Author Topic: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22  (Read 1680 times)

truthseeker

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the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« on: October 07, 2015, 09:25:18 AM »
Hi,everybody,I think I meet some problems of interpreting Romans 6.
Is Paul describing an accomplished fact or objective reality in perfect tense, or just a future possibilty or subjective striving in Rom 6:6-7,18,22 that say that being used to be servants of sin now we are being or have been set free from sin?
If we have truly been set free from sin(Rom 6:17),why did he bother exhorting us in Rom 6:12-13,16,19-21?
Can we say that Paul is a free man in light of his status in Rom7:14-24?
Your thoughts? Thank you very much!

truthseeker

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2015, 10:05:39 AM »
and two relevant question:1) why is Holy Spirit absent from Rom 6 that is the liberator or freedom-giver(2 Cor 3) given the fact that Rom 6 deals with Baptism ,freedom and Sanctification? 2)Related to this, Rom 7:1-6 seems to mention the Spirit in matters of spiritual freedom and fruits, but don't you think the contrast between Rom 7:1-6 vs 14-24 too dramatic? A freed man in Rom 7:1-6(and Gal 2:19-21) is simutaneously a struggling man in 7:14-24?? :o
« Last Edit: October 07, 2015, 10:13:40 AM by truthseeker »

racin_jason

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2015, 10:29:29 AM »
TruthSeeker, I encourage you to edit your post and insert the verses you are asking about, spacing things out to make it easier to read. Sure, we could just go look it up, but its the nature of online discussions that if you want people to participate on your thread, give them the content of what you are asking about.
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readselerttoo

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2015, 12:00:20 PM »
What is presumed in Romans 6 is that the baptized person lives in Christ's Body since Christ's Death is the person's death and Christ's Resurrection is the person's resurrection.  Baptism places the person directly into Christ's Body and therefore in His narrative.  A freed person is free only as long as he is in Christ.  From the person's side it is a constant struggle full of anxiety because of the crucifixion of sin in the flesh.

St. Paul encourages others to use exhortation as a means to give hope and comfort to those who are struggling with sin and the crucifixion of the flesh. The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.  See also Hebrews 3:13.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2015, 01:22:53 PM by readselerttoo »

J. Thomas Shelley

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2015, 03:38:16 PM »
What is presumed in Romans 6 is that the baptized person lives in Christ's Body since Christ's Death is the person's death and Christ's Resurrection is the person's resurrection.  Baptism places the person directly into Christ's Body and therefore in His narrative. 

Baptism is our personal Pascha.
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Weedon

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2015, 05:32:52 PM »
Seeker,

This might be helpful in digging at some of the underlying questions. I wrote it some years ago:

http://weedon.blogspot.com/2007/09/progression-in-sanctification.html

truthseeker

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2015, 09:00:03 AM »
TruthSeeker, I encourage you to edit your post and insert the verses you are asking about, spacing things out to make it easier to read. Sure, we could just go look it up, but its the nature of online discussions that if you want people to participate on your thread, give them the content of what you are asking about.
Thanks for your reminding! :)

Here are some puzzling verses ( NIV ) mentioned above (with my confusions following):

Rom 6:3-4a Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death……just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father 【an objective ,indicative and "already" reality Gospel?】

Rom 6:4b in order that … we too may live a new life.【a subjective ,imperative and "not yet" appeal for trusting ?】

Rom 6:6-7 For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin, because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.【an objective ,indicative and "already" reality Gospel?】

Rom 6:8 Now if we died with Christ, we 【believe】 that we will also live with him.【a aroused trust? "6:9 For we know that … " 】

Rom 6:11-13  In the same way, count yourselves … Therefore do not…… Do not ……【again, Paul's appeal for trusting in view of the Gospel just preached in 6:9-10?】

Rom 6:14 For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace.【and then, once again Paul renders the Gospel guarantee for trust】

Rom 6:17-18 But thanks be to God that, though you 【used to be】 slaves to sin, you 【have come to】 obey from your heart the pattern of teaching that 【has now】 claimed your allegiance.  You 【have been】 set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.【the most puzzling passages for me: they are just repeats of 6:3-4a,6-7?】

Rom 6:19 …… so now offer……【a repeat of 6:12-13?】

Rom 6:22 【But now that you have been】 set free from sin and have become slaves of God…… 【now that I am freed from sin why did Paul bother exhorting 6:19b? For proving(working out) my sincerity and genuineness of my status in 6:22?】

and why is Holy Spirit absent from 6:19-23 in light of the almost same verses in Rom 8:5-13 mentioning repeatedly the Spirit?

and how about the huge contrast between the conditions of the man in Rom 7:3-4,6 vs 7:14-14(maybe it's too famous for Lutherans so I skip writing 7:14-24)

Rom 7:2b but if her husband dies, she is released from the law that binds her to him. 3 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.

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.【seem to parallel the Gal 2:19-21 “For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”】

for me Paul nosedives from the Rom 7:6 under The freedom-giver Spirit to Rom 7:24 under the Law, too dramatic a change.
« Last Edit: October 08, 2015, 09:07:12 AM by truthseeker »

truthseeker

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #7 on: October 08, 2015, 09:20:01 AM »
What is presumed in Romans 6 is that the baptized person lives in Christ's Body since Christ's Death is the person's death and Christ's Resurrection is the person's resurrection.  Baptism places the person directly into Christ's Body and therefore in His narrative.  A freed person is free only as long as he is in Christ.  From the person's side it is a constant struggle full of anxiety because of the crucifixion of sin in the flesh.

St. Paul encourages others to use exhortation as a means to give hope and comfort to those who are struggling with sin and the crucifixion of the flesh. The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.  See also Hebrews 3:13.
Thanks, I agree with you that  A freed person is free only as long as he is in Christ.(e.g., 2 Cor 5:17 and Rom 8:1, 7:1-6)
but that use exhortation as a means to give hope and comfort to those who are struggling with sin and the crucifixion of the flesh seems to new for me, I'd to ponder it.

truthseeker

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2015, 09:38:01 AM »
Seeker,

This might be helpful in digging at some of the underlying questions. I wrote it some years ago:

http://weedon.blogspot.com/2007/09/progression-in-sanctification.html
Thank you, Pastor.
Can I understand "The healing work of God in our lives is precisely the activity of the Holy Spirit" as bearing more fruits as in Rom 7:4,6 and understand all the imperatives in Rom 6 as the healing of God?
And the healing is just another way of saying "growing in Grace" or "more faith, so more freedom, therefore more fruits in Spirit"?

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #9 on: October 08, 2015, 11:36:54 AM »
From the beginning of Romans, Paul establishes two ways of being righteous = being in right relationship with God: (1) by obeying the law; and (2) by trusting that God has reckoned us righteous. Paul argues that when God reckoned Abraham righteous, it couldn't have been because he obeyed the law, because the law hadn't been given yet. By receiving salvation by God's grace through faith; it puts to death salvation by my works. "Sin" is the power that keeps turning us back to "my works" and away from God's work; moving from "it's about me" to "it's about God." Dead = I can do nothing. Raised from death = something that God does for us when we can do nothing for ourselves. "Slaves to righteousness" and "slaves to God" = Let God be God and reckon us righteous.


Differently than we often look at "sin" as bad deeds; here it seems to be more of a power, e.g., self-centeredness that seeks to make us the center of our world rather than God.


We are righteous because God said so. It's an accomplished fact. We will live like we are righteous? No. We will continue to fight against selfish, self-centered attitudes and actions.


Outward acts may be exactly the same, e.g., giving a cup (or bottle) of water to a thirsty man; but it may come with an attitude of "see what a good guy I am" or "I have to do what the law says to do," or "I hope this makes him go away so he doesn't bother me any more," with no thoughts about God or even love for the other person; or "What a good God we have who loves and is present in this man's life. How can I refuse to help someone for whom Christ died?"


I think Paul is using terms, e.g., "sin" in ways different than we usually do as attitude and motivation more than outward acts.
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Weedon

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #10 on: October 08, 2015, 03:17:10 PM »
Freedom means what? The old sinful self likes to think freedom means doing whatever he chooses to do, whenever he chooses to do it. But this really isn't freedom; just slavery. Think Prodigal Son! Freedom truly ends up meaning having a Father who loves you, welcomes you, embraces you even in your utter unworthiness and throws a party to celebrate your homecoming. Freedom is being at home with Him, HAVING a home with Him. And so freedom ends up coinciding with gladly doing whatever He asks you to do - not to win that home, not to preserve your place in it, but because you know you have no right whatsoever to a place in it, and He wanted you anyway.

truthseeker

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2015, 01:36:32 AM »
By receiving salvation by God's grace through faith; it puts to death salvation by my works. "Sin" is the power that keeps turning us back to "my works" and away from God's work; moving from "it's about me" to "it's about God." Dead = I can do nothing. Raised from death = something that God does for us when we can do nothing for ourselves. "Slaves to righteousness" and "slaves to God" = Let God be God and reckon us righteous.

Differently than we often look at "sin" as bad deeds; here it seems to be more of a power, e.g., self-centeredness that seeks to make us the center of our world rather than God.

……

I think Paul is using terms, e.g., "sin" in ways different than we usually do as attitude and motivation more than outward acts.
Thank you very much for these insights!
Maybe the imperatives in Rom 6 seem to be a fight against selfish, self-centered attitudes and actions?

truthseeker

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Re: the puzzling Rom 6:6-7,18,22
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2015, 01:40:32 AM »
Freedom means what? The old sinful self likes to think freedom means doing whatever he chooses to do, whenever he chooses to do it. But this really isn't freedom; just slavery. Think Prodigal Son! Freedom truly ends up meaning having a Father who loves you, welcomes you, embraces you even in your utter unworthiness and throws a party to celebrate your homecoming. Freedom is being at home with Him, HAVING a home with Him. And so freedom ends up coinciding with gladly doing whatever He asks you to do - not to win that home, not to preserve your place in it, but because you know you have no right whatsoever to a place in it, and He wanted you anyway.

Yes, and I think this is precisely what Rom 7:1-6 have said.