I think most Baptists have Romans 7 totally wrong

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by jygf77, Dec 18, 2009.

  1. jygf77

    jygf77
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    The 'study note' under Romans 7:17 in Zondervan's "NASB Study Bible" (edited by Kenneth Barker) says this: "Not an attempt to escape moral responsibility but a statement of the great control sin can have over a Christians life." If the apostle Paul read that, he would go find Kenneth Barker and ol' Kenny Boy would know he had barked up the wrong tree. Sin can have no control over a Christian's life, by definition. Christian means "little Christ." If that isn't enough to convince you (and I hope it isn't), allow me to continue...

    Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as He is righteous. He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. (1 John 3:7-8).

    John knew that Kenneth Barker and whoever else would be leading us astray, trying to get us to believe that a righteous person can sin. That is why John wrote what he wrote. Many Christians make claims like, "as believers we must wage war against the sin that remains in us." This is a lie. Although many have been decieved into thinking it is true, it remains a lie nonetheless, and it decieves many people into thinking it is normal for a Christian to sin.

    Many things Scripture says can be devastating to someone's life and eternity if they are misunderstood and taken out of context. For instance, take Christ's command to hate our families. Looking at Scripture on the whole, and especially at the context of individual verses, is absolutely critical to understanding Scripture.

    People who think Christians are at war with sin (sometimes winning, sometimes losing, but always making progress) base this belief off of Romans 7:23, however, the truth is that true Christians have no sin remaining in them. They sin no more. The man who says, "I know [Christ]," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. (1 John 2:4). No one who lives in [God] keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen [God] or known him. (1 John 3:5)

    Many Christians think Romans chapter 7 teaches that believers can (and indeed must) sin and still have sin in them. They totally misunderstand Romans 7, because there Paul is talking about what sin did to him. He is describing his former thinking, but he uses present tense to describe it. This can be confusing, especially because people stop reading at the end of chapter 7. The original letter he wrote did not have any such chapter breaks.

    In verse 7:25 Paul says he is a slave to God's law in the mind and to sin's law in the sinful nature. Paul is not saying that his mind is good and his body bad. He is saying the law is good, but it is unable to save any man (see Romans 10). Paul is saying both his mind (with the law) and his body (with sin) are unable to do anything righteous.

    The key, however, is to see that ultimately Paul concludes (on into chapter 8) that "through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do... God did by sending his own Son... to be a sin offering... in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us... who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit.

    Paul's entire point is that he was eventually "set free", through Christ, to live according to the Spirit. He continues, "..those controlled by the sinful nature cannot please God. You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. ... Therefore, brothers, we have an obligation, but it is not to the sinful nature, to live according to it. For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die.

    When Paul says, back in chapter 7 verse 20, "the good I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want," he is not refering to himself now as a Christian. That would contradict the entire point he is making. What Paul is describing in chapter 7 is how he felt back when he was trying to attain righteousness through the Law. Paul is relating to us, in first person, his experience of when he was in sin which, through the Law, had him dead. (7:9).

    This is a very important concept Christians need to understand, because by misunderstanding it thousands if not millions think they are able to be "disobedient believers." The truth that the apostle John warned us people would try to lead us astray from (top of this page) is this. The righteous act righteous, for they know God, and sinners act sinful, for they are of the devil. Disobedient believers end up in the same place as the disobedient un-believers. As Paul said above, "for if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die."

    Another verse many Christians misquote is where James wrote, "Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. We all stumble in many ways. If anyone is never at fault in what he says, he is a perfect man, able to keep his whole body in check." (James 2). They think James is telling us that everyone sins all the time. That is not at all what James is saying.

    James, rather, is talking about people who want to teach others. No one but God says the truth all the time and never makes an honest mistake. We all will accidentally tell someone something that is untrue at this time or another, and that doesn't make us sinners or liars unless we intended to deceive. It just makes us imperfect humans. James is warning people to be very careful about teaching, because we all are subject to human error... and in the case of Christian doctrine, error has enormous consequences.

    When Jesus told us to be perfect (Matthew 5:48), the context was not about teaching, speaking, or the common "human error" that we all make and stumble with all the time. Jesus was talking about perfect love, doing everything you do out of love for your neighbor. We *can* be perfect in that sense, and indeed we *must* be to obey Christ.

    One more verse that many Christians twist is when John wrote, "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us." (1 John 1:8). Again, context is essential to understand what he was saying. Verse 10 clarifies what John means, "If we say we have not sinned, we make God a liar." John is not saying we must admit we are sinning. He is saying we must admit we have sinned. Indeed, it is possible to live a sin-free life after being forgiven. Christ commanded it, and in the very next verse (John 2:1) John tells us the very reason he was writing all this: "I am writing these things to you, my little children, so that you will not sin."

    For more on 1 John ch. 1 and ch. 2, and some discussion about the tenses of the verbs there, see the doctrine section of my website (below)

    God's peace to you,
    Jason
    www.acts420.com
     
  2. annsni

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    If it is possible to live a perfect sin-free life as a Christian, then we can toss the Bible since it's telling us all through it just how we should strive to live. I'm sorry but I disagree that we can live sinlessly because we know that even the thought of sin is sin.

    Well, good luck with this! :wavey:
     
  3. kyredneck

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    There is no written formula whereas one can be born from above.

    Jason, I pray that it's not the way you say it is, because if it is this boy don't stand a chance, he's going to hell. As far as I'm concerned I'm unable to get up out of this chair and walk out of the room without sinning, and, I believe Paul is conveying that same attitude in the OP passage.
     
  4. pinoybaptist

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    we can't even go through one thread in this board without sinning.
     
  5. Revmitchell

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    1Jn 1:8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.
     
  6. Mexdeaf

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    So at what point in the Christian life does this come to pass?
     
  7. HankD

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    "Normal" is the wrong word for describing the Christian who sins, but the fact that it happens is evident from Scripture:

    Revelation 2:20 Notwithstanding I have a few things against thee, because thou sufferest that woman Jezebel, which calleth herself a prophetess, to teach and to seduce my servants to commit fornication, and to eat things sacrificed unto idols.

    1 Corinthians 8

    10 For if any man see thee which hast knowledge sit at meat in the idol's temple, shall not the conscience of him which is weak be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols;
    11 And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died?​
    12 But when ye sin so against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, ye sin against Christ.

    Matthew 19
    21 Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.
    22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.

    So? Sold all you have?

    HankD​
     
  8. Tom Butler

    Tom Butler
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    Wecome, Jason, to the Baptist Board.

    Your first post, and pow, right in the kisser.

    I hope you'll not get your feelings hurt when you find out you are a minority of one on this subject.

    Let me also suggest you go up to the top of the board to Welcome to The Baptist Board, introduce yourself, tell us all the skeletons in your closet, and let's get acquainted.
     
  9. David Michael Harris

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    Amen & Amen. Christians do sin, thankfully we have an advocate.
     
    #9 David Michael Harris, Dec 18, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2009
  10. donnA

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    if it were possible to be sin free why does God give christians instructions on WHEN they sin. Since only Jesus is sin free, aren't we putting ourselves on His level if we say we are sin free? Just making the claim is sin, it's pride.
     
  11. donnA

    donnA
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    over the last 9 years I've learned to always be suspect of newbies whose first and only post is a controversal topic that will cause problems.
     
  12. David Michael Harris

    David Michael Harris
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    That's normal.
     
  13. Revmitchell

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    And or tout their website
     
  14. Jim1999

    Jim1999
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    So, we have sinless perfection. I think I have heard that one before, but it was a oneness pentecostal, not baptist.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  15. David Michael Harris

    David Michael Harris
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    Love that beard Jim. :)
     
  16. HankD

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    Hmm, looks like jygf77 is a "hit and run" poster.

    HankD
     
  17. Winman

    Winman
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    I told this story on another thread, I used to work with a fellow that belonged to some Holiness church, and he believed like this poster that a Christian can become sin free. He told me there was an old man in his church who had not sinned for years.

    One day I bet this fellow he could not go 24 hours without sinning. He laughed and said, "Oh, that's easy, I can easily go 24 hours without sinning!".

    I said, "Well, you just blew it, the Bible says boasting is a sin, and you just boasted."

    He became so angry I wondered if he was going to take a swing at me. After that he would not talk to me about this subject anymore.
     
  18. Darrenss1

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    In my experience those whom believe the bible teaches christians can live sin free (or do you mean actually and ALWAYS 24 hrs a day 7 days a week for the rest of your life - not 1 sin??) have first a low opinion of God's perfect standards, a high opinion of their own righteousness and a wrong understanding of what sin actually is.

    Mark it down, what would you have to do to actually live 100% sin free?? That is why when we realize we are sinners coming short of God's standards and will for our lives we have nothing but to throw ourselves before the grace and mercy of God and thank Him for allowing us to know Him, serve Him, worship Him and have Him in our lives despite our obvious failings, even though we are works in process we just don't measure up....

    Darren
     
  19. HankD

    HankD
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    I like to ask them if they have ever gone 26MPH (or more) in a 25MPH Zone.

    1 Peter 2
    13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;
    14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.​

    Or

    1 Thessalonians 5:17 Pray without ceasing.

    HankD​
     
  20. preachinjesus

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    Well good to see the trolls have been fed today...;)
     

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