The Good I Don’t Do

I remember when I was in my teens at church and the following reading would come up in the pericopes (those readings that follow the three-year lectionary of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod)

I used to feel so bad for the elder that had to stand up and read from Romans 7 in front of the congregation because it is so complicated to read aloud:

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.

Even as a youngster, I could relate to the concept of this challenge. And as I have moved through my life, the reality of it all is ever-present. What a struggle. It is a struggle for each of us!

How is it possible to be wretched and yet also be worthy of being rescued? Only through Jesus. Through Christ alone!

On the Road,

Liz

wretchedw

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