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Romans 7 Lexham English Bible (LEB)

Released from the Law through Death

Or do you not know, brothers (for I am speaking to those who know the law), that the law is master of a person for as long a time as he lives? For the married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law of the husband. Therefore as a result, if she belongs to another man while[a] her husband is living, she will be called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is free from the law, so that she is not an adulteress if she[b] belongs to another man. So then, my brothers, you also were brought to death with respect to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to the one who was raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God. For when we were in the flesh, sinful desires were working through the law in our members, to bear fruit for death. But now we have been released from the law, because we[c] have died to that by which we were bound, so that we may serve in newness of the Spirit and not in oldness of the letter of the law.

Knowledge of Sin Comes through the Law

What then shall we say? Is the law sin? May it never be! But I would not have known sin except through the law, for I would not have known covetousness if the law had not said, “Do not covet.”[d] But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin is dead. And I was alive once, apart from the law, but when[e] the commandment came, sin sprang to life 10 and I died, and this commandment which was to lead to life was found with respect to me to lead to death. 11 For sin, seizing the opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me. 12 So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good.

Internal Conflict with Sin

13 Therefore, did that which is good become death to me? May it never be! Rather it was sin, in order that it might be recognized as sin, producing death through what is good for me, in order that sin might become sinful to an extraordinary degree through the commandment. 14 For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am fleshly, sold into slavery to sin[f]. 15 For what I am doing I do not understand, because what I want to do, this I do not practice, but what I hate, this I do. 16 But if what I do not want to do, this I do, I agree with the law that it is good. 17 But now I am no longer the one doing it, but sin that lives in me. 18 For I know that good does not live in me, that is, in my flesh. For the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. 19 For the good that I want to do, I do not do, but the evil that I do not want to do, this I do. 20 But if what I do not want to do, this I am doing, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin that lives in me.

21 Consequently, I find the principle with me, the one who wants to do good, that evil is present with me.[g] 22 For I joyfully agree with the law of God in my inner person, 23 but I observe another law in my members, at war with the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that exists in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? 25 Thanks be[h] to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself with my mind am enslaved to the law of God, but with my flesh I am enslaved to the law of sin.

Footnotes:

  1. Romans 7:3 Here “while” is supplied as a component of the participle (“is living”) which is understood as temporal
  2. Romans 7:3 Here “if” is supplied as a component of the participle (“belongs”) which is understood as conditional
  3. Romans 7:6 Here “because” is supplied as a component of the participle (“have died”) which is understood as causal
  4. Romans 7:7 A quotation from Exod 20:17; Deut 5:21
  5. Romans 7:9 Here “when” is supplied as a component of the participle (“came”) which is understood as temporal
  6. Romans 7:14 Literally “sold under sin”
  7. Romans 7:21 Or “in me”
  8. Romans 7:25 Some manuscripts have “But thanks be
Lexham English Bible (LEB)

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Romans 7 New International Version (NIV)

Released From the Law, Bound to Christ

Do you not know, brothers and sisters—for I am speaking to those who know the law—that the law has authority over someone only as long as that person lives? For example, by law a married woman is bound to her husband as long as he is alive, but if her husband dies, she is released from the law that binds her to him. So then, if she has sexual relations with another man while her husband is still alive, she is called an adulteress. But if her husband dies, she is released from that law and is not an adulteress if she marries another man.

So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God. For when we were in the realm of the flesh,[a] the sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in us, so that we bore fruit for death. But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the written code.

The Law and Sin

What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.”[b] But sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, produced in me every kind of coveting. For apart from the law, sin was dead. Once I was alive apart from the law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died. 10 I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death. 11 For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death. 12 So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good.

13 Did that which is good, then, become death to me? By no means! Nevertheless, in order that sin might be recognized as sin, it used what is good to bring about my death, so that through the commandment sin might become utterly sinful.

14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[c] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature[d] a slave to the law of sin.

Footnotes:

  1. Romans 7:5 In contexts like this, the Greek word for flesh (sarx) refers to the sinful state of human beings, often presented as a power in opposition to the Spirit.
  2. Romans 7:7 Exodus 20:17; Deut. 5:21
  3. Romans 7:18 Or my flesh
  4. Romans 7:25 Or in the flesh
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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