Rom 8:1 NLT – 1 So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.
This scripture comes after the struggles Paul has regarding sin. He comes to a question; Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Romans 7:24. Then he says. V25, Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin. I believe Paul had a revelation, that’s written in Romans 12:2 NIV – 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Paul was a man with temptations, and I believe sometimes he fell into temptation. He struggled the same way as you and I do. If he didn’t, then he wouldn’t be human. Paul realised freedom came through Jesus. Then he finds comfort with; there is no condemnation of those who belong to Christ Jesus.
Those who belong to Jesus should no longer feel the condemnation of God. God through His graciousness sent His Son to show mercy for those who love Him. God was teaching Paul the same thing, and that’s why he wrote what he learned, to help others because he saw the power in it.
It is through our union with Jesus that God looks at us. Jesus paid the price for us, The condemnation that once was is no longer.
Most Pastors I have heard preach on this scripture have said Paul wrote this as a lesson rather than a personal experience. I believe all of Paul’s writings are from personal experience.
If you keep reading in verse 2.
Rom 8:2 NLT And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.
We have the power of the Spirit to free us from the power of sin. That means we are overcomers of sin. When temptation comes, we can break the power of it through the Spirit of God. To know Jesus is to have a relationship with him. If you don’t, then it will be difficult to overcome the sin. It is not a sin when temptation comes; it is a sin when you fall into the trap of temptation. It is important to recognise the temptations. The devil tempts all people, that is what he does. He comes to steal, kill and destroy all people, especially those who belong to Jesus.
I had a pornography problem for 27 years. It was a vicious cycle. I knew it was wrong. I sought prayer and counselling; I didn’t overcome it. I felt condemned, and I hated myself for it. Years later I realised, even though I was going to church, I didn’t have a relationship with God. I was a Sunday Christian. Meaning I only read my bible and spent time with God on Sundays. If I was to spend only one day a week with my wife, then how do we become closer or get to know each other better. We can’t. Relationships take time and effort. That is how we need to be with God. Spend time with him, in prayer, reading your bible, study and talking with Him.
I am reminded of the seven sons of Sceva. Acts 19. They tried to mimic Paul. And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye?” Verse 20. And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so they fled out of that house naked and wounded. Spending intimate time with God gives you an authority in God that comes through Jesus. Living in this authority and knowing it helps us to overcome the power of sin. I knew God has given me the authority to overcome, living it and knowing it are important ingredients to living a Christian life. That comes from spending intimate time with God, which I didn’t do.
If we don’t know God intimately, there will be consequences. If we are not clean within ourselves, there are consequences. If you read Luke 11:24-26 24 “When an evil spirit leaves a person, it goes into the desert, searching for rest. But when it finds none, it says, ‘I will return to the person I came from.’ 25 So it returns and finds that its former home is all swept and in order. 26 Then the spirit finds seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they all enter the person and live there. And so that person is worse off than before.”
The devil will not stop, he will try and try again. When I had the pornography addiction, I would get prayer. I wouldn’t look at it for at least two weeks and then temptation would come. I would fall into that temptation and the addiction got worse. Through the healing process, God showed me three things. I didn’t have a relationship with Him; I had other issues to deal with relating to pornography, and I had un-forgiveness festering in my heart. It wasn’t until I dealt with those issues when my addiction stopped and the condemnation stopped.
I look back at my addiction, and I know God has forgiven me. I know I’m not condemned for what I did. If I was to continue down a path of pornography and sexual sin, I would have lived a life of destruction. If I was to look at porn now, through temptation, it would actually bring a sadness in my heart and a separation from God. That’s because of the relationship I have with God, and light can not mix with darkness.
It is good to know God doesn’t condemn us. It is good to know that He will forgive when we ask for forgiveness. This does not give us an excuse to keep on sinning. If we continue to sin, then Jesus’ death was in vain. Gods love should steer us away from sin, whereas the devil will try to steer us away from God. There is a Spiritual battle going on and we have to know how to fight. We have to know the authority we have in Jesus. Ephesians 6:12 NLT says. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. It is important to have your Spiritual armour on to fight off the devil. Read Ephesians 6:10-20. Through counselling I was told to put on the armour figuratively. If you don’t know how to use the armour, then the armour becomes useless. The only way to use the armour is by having a relationship with God, who is the provider of the armour.
If you have any prayer points or comments, please leave a comment. I am happy to pray for you.
Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness. (Matthew 6:33)
Spiritual Hope . Joyful Faith . Trust in God
Trusting the Love of Jesus Christ, One Day at a Time - Psalm 13:5 NIV, “But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation.”