Summary: Until we put off the man that is dead to sin we will not grow in the ways of God. If we stay bound to the dead man, he will infect us and ultimately destroy us.
"Bound to a Dead Man"
Romans 7:24-25; Eccl. 8:6-8
A. This is the day that the Lord hath made
B. Special days in our life
C. Day of our birth
1. The joy and happiness that surrounds a newborn
2. There is a new life of promise and potential
3. The whole world was in front of you
4. Unlimited experiences of life were ahead of you
5. The incredible journey called life
D. Yet from the moment we are born, with all of its wonder and amazement, we also begin the process of dying
1. Every minute we live brings us one minute closer to our death
2. Within this living body of vibrant blood, veins, organs, tissue and intricate systems resides a dying man who will one day pass from this life
3. That is not a pleasant thought, nor do we like to dwell on it.
4. Death is an issue we would just as soon relegate to " somewhere out there" or "later"
a. It makes us admit and confront the fact of just how weak and frail we really are; regardless of our perceptions of our strength and ability
II. Eccl. 8:8
A. No man hath power over the spirit to retain the spirit
1. It is not in our ability to preserve our life forever
B. Neither hath he power in the day of death
1. All of you human strength and ability mean nothing when struggling for the very existence of life
C. And there is no discharge in that war.
1. In what will perhaps be the greatest battle of your life, you cannot just "checkout"
D. We all know that day is coming; we have all, at one time or another, wrestled with the thought in our mind
III. Paul in Romans 7 reveals his struggle to us
A. Statement: "O, Wretched man that I am"
1. Very emotional statement: full of much passion
2. It tells us how he views his present condition
a. I am wretched; there is a great struggle within me between right and wrong
b. The struggle between sin and righteousness
3. In the midst of this struggle, knowing sin kills and righteousness makes alive, Paul declares himself to be wretched
B. What is his solution?
1. His question: Who?
2. He is looking for someone to help him
3. We have always viewed the Apostle Paul as the strangest of all the Apostles
a. He withstood so valiantly all of the trials and tests of his life that it seems odd to find him asking for help
C. It must be an incredible struggle for him to need help
1. What then was the battle?
2. "Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?"
3. He is saying "Although I am living flesh and blood in front of you, I am dying on the inside"
a. "While I yet live and am free to do whatever I want, I am bound to the dead man inside of me"
b. "The body of this death"
IV. Allusion to punishment sometimes put upon a murderer
A. Roman Courtroom
1. Judge, jury, attorneys, and the accused
2. Charges of murder are brought and proven
3. The guilty verdict is pronounced and in extreme cases the punishment is more horrible than you can imagine.
4. Then the judge proclaims the sentence
a. The dead man is brought into the courtroom
b. The guilty sees his victim once again
c. They then lay the victim on the back of the guilty; bind his hands and feet to the murderers hands and feet