New American Standard Bible
But now we have been released from the Law, having died to that by which we were bound, so that we serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter.
King James Bible
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.
Darby Bible Translation
but now we are clear from the law, having died in that in which we were held, so that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in oldness of letter.
World English Bible
But now we have been discharged from the law, having died to that in which we were held; so that we serve in newness of the spirit, and not in oldness of the letter.
Young's Literal Translation
and now we have ceased from the law, that being dead in which we were held, so that we may serve in newness of spirit, and not in oldness of letter.
Romans 7:6 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
But now - Under the gospel. This verse states the consequences of the gospel, in distinction from the effects of the Law. The way in which this is accomplished, the apostle illustrates more at length in Romans 8 with which this verse is properly connected. The remainder of Romans 7 is occupied in illustrating the statement in Romans 7:5, of the effects of the Law; and after having shown that its effects always were to increase crime and distress, he is prepared in Romans 8 to take up the proposition in this verse, and to show the superiority of the gospel in producing peace.
We are delivered - We who are Christians. Delivered from it as a means of justification, as a source of sanctification, as a bondage to which we were subjected, and which tended to produce pain and death. It does not mean that Christians are freed from it as a rule of duty.
That being dead - Margin, "Being dead to that." There is a variation here in the manuscripts. Some read it, as in the text, as if the Law was dead; others, as in the margin. as if we were dead. The majority is in favor of the reading as in the margin; and the connection requires us to understand it in this sense. So the Syriac, the Arabic, the Vulgate, AEthiopic. The sentiment here, that we are dead to the Law, is what is expressed in Romans 7:4.
Wherein we were held - That is, as captives, or as slaves. We were held in bondage to it; Romans 7:1.
That we should serve - That we may now serve or obey God.
In newness of spirit - In a new spirit; or in a new and spiritual manner. This is a form of expression implying,
(1) That their service under the gospel was to be of a new kind, differing from that under the former dispensation.
The worship required under the gospel is uniformly described as that of the spirit and the heart, rather than that of form and ceremony; John 4:23, "The true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth; Philippians 3:3.
And not in the oldness of the letter - Not in the old letter. It is implied here in this,
(1) That the form of worship here described pertained to an old dispensation that had now passed away; and,
(2) That that was a worship that was in the letter.
To understand this, it is necessary to remember that the Law which prescribed the forms of worship among the Jews, was regarded by the apostle as destitute of that efficacy and power in renewing the heart which he attributed to the gospel. It was a service consisting in external forms and ceremonies; in the offering of sacrifices and of incense, according to the literal requirements of the Law rather than the sincere offering of the heart; 2 Corinthians 3:6, "The letter killeth; the spirit giveth life;" John 6:63; Hebrews 10:1-4; Hebrews 9:9-10. It is not to be denied that there were many holy persons under the Law, and that there were many spiritual offerings presented, but it is at the same time true that the great mass of the people rested in the mere form; and that the service offered was the mere service of the letter, and not of the heart. The main idea is, that the services under the gospel are purely and entirely spiritual, the offering of the heart, and not the service rendered by external forms and rites.
(But the contrast here is not between services required under the legal and gospel dispensations respectively, but between service yielded in the opposite states of nature and grace. In the former state, we are "under the law" though we live in gospel times, and in the latter, we are "delivered from the law" as a covenant of works, or of life, just as pious Jews might be though they lived under the dispensation of Moses. The design of God in delivering us from the Law, is, that we might "serve him in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter," that is, in such a spiritual way as the new state requires, and from such spiritual motives and aids as it furnishes; and not in the manner we were accustomed to do, under our old condition of subjection to the Law, in which we could yield only an external and forced obedience. "It is evident," says Prof. Hodge that the clause "in the oldness of the letter is substituted by the apostle, for 'under the law' and 'in the flesh;' all which he uses to describe the legal and corrupt condition of people, prior to the believing reception of the gospel.")
LibraryThe Original and the Actual Relation of Man to Law.
ROMANS vii. 10.--"The commandment which, was ordained to life, I found to be unto death." The reader of St. Paul's Epistles is struck with the seemingly disparaging manner in which he speaks of the moral law. In one place, he tells his reader that "the law entered that the offence might abound;" in another, that "the law worketh wrath;" in another, that "sin shall not have dominion" over the believer because he is "not under the law;" in another, that Christians "are become dead to the law;" in …
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But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that which is of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter; and his praise is not from men, but from God.
May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?
Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.
Even so consider yourselves to be dead to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace.
For the married woman is bound by law to her husband while he is living; but if her husband dies, she is released from the law concerning the husband.
Therefore, my brethren, you also were made to die to the Law through the body of Christ, so that you might be joined to another, to Him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.
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