Today’s SOAP takes us into the book of Romans, chapter 8. Verses 1-4 begin telling us about Life Through the Spirit. Our SOAP verse is the very first verse in this amazing chapter. For my scripture today, I am showing two very different versions, however, what they both say is amazing, and something I can find such comfort in.
Free from Indwelling Sin
8 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.(NKJV)
The Solution Is Life on God’s Terms
8 1-2 With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved. Those who enter into Christ’s being-here-for-us no longer have to live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud. A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death. (The Message)
I don’t think you can make an observation just based off of one verse here. What follows is to important to just gloss over. This chapter tells of what life through the spirit is like, and reminds us how powerless we are because of the weakness of our own flesh. It’s that way for a very specific reason, and a reflection back on this week’s earlier SOAP’s will remind us…we are desperate for God in our lives and without Him, the enemy will attack and tear us apart. We do not have the strength…God has the strength and gives it to us!
But when looking at the Message, the heading of this verse really tells it all: The Solution is Life on God’s Terms. Notice nothing in that heading spoke of us being able to do anything on our own terms…it’s all on God’s terms! God’s timing in everything…and our timing isn’t God’s. Our thoughts and solutions are not His. We must learn to let go and trust God in everything, especially when we want to control it.
The New King James Version speaks of condemnation, and I love how the Message speaks of the dilemma that is now over because of the price Jesus paid for us and our sins. I looked up the word in the dictionary.
- the action of condemning someone to a punishment; sentencing.
How about a verse mapping lesson. Verse mapping simply takes certain words and helps clarify so that you can personalize the verse more to yourself. We already can replace “condemnation” with punishment or sentencing, so let’s look making this verse personal by insert our name:
There is therefore now no punishment for Jayne who is in Christ Jesus, because Jayne does not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
Replace my name with yours, and we’ve just verse mapped! Now this verse is as personal as it can be, and suddenly you can see that Jesus’ sacrifice wasn’t in vain, but just for YOU!!
Lord, What an amazing gift Jesus gave to me so that I can know You. I know I am Yours and so grateful for Your mercy and forgiveness, even though I am in no way worthy of it. Lord, help me to always remember that I have the Spirit in me and because of that, I can always find my way to You! And may the Spirit shine for all the world to see, even when I find it difficult. Use me as a beacon of light to bring others to You. I pray in Jesus’ Name, Amen.