From the below verses I get an understanding that

  1. Earlier (Before Jesus resurrection) we were sinful and were further condemned by the law.
  2. We tried our best to obey the law but failed
  3. After we accept Jesus we are saved and we also are serving G-d by obeying the law in spirit and not just mechanically following the law.

Romans 7:4 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. 5 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. 6 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.

2 Answers 2


The first two points (1-2) are correct, with a clarification of the 1) that "further condemned by the Law" means that Law makes our sinful inclinations, to which all humankind is subjected, even more visible and noticeable, to the effect that while all humanity is beset and infected by those sinful inclinations, Jews, having Law, are pinched by a feeling of guilt even more than non-Jews, for Jews have a Law that makes this same infection so noticeable.

As to the 3) ("After we accept Jesus we are saved and we also are serving G-d by obeying the law in spirit and not just mechanically following the law") - no, we are not serving God by obeying the law any more; on the contrary, if we continue obeying law, we cease to be followers of Christ, in whom the Law is abolished. For "we lawfully (i.e. by the precepts of the same Law) died for Law" (Galatians 2:19), that is to say, in Law was lawfully included its own abolition through arrival of Christ, and thus, if anybody after coming of Christ still wants to resurrect the lawfully dead Law, he is by this killing Christ anew and cannot please God the Father.

To give a helpful simile: a doctor tells patients: "A powerful anti-bacterial medicine Sinnocide is on way to you! It will need one month to arrive, but before it arrives you need to sustain your illness checked through those rules - herbal food, no alcohol, at least 7 hours sleep etc. - which will not heal you from infection, but will prolong your life before the Sinnocide arrives." Now, when the Sinnocide has arrived the rules set by the doctor became void because the very infection was healed by Sinnocide. Thus, the rules included their own lawful abolition through arrival of the Sinnocide.

You can kind of say that the life in faith in Christ is a 'spiritual fulfillment of the same law', for instance, that "You shall not kill" now, in Christ, applies also to hatred, or "You shall not commit adultery", in Christ applies also to a lustful gaping at a woman, but still this formulation is a bit dangerous unless correctly interpreted, and correct interpretation is that if one lives in Christ, he is partaker of Christ's freedom, and this freedom is that there is no law whatsoever for those who have overcame the tyranny of worldly attachments through Christ (Gal. 5:23). Thus, a Christian who does not do God-ly deeds of Holy Spirit on Sabbath, is no more a Christian, for he has abolished Christ's Cross and Resurrection, having returned to the dead Law that started to live anew in such an apostate used-to-be Christian. But even this is impossible, for Law in its rightful essence included its own abolition in Christ, but such a wrongheadedly resurrected Law is not even a legitimate Law any more, for Moses wrote about Christ (John 5:46). Thus, in a Christian vision, a Jew cannot be any more faithful to God by serving the Law, for after Christ's advent the following of Law is both anachronistic and unlawful by the imperative of the same Law, that has in it a time-bomb of self-abolition at the advent of Jesus Christ.

  • But is not "love your neighbor as yourself" === "commandment 5 - 10" === Galations 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentlenesses, and self-control. Against such things, there is no law. ... and is this not what the law highlighted, Stil not clear why Paul says the law is dead when Gal 5:22 is all about living as per the outcome of the law.
    – Yeddu
    Commented May 17, 2021 at 8:52
  • 1
    @Yeddu The difficulty is in semantics of the word "Law". Yes, the Ten Commandments continue even after Jesus' Resurrection in the new light though, the first commandment already should be understood in Trinitarian way, otherwise it is not real God but a blasphemy on Him, for the Son claims equal divinity, and also the Spirit. And all the rest of the decalogue should be understood spiritually and deeper. As to other, ritualistic aspects of the Law, like sacrificing lamb (Exodus 12:6) and suchlike, are made totally obsolete, and if one continues observing them, one sins against God.. Commented May 17, 2021 at 9:44
  • Thank you Levan Gigineishvili. The temple ritual laws were never meant for Gentiles from the beginning.
    – Yeddu
    Commented May 17, 2021 at 9:45
  • @Yeddu and neither are they meant for Jews any longer after the advent of their promised Messiah, Jesus Christ Commented May 17, 2021 at 9:46

Is Paul saying that once we believe in Jesus we live by the spirit / essence / true meaning Law?

Answer: This was somewhat answered already here. We are no longer subject to the Law of Moses, it has been superseded by the Law of Christ.

Note that no one can perfectly adhere to the Law of Moses, which was "nailed to the Cross" (Col. 2:14).

As I wrote elsewhere, suppose we consider the laws we have today. There is a law that we must not exceed 55 mph on a highway. The moment we drive 56 mph, we have broken the law (of course, we will probably not be penalized). But, the law exists for the benefit of society and there is no reward for simply keeping it.

Thus, sin arises the moment we recognize there is a law, and that we have broken (whether today, or sometime in the past). As is stated in John's First Letter, sin is lawlessness:

1 John 3:4: "Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness."

Once we have driven 56 mph in a 55 mph zone, we become a sinner -- irrespective of how we view this, in God's eyes we have violated His law:

Romans 13:1: "Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities."

Fortunately, in both the Old and New Covenants, God has provided relief for our transgressions, no matter how slight we may view them. The relief comes through faithful obedience to God's Word, that which is inspired by the Holy Spirit. In the O/T that meant offering bloody sacrifices, visiting the Temple regularly, keeping all the commandments, etc.

In the N/T, it is much the same. We must worship God on every first day of the week (Sunday), where we are to memorialize the death of Christ through communion: unleavened bread and (unleavened) fruit of the vine. We must offer spiritual sacrifices to God through our obedience to all N/T commandments (Golden Rule, etc.).

The law itself offers death since we are unable to keep it:

Romans 7:9-11: "I was once alive apart from the Law; but when the commandment came, sin became alive and I died;... for sin, taking an opportunity through the commandment (Law), deceived me and through it killed me."

In the absence of the law, we would not be held accountable. How could we be? Just as Paul writes above, it is only upon our recognition of the law that we become law-breakers.

It is only through keeping of God's Plan of salvation that saves us from the consequences of breaking law. (cf. 1 John 1:7, 9).

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