What it means to be dead to the law – by Sam Powell
This sermon by Ps Sam Powell is a good explanation of what it means to be saved.
Sam begins by talking about the errors of both “easy believism” and “lordship salvation”. Then he explains that the wife/husband analogy in Romans 7:1-2 is not addressing the biblical grounds for divorce and remarriage. (So, dear reader, please don’t be triggered by him quoting those two verses. Sam knows that the Bible allows divorce for abuse.)
Sam then expounds on the truth that every human being is either in Adam, or in Christ. If we are in Adam we are under the curse of the Law and the penalty is death – this is a tough message, but we do need to grasp it if we are to truly understand God’s truth. He then goes on to expound on what it means to be in Christ, and the assurance that gives.
The sermon is called Until Death Do Us Part. It’s a very good presentation of what is known as ‘reformed theology’. I urge you to listen to it carefully.
Sam is preaching on Romans 7:1-6 so I’ll put that passage here in two versions that I know Sam appreciates.
Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?
2 For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.
3 So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.
4 Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.
5 For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.
6 But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.
Christ has delivered us from the law and death. Paul shows what the flesh and natural man is, and calls it the law of the members. [this is Myles Coverdale’s prefatory summary of chapter 7.]
Do you not consider, brethren (I speak to people who know the law), that the law has dominion over a person as long as it endures? 2 For the woman who is under a husband is bound by the law to the man as long as he lives. But if the husband is dead, she is released from the law of the husband. 3 So then, if while the husband is alive she couples herself with another man, she will be counted a wedlock breaker. But if the husband is dead, she is free from the law, so that she is no wedlock breaker if she couples herself with another man.
4 In a similar way, my brethren, you are dead concerning the law by the body of Christ, in order to be coupled to another (I mean, to him who is risen again from death), so that we will bring forth fruit unto God. 5 For when we were in the flesh, the lusts of sin, which were stirred up by the law, reigned in our members to bring forth fruit unto death. 6 But now we are delivered from the law, and dead to that to which we were in bondage, in order to serve in a new life of the Spirit, and not in the old life of the letter.