Freedom from the Law
The function of the Law7 So what are we going to say? That the Law is sin? Absolutely not! But I wouldn’t have known sin except through the Law. I wouldn’t have known the desire for what others have if the Law had not said, Don’t desire to take what others have.[a] 8 But sin seized the opportunity and used this commandment to produce all kinds of desires in me. Sin is dead without the Law. 9 I used to be alive without the Law, but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life, 10 and I died. So the commandment that was intended to give life brought death. 11 Sin seized the opportunity through the commandment, deceived me, and killed me. 12 So the Law itself is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous, and good.
Living under the Law13 So did something good bring death to me? Absolutely not! But sin caused my death through something good so that sin would be exposed as sin. That way sin would become even more thoroughly sinful through the commandment. 14 We know that the Law is spiritual, but I’m made of flesh and blood, and I’m sold as a slave to sin. 15 I don’t know what I’m doing, because I don’t do what I want to do. Instead, I do the thing that I hate. 16 But if I’m doing the thing that I don’t want to do, I’m agreeing that the Law is right. 17 But now I’m not the one doing it anymore. Instead, it’s sin that lives in me. 18 I know that good doesn’t live in me—that is, in my body. The desire to do good is inside of me, but I can’t do it. 19 I don’t do the good that I want to do, but I do the evil that I don’t want to do. 20 But if I do the very thing that I don’t want to do, then I’m not the one doing it anymore. Instead, it is sin that lives in me that is doing it.
21 So I find that, as a rule, when I want to do what is good, evil is right there with me. 22 I gladly agree with the Law on the inside, 23 but I see a different law at work in my body. It wages a war against the law of my mind and takes me prisoner with the law of sin that is in my body. 24 I’m a miserable human being. Who will deliver me from this dead corpse? 25 Thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then I’m a slave to God’s Law in my mind, but I’m a slave to sin’s law in my body.
- Romans 7:7 Exod 20:17; Deut 5:21