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“So that you might belong to another.” (Romans 7:4 ESV) With these words from Romans 7 this morning, Paul unpacks the freedom we have in our new life in Christ. Please join us “On the Roman Road” as we see again our mission task before us to make known the freedom we have in Christ!

As we read through the Epistle to the Romans, we see how the Christian life described in the 1st century is much like the one we live in today. The Apostle Paul describes the purpose of our freedom in Christ with these words: “so that you might belong to another.” (Romans 7:4) In Chapter 7 of Romans, Paul unpacks our new life in Christ in relation to the law. Here he shows how we are freed from the power and control of the law since we have died to the law in Christ.

What do you do when someone gives you advice? Do you listen? Do you follow it? Many times, we probably consider the source of this advice before we choose to act upon the words of another. If a friend shares a recipe, we will likely try it. If our doctor gives us a prescription, we will most certainly fill it. What about when we read in God’s Word the demands that He has declared? Do not steal! Do not covet! Paul noted already in Romans 3:20 how we are powerless to fulfill the demands of the law of God. But this does not mean that the law has no place in our lives. It is through the law that we are made aware of sin in our lives and our need of a Savior.

As the law reveals our sin, it also causes us to die. But this just points us to the death of our Savior Jesus who has set us free. Yes, the One who fulfilled the Law and yet suffered the consequences as a lawbreaker died that the Law’s power would no longer reign over us and we would be made alive in the Spirit. The Spirit reworks the Law in our lives as we die in and through our baptism into Jesus. In the Spirit we are made alive in Jesus. We are not bound by the “written code” but by the Spirit that He gives to us. We do belong to Another, not the law but the very Spirit of God who lives in us. In a world that struggles to live together in harmony and peace, God’s Spirit sends us to share this freedom and new life we have in Jesus.

As we join in worship today and gather to hear His Word both the Law and the Gospel, we are called to make known this freedom we have in Christ and freely share this freedom in all the world where He sends us!

Pastor Carl