New American Standard Bible
and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
King James Bible
So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
Darby Bible Translation
and they that are in flesh cannot please God.
World English Bible
Those who are in the flesh can't please God.
Young's Literal Translation
for neither is it able; and those who are in the flesh are not able to please God.
Romans 8:8 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
So then - It follows; it leads to this conclusion.
They that are in the flesh - They who are unrenewed sinners; who are following supremely the desires of the flesh; Romans 7:18. Those are meant here who follow fleshly appetites and desires, and who are not led by the Spirit of God.
Cannot please God - That is, while they are thus in the flesh; while they thus pursue the desires of their corrupt nature, they cannot please God. But this affirms nothing respecting their ability to turn from this course, and to pursue a different mode of life. That is a different question. A child may be obstinate, proud, and disobedient; and while in this state, it may be affirmed of him that he cannot please his parent. But whether he might not cease to be obstinate, and become obedient, is a very different inquiry; and the two subjects should never be be confounded. It follows from this,
(1) That those who are unrenewed are totally depraved, since in this state they cannot please God.
(2) that none of their actions while in this state can be acceptable to him, since he is pleased only with those who are spiritually minded.
(3) that those who are in this state should turn from it without delay; as it is desirable that every man should please God.
(4) that if the sinner does not turn from his course, he will be ruined.
With his present character he can never please him; neither in health nor sickness; neither in life nor death; neither on earth nor in hell. He is engaged in hostility against God; and if he does not himself forsake it, it will be endless, and involve his soul in all the evils of a personal, and direct, and eternal warfare with the Lord Almighty.
LibraryAugust 6. "As Many as are Led by the Spirit of God they are the Sons of God" (Rom. viii. 14).
"As many as are led by the Spirit of God they are the sons of God" (Rom. viii. 14). The blessed Holy Spirit is our Guide, our Leader, and our Resting-place. There are times when He presses us forward into prayer, into service, into suffering, into new experiences, new duties, new claims of faith, and hope, and love, but there are times when He arrests us in our activity, and rests us under His overshadowing wing, and quiets us in the secret place of the Most High, teaching us some new lessons, breathing …
Rev. A. B. Simpson—Days of Heaven Upon Earth
September 27. "The Glorious Liberty of the Children of God" (Rom. viii. 21).
The Intercession of Christ
For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
For while we were in the flesh, the sinful passions, which were aroused by the Law, were at work in the members of our body to bear fruit for death.
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