“But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.” —Romans 8:9, 10
“But ye are not in the flesh…” tells us that in contrast to what we have seen of those whose minds are set upon carnal things, and though we have a nature we were born with that is certainly flesh and full of fallen humanity (Romans 7:14), we are saved by God’s grace; He is growing us in grace by His grace, building us up in faith, and sanctifying us for His good pleasure. Since those who are “in the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8:8), the apostle tells us that we actually do please God. How so?
“For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.” —Romans 8:6-8
In the first clause of Romans 8:6 we are told that “to be carnally minded is death;” that is, having the reason, understanding and affections set upon those natural things has no life in it whatsoever. Certainly, of those who are unsaved, who are only natural and have nothing of the Holy Spirit in them until the day they die, shall suffer eternal death and will be cast away from the favor of God forever. The second clause of Romans 8:6 gives the stark contrast to death: life and peace.
The unsaved sinner doesn’t “consent with the law that it is good.” He violently disagrees with the law and suppresses God’s truth in unrighteousness (Romans 1:18). Because the unsaved sinner hates God (Romans 1:30), he hates the law of God because it comes from God and is holy, just and good (Psalm 78:1; Romans 7:12).
“For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.” —Romans 7:14
As mentioned in the last article, there is a shift from the use of the past tense to the present tense: “…the law is spiritual… I am carnal.” Not only do I believe that this verse is key to unlocking the truth in the verses to follow, but that the tenses used in this verse are a key to unlocking the truth in this verse.