sin principle existing in my body members;- Although sin has a pre-life claim thru Adam unto death, he does not have a contract on the life-service of the child of God. After one is saved, by virtue of the Seal of the Holy Spirit in salvation, he, thereafter belongs to God and should serve him always, thru the spirit, Mark 9:41; 1 Corinthians 3:9; 1 Corinthians 10:31.

Verse 24

1) "0 wretched man that I am!" (talaiporos ego anthropos) "O wretched man I am;" In the battle of the conscience, so conscious of daily guilt of sin, yet longing to honor and please Christ, full of testings, challenged by tedious toils and hard labors and conflicts -there is a wail of anguish and a cry for help in the saint’s struggling voice if this body ends all!

2) "Who shall deliver me," (tis me brusetai) "Who will deliver, release, or set me free;" Who? Who else, but the Lamb of God, John 1:29; who else, but the one on the throne who has conquered sin and death for every man, Hebrews 2:9; Revelation 5:1-2; Revelation 5:5-12; Romans 8:11.

3) "From the body of this death?" (ek tou somatos tou thanatou toutou;) "Out of the body of this death?" Or how shall I escape this dead body - body of death nature! The "who" answer is Jesus Christ, who is alive forevermore, to raise and bring all his own to himself, and his church to a more intimate affinity to him, John 14:1-3; 1 Corinthians 15:51-52; 1 Corinthians 15:57; 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; Philippians 3:20-21.

Verse 25

1) "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord," (charis to theo dia lesou christou tou kuriou hemon) "Thanks to God through Jesus Christ our Lord;" this deliverance shall be through him. "through faith in his blood," not thru the Law of Moses, the church, baptism, or moral perfection, Romans 3:25.

2) "So then with the mind," (Ara oun to men noi) "So then with the mind, on the one hand;" the mind of the Spirit, which is renewed, grows in grace day by day, Romans 12:1-2; 2 Peter 3:18.

3) “I myself serve the law of God," (autos ego douleuo nomo theou) "I myself serve the law of God," the law-principle of eternal holiness, as I work out my salvation, day by day (demonstrate it) in the fruit and deeds of the Spirit, Galatians 5:22-25; Ephesians 4:32; 2 Peter 1:4-10.

4) "But with the flesh the law of sin," (te de sarki nomo hamartias) "On the other hand with the flesh (I do slave service to) the law-principle of indwelling, inherent sin;" The new man, new creature, new nature longs for holiness, but the old struggles for lust and pride, and, greed and covetousness, much as Romans 7:17; Romans 7:20; the flesh principle has compulsions only for flesh desires; as the sow loves the mire and the dog his vomit; and every one with the Spirit of God should let him be master or commander-in-chief of all body members, to bring them under subjection, keep them from the mire and dead bodies, unto holiness of life and service. 1 Corinthians 9:26-27; 2 Peter 2:22.

Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Romans 7". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/romans-7.html. 1985.
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