Light in August: Romans 8:18-39

Sheldon A. Tostengard

Article Type: Texts in Context

Publication Date: 7/1/1987

Issue: Wisdom (Vol. 7, No 3, Summer, 1987)

Before we turn to verses 18-39, we need to take brief notice of the first seventeen verses of the chapter. In the clause, "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus," we have a massive turning in the epistle, a massive turning toward the gospel. In that very first verse the debate about whether Paulís main agenda in Romans is justification by faith or life in Christ is resolved. It is precisely the one who is in Christ who is justified. Life in Christ, as one takes it to heart, means to walk, walk according to the Spirit rather than the flesh. Paulís argument is by no means "only theological" but has everything to do with the Christian life. Just as people are uniquely creatures of the mind, so our minds are now shaped by and fixed on the cruciform existence which is Christ.

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