This is the eighth installment of what I hope to be a complete “translation” of Romans. Please note that this is not scripture; it is my understanding of scripture. Any with questions or concerns should check the original.
Eighth chapter of Romans
So now there is no judgement for those who believe in Jesus Christ, because the power of the Spirit of life set me free through the work of Jesus – free from the power of sin and death.
For what the law could not do – it had no power to save us, being weakened by our unlawful and disobedient nature – God did, by sending his own Son in human flesh to be an offering for us … to pay what we could not pay.
And God judged sin in sinful men so that the goodness and rightness of the law might be fulfilled in our lives: those of us who do not live according to our old evil nature, but according to the guidance of the Spirit of God.
Those who live in their sinful nature think only of what that nature desires, but those who live in harmony with the Spirit set their minds on what God desires. The sinful mind is death, but the mind that serves the Spirit is life and peace. The sinful mind hates God; it does not submit to God’s will – indeed, it cannot! And those who are controlled by their sinful nature cannot please God.
But you are led not by your sinful nature but by the Spirit of God – if the Spirit lives in you. If anyone does not have the Spirit, he does not belong to Christ. He is not one of His.
And if Christ is in you, your sinful nature is dead (because of the evil of sin), but your new nature is alive (because of the goodness of Christ). And if the Spirit of God is in you – the God who raised Jesus from the dead – He will give life to your mortal body.
Because of that, brothers, we have an obligation. Not to the sinful nature – to live in its power is death. But to God, who puts that sinful nature to death by working in our lives through His Spirit. By doing this, He gives us life.
Because those who are led by the Spirit of God are the sons of God. For you are not a slave – God is not that kind of master! Rather, He has adopted you as His son, and we can call Him our Father. The Spirit of God Himself testifies in our hearts that we are His children.
And if we’re children, then we’re heirs – heirs of God, and co-heirs with Jesus … if in truth we share in His suffering, so that we may also share in His glory.
But I tell you, I am certain that our current suffering is as nothing compared to the glory that will be revealed in us: all of creation is waiting eagerly for the sons of God to be revealed.
For since our fall into sin creation itself has been groaning in agony, waiting to be freed from slavery to decay, and waiting to be brought into the glorious liberty of the children of God. It has been in birth pangs right up to this present day.
And not only creation, but also we ourselves! We have seen the first part of the goodness of God, but we also groan and wait eagerly for our finalized adoption as sons, and the reclamation of our bodies. In this hope we were saved.
Now hope that is seen is not hope – who hopes for the things he already has? But we hope for this while we do not yet have it, and we wait for it with patience. The Spirit of God helps us in our weakness – we don’t know what we need to pray for, but He Himself prays for us with passion too deep for words.
And God the Father, who knows all our thoughts, knows the mind of the Spirit, since the Spirit intercedes for all of God’s people in keeping with the Father’s will.
We know that in all things God acts for the good of those who love Him, and who have been called by Him to His purpose. For those that God knew before the beginning of time He also decided to make right and good – just like his Son, Jesus Christ – so that Jesus might be the oldest of many, many children. And those God knew in advance, He called to Himself, and those He called, He also made right in His sight, and those he made right, He also glorified.
What can we say in response to this?
If God is for us, who can be against us? If God did not spare His only son, but gave Him up for us, will He not also give us all things? Who will condemn God’s chosen ones? It is God who has declared us innocent – who then can condemn us?
Christ Jesus, who died for us, and who, more than that, also was raised from the dead, is now powerful in heaven, and is praying and acting on our behalf.
Who will separate us from the love of Christ?
Will trouble, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or poverty, or danger, or death? As it is written in Psalm 44, “for your sake, God, we are killed all day long, we are seen as sheep for the slaughter.”
No! In all these thing we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us!
For I am convinced that neither death nor life nor angels nor demons, nor things present or things to come, nor height nor depth nor any other thing in all of creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is ours in Jesus Christ our Lord.