Stuck in Romans 7

I still sin“For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.” (Romans 7:23-23)

“Help, I’m stuck in Romans 7!”

Have you ever felt that way? Sick and tired of not doing what you know you should and doing instead what you know you shouldn’t. We’re not supposed to envy, but do you know when I get real envious? I hate to admit it, but I get downright jealous when someone gets unstuck from Romans, chapter 7. The drunkard comes to the Lord and his thirst for alcohol is instantly gone. Done. Put a period on the sentence. Whatever besetting sin or sins someone has and they’re delivered. A snap of the fingers, and see ya Romans 7. Why them? Why not me?

I keep complaining to the pastor about this daily fight. He reminds me to stay focused on the Lord. “Press on.” he encourages me, “Press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” The pastor says it is a daily struggle. And I keep telling him I want it to be over. I don‘t want to fight and flail and win a few and lose a lot. I don’t like this daily stuff. I want “Bada bing, bada boom” and Romans 7 is in the rear view mirror. Say, bye, bye. For some reason that makes the pastor shake his head and smile.

Of course, I am aware that those who get instant deliverance from this sin or that sin have other transgressions they too must daily contend against. I heard an old preacher say “this world is a battleground, not a playground!” We’re all in a fight. No one is immune to temptation in this temptation-around-every-corner-world. I know what the pastor and the old preacher are saying is true. I know life is torpedoes and landmines, not water balloons and swing sets. I know the daily fight exercises our spiritual muscles.

I know us wretched folks have been delivered – “Thank God – through Jesus Christ our Lord!” I know “we all, with unveiled faces, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (II Corinthians 3:18) I know the day will come when the battleground and Romans 7 will go bye, bye for good. But, until then – “Help, I’m stuck in Romans 7!”

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