Summary: If we live in the flesh we cannot please God.
For What the Law Could Not Do
The scripture teaches us that "Without faith it is impossible to please God. In the scripture reading we see that those who live in the flesh cannot please God. This is saying to us, if we live in the flesh, we live without faith and are not pleasing to God.
The Apostle Paul explains clearly what belongs to the believer. Stating, "There is therefore now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus." Notice the word now, not yesterday, nor tomorrow, but now. What a wonderful privilege and comfort to know that we are free from condemnation and the dominion of Satan because of the finished work of Christ.
He does not say, “There is no accusation against them,” for it is there; but the accusation is thrown out, and the indictment is gone. He does not say, “There is no cross, no affliction or displeasure,” for there may be; but there is no condemnation.
We may be chastened of the Lord, but not condemned by the hand of the Lord. This is because we are in Christ Jesus; by virtue of this union with him through faith we are secure. We are in Christ Jesus, He is as our city of refuge, and we are protected from the avenger of the blood who is the father of lies.
There is no condemnation, because the death of Christ satisfied the demands of justice. We then gain our character from our walk; we are either walking in the flesh or walking in the spirit, living in old or the new nature, in corruption or grace, in light or darkness.
Think of the freedoms we have as believers, we have the honor of justification, knowing there is now no condemnation, the joy of sanctification, because we are walking after the Spirit, and not after the flesh.
The law could neither justify nor sanctify, neither free us from the guilt nor from the power of sin, having not the promises either of pardon or grace. The law made nothing perfect; it was weak. The law made some attempts but it was too weak, and man was unable to keep the law and was a failure.
“The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus had made us free from the law of sin and death.” This covenant of grace through Christ gives us pardon and a new nature, freeing us from the law of sin and death, thus freeing us from the guilt and power of sin, also, from the curse of the law and its dominion over the flesh.
We are under another covenant, another master, under the law of the Spirit; the law that gives spiritual life and qualifies us for eternal life. This freedom was made possible by what God provided when He gave us His Son as a ransom for sin.
When the law failed, God provided another method. Christ came to do what the law could not do. Moses brought the children of Israel to the borders of Canaan, and then died, and left them there; but Joshua did that which Moses could not do, and put them in possession of the land Canaan.
“For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh."
Christ appeared in the likeness of sinful flesh, not sinful, for He was holy, harmless and undefiled; but in the likeness of that flesh which was sinful. He took upon himself that nature which was corrupt, though completely removed from the corruptions of it.
What a great condescension that He who was God should be made in the likeness of flesh; but much greater that He who was holy should be made in the likeness of sinful flesh, and became a sacrifice for sin, condemning sin in the flesh.
The dooming of sin saves the sinner from condemnation, because Christ was made sin for us, disarming the devil and death which at one time had dominion over us. Think of the effects of what Christ accomplished has upon us.
"That the righteousness of the law being fulfilled in us." Because of His righteousness we are now able to stand in His presence as though we had never sinned. Our position of justification and sanctification is complete in Him.
His righteousness is completed in us when we no longer walk after the flesh, but after the Spirit. How may we know whether we are after the flesh or after the Spirit? By examining what we think, the things we say and the way we walk.