The Spiritual Law of Resurrection Changes Circumstances

August 12th, 2017

For the law of the pneuma of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death." Romans 8:2  


For the law of the Spirit of life which is in Christ Jesus, the law of our new being, has freed me from the law of sin and of death.


Romans 8:2 The Law of the Spirit Sets Us Free


The Law of the Spirit of Life. Origen: The law of the Spirit of life is the same thing as the law of God.… For to serve the law of God and to be under the law of the Spirit is to serve Christ. To serve Christ is to serve wisdom, which is to serve righteousness, which is to serve truth and all related virtues. Commentary on the Epistle to the Romans.


The Spirit of Life in Jesus Christ. Ambrosiaster: Paul holds out security for us by the grace of God, so that we should not be tempted by the suggestions of the devil as long as we reject them.… We shall instead be rewarded if we repel the counsels of that sin which remains in us, for it demands great skill to avoid the tricks of the enemy within. “The law of the Spirit of life is the law of faith.” For even the law of Moses is spiritual in that it forbids us to sin, but it is not the law of life. It has no power to pardon those who are guilty of the sins which merit death and thus to bring them back to life.… Therefore it is the law in Christ Jesus, that is to say, through faith in Christ, which frees the believer from the law of sin and death. The law of sin, which Paul says dwells in our members, tries to persuade us to sin, but the law of Moses is a law of death, because it puts sinners to death. Commentary on Paul’s Epistles.11


Chrysostom: “The law of the Spirit of life” is just a way of saying “the Spirit. “For as he calls sin the “law of sin,” so he also calls the Spirit the “law of the Spirit.” But Paul also called the law of Moses “spiritual.” What is the difference? It is great! For the law of Moses was spiritual, but here we are dealing with the law of the Spirit.… The law of Moses was merely given by the Spirit, but this one gives those who receive it a large measure of the Spirit himself. This is why Paul called it the law of life, in opposition to the law of sin, not to the law of Moses. For when he says that it freed him from the law of sin and death, it is not the law of Moses which he has in mind, because he never calls it the law of sin. In any case, how could he have done so since he had called it “just and holy” on so many other occasions, and destructive of sin as well? Rather, the law of sin is the force which wars against the law of the mind. The grace of the Spirit put a stop to that war by slaying sin and making the contest light for us, putting a victor’s crown on our heads at the beginning and then drawing us into the struggle with enough help to win it. Then, as he always does Paul turns from the Spirit to the Son and the Father, showing that we are dependent on the entire Trinity.


Pseudo-Constantius: Those who are in Christ do not serve the lusts of the flesh, and therefore they are not bound to be condemned. The Holy Letter of St. Paul to the Romans.


Pelagius: Note that Paul calls the law “grace.” Pelagius’s Commentary on Romans.

Set Free from the Law of Sin and Death. Theodore of Mopsuestia: The apostle says that the resurrection takes place by the working of the Spirit. … Paul calls the Spirit the “Spirit of life” because the Spirit is the firstfruits of the eternal life which we shall then enjoy. The Spirit has been given to us in the hope of immortality, and faith in Christ has permitted us to enjoy him, because he has set us free from death and sin. Clearly Paul is using the things which are to come as evidence for what has been promised to us in Christ. Pauline Commentary from the Greek Church.


Romans 1:4 In this passage the nature of the Lord Jesus is being set forth. God's gospel is "concerning His Son Jesus Christ": hence, it is necessary, at the outset, to define His true nature. As regards his flesh He was "of the Seed of David." As regards his pneuma He was "the Son of God." And this pneuma was "holiness "itself. The word is remarkable: it is ἁγιωσύνη (hagiosunē). It does not occur at all in Greek Literature. And in the New Testament it is found only here, and 2 Cor. 7:1 ("perfecting holiness in the fear of God)," and 1 Thess. 3:13 ("unblameable in holiness before God"). The expression "pneuma hagiōsunēs" must therefore not be confounded with pneuma hagion. Hagiōsunē denotes the attribute of holiness itself; not merely holy as to character. Hence, "pneuma hagiōsunēs," a pneuma of holiness, being the Genitive of Apposition, means a pneuma which is holiness itself. This agrees with Luke 1:35 where it is distinctly stated to Mary: "that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." The Divine spiritual nature of Christ which He had from the Holy Spirit Himself is here put in contrast with the human flesh which he had of "Mary" as "the Seed of David."


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