Romans 7 clearly lays out the fact that the believer has died to the law and the demands of the law. Then we see an agonizing firsthand narrative that despite our sincere desire to please God, we see so much failure (Rom 7:14-23). In these verses the personal pronouns, “I”, “me”, “my” are mentioned some 37 times.
The fact is, in Romans 7:14-23, it’s all about self… doing. This is clearly seen to be someone in the flesh… walking by the flesh. Of course, this sets up Romans 8 well, with its emphasis on walking by the Spirit vs. walking by the flesh.
The flesh walker asks “How can I please God? How can I walk obediently? How can I overcome sin? How can I be a faithful witness?” etc., ad nauseum. Do you see the pattern here? Just like Romans 7:14-23, it’s all about me and my doing.
That’s the point of the Old Covenant: to glorify God’s righteousness and holiness by exposing our unrighteousness and sinfulness. The Old Covenant emphasizes man’s doing. It proves what a failure man’s “doing” is. How thoroughly corrupt it is to do anyting apart from God.
Now comes the New Covenant. The emphasis is not on “how” (do this, don’t do this), rather the emphasis is on WHO.
In Romans 7:24-25:
(7:24) O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? (7:25) I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, with the mind I myself serve the law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin.
When you cry out, “Who will deliver me…” you’ve given up dependence on your doing and admit the need of another’s doing.
That’s the whole key to the New Covenant! The answer is not “how” (implying a method/technique featuring my doing)…. the answer is:
WHO! The answer is another Person altogether… The Lord Jesus Christ! It is HE who performs! It is HE who walks holy, without sin, totally pleasing God the Father!
Hallelujah! The answer is not “how”, the answer is Christ Jesus!
The provision of the New Covenant isn’t power, technique, teaching or any such thing. The provision of the New Covenant is Christ!
Most Christians understand this relative to forgiveness for sin, but fail to see Christ as the New Covenant means of righteousness and holiness.
” I, the LORD, have spoken it, and I will do it.”