Author: Ron Graham
—Simply Bible Readings
No More Fleshly Thinking
¶“1Those who are in Christ Jesus are not under condemnation. They do not walk in the way of the flesh, but in the way of the Spirit. 2In Christ Jesus, the law of the Spirit of life has freed you from the law of sin and death. 3The law was powerless, weakened by [how it dealt with sins of] the flesh. So God sent his own Son [to live] in flesh just like ours —flesh so prone to sin. He was [a sinless sacrifice] for sin. So sin in the flesh found its due punishment.”
¶“4[This means] that we [in Christ] fulfil the righteous requirement of the law, we who walk not in the way of the flesh but of the Spirit. 5For those who live in the way of the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh. But those who live in the way of the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. 6To set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.” (Romans 8:1-6).
¶“7Fleshly thinking is hostile toward God. It is not subject to God’s law, nor is it able to be. 8So those [whose thoughts are] in the flesh cannot please God. 9However, you are not [thinking] in the flesh but in the spirit —if indeed God’s Spirit is at home in you. Christ disowns anyone in whom the Spirit of Christ does not [dwell].” (Romans 8:7-9).
¶“10If [the Spirit of] Christ [dwells] in you, truly the [thinking of your fleshly] body is dead. Otherwise its outcome would be sin. However the [thinking of] the Spirit is life, because through [that thinking] you do right. 11If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus Christ from the dead dwells in you, then he who raised Christ from death will also give life to your dying bodies. [He will do this] through his Spirit who dwells in you” (Romans 8:10-11).
¶“12So brethren we are not obliged to the flesh to live in the fleshly [mindset]. 13In fact, if you do live in the way of the flesh you will die. But if you, by the Spirit, put to death the [sinful] deeds of your fleshly body, you will live. 14In fact, all who are led by the Spirit are sons [and heirs] of God. 15For you did not receive a spirit to make you fear, as though you were slaves. Rather, you received the Spirit of adoption as sons in God’s family. As sons, we cry [joyfully to God], 'O Father, dear Father'” (Romans 8:12-15).
¶“16The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit, that we are the children of God. 17Now since we are children, we are also heirs. We are heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ sharing [all the riches] of his glory —of course we must also [endure as] joint sufferers with him. 18I consider our present day sufferings as not worthy of comparison with the glory that will be revealed to us” (Romans 8:16-18).
¶“19The creation waits eagerly, expecting the sons of God to be revealed. 20The creation was brought low by futility. It didn't want to be, but there was one who made it subject. But in hope 21 the creation will be freed from its decay. It will enter into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22 Yes we know that the whole creation together groans in labour with birth pains —even till now” (Romans 8:19-22).
¶“23Moreover, even we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit —we groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption as sons and the redemption of our [fleshly] body. 24For in this hope we were saved. Now there is no such thing as hope that is seen. As soon as one's hope is seen [on the horizon], it is no longer a hope is it? 25We don't yet see what we hope for, but we wait for it [watching eagerly] with patience” (Romans 8:23-25).
More Than Conquerors
¶“26In the same way the [Holy] Spirit also helps in our weakness. For we don't know how to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. Furthermore, he who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is. [Thus God knows our hearts] because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to God’s will” (Romans 8:26-27).
¶“28And we know that God makes all things work together for good to those who love God —to those who are called in line with his purpose” (Romans 8:28).
¶“29For God knew beforehand those [who would become] sons. He also made it their destiny to take on a form like the image of his Son. God purposed that his [unique] Son might be the firstborn among many brethren. 29Those given this destiny, God also called [into his family]. Those given this calling, God also made righteous. Those given this righteousness, God also made [heirs] of glory” (Romans 8:29-30).
¶“31What shall we reply to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32God did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all. So how [could anyone say that] he won't also, in his grace, grant us to [share] all things with him? 33Who shall bring any charge against God’s chosen heirs? [After all], it is God who makes them righteous” (Romans 8:31-33).
¶“34Who is the one who condemns? Isn't Christ Jesus the one who died? Yes, and even better, the one who was raised. He is [now] at the right hand of God, [and there] he too intercedes for us” (Romans 8:34).
¶“35So who shall part us from Christ’s love? Shall trouble or distress or persecution? Shall having no food or clothes? Shall peril or sword? 36—as scripture says, 'All day long we face death for your sake. We are regarded as sheep for slaughter.' 37 [Though we suffer] all these things, in them we more than conquer through him who loved us!” (Romans 8:35-37).
¶“38I am fully convinced that neither death nor [troubled] life; neither heavenly messenger nor [earthly] monarch; neither what happens today, nor will in the future; 38neither things exalted nor things in the deep —nothing in creation can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord!” (Romans 8:38-39).