Featured

Free from the law of Sin and Death | Romans 8:2

Romans 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death

Before covering Chapters 6, 7 and 8 of ‘Romans’ it’s recommended that you first read ‘Subject to the Power of the Law’. That study reviews the context of chapter 5 and the first half of chapter 6, and will greatly aid in the continuity of the following chapters.

Let’s take a look at what the Apostle Paul says, in context, about our former ‘bondage’ and ‘slavery’, and what we’ve been ‘freed from in Christ’.

What does the text say?

Romans 6:6 so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.

Romans 6:12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions.

Romans 6:16 Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?

  • John 8:34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin.”

Romans 6:17 But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin…

Romans 6:18 and, having been set free from sin

Romans 6:19 For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness…

Romans 6:20 For when you were slaves of sin.

Romans 6:22 But now that you have been set free from sin AND have become slaves of God

  • Revelation 1:5 Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood.

Paul said, it was from our bondage to sin that we have been freed; it was sin that held us in servitude, in slavery.

According to Romans 6:16 above, the Apostle Paul claimed there are only two types of slaves on earth. One is the person who serves the Creator, God Almighty, and is a slave of obedience which leads to righteousness. The other is the person who is a slave to sin, which leads to death (v.16). Those are Paul’s own words! Those are the only two options available to us in our lifetime, at least according to the Apostle Paul.

Paul clearly stated, we were slaves of sin, with sin having dominion over us. We were in bondage to our sinand subject to the power of the Law to condemn us guilty of our sin; separating us from God (again, please read ‘Subject to the Power of the Law’). However, because of the redeeming blood of the Messiah, IF we have confessed our sins AND repented, then we have forgiveness for those past sins because we are now subject to the power of the grace of God. THEN, we can have reconciliation with the Almighty, and the opportunity of serving Him (v.22) without that condemnation.

What did Paul say in verse 22 above; we “have been set free from sin”; he did not say Law, as so many errantly teach. There is NOT one verse in the entirety of the Scriptures that says ‘we have been freed from the Law of God given through Moses’; not one!

In fact, Paul stated ~

Romans 7:7 What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means!

We have been, and still are being taught wrong by mainstream theology!

Read Romans 6:22 again, out loud ~

Romans 6:22 But now that you have been set free from SIN and have become slaves of God

We are no longer under the dominion, captivity, bondage of our sin’. We also are no longer condemned for those past sins. We are now pardoned, and in Messiah we are set free from the dominion of sin in our lives! THAT, is what we’ve been “saved” from by the blood of Messiah! He ransomed us, bought our freedom, and “delivered” us from the slavery and captivity to our sin. Hallelu-Yah!!!

However, we are not free to continue in that sin, as Paul repeatedly reminded us ~

Romans 6:1-2 1What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?

Should we continue in the sin that created the need for Jesus to die? Should we go back and continue in that sin now that we’ve been freed/delivered/saved from it’s dominion over us? The Apostle Paul just said, NO WAY’!

In context, the two verses right before Romans 6:1-2 is as follows ~

Romans 5:20-21 20Now, the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, 21so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Paul said the law of God came in to “increase/augment” sin, to define for us what sin is, and ‘to show’ how terrible it is. When Jesus died on the cross bearing the sins of the world, “sinning” was breaking the law of God given through Moses. That is “the sinning” that Paul rhetorically asks in Romans 6:1, “shall we continue in sin?” Paul said that we should not continue in the sin he just mentioned two verses earlier in 5:20. He stated we should not continue in the sin “increased/augmented” by the law.

The word “continue” in the Greek is G1961 ἐπιμένωμεν/epimenōmen which Thayer’s Greek lexicon states to mean: ‘to persevere’, ‘continue’; with the dative of the thing continued in.

By using the word epimenomen Paul is stating that the sin of Romans 5:20 (breaking the law of God given through Moses) is the exact sin that we are not to continue in. This is basic grammar, as well as, continuity of context.

Think logically, not emotionally.

The Sin that the law of Moses “increased/augmented” from Romans 5:20, is the Sin we are “not to continue in” from Romans 6:1; Period. Therefore, Paul unequivocally instructed us to not continue breaking the law of God given through Moses; which he defined as sinning in the prior sentence!

How did Paul know what sin was?

What does the text say?

Romans 3:20 for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

Romans 7:7 I would not have known sin except through the law.

  • 1 John 3:4 Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness.

The ‘sins’ that Jesus bore for everyone on the cross did not magically change. Jesus did not die carrying ‘Mosaic-Law-sins’ for King David, and ‘non-Mosaic-Law-sins’ (as if that were a real thing) for you and me. That is completely un-Scriptural and illogical. There is not one Scripture that changes God’s definition of sin. The mainstream fallacy of “ceremonial-Laws” and “moral-Laws” is man-made-dogma, and those “terms” are found nowhere in any verse, anywhere in the Scriptures. The sins that they/we were in bondage to, are the same sins that have always been; the sins defined by God’s Instructions/Laws that He gave through Moses. Otherwise, God Almighty is a respecter of persons AND He changes.

So, if we’ve been set free from the dominion of sin, what did Paul say that we should do now?

Romans 6:18-19,22 18And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 19I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so NOW present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.… 22But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life.

Here in verses 18, 19 and 22 Paul told us that we are to now be righteous, which leads to our holiness/sanctification, that is, our being set apart as God’s people. Do you see how he contrasted ‘righteousness’ with ‘lawlessness’, as well as, ‘slavery-to-sin’ with ‘slavery-to-righteousness’? Righteousness is the opposite of lawlessness, therefore righteousness is equal to being lawful!

Think logically, not emotionally.

If we are ‘slaves-to-righteousness’, we are obedient to the Law of God. As bond-servants of God, we show our love, allegiance and faithfulness by obeying His instructions, right rulings and just decrees. It has nothing to do with trying to be “justified”, but everything to do with us ‘presenting ourselves’ to God as slaves to righteousness; at least according to the Apostle Paul.

In verse 19 above, the word present in the Greek G3936 is παραστήσατε/parastēsate and is an Accusative Verb that Thayer’s Greek Lexicon states to mean: ‘to present or show’, with an accusative of the quality which the person or thing exhibits.

Now that we have been set free from our slavery to sin (which is lawlessness), Paul commanded us to ‘exhibit ourselves’, to present ourselves obedient slaves to righteousness (lawfulness). This is an ‘action of demonstration’ that Paul stated that we must do if we are in Christ; not for justification, but for righteousness (please read “Justification vs. Righteousness” to learn the difference between the two).

This ‘demonstration of righteousness‘, Paul called it our ‘fruit’ (of righteousness), and he said it leads to our sanctification/holiness, which in turn leads to our eternal life, Romans 6:22 above; also, please read the study, ‘Salvation vs. Eternal Life‘.

Paul is consistently taken out of context, misquoted and misinterpreted regarding this topic of “bondage”, “captivity” and “slavery”. We have been misled and/or misinformed for a very long time. Paul never said that we were set free from the Law of God given through Moses. Paul never maligned or denigrated the Law of Moses.

In fact, Paul showed pride for, and devotion towards the Law ~

What does the text say?

Romans 2:20 having in the law the embodiment of knowledge and truth— (see ‘What is Truth?‘)

Romans 2:23 You who boast in the law dishonor God by breaking the law.

Romans 3:31 Do we then overthrow the law by this faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law. (see ‘Paul Commands Us to Uphold the Law‘)

Romans 7:12 So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

Romans 7:22 For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being,

Romans 7:25 So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind

Romans 8:7-9 7For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. 8Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. 9You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you.

There’s only ever been, or ever will be, “one” Law of God. God is the same yesterday, today and forever; please read ‘The Sabbath: Forever Means Forever‘ and watchExamining the Scriptures on YouTube.

Paul exhibited an adamantly, Pro-Law stance in all of those verses. Paul never showed any disdain for the Law. He never profaned the Law.

The much-heralded watch words of today’s mainstream theology, such as “legalism”, “moral-law” and “ceremonial-law” aren’t in the Bible ever, much less in Paul’s writings.

Let’s look at Paul’s understanding of righteousness?

Romans 2:13 for not the hearers of the law are righteous before God, but the doers of the law shall be declared righteous.

Romans 7:12 So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

As the most eminent scholar of his day, where would Paul get this doctrine?

Deuteronomy 4:8 And what great nation is there, that has statutes and rules so righteous as all this law that I set before you today?

Deuteronomy 6:25 And it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to do all this commandment before the LORD our God, as he has commanded us.

Isaiah 51:7 “Listen to me, you who know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law.

Again, please see “Justification vs. Righteousness”.

Paul not only told us to be righteous, but he also demanded that we are not to return to the bondage and slavery of our sin ~

Galatians 4:3 In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world

Galatians 4:8-9 8Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods. 9But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more?…

Galatians 5:1 For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. (Please read ‘Freedom or Bondage‘)

Ephesians 2:1-2 1And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience-

Colossians 2:8 See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

Titus 3:3 For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another.

  • Titus 2:14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

  • Psalm 130:7-8 O Israel, hope in the LORD! For with the LORD there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption. And he will redeem Israel from all his iniquities.

  • Hosea 13:14 I shall ransom them from the power of Sheol; I shall redeem them from Death. O Death, where are your plagues? O Sheol, where is your sting? Compassion is hidden from my eyes.

Next, let’s take the time to read Paul in context, in order to dispel the myth that the ‘Law of God’ is the same as the ‘law of sin and death’, as so many teach today.

Paul himself fought against ‘the flesh’ in order to try and keep from sinning. He called it another law“, different from the Law of God that he actually delighted in! These are 2 completely different “laws” that Paul himself explains if we read the verses ‘in context’.

In same sentence that Paul told us that he ‘delighted’ in the Law of God given through Moses, he called the ‘law of sin’ “another law” and this law ‘dwelt in his members‘, his flesh; proving they are not the same thing.

What does the text say?

Romans 7:22-23,25 22For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, 23but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members25So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.

The “Law” that Paul mentioned throughout ‘Romans’ (and all of his letters), as coming from God Almighty has only, ever been the ‘Law of Moses’. The ‘law of sin and death’ is a completely different law that Paul introduced in his ‘Romans’ commentary for the very first time, in order to show us that, it is our ‘obedience to sin that leads to our death‘.

How did the apostle Paul know about this ‘other law’? Having studied at the feet of Gamaliel, he knew the Word of God, the Scriptures, better than anyone.

What does the text say? ~

Ezekiel 18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is mine: the soul who sins shall die.

‘Cause and Effect’ defined by God; “the law of sin and death“.

What about Paul’s contemporary, the head of the Jerusalem Council and brother of our Messiah; what did he have to say on this subject?

James 1:14 -15 14But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. 15Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death.

Let’s take a quick step back to see what Paul said about the Law of God given through Moses, and it’s requirements?

What does the text say?

Romans 2:14-15 14For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts

Paul states that those who do “what the law requiresshow/present/prove that the law is written on their hearts. This is a direct quote from Jeremiah and the prophecy about the “new” covenant ~

  • Jeremiah 31:31,33 31“Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the “house of Israel” and the “house of Judah”… 33For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.”

Paul then told us that the law is not sin, but that it defines what sin is. Paul informed us in the Future Tense that the Law tells us how we are to know what sin is… again, in the Greek, this in Paul’s Future Tense! ~

Romans 7:7a What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin.

Then Paul claimed the Law of God is Holy, Righteous and Good. Pretty self-explanatory ~

Romans 7:12 So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

The law can never be unholy or unrighteous or bad, or Paul would be a liar and a hypocrite.

The law of God is Spiritual, meaning divinely inspired, emanating from the Divine Spirit (as per Thayer’s Greek Lexicon) ~

Romans 7:14 For we know that the law is G4152spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin.

The ‘Law being Spiritual does not mean that the Law of Moses was somehow transformed into a random, esoteric apparition that’s magically endowed upon us. In this sentence, Paul compared the Law‘, to the Flesh‘. One is Godly, one is Carnal; one is Divinely-Inspired, and the other one is sold-under-sin.

The Greek for spiritual that Paul used is G4152 πνευματικός/pneumatikos, which Thayer’s Greek Lexicon states as: divinely inspired, and so redolent (reminiscent) of the Holy Spirit; emanating from the Divine Spirit, or exhibiting its effects and so its character.

The Law being “Spiritual” is not something new to the ‘New’ Testament, as mainstream theology teaches. Paul was just explaining the difference between the Law of God and the carnal flesh; that they are at enmity with each other.

Paul also stated, in his Present Tense, that the Law of God was his delight, in his inner-being, his inward man; and he served the Law of God with his mind ~

Romans 7:22,25 22For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being… 25So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind

Next, we see the of ‘law of sin’ contrasted to the ‘Law of God’ that Paul delighted in and served ~

Romans 7:13 Did that which is good [the Law of God v.12], then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin

It is ‘sin’ that brought death, not the Law, so says the Apostle Paul. The Law gives us the definition of sin and shows how bad it really is (Romans 5:20 above), and through this definition it can condemn us. The two verses prior to Romans 7:13 reveal this ~

Romans 7:11-12 11For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. 12So the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

According to Paul, sin which is defined by the commandment, seized him. Sins dominion over him, killed him. ‘Sin leads to death’; THAT FACT is thelaw of sin and death.

‘Sin leads to death’, that is “a law” unto itself. Period.

Paul states that his flesh is sold under sin and that he often does what he does not want to do ~

Romans 7:15 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.

Here it is again, the second different law…

Romans 7:21-23 21So I find it to be ‘a law‘ that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. 22For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, 23but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members.

Did you catch that? Paul professes that he delights in the Law of God with his inner-being, but another law lies close at hand in his members “waging war with the Law of God” in his mind. That other law, the one that’s at war with the Law of God, Paul calls that “the law of sin”. These two laws are not the same law, at least according to the Apostle Paul.

What Law does Paul serve with his inner-being and his mind?

What different law does his flesh serve?

What does the text say?

Romans 7:25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.

Two different laws, one good and one evil. One sentence later Paul reiterates that one ‘good’ law leads to life and the other ‘evil’ law leads to death.

Romans 8:2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.

  • Romans 6:23a For the wages of sin is death

The ‘law of sin and death’ is not the ‘Law of God’ as so many tragically teach.

Paul then deliberately reminds these Roman believers (and us) that those who live by the flesh and thereby obey the ‘law of the sin and death’, those people are hostile to God ‘because’ they do not submit to the Law of God. Paul blatantly states in his Present Tense that those who do not submit to the Law of God cannot please God. ~

What does the text say in the Present Tense in the Greek?

Romans 8:7-8 7For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. 8Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.

Those that live in the flesh, in sin, are hostile to God ‘because’ that person does not submit to God’s Law. That person, the one that does not submit to the Law of God, cannot please God! So says Paul…

Final Thought: We have been freed from our slavery to sin; we’ve been “saved” from our prior bondage to sin which leads to death. We are no longer under sins dominion, separated from God. Now we all have to choose; we either submit to God’s Law, or go back to our slavery to sin. Choose this day whom you will serve…

  • For further study of Paul’s teachings, as well as the original Greek, please see the ‘Page Links’ at the top of this page or blog posts at the bottom. Be a Berean, and test Paul’s doctrines to the “Scriptures”. Please ‘share’ this study. Thank you for your time!

Salvation vs. Eternal Life | Romans 2:7

Romans 2:6-7 6He will render to each one according to his works: 7to those who by continuance in good works seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life

Salvation versus Eternal Life… what did the apostle Paul teach?

What does it mean to be ‘saved’? What have we been ‘saved’ from? How is ‘salvation’ defined by the Holy Scriptures? What does the Greek text actually say, and how does it compare with the way today’s mainstream denominations interpret it? We’ll be addressing all these questions and more, but first, let’s start with some basics.

Sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin… | Romans 5:12

The soul that sins shall die | Ezekiel 18:4, 20

Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. | John 8:34

Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. | Romans 6:12

Obedience to sin leads to death | Romans 6:16, James 1:14-15

Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? | Romans 7:24

Through our own ‘willful-obedience-to-sin’, we were held captive to sin. We were condemned to continue in that bondage, slaves to our sin, and sin leads to death.

Who will deliver us from that slavery? Who will save us from that bondage? Who will pay our ransom?

But God will ransom my soul from the power of Sheol | Psalm 49:15

I shall ransom them from the power of Sheol; I shall redeem them from Death. | Hosea 13:14

For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” | Mark 10:45

She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will  save his people from their sins. | Matthew 1:21

What does the text say that He will save them from? It says, ‘from their sins’.

Jesus’s blood was the ransom price required to “deliver/save” us from the slavery of our sin; He did this of His own free-will.

For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” | Matthew 20:28, Mark 10:45, John 10:18, Psalm 49:15, Jeremiah 31:11, 1 Timothy 2:6, Revelation 5:9

Jesus saved/delivered/freed us from that ‘bondage-to-sin’; He gave His life so that we would no longer be obedient slaves to our sin.

What does the text say?

Romans 6:6 so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.

Romans 6:17 But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin

Romans 6:18 and, having been set free from sin

Romans 6:22 But now that you have been set free from sin

Revelation 1:5 Jesus Christ the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of kings on earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood.

Jesus saved/delivered/freed us from our slavery to sin.

Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is ‘the gift’ of God

God manifested Himself in the flesh, and in His mercy, gave Himself to pay the ransom for many. His ‘payment-in-blood’ is ‘the free gift’ of God, through no work of our own, but because He loves us.

The opportunity was offered before you were even born.

The word “gift” in the Greek is G1435 δῶρον/dōron, and what is never taught by mainstream theology is how this word was used throughout the Scriptures. This is the same word Jesus used in Mark 7:11 when he said, “But you say, “If a man says to his father or mother, ‘Whatever profit you might have received from me is Corban”—’ (that is, a gift to God)”.

Dōron, in the Septuagint is almost exclusively translated from the Hebrew word קָרְבָּן/qorban/corban, H7133. Brown-Driver-Briggs states this to mean: an offering, an oblation. In the Septuagint it’s used everywhere as δῶρον/dōron, a term which encompasses all kinds of sacrifices, the bloody as well as the bloodless.

That “gift of God” is not a wrapped present, tied with a bow. It’s not a souvenir, or keepsake, or trinket as we commonly think a “gift” would be. The “gift of God”, the blood of Messiah, was a ‘Qorban’, an offering. God-in-the-flesh offered Himself as the price to pay our ransom, and deliver us from the prison-of-sin.

Ephesians 2:8 more accurately reads ~

Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you have been delivered through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is ‘the offering’ of God

He delivered us from the dominion-of-sin in our lives; He saved us from the prison-of-sin by offering himself as the ransom price.

Paul elaborated on this just a few of chapters later ~

Ephesians 5:2 “And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God

When we walked in ‘obedience-to-our-sin’, we were alienated and separated from Messiah, without God in the world | Ephesians 2. When we were in that ‘prison-of-sin’, we were trapped. When we were in bondage to that ‘slavery-of-walking-in-sin’, we had no chance, no opportunity to be reconciled to the Father.

That ‘prison’ of ‘sins-dominion-in-our-life’ is what we have been saved from; “that” is what “Salvation” is.

Paul clearly stated, we were enslaved to our sin, separating us from God. However, because of the redeeming blood of the Messiah, IF we have confessed our sins AND repented, then we have forgiveness for our past sins | 1 John 1. THEN, we can have reconciliation with the Almighty, and the opportunity of serving Him without condemnation |Romans 8.

Jesus (God-in-the-flesh), paid our ransom, so that everyone has the opportunity of deliverance from that slavery. He paid “everything” that He had for us, so now we owe Him “everything” that we have. He did not spill His blood dying on the tree, so that we could walk out of that prison and into our own self-sovereignty; He bought us, He paid for us, we are not our own any longer | 1 Corinthians 6:19-20!

Now that the opportunity for deliverance from that slavery has been made available, what are our choices?

What does the text say?

Romans 5:16-19 16Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, OR of obedience, which leads to righteousness17But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, 18and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. 19I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.

According to Paul, everyone has only one of two choices to make:

  1. Either ignore the free gift of being saved from that dead-end prison of obedience to sin, which is lawlessness, and leads to death, OR
  2. Choose to be obedient servants of God which leads to righteousness and being set-apart/sanctified.

Those are the only two choices the Apostle Paul gave us!

Again, the “offering” of God, has granted everyone the opportunity of deliverance/salvation, that is, being delivered from or set free from sins dominion over us; that is what we’ve been “saved” from.

Now that the opportunity of being ‘saved from the dominion sin/lawlessness’ has been made available, are we going to throw that free gift away, and go back to sinning/lawlessness’? Can we continue disobeying God (i.e. sinning) and still expect to reap the benefits of “the free gift”?

Are we really allowed to continue doing those acts of disobedience/sin/lawlessness that required the death of Jesus in the first place?

What does the text say?

Romans 6:1-2 1What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? 2By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?

After you “believe” in Messiah, and His free gift of salvation/deliverance from the prison-of-sins-dominion, are you then allowed to live a self-sovereign lifestyle?

Now that ‘deliverance/salvation’ from the slavery-of-sin has been accepted, now that you “believe” in the Messiah’s redemption, are you seriously expecting God Almighty to give you eternal life if you continue to walk in disobedience (sin)???

God is not mocked ~

Galatians 6:7-8 7Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. 8For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.

Hebrews 10:26-28 26For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. 28Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses [Verses 26-28 are Present Tense in the Greek.]

2 Peter 2:20 For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter end is worse for them than the beginning.

The free gift of ‘salvation/deliverance’ from the dominion-of-sin has been made available to all, but it is a well-known fact that not everyone will inherit Eternal Life.

There will be many who “believe” in Jesus, that he is Lord and Messiah, but will not enter the Eternal Kingdom ~

What does the text say?

Matthew 7:21-23 21Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 23And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

  • the “many” believed in Jesus, that he is the Lord, and they thought they were serving Him all along, but they did not get into the Kingdom of Heaven because they broke the Law of God; please read, ‘The Law: Fulfilled or Abolished?‘.

In Matthew 7 above, Jesus proclaims that those who ‘do the will of the Father’ will get to enter the Kingdom. He also contrasts those who do the will of the Father’ against those who ‘work lawlessness’. God-the-Son proclaims that it’s those who ‘work lawlessness that do not get to enter the Kingdom, ‘EVEN if they believe in Him‘. Doing the will of the Father is the opposite of working lawlessness, therefore, doing the will of the Father is working ‘lawfully’. According to Jesus, God-in-the-flesh, “that” is the key which gains us entrance into the Kingdom of Heaven.

That is what the text says!

The FREE gift of ‘Salvation’ made possible by the death and resurrection of Jesus is not ‘Eternal Life’ in the Kingdom; ‘Salvation’ makes ‘Eternal Life’ possible. Without being delivered from that slavery-to-sin, it would be impossible for us to escape. Now that we have the opportunity of being ‘saved/delivered from our ‘prison-of-sin’, we can now choose to either return to serving sin, or we can choose to serve righteousness. Remember, these were the only options given to us by the Apostle Paul in Romans 5:16 above.

Serving righteousness is ‘doing the will of the Father’ (Matthew 7 above), and that is what gains us ‘Eternal Life’ in the Kingdom (Please read the study ‘Justification vs. Righteousness‘ to understand the difference between the two).

What does the text say?

Romans 2:6-7 6He will render to each one according to his works: 7to those who by continuance in good works seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life

Paul is only quoting the Master ~

Matthew 19:16-17 16And behold, a man came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?” 17And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.”

According to the Scriptures, “Salvation” and “Eternal Life” are not the same thing; “Salvation from Sin” is not the same thing as “Eternal Life in the Kingdom”. 99% of the mainstream denominations teach that they are one and the same; we are being lied to, whether it is on purpose or in ignorance, it’s still deception.

The FREE GIFT of ‘Salvation’ from the prison-of-sin now makes ‘Eternal Life’ possible; by obedience to righteousness, by doing the will of the Father’ we will enter into Life and the Kingdom. Without the FREE GIFT we can do nothing! Without the FREE GIFT of being ‘Saved’ from the prison-of-sin, we are condemned, without God, without hope.

The FREE GIFT is not entrance into the Kingdom; the FREE GIFT is a reprieve, a pardon from prison-of-sin, and the forgiveness of past sins IF you repent.

‘Repenting’ is KEY, and it’s not what we have been taught by mainstream theology either. Repenting is ‘not‘ just feeling sorry and acknowledging what you did in the past was sin; it’s turning away from the past sin and turning back to obedience to God’s Instructions! Mental acknowledgement and regret of sin is completely useless if you continue in disobedience/sin/lawlessness. Obedience to God’s Instructions/Laws is doing what is “right” in the eyes of God, i.e. ‘Righteousness’.

What does the text say?

Romans 2:13 for not the hearers of the law [are] righteous before God, but the doers of the law shall be declared righteous 

Today’s mainstream definition of ‘repentance’ is an emotional, esoteric feeling of sorrow. It has become a simplistic event of confessing to yourself that you feel sorry it happened, but still think, “well, I’m saved so Jesus forgives me”… this is complete nonsense, and totally unscriptural!

Hebrews 10:26-27 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a fearful expectation of judgment

You MUST turn away from sinning and you MUST turn back to obeying the Creator’s Instructions, or there is no covering of your sin, only fearful judgement; you will have forfeited your opportunity of deliverance/salvation from sin.

“Salvation/Saved” is not a rank or a status, it’s not a designation or a title of any “believer”.

The word ‘Saved’, in my humble opinion, should not be used because in today’s mainstream culture, it has lost it’s true meaning; ‘Delivered’ is far more accurate anyway. In the mainstream vernacular, “Saved” has the connotation of ‘a completed objective‘. It implies that we’ve ‘reached our destination’. It has come to mean “I have arrived safe and sound”. That couldn’t be further from the truth. The ‘truth’ is, we WERE in captivity, we WERE in slavery, we WERE in bondage; and by His Blood we have been given the opportunity to be “rescued from”, “freed from”, “delivered from” that situation we WERE in; i.e. “slaves to sin”.

According to Webster: Deliverance = release from captivity, slavery, oppression, or any restraint; rescue from danger or any evil; ‘He hath sent me to heal the broken-hearted, to preach deliverance to the captives.’ Luke 4:18; Romans 6:18, 22; Revelation 1:5

The Greek word ‘sṓzō’, which is translated into English as saved or delivered, is defined by Thayer’s Lexicon as follows: G4982 sṓzō (from sōs, “safe, rescued”) – properly, deliver out of danger.

In the Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament), sṓzō is almost exclusively translated from the Hebrew word יָשַׁע / yasha. Strong’s definition for ‘Yasha’ is: H3467 יָשַׁע (yasha) – to deliver; to be liberated or saved or placed in freedom from external evils. Brown-Driver-Briggs defines Yasha as – Deliver; properly to be open, wide or free, that is, (by implication) to be safe; causatively to free or succor.  Be liberated, saved; deliver, save (properly give width and breadth to, liberate).

The Messiah paid the ransom price for us, allowing us to be liberated from that captivity, that slavery. Jesus redeemed us, He liberated us from that prison. He delivered’ us, so that we can now be set free from that slavery to sin.

What? We’ve been given the opportunity of freedom from slavery (to sin), so now WE can do what WE want, live how WE want?

He ‘bought our freedom from sin ‘in order to serve Him‘, the One who purchased us; ‘for you were bought with a price’ | 1 Corinthians 6:20.

If you don’t serve Him on His terms, then you serve sin and are at enmity with Him.

Romans 6:16-22 16Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness. 17But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, 18and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. 19I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification. 20For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death. 22But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.

It is critical that we go over those verses again, where the Apostle Paul proclaimed that there are only two types of slaves on earth. One is the person who serves the Creator, God Almighty, and is a ‘slave of obedience’ which leads to righteousness and eternal life. The other is the person who is a slave to sin, which leads to death (v.16). These are the only two options available to us in our lifetime, at least according to the Apostle Paul (please read the study ‘Free from the law of Sin and Death‘).

Paul is very precise, ‘servants of God who work righteousness gain eternal life’ ~

for not the hearers of the law [are] righteous before God, but the doers of the law shall be declared righteous. | Romans 2:13

But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. |Romans 6:22

Choose this day whom you will serve.

We must walk in obedience to the Master that purchased/ransomed us. You are the servant of whom you serve, either of sin which leads to death, OR of obedience which leads to righteousness [Rom. 6:16] which leads to sanctification [Rom. 6:19] which leads to eternal life [Rom. 6:22].

The reason I’m really driving this home so hard is because this is “NEVER” taught in the mainstream churches.

What does the text say?

Romans 2:5-9 5God’s righteous judgment will be revealed. 6He will render to each one according to his works: 7to those who, in patient continuance of good works, seek for glory sand honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; 8but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury.

It doesn’t get any clearer than that; obedience and righteous good works are required of us in order to attain eternal life. This is the exact opposite of what is being taught from the mainstream pulpit; the majority of mainstream denominations teach the opposite of what the Word of God proclaims.

If we deliberately/willingly return to that sin (transgression of the Law), then the FREE gift (the blood of Jesus offered for that sin) is forfeit!

But, IF we repent from our heart, stop sinning and walk as Jesus walked, obedient to the will of the Father, THEN we will hear the words “well done, good and faithful servant… enter into the joy of your Master”! | Matthew 25

God-in-the-flesh proclaimed, just like Paul did in Romans 2:6-7, that our deeds/actions in righteousness (as defined by God) will reap us the worthiness of entering into the Kingdom and Eternal Life. Lawlessness and doing what’s right in our own eyes will only lead to wrath, fury and our destruction; that is what the text says.

Matthew 7:13-14 13Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. 14For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.

Matthew 7:21-23 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.  On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’  And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

  • The ‘many’ believed in Jesus, that he was the Messiah and they called him “Lord”, but did not get into the Kingdom because of “lawlessness”; i.e. breaking the Law of God

Matthew 19:16-17 16And behold, a man came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?” 17And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.”

Matthew 19:28 And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold and will inherit eternal life.

Luke 13:24-28 24Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able. 25When once the master of the house has risen and shut the door, and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, open to us,’ then he will answer you, I do not know where you come from.’ 26Then you will begin to say, We ate and drank in your presence, and you taught in our streets.’ 27But he will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Depart from me, all you workers of evil!’ 28In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but you yourselves cast out.

  • Again, the many “believed” in Jesus, that he was the Messiah and they called him “Lord”, but did not get into the Kingdom

John 3:36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.

John 5:28-29 28Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done bad to the resurrection of judgment.

Romans 2:6-9 6He will render to each one according to his works: 7to those who by patience in good work seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; 8but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, 9there will be wrath and fury.

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 9Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.

  • Who is Paul speaking to here? He’s not writing to unbelieving pagans, he is warning ‘believers’ in Jesus

Galatians 6:7-8 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.

Revelation 2:10-11 10 Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. 11He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. The one who conquers will not be hurt by the second death.

Revelation 3:4-6 4Yet you have still a few names in Sardis, people who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. 5The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life. I will confess his name before my Father and before his angels. 6He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’

Salvation/deliverance, ‘being saved from slavery to sin’, is not Eternal Life, but without being delivered from that bondage we have no opportunity to be counted worthy of Eternal Life.

Salvation is an opportunity, one offered by the Creator through the blood, death and resurrection of the Messiah; the offer of forgiveness and acquittal of the past sins that we were enslaved to. Eternal Life is the reward we merit through faithfulness and obedience to our new Master; all possible now that we have trusted/believed in the Deliverance offered by the Almighty.

The FREE gift of ‘Salvation-from-our-bondage-to-sin’ makes ‘Eternal Life now possible through our own obedience to righteous good works, which are defined by God!

FINAL THOUGHT:

Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure”— for the fine linen is the righteous deeds of the saints | Revelation 19:7-8

People who have not soiled their garments, and they will walk with me in white, for they are worthy. The one who conquers will be clothed thus in white garments, and I will never blot his name out of the book of life | Revelation 3:4-5

Worthiness is something you deserve by your own merit. The Bride of Messiah will make herself ready, and her bright, pure linen IS the “righteous deeds” of the saints; again, please read the study, ‘Justification vs. Righteousness‘.

The worthy will wear white and receive ‘LIFE’, and the only thing that makes you worthy is your righteous deeds! So says the Word of God.

“Eternal Life” is something you deserve by your own merit, ‘Salvation’ made available by God now makes ‘Eternal Life’ possible.

Mainstream theology has twisted the Scriptural definitions of ‘salvation’ and ‘eternal life’ into a convoluted doctrine. They’ve tried to blend them together so that they mean the same thing. This is nonsense and completely unscriptural. 99% of the modern mainstream denominations teach a false doctrine when they tell you that the salvation offered by God guarantees you eternal life. The gift of God, the blood of Jesus, is not a golden ticket that says eternal life is now assured. The gift of The Messiah’s redeeming blood is an opportunity for us to repent and receive forgiveness for our past sins, so that we ‘can be worthy of Eternal Life in the Kingdom, which was not possible otherwise.

Choose this day whom you will serve.

  • For further study of Paul’s teachings, as well as the original Greek, see the ‘Page Links’ at the top of this page or blog posts at the bottom. Be a Berean, and test Paul’s doctrines to the “Scriptures”. Please ‘share’ this study. Thank you for your time!