Summary: Paul was being defeated by (the law of) sin, forcing him (his renewed mind) to search till God could reveal to him the way of deliverance (the Law of the Spirit). The law of sin is too strong for anyone so you must yield to a higher law if you would have
BATTLING BESETTING SIN
(THE ENEMY WITHIN)
How does one go about battling the sin which so easily besets us? Is there any way to be completely delivered from the sin that has plagued your life for years and years?
A person who believes in the Lord Jesus Christ may be delivered immediately from sin's grip at the point of his salvation. But this experience is not shared by all believers. Most are not totally delivered from all besetting sins when they first trust God. Instead they find themselves still falling into sin.
There is no doubt that they have received eternal life, but their difficulty with sin remains. They are:
- going to quit smoking someday
- going to stop drinking someday
- going to stop taking Valium someday
- going to quit lusting with their mind someday
- going to get organized someday
- going to quit cussing - losing temper, talking so about other people
- going to quit talking -gossiping about other people someday
- going to stop procrastinating & get busy someday
- going to stop eating so much someday
- going to start attending church regularly, pray regularly, read Bible regularly, witness regularly someday.
And on and on the list goes. These and other sins keep the Christian and non-christian alike in senseless bondage. And if sins binds you, then you are unable to serve God as you know you should.
I will be reading from the New American Standard since that treasured version, the King James, is difficult to fully understand here.
Paul was being defeated by (the law of) sin, forcing him (his renewed mind) to search till God could reveal to him the way of deliverance (the Law of the Spirit) (CIT). His word for you today is: the law of sin is too strong for anyone so you must yield to a higher law if you would have victory.
God's purposefully reveals to us that in and of ourselves, even our new man, our redeemed self, we are weak and wretched and unable to serve Him. Only as we submit - surrender to the control of the Spirit of God can we find deliverance from the bondage of sin and the freedom to serve God.
I. HIS DETERMINATION 7:15-16
II. HIS DEFEAT 7:17-23
III. HIS DELIVERANCE 7:24 -8:2
We understand from this passage that the apostle Paul was once a Christian living a defeated life. Let us look closer at the turmoil that was going on in the apostle Paul's life.
I. First we have HIS DETERMINATION (15-16).
(15a) - For that which I am doing, I do not understand
Paul states that he is not personally doing what he wants to be doing but something else. He is asking why can a person not do that which he is determined to do.
(15b) - for I am not practicing what I would like to do."
Paul states that he is not continually living the Christian life which he so wants to practice doing.
(15c)- For I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate."
We see Paul battling over why he is so prone to do evil when he hates evil. Paul is confused over why he cannot do what he desires to do, yet does the things he hates. We notice he has cast all evil, all sin, under one category, that is the thing he hates.
(16) - "But if I do the very thing I do not wish to do, I agree with the Law [confessing] that it is good."
Paul agrees that the Law is right by his action of striving to do it. If he did not agree it was right he would not be striving to obey it. Here we see the difference between the carnal saved and the unsaved man.
THE SAVED MAN'S CONDITION
- His heart has been soften.
- He earnestly endeavors after the life of God.
- The saved man's consciousness has been revived by his salvation and when he does anything wrong, he realizes it and is repentant.
- He agrees with God about the evil he does, and is determined to hate it.
- He agrees that God's Law is right, and in that agreement he strives powerfully in his attempt to live by it.
THE LOST MAN'S CONDITION
- He knows to do right (Romans 1:19).
- God has placed within every one of us the inborn knowledge of right and wrong.
- Yet the unsaved man does not strive forcibly to do right.
- He may not like the evil he does, but he does not hate it.
II. MAN'S DEFEAT (17-21).
(17a) "So now, no longer am I the one doing it,"
Paul acknowledges that his fierce determination not to do sin (which is his true, redeemed self), proves that he has chosen sides, and pitted himself against the evil he does despite his doing of the evil. Thus now he is no longer the one doing it.