No Condemnation In Christ Jesus-Merry Monday by Parris Bailey
“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.” Romans 8:1 (MSG)
We can all sigh with relief when the apostle Paul, when wrestling in Romans 7 with the sin in him and exclaiming, “O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?” (Rom. 7:24) Then, Paul answers that very question in the next chapter by saying, “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus”. This is an amazing scripture. Condemnation, what exactly does that mean? Thayer says- “damnatory sentence, or something to be decided against anyone. A verdict, by the result of judgement.” By the grace of God, “the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death.” (Rom.8:2) No condemnation!
Paul goes on to say, “To be carnally minded is death.” What does it mean to be carnally minded? How may we know whether we are after the flesh or after the Spirit? We do this by examining what we give our attention to, the things of the flesh or the things of the spirit. Carnal pleasure, worldly profit and honour, our value of sense and time, are the things of the flesh, which carnal people mind. And what exactly does it mean to be spiritually minded? When we find ourselves wanting the favour of God, thinking about the welfare of the soul, the concerns of eternity, these are the things of the Spirit.
Jesus couldn’t have put any more bluntly to Peter when he said, “thou savorest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.” (Matt.16:24) Which way do the thoughts move with most pleasure? The man is as the mind is. (Proverbs)
Let’s listen to Octavius Winslow as he talks about the carnally minded, “Converse with the scholar of his Homer, with the philosopher of his Newton, with the poet of his muse, with the astronomer of his stars, with the banker of his bullion, with the merchant of his market, the farmer of his cattle, with sensualist of his pleasures, with the husband of his bride, with the mother of her first-born, and you have awakened the devotion and enthusiasm of the heart in favor of its fond and worshipped idol. To all this the carnal mind is alive. But alas! the end of these things is death.” You see all those things are good but there is only one thing that brings life. Seeing and savoring Christ himself.
The good news is that He gives us the power and desire to do just this: to see and savor Him. Last week Frank and I were able to go on vacation and enjoy the white beaches and aquamarine water of Florida. One day I drug all the gang to a remote state park, hours away from where we were staying. I got my wish, few people, clear waters and schools of fish. I found myself swimming all alone and not worshipping nature but savoring Christ. It was as if I was looking into His eyes as I saw the stingrays, the horseshoe crabs and the schools of fish change the color of the ocean. Being spiritually minded brings life, being carnally minded gets you a sunburn, sand in your britches and a few sea shells. Which would you prefer? Have you looked into His eyes lately and seen His world?