Therefore now (αρα νυν ara nun). Two particles. Points back to the triumphant note in Romans 7:25 after the preceding despair.No condemnation (ουδεν κατακριμα ouden katakrima). As sinners we deserved condemnation in our unregenerate state in spite of the struggle. But God offers pardon “to those in Christ Jesus (τοις εν Χριστωι Ιησου tois en Christōi Iēsou). This is Paul‘s Gospel. The fire has burned on and around the Cross of Christ. There and there alone is safety. Those in Christ Jesus can lead the consecrated, the crucified, the baptized life.
The law of the Spirit of life (ο νομος του πνευματος της ζωης ho nomos tou pneumatos tēs zōēs). The principle or authority exercised by the Holy Spirit which bestows life and which rests “in Christ Jesus.”Made me free (ηλευτερωσεν με ēleutherōsen me). First aorist active indicative of the old verb ελευτεροω eleutheroō for which see note on Galatians 5:1. Aleph B have σε se (thee) instead of με me It matters little. We are pardoned, we are free from the old law of sin and death (7:7-24), we are able by the help of the Holy Spirit to live the new life in Christ.
That the law could not do (το αδυνατον του νομου to adunaton tou nomou). Literally, “the impossibility of the law” as shown in 7:7-24, either nominative absolute or accusative of general reference. No syntactical connection with the rest of the sentence.In that (εν ωι en hōi). “Wherein.” It was weak (ηστενει ēsthenei). Imperfect active, continued weak as already shown. In the likeness of sinful flesh (εν ομοιωματι σαρκος αμαρτιας en homoiōmati sarkos hamartias). For “likeness” see note on Philippians 2:7, a real man, but more than man for God‘s “own Son.” Two genitives “of flesh of sin” (marked by sin), that is the flesh of man is, but not the flesh of Jesus. And for sin (και περι αμαρτιας kai peri hamartias). Condensed phrase, God sent his Son also concerning sin (our sin). Condemned sin in the flesh (κατεκρινε την αμαρτιαν εν τηι σαρκι katekrine tēn hamartian en tēi sarki). First aorist active indicative of κατακρινω katakrinō He condemned the sin of men and the condemnation took place in the flesh of Jesus. If the article την tēn had been repeated before εν τηι σαρκι en tēi sarki Paul would have affirmed sin in the flesh of Jesus, but he carefully avoided that (Robertson, Grammar, p. 784).
The ordinance of the law (το δικαιωμα του νομου to dikaiōma tou nomou). “The requirement of the law.”Might be fulfilled (ινα πλερωτηι hina plerōthēi). Purpose of the death of Christ by ινα hina and first aorist passive subjunctive of πληροω plēroō Christ met it all in our stead (Romans 3:21-26). Not after the flesh, but after the Spirit (μη κατα σαρκα αλλα κατα πνευμα mē kata sarka alla kata pneuma). The two laws of life (κατα σαρκα kata sarka in 7:7-24, κατα πνευμα kata pneuma Romans 8:1-11). Most likely the Holy Spirit or else the renewed spirit of man.
Do mind (προνουσιν phronousin). Present active indicative of προνεω phroneō to think, to put the mind (πρην phrēn) on. See note on Matthew 16:23; note on Romans 12:16. For the contrast between σαρχ sarx and πνευμα pneuma see Galatians 5:16-24.
The mind (το προνημα to phronēma). The bent or will of the flesh is death as shown in 7:7-24.Life (ζωη zōē). In contrast with “death.” Peace (ειρηνη eirēnē). As seen in Romans 5:1-5.
Is not subject (ουχ υποτασσεται ouch hupotassetai). Present passive indicative of υποτασσω hupotassō late verb, military term for subjection to orders. Present tense here means continued insubordination.Neither indeed can it be (ουδε γαρ δυναται oude gar dunatai). “For it is not even able to do otherwise.” This helpless state of the unregenerate man Paul has shown above apart from Christ. Hope lies in Christ (Romans 7:25) and the Spirit of life (Romans 8:2).
Cannot please God (τεωι αρεσαι ου δυνανται theōi aresai ou dunantai). Because of the handicap of the lower self in bondage to sin. This does not mean that the sinner has no responsibility and cannot be saved. He is responsible and can be saved by the change of heart through the Holy Spirit.
Not in the flesh (ουκ εν σαρκι ouk en sarki). Not sold under sin (Romans 7:14) any more.But in the spirit (αλλα εν πνευματι alla en pneumati). Probably, “in the Holy Spirit.” It is not Pantheism or Buddhism that Paul here teaches, but the mystical union of the believer with Christ in the Holy Spirit. If so be that (ειπερ eiper). “If as is the fact” (cf. Romans 3:30). The Spirit of Christ (πνευμα Χριστου pneuma Christou). The same as “the Spirit of God” just before. See also Philemon 1:19; 1 Peter 1:11. Incidental argument for the Deity of Christ and probably the meaning of 2 Corinthians 3:18 “the Spirit of the Lord.” Condition of first class, assumed as true.
The body is dead (το μεν σωμα νεκρον to men sōma nekron). Has the seeds of death in it and will die “because of sin.”The spirit is life (το δε πνευμα ζωη to de pneuma zōē). The redeemed human spirit. He uses ζωη zōē (life) instead of ζωσα zōsa (living), “God-begotten, God-sustained life” (Denney), if Christ is in you.
Shall quicken (ζωοποιησει zōopoiēsei). Future active indicative of ζωοποιεω zōopoieō late verb from ζωοποιος zōopoios making alive. See note on 1 Corinthians 15:22.Through his Spirit (dia tou pneumatos). B D L have dia to pneuma (because of the Spirit). Both ideas are true, though the genitive is slightly more probably correct.
We are debtors (οπειλεται εσμεν opheiletai esmen). See note on Galatians 5:3; Romans 1:14.Not to the flesh (ου τηι σαρκι ou tēi sarki). Negative ου ou goes with preceding verb and τηι σαρκι tēi sarki not with the infinitive του ζηιν tou zēin f0).
Ye must die (μελλετε αποτνησκειν mellete apothnēskein). Present indicative of μελλω mellō to be about to do and present active infinitive of αποτνησκω apothnēskō to die. “Ye are on the point of dying.” Eternal death.By the spirit (πνευματι pneumati). Holy Spirit, instrumental case. Ye shall live (ζησεστε zēsesthe). Future active indicative of ζαω zaō Eternal life.
Sons of God (υιοι τεου huioi theou). In the full sense of this term. In Romans 8:16 we have τεκνα τεου tekna theou (children of God). Hence no great distinction can be drawn between υιος huios and τεκνον teknon The truth is that υιος huios is used in various ways in the New Testament. In the highest sense, not true of any one else, Jesus Christ is God‘s Son (Romans 8:3). But in the widest sense all men are “the offspring” (γενος genos) of God as shown in Acts 17:28 by Paul. But in the special sense here only those are “sons of God” who are led by the Spirit of God, those born again (the second birth) both Jews and Gentiles, “the sons of Abraham” (υιοι Αβρααμ huioi Abraam Galatians 3:7), the children of faith.
The spirit of adoption (πνευμα υιοτεσιας pneuma huiothesias). See note on this term υιοτεσια huiothesia on Galatians 4:4. Also see Galatians 4:5. Both Jews and Gentiles receive this “adoption” into the family of God with all its privileges. “Whereby we cry, Abba, Father” (εν ηι κραζομεν Αββα ο πατηρ en hēi krazomen Abbā ho patēr). See note on Galatians 4:6 for discussion of this double use of Father as the child‘s privilege.
The Spirit himself (αυτο το πνευμα auto to pneuma). The grammatical gender of πνευμα pneuma is neuter as here, but the Greek used also the natural gender as we do exclusively as in John 16:13 εκεινος ekeinos (masculine he), το πνευμα to pneuma (neuter). See also John 16:26 (οεκεινος hȯ̇ekeinos). It is a grave mistake to use the neuter “it” or “itself” when referring to the Holy Spirit.Beareth witness with our spirit (συμμαρτυρει τωι πνευματι ημων summarturei tōi pneumati hēmōn). See note on Romans 2:15 for this verb with associative instrumental case. See 1 John 5:10. for this double witness.
Joint-heirs with Christ (συνκληρονομοι Χριστου sunklēronomoi Christou). A late rare double compound, in Philo, an Ephesian inscription of the imperial period (Deissmann, Light from the Ancient East, p. 92), papyri of the Byzantine period. See note on Romans 8:29 for this idea expanded. Paul is fond of compounds of συν sun three in this verse (συνκληρονομοι συνπασχωμεν συνδοχαστωμεν sunklēronomoiσυνδοχαζω sunpaschōmenινα sundoxasthōmen). The last (first aorist passive subjunctive of sundoxazō with hina (purpose), late and rare, here only in N.T.
To us-ward (εις ημας eis hēmās). We shall be included in the radiance of the coming glory which will put in the shadow the present sufferings. Precisely the same idiom here with μελλουσαν δοχαν mellousan doxan (aorist passive infinitive of αποκαλυπτηναι apokaluphthēnai) occurs in Galatians 3:23 with μελλουσαν πιστιν mellousan pistin which see.
The earnest expectation of creation (η αποκαραδοκια της κτισεως hē apokaradokia tēs ktiseōs). This substantive has so far been found nowhere save here and Philemon 1:20, though the verb αποκαραδοκεω apokaradokeō is common in Polybius and Plutarch. Milligan (Vocabulary) thinks that Paul may have made the substantive from the verb. It is a double compound (απο apo off from, καρα kara head, δοκεω dokeō Ionic verb, to watch), hence to watch eagerly with outstretched head.Waiteth for (απεκδεχεται apekdechetai). See note on 1 Corinthians 1:7; Galatians 5:5 for this rare word (possibly formed by Paul, Milligan). “To wait it out” (Thayer). The revealing of the sons of God (την αποκαλυπσιν των υιων του τεου tēn apokalupsin tōn huiōn tou theou). Cf. 1 John 3:2; 2 Thessalonians 2:8; Colossians 3:4. This mystical sympathy of physical nature with the work of grace is beyond the comprehension of most of us. But who can disprove it?
Was subjected (υπεταγη hupetagē). Second aorist passive indicative of υπατασσω hupatassō (cf. Romans 8:7).To vanity (τηι ματαιοτητι tēi mataiotēti). Dative case. Rare and late word, common in lxx. From ματαιος mataios empty, vain. Ephesians 4:17; 2 Peter 2:18. Not of its own will (ουχ εκουσα ouch hekousa). Common adjective, in N.T. only here and 1 Corinthians 9:27. It was due to the effect of man‘s sin. But by reason of him (αλλα δια τον alla dia ton). Because of God. In hope that (επ ελπιδι οτι Ephesians' helpidi hoti). Note the form ελπιδι helpidi rather than the usual ελπιδι elpidi and so επ Ephesians' οτι Hoti can be causal “because” instead of declarative “that.”
The creation itself (αυτη η κτισις autē hē ktisis). It is the hope of creation, not of the Creator. Nature “possesses in the feeling of her unmerited suffering a sort of presentiment of her future deliverance” (Godet).
Groaneth and travaileth in pain (συνστεναζει και συνωδινει sunstenazei kai sunōdinei). Two more compounds with συν sun Both rare and both here alone in N.T. Nature is pictured in the pangs of childbirth.
The first fruits (την απαρχην tēn aparchēn). Old and common metaphor.Of the Spirit (του πνευματος tou pneumatos). The genitive of apposition. The Holy Spirit came on the great Pentecost and his blessings continue as seen in the “gifts” in 1 Corinthians 12-14, in the moral and spiritual gifts of Galatians 5:22. And greater ones are to come (1 Corinthians 15:44.). Even we ourselves (και αυτοι kai autoi). He repeats for emphasis. We have our “groaning” (στεναζομεν stenazomen) as well as nature. Waiting for (απεκδεχομενοι apekdechomenoi). The same verb used of nature in Romans 8:19. Our adoption (υιοτεσιαν huiothesian). Our full “adoption” (see Romans 8:15), “the redemption of our body” (την απολυτρωσιν του σωματος ημων tēn apolutrōsin tou sōmatos hēmōn). That is to come also. Then we shall have complete redemption of both soul and body.
For by hope were we saved (τηι γαρ ελπιδι εσωτημεν tēi gar elpidi esōthēmen). First aorist passive indicative of σωζω sōzō The case of ελπιδι elpidi is not certain, the form being the same for locative, instrumental and dative. Curiously enough either makes good sense in this context: “We were saved in hope, by hope, for hope” (of the redemption of the body).
With patience (δι υπομονης di' hupomonēs). Paul repeats the verb απεκδεχομαι apekdechomai of Romans 8:23.
Helpeth our infirmity (συναντιλαμβανεται τηι αστενειαι ημων sunantilambanetai tēi astheneiāi hēmōn). Present middle indicative of συναντιλαμβανομαι sunantilambanomai late and striking double compound (Diodorus, lxx, Josephus, frequent in inscriptions, Deissmann, Light, etc., p. 87), to lend a hand together with, at the same time with one. Only twice in N.T., here and Luke 10:40 in Martha‘s plea for Mary‘s help. Here beautifully Paul pictures the Holy Spirit taking hold at our side at the very time of our weakness (associative instrumental case) and before too late.How to pray (το τι προσευχωμετα to ti proseuxōmetha). Articular clause object of οιδαμεν oidamen (we know) and indirect question with the deliberative aorist middle subjunctive προσευχωμετα proseuxōmetha retained in the indirect question. As we ought (κατο δει katho dei). “As it is necessary.” How true this is of all of us in our praying. Maketh intercession (υπερεντυγχανει huperentugchanei). Present active indicative of late double compound, found only here and in later ecclesiastical writers, but εντυγχανω entugchanō occurs in Romans 8:27 (a common verb). It is a picturesque word of rescue by one who “happens on” (εντυγχανει entugchanei) one who is in trouble and “in his behalf” (υπερ huper) pleads “with unuttered groanings” (instrumental case) or with “sighs that baffle words” (Denney). This is work of our Helper, the Spirit himself.
He that searcheth (ο εραυνων ho eraunōn). God (1 Samuel 16:7).According to the will of God (κατα τεον kata theon). See note on 2 Corinthians 7:9-11 for this phrase κατα τεον kata theon (according to God). The Holy Spirit is the “other Paraclete” (John 14:16) who pleads God‘s cause with us as Christ is our Paraclete with the Father (1 John 2:1). But more is true as here, for the Holy Spirit interprets our prayers to God and “makes intercession for us in accord with God‘s will.”
All things work together (παντα συνεργει panta sunergei). A B have ο τεος ho theos as the subject of συνεργει sunergei (old verb, see 1 Corinthians 16:16; 2 Corinthians 6:1). That is the idea anyhow. It is God who makes “all things work together” in our lives “for good” (εις αγατον eis agathon), ultimate good.According to his purpose (κατα προτεσιν kata prothesin). Old word, seen already in Acts 27:13 and for “shewbread” in Matthew 12:4. The verb προτιτημι protithēmi Paul uses in Romans 3:24 for God‘s purpose. Paul accepts fully human free agency but behind it all and through it all runs God‘s sovereignty as here and on its gracious side (Romans 9:11; Romans 3:11; 2 Timothy 1:9).
Foreknew (προεγνω proegnō). Second aorist active indicative of προγινωσκω proginōskō old verb as in Acts 26:5. See Psalms 1:6 (lxx) and Matthew 7:23. This fore-knowledge and choice is placed in eternity in Ephesians 1:4.He foreordained (προωρισεν proōrisen). First aorist active indicative of προοριζω proorizō late verb to appoint beforehand as in Acts 4:28; 1 Corinthians 2:7. Another compound with προ prȯ (for eternity). Conformed to the image (συμμορπους της εικονος summorphous tēs eikonos). Late adjective from συν sun and μορπη morphē and so an inward and not merely superficial conformity. Εικων Eikōn is used of Christ as the very image of the Father (2 Corinthians 4:4; Colossians 1:15). See note on Philippians 2:6. for μορπη morphē Here we have both μορπη morphē and εικων eikōn to express the gradual change in us till we acquire the likeness of Christ the Son of God so that we ourselves shall ultimately have the family likeness of sons of God. Glorious destiny. That he might be (εις το ειναι αυτον eis to einai auton). Common idiom for purpose. First born among many brethren (πρωτοτοκον εν πολλοις αδελποις prōtotokon en pollois adelphois). Christ is “first born” of all creation (Colossians 1:15), but here he is “first born from the dead” (Colossians 1:18), the Eldest Brother in this family of God‘s sons, though “Son” in a sense not true of us.
Called (εκαλεσεν ekalesen)- Justified (εδικαιωσεν edikaiōsen) - Glorified (εδοχασεν edoxasen). All first aorist active indicatives of common verbs (καλεω δικαιοω δοχαζω kaleōεδοχασεν dikaioōdoxazō). But the glorification is stated as already consummated (constative aorists, all of them), though still in the future in the fullest sense. “The step implied in edoxasen is both complete and certain in the Divine counsels” (Sanday and Headlam).
For these things (προς ταυτα pros tauta). From Romans 8:12 on Paul has made a triumphant presentation of the reasons for the certainty of final sanctification of the sons of God. He has reached the climax with glorification (εδοχασεν edoxasen in Romans 8:30). But Paul lets the objector have his say as he usually does so that in Romans 8:31-39 he considers the objections.If God is for us, who is against us? (ει ο τεος υπερ ημων τις κατ ημων ei ho theos huper hēmōnclass="normal greek">υπερ tis kath' hēmōṅ). This condition of the first class carries Paul‘s challenge to all doubters. There is no one on a par with God. Note the two prepositions in contrast (κατα huper over, kata down or against).
He that (ος γε hos ge). “Who as much as this” (γε ge here magnifying the deed, intensive particle).Spared not (ουκ επεισατο ouk epheisato). First aorist middle of πειδομαι pheidomai old verb used about the offering of Isaac in Genesis 22:16. See note on Acts 20:29. Also with him (και συν αυτωι kai sun autōi). The gift of “his own son” is the promise and the pledge of the all things for good of Romans 8:28. Christ is all and carries all with him.
Who shall lay anything to the charge of God‘s elect? (τις εγκαλεσει κατα εκλεκτων τεου tis egkalesei kata eklektōn theou̇). Future active indicative of εγκαλεω egkaleō old verb, to come forward as accuser (forensic term) in case in court, to impeach, as in Acts 19:40; Acts 23:29; Acts 26:2, the only N.T. examples. Satan is the great Accuser of the brethren.It is God that justifieth (τεος ο δικαιων theos ho dikaiōn). God is the Judge who sets us right according to his plan for justification (Romans 3:21-31). The Accuser must face the Judge with his charges.
Shall condemn (κατακρινων katakrinōn). Can be either present active participle (condemns) or the future (shall condemn). It is a bold accuser who can face God with false charges or with true ones for that matter for we have an “Advocate” at God‘s Court (1 John 2:1), “who is at the right hand of God” (ος εστιν εν δεχιαι του τεου hos estin en dexiāi tou theou) “who also maketh intercession for us” (ος και εντυγχανει υπερ ημων hos kai entugchanei huper hēmōn). Our Advocate paid the debt for our sins with his blood. The score is settled. We are free (Romans 8:1).
Shall separate (χωρισει chōrisei). Future active of old verb χοριζω chorizō from adverb χωρις chōris and that from χωρα chōra space. Can any one put a distance between Christ‘s love and us (objective genitive)? Can any one lead Christ to cease loving us? Such things do happen between husband and wife, alas. Paul changes the figure from “who” (τις tis) to “what” (τι ti). The items mentioned will not make Christ love us less. Paul here glories in tribulations as in Romans 5:3.
Even as it is written (κατως γεγραπται kathōs gegraptai). He quotes Psalm 44:23.We are killed (τανατουμετα thanatoumetha). Present passive indicative of τανατοω thanatoō for which see note on Romans 7:4. Same idea of continuous martyrdom in 1 Corinthians 15:31. As sheep for the slaughter (ως προβατα σπαγης hōs probata sphagēs). Objective genitive (σπαγης sphagēs).
Nay (αλλα alla). On the contrary, we shall not be separated.We are more than conquerors (υπερνικωμεν hupernikōmen). Late and rare compound. Here only in N.T. “We gain a surpassing victory through the one who loved us.”
For I am persuaded (πεπεισμαι γαρ pepeismai gar). Perfect passive participle of πειτω peithō “I stand convinced.” The items mentioned are those that people dread (life, death, supernatural powers, above, below, any creature to cover any omissions).
To separate us (ημας χωρισαι hēmās chōrisai). Aorist active infinitive of χοριζω chorizō (same verb as in Romans 8:35). God‘s love is victor over all possible foes, “God‘s love that is in Christ Jesus.” Paul has reached the mountain top. He has really completed his great argument concerning the God-kind of righteousness save for its bearing on some special problems. The first of these concerns the fact that the Jews (God‘s chosen people) have so largely rejected the gospel (chapters 9-11).
The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright © Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Romans 8". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week after Easter