To Know the Love of Christ

Ephesians 3:19-21 And to know the love of Christ, which passes knowledge, that you might be filled with all the fulness of God. Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. 

‘To know the love of Christ’ – there is no greater privilege for any human and no greater obligation to accept this truth and live accordingly! We cannot live for God when we don’t accept His love and choose to live in obedience at all times (John 3:16; 1Jn. 3:16; Rom. 6; 1Pet. 2:21-23; 1Jn. 3:1-10; 4:16-17).

‘Be filled with all the fulness of God.’ To be filled with all the fullness of God is just as possible today as then, and as possible as the other things prayed for here and in Ephesians 1:17-19 (cp. John 14:12).

‘Exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.’ Superabundantly above the greatest abundance we may ask or even think, according to the power that works in us. His ability is connected with His willingness to do for His people. There are no limitations in getting things from God according to the promises and living in obedience (2Pet. 1:4).

‘In the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.’ This is the 6th New Testament prophecy in Ephesians (3:21, unfulfilled). This teaches that the body of Christ consisting of newborn believers will continue eternally.

The Testimony of Christ

1Corinthians 1:6-9 Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: So that you come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that you may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom you were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord. 

‘Testimony’ [Greek: marturion] refers to the gospel of Christ which Paul had confirmed to people in all places by the gifts of the Holy Spirit (Rom. 15:18-19, 29; Acts 15:4, 12; 19:11).

‘So that you come behind in no gift’ – the gospel was fully preached and confirmed (1:6), to the end that believers come behind in no gift of the Holy Spirit (1:7; 12:4-11).

‘Waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ …’ this is the first New Testament prophecy in 1 Corinthians verses 7-8, unfulfilled. [Greek: apekdechomai] eagerly expecting. It is used in nearly every instance of looking for the coming of the Lord or the future hope of salvation.

‘Coming’ [Greek: apokalupsis] unveiling, revelation, manifestation. Revelation – when used of a revelation it always denotes that which has had the covering taken off and the mystery removed, so that all can see alike what is revealed (Rev. 1:1; Rom. 2:5; 16:25; 1Cor. 14:6, 14:26; 2Cor. 12:1, 7; Gal. 1:12; 2:2; Eph. 1:17; 3:3). When used of a person it means his visible appearance and manifestation to others (Luke 2:13; Rom. 8:19; 1Pet. 1:7). It is used of: The gospel light (Luke 2:32); the coming judgment (Rom. 2:5); the unveiling of truths previously hidden but now revealed (Rom. 16:25; 2Cor. 12:1, 12:7; Gal. 1:12; 2:2; Eph. 1:17; 3:3; Rev. 1:1); the coming glory (1Pet. 4:13); the second coming of Christ (1Cor. 1:7; 2Thess. 1:7; 1Pet. 1:7, 13); manifestation of the sons of God (Rom. 8:19).

There are four Greek words used of Christ’s coming: (1) Apokalupsis: revelation (Rev. 1:1; 2Thess. 1:7; 1Pet. 1:7, 13). (2) Epiphaneia: appearing (1Tim. 6:14; 2Tim. 4:1, 8; Tit. 2:13; 2Thess. 2:8). Use also of the first coming (2Tim. 1:10). (3) Phaneros: to shine, be manifest, be seen (1Jn. 2:28; 3:2; 1Pet. 5:4; Col. 3:4). (4) Parousia: personal appearance, presence. The word is generally translated “coming,” hence it is used for both the rapture (coming in the air for the saints) and the second coming (coming from heaven with the saints to earth). The word is used of the rapture in 1 Corinthians 15:20-23; 1 Thessalonians 2:19; 3:13; 4:15; 5:23; 2 Thessalonians 2:1; James 5:7-8 and 1 John 2:28. It is used of the second coming in Matthew 24:3, 27, 37, 39; 2 Thessalonians 2:8 and 2 Peter 1:16; 3:4.

‘Confirm you unto the end’ – As the testimony or the gospel of Christ was confirmed among you to attract you to Christ, so He will confirm you through this testimony until the end, that you may be blameless at His coming.

‘Blameless’ [Greek: anengkletos] not accused, unimpeachable.

‘Day of our Lord Jesus Christ’ – In the day when Christ comes to receive saints unto Himself (1Cor. 1:8; 5:5; 2Cor. 1:14; Php. 1:6, 10; 2:16).

‘God is faithful’ – this was a favourite expression among Jews of the integrity of God (1Cor. 1:9; 10:13; 2Cor. 1:18; 1Thess. 5:24; 2Thess. 3:3).

‘Fellowship’ [Greek: koinonia] the communion, fellowship, and participation with Christ in His sufferings, in the gifts and graces of the Holy Spirit in this life, and in the glories of the kingdom in the next life (2Cor. 13:14; 1Jn. 1:3; Php. 3:10).


Romans 16:25-27 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen. Written to the Romans from Corinthus, and sent by Phebe servant of the church at Cenchrea. 

‘Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began.’ This is certainly a second postscript. Some think that Paul added it when he got to Rome and after he had written Ephesians concerning the mystery that had been kept secret from ages past (Eph. 3:1-21). It is in all the MSS but two or three. Some have it after Romans 14:23 and others have it here. Some have it in both places, but there is no question of its genuineness and authenticity.

‘Mystery’ [Greek: musterion] something previously hidden, but now fully revealed. In the New Testament it always means any doctrine that has not, in former times, been made fully known to people. Eighteen mysteries are mentioned in Scripture: The kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of God (Matt. 13:11; Mark 4:11; Luke 8:10); Israel’s blindness (Rom. 11:25); salvation in Christ (Rom. 16:25); the wisdom of God (1Cor. 2:7); the doctrines of God (1Cor. 4:1; Col. 2:2; 1Tim. 3:16); the gospel (Eph. 6:19); the gift of knowledge (1Cor. 13:2); speaking in tongues (1Cor. 14:2); the rapture (1Cor. 15:23, 51-58; John 14:1-3; 1Thess. 4:13-16); God’s will (Eph. 1:9); the body of Christ (Eph. 3:1-9; 5:32); Christ in people (Col. 1:26-27); the doctrines of Christ (Col. 4:3); the spirit of lawlessness (2Thess. 2:7); the faith of the gospel (1Tim. 3:9); the seven candlesticks (Rev. 1:20); God’s delay in casting out of satan (Rev. 10:7; 12:7-17); mystery Babylon (Rev. 17:5, 7).

‘Scriptures of the prophets’ the writings of the prophets – the Old Testament – are part of the Scriptures.

‘Made known to all nations for the obedience of faith.’ The obedience to the faith among all nations are made known through the: the Gospel, the preaching of Jesus Christ and the revelation of the mystery (16:25); scriptures of the prophets and the commandment of God (16:26). The gospel preaching and revelation by the Scriptures must be known and believed in order for the soul to be saved (Mark 16:15-16; John 3:16-20; Rom. 1:16; 10:9-10; Eph. 2:8-9; 1Jn. 1:9; Heb. 11:6).

Glory through Jesus Christ

Romans 15:17-21 I have therefore whereof I may glory through Jesus Christ in those things which pertain to God. For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ has not wrought by me, to make the Gentiles obedient, by word and deed, Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ. Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man’s foundation: But as it is written, To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see: and they that have not heard shall understand. 

‘Through Jesus Christ in those things which pertain to God’ – ten things through Jesus Christ: “Therefore being justified by faith, we have PEACE with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” (5:1); “Likewise reckon you also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but ALIVE unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (6:11); “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is ETERNAL LIFE through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (6:23); “I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind, I myself SERVE THE LAW OF GOD…” [thanks for salvation] (7:25); “I have therefore whereof I MAY GLORY [boasting] through Jesus Christ in those things which pertain to God.” (15:17); “But thanks be to God, which gives us the VICTORY through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1Cor. 15:57); “Wherefore thou are no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then AN HEIR [heirship] of God through Christ.” (Gal. 4:7); “And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall KEEP [keeping] your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Php. 4:7); “…let him do it as of the ability which God gives: that God in all things MAY BE GLORIFIED through Jesus Christ…” (1Pet. 4:11); “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world THROUGH THE KNOWLEDGE [salvation] of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ…” (2Pet. 2:20).

‘Illyricum’ included Montenegro, Albania and Yugoslavia.

‘Have fully preached the gospel of Christ.’ Paul here sums up the New Testament program as both teaching and confirming the gospel (15:18-21). ‘To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see: and they that have not heard shall understand’ this is the 19th and last prophecy in Romans (15:21; Isa. 52:15). Those who did not know of Paul or hear the Word from him were the ones to see and understand.

Persuaded of You

Romans 15:14-16 And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that you also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another. Nevertheless, brethren, I have written the more boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God, That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost. 

‘Persuaded of you, my brethren, that you also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.’ Paul persuaded of seven things: that God would fill them with joy; that God would fill with peace; that faith would abound in hope; that they had Spiritual power, that they were filled with goodness (15:14), that they were filled with knowledge and that they were capable of ministering.

This persuasion is no more a definite law or a guarantee that such is true of every Christian than that of Romans 8:38-39. Both passages reveal possibilities for all Christians which should be normal in every life, but some are not so persuaded as Paul was.

‘Boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God.’ I have written freely to you in view of my apostolic office to the Gentiles. I am commissioned by Jesus Christ to minister to you Gentiles the gospel of God – that your consecration may be acceptable to God, being sanctified by the Holy Spirit (15:15-16).

‘Sanctified’ [Greek: hagiazo] to hallow (Matt. 6:9; Luke 11:2); be holy (Rev. 22:11); and sanctify or consecrate – set apart for a sacred purpose (Matt. 23:17, 19; John 10:36; 17:17, 19; Acts 20:32; 26:18; Rom. 15:16; 1Cor. 1:2; 6:11; 7:14; Eph. 5:26; 1Thess. 5:23; 1Tim. 4:5; 2Tim. 2:21; Heb. 2:11; 9:13; 10:10, 14, 29; 13:12; 1Pet. 3:15; Jude 1:1). The Greek word for “sanctify” is hagiazo, meaning to separate from a profane to a sacred use; to consecrate self wholly to God and His service. The primary meaning is separation, not making holy. It means to make holy only when the person or thing sanctified needs to be cleansed from sin or defilement in order to be fit to be separated unto God and His service. Material things such as a day (Gen. 2:3); the tabernacle (Ex. 29:43-44); clothes (Lev. 8:30); houses (Lev. 27:9-29); or the temple (2Chron. 7:16-20) must be cleansed from all defilement in order to be fit to be presented to God for His holy uses. God’s name (Ezek. 36:23); God (1Pet. 3:15); Christ (John 10:36; 17:19); or the already cleansed disciples (John 13:10; 15:3; 17:2, 6, 14, 16) need not be cleansed from sin. To sanctify means to set apart from other uses to God’s particular use, not to cleanse from sin or rid of carnal nature (sometimes called “the old man” or Adamic nature). Even Christ, the Sinless One, was sanctified (John 10:36; 17:19). Where humans are concerned one begins to be sanctified when he begins to consecrate his life to God, and the process is continued as he continues in his dedication (1Cor. 1:30; 6:11; 2Thess. 2:13; 1Jn. 1:7-9; 3:8-10; 5:1-4, 18).

Sin is not necessarily involved in sanctification, because the word means setting apart. God has sanctified both people and material things, and even immaterial things.

According to the Grace

Romans 12:3-8 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God has dealt to every man the measure of faith. For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; Or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teaches, on teaching; Or he that exhorts, on exhortation: he that gives, let him do it with simplicity; he that rules, with diligence; he that shows mercy, with cheerfulness. 

‘Unto me’ – this refers to Paul’s apostleship by the grace of God (1:5; Eph. 3:8).

‘Not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God has dealt to every man the measure of faith] Not to be conceited and self-important, but to take a sane view of himself.

‘So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another’ Paul here compares the body of Christ to a human body (1Cor. 12:12-28).

‘Gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us’ – this refers to the spiritual gifts of 1Cor. 12:4-11, 27-31. They are given and to be exercised according to grace and the measures of faith (12:3, 6).

‘Whether prophecy’ – this gift is that of speaking to people to edify and exhort them (1Cor. 14:3-6).

‘Ministry’ [Greek: diakonia] service rendered by a diakonos, a deacon, one who executes the command of another. It is used of: Servants of kings (Matt. 22:13); servants at feasts (John 2:5, 9); ministers or officers of civil governments (13:4); men and women servants of congregations (Matt. 23:11; Mark 9:35; Rom. 16:1); deacons or business elders and distinct from bishops or teaching elders (Php. 1:1; 1Tim. 3:10-13; Acts 6:1-7); Jesus Christ as a minister to the Jews in the work of preaching, teaching and healing (15:8; Gal. 2:17; Matt. 4:23-24; 9:35; Acts 10:38); ministers of congregations (Matt. 20:26; Mark 10:43); teachers of the gospel (1Cor. 3:5; 2Cor. 3:6; Eph. 3:7; Col. 1:23, 25; 1Thess. 3:2); ministers of Christ and of God (John 12:26; 2Cor. 6:4-10; 11:23; Eph. 6:21; Col. 1:7; 4:7; 1Tim. 4:6); also used of ministers of satan to counterfeit the work of true ministers and to deceive (2Cor. 11:15)

‘Teaches’ – the teacher [Greek: didaskalos] was an instructor of others (Acts 13:1).

‘Exhorts’ [Greek: parakaleo] to call aside; make an appeal to by way of exhortation, entreaty, comfort, or instruction (Acts 4:36; Heb. 10:25). ‘Gives’ refers to the rich that give help to others (2Cor. 8:2; 9:11-13). ‘Simplicity’ [Greek: haplotes] Do not give with outward show or pride. (2Cor. 1:12; 8:2; 9:11, 13; 11:3; Eph. 6:5; Col. 3:22).

‘Rules’ [Greek: proistemi] to stand before, that is, (in rank) to preside, or (by implication) to practise: – maintain, be over, rule. ‘He that shows mercy, with cheerfulness’ – those who work with the sick and work for charity must be cheerful and sympathetic.

The Truth in Christ

Romans 9:1-5 I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost, That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart. For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh: Who are Israelites; to whom pertained the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. 

‘Say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost’ In Romans 1-8, we see prove that God’s grace extends to both Jews and Gentiles who believe. Romans 9-11 deals with the Jews and shows why they were rejected and cut off by God and why and how the Gentiles were called and elected to partake of gospel benefits.

‘Heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart’ sorrow and continued pangs.

‘I could wish that myself were accursed’ – this merely shows Paul’s willingness to be cursed, not it is necessity (John 15:13).

‘Adoption’ the Jews was all adopted by God (Ex. 4:22; Deut. 14:1; 32:18; Jer. 31:9; Hos. 11:1). In Exodus 4:22 we see that God calls the nation of Israel His son and firstborn as contrasted with the firstborn of Egypt. Pharaoh would understand this fully, for he himself was called son of Ra, or beloved of his god. God was telling him that He loved Israel as he himself loved his firstborn (Ex. 4:23). The whole life of the Israelites was regulated by this principle: You are the children of the Lord your God (Deut. 14:1; Ps. 87:6). God says He birthed Israel (Deut. 32:18). Isaac is spoken of as being born “after the Spirit” (Gal. 4:28-29). They were children of God by the new birth in the same sense that men are born again today, which is by adoption (8:15; 9:4; Gal. 4:5; Eph. 1:4).

‘Glory’ this refers to the Divine Presence (Ex. 16:7, 10; 24:16-17; 40:34-35; Lev. 9:6, 9:23; Num. 14:10, 21; 16:19, 42; Deut. 5:24; 1Sam. 4:21-22; 1Kin. 8:11; etc.).

‘Covenants’ the ones made with Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, David, and others. ‘Law’ – the law was only for Jews (2:12-16; 3:2; 9:4; Deut. 5:3; 29:14). ‘Service of God’ – the rituals of the law (Leviticus 1-12; etc.). ‘The promises’ of Canaan, Messiah, Kingdom, etc.

‘Fathers’ Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and 12 sons.

‘Concerning the flesh Christ came’ – according to human nature (9:3-5; 1Tim. 3:15; Heb. 2:7-18; 1Jn. 4:2) Jesus came in the flesh (Matt. 1:1, 6).

‘Came, who is over all’ – a true Jew is not the one who is circumcised in the flesh, neither is true circumcision in the flesh. A true Jew is one that has inward circumcision of the heart and in the spirit and has more than an outward cutting in the flesh and a profession of truth. This does not teach that every Christian is a Jew, but to be a true Jew one must be of the seed of Abraham, and have circumcision of the heart, and be a child of the promise (2:28-29; 9:6-7).

I am Persuaded

Romans 8:36-39 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. 

‘As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter’ the first Old Testament prophecy fulfilled in Romans from Psalm 44:22.

Eight facts about Christian suffering are given: Suffering is not strange or unusual for Christians (1Pet. 4:12; 2Tim. 3:12). One should rejoice when a partaker of the sufferings of Christ (1Pet. 4:13; Matt. 5:10). The greater the suffering the greater the joy and glory (8:17-18; 1Pet. 4:13). Besides the greater glory to come the Christian has the Holy Spirit upon him now to enable him to endure (8:26-27; 1Pet. 4:14;). Christian sufferings glorify God (8:17-18; 1Pet. 4:14). It is an honor, not a shame, to suffer as a Christian (1Pet. 4:16). Though sufferings begin with Christians, they end in an eternal weight of damnation to the ungodly (1Pet. 4:17-18). Sufferings should be borne by Christians, in patience as in the will of God, realizing that God is always faithful to His own in their sufferings (1Pet. 4:19; 1Cor. 10:13).

Ten rewards for Christian suffering are noted: Greater glory in heaven (2Cor. 4:17); eternal consolation (2Cor. 1:7); making Jesus known (2Cor. 4:11); life to others (2Cor. 4:12); making grace manifest (2Cor. 4:15); guarantee of judgment (2Thess. 1:5); reign with Christ (2Tim. 2:12); the Holy Spirit upon us (1Pet. 4:14); glory to God (1Pet. 4:16) and great joy (1Pet. 4:13-14).

Christian suffering does not consist of: Suffering for murder, as a thief, or for being an evildoer or a busybody (1Pet. 4:15); or for suffering for any crime listed in Romans 1:18-32; 1Corinthians 6:9-11 and Galatians 5:19-21

Christian suffering does consist of: Persecution for righteousness (Matt. 5:10; 13:21; Mark 10:30; John 15:20); reviling and slander (Matt. 5:11-12; 10:25; Acts 13:45; 1Pet. 4:4); false accusations (Matt. 10:17-20); scourgings for Christ (Matt. 10:17); rejection by people (Matt. 10:14); hatred by the world (Matt. 10:22; John 15:18-21); hatred by relatives (Matt. 10:21-36); martyrdoms (Matt. 10:28; Acts 7:58); temptations (Luke 8:13; Jas. 1:2-16); shame for His name (Acts 5:41); imprisonments (Acts 4:3; 5:18; 12:4); tribulations (Acts 14:22; 2Thess. 1:4); stonings (Acts 14:19; 2Cor. 11:25); beatings (Acts 16:23; 2Cor. 11:24-25); being a spectacle to people (1Cor. 4:9); misunderstanding, necessities, defamation, and despisings (1Cor. 4:10-13); trouble, affliction, distresses, tumults, labours, watchings, fastings, and evil reports (2Cor. 6:8-10; 11:26-28); reproaches (Heb. 13:13; 1Pet. 4:14); trials (1Pet. 1:7; 4:12); satanic opposition (Eph. 4:27; 6:12); groaning and travailing because of the curse (8:17-26).

‘For I am persuaded’ in Romans 8:38-39 Paul explains that, in view of his doctrines before stated, he is personally persuaded that nothing will be able to separate him from the love he has for God and Christ.

‘Principalities’ the satanic powers of Ephesians 2:2 and 6:12.

‘Creature’ any thing in creation.

‘Separate us from the love of God’ one who lives and walks in the Spirit, will not be separated by any of the 17 things of Romans 8:35-39 any more than he will be moved to commit the 17 things of Galatians 5:19-21. The secret of victory and absolute assurance for the believer is to walk as taught in Romans 6:14-23; 8:1-13 and Galatians 5:16-26.

Joint-heirs with Christ

Romans 8:15-17 For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. 

‘Spirit of bondage again to fear’ Spirit and nature of satan (Eph. 2:2; John 8:44; 1Jn. 3:8; Heb. 2:14-15). You have not received a spirit of slavery to relapse again into fear and terror, but you have received the Spirit of freedom and sonship to break every bondage.

‘The Spirit of adoption’ Spirit and nature of God (5:5; 8:2, 9, 11, 15-16; Gal. 4:4-6). ‘Adoption’ – Sonship (8:15, 23; 9:4; Gal. 4:5; Eph. 1:5). Adopted sons share the same rights and privileges as one born in the family. Because of sonship, we receive the fullest evidence of it by the Spirit (8:14-16; Gal. 4:6-7).

‘Abba, Father’ [Aramaic for Father] only used by Jews where both parents of a real son were Jews, or of a proselyte of the covenant. Not used when the mother was a slave (Gal. 4:24). This indicates the true relationship of Jesus to God.

‘Itself’ – Himself, for He is a person.  It is of the greatest importance that we believe in the divinity of the Holy Spirit, and also His personality. It is only when we learn these truths that we can give Him the honour, worship, adoration, and personal respect that we give to God. We must learn that the Holy Spirit is not a mere power that we need to get hold of and use, but we must learn that He is a person who is infinitely wise, holy, just, and gracious, and who seeks to get hold of us and use us. We must become acquainted with Him as a person and not merely as an influence or power derived from a person. The following points prove that He is a real person: Personal names are given to Him; personal pronouns are used of Him (John 14:16-26; 15:26; 16:7-15); personal attributes are ascribed to Him; personal works are ascribed to Him; personal references are made concerning Him; personal treatment is ascribed to Him. He can be resisted (Acts 7:51); tempted (Acts 5:9); grieved (Eph. 4:30); lied to (Acts 5:3-4); blasphemed (Matt. 12:31-32); insulted (Matt. 12:31-32; Heb. 6:4-6; 10:26-29); quenched (1Thess. 5:19); vexed (Ps. 78:40; Isa. 63:10); quieted (Zech 6:8); fellowshipped (Php. 2:1); and otherwise mistreated or obeyed like any other person. In the Holy Spirit’s relationship to men He is spoken of as searching hearts, regenerating, sanctifying, helping, convicting, teaching, quickening, guiding, witnessing, interceding, revealing, working, hearing, speaking, helping, communing, appointing, commanding, counselling, comforting, inspiring, assuring, calling, hearing, and in many ways acting as a real person.

‘Our spirit’ – this is our mind or understanding (1Cor. 2:11).

‘And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ …’ this is the 1st New Testament prophecy in Romans (8:17-250). Not only children, but also heirs (8:17; Eph. 3:6; Heb. 11:9; 1Pet. 3:7).

‘If so be that we suffer with him’ this refers to our sufferings for His sake, as all are called to endure (8:17-18; Col. 1:24; 2Tim. 2:12; 3:12).

‘Glorified together’ all will be glorified together with Christ (Col. 3:4; 1Thess. 4:13-17; 1Cor. 15:23, 51-58).

Baptized into His Death

Romans 6:3-7 Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin.

‘Baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death’ baptism into Christ, not water (6:3-5; 1Cor. 12:13; Gal. 3:28-29; Eph. 4:5; Col. 2:11-13). Baptism “into Christ” is essential to salvation – into Christ or into His body at repentance and the new birth. It is called “one baptism” (Ephes. 4:5), because it is the only baptism that saves the soul and brings into the body of Christ. The other two baptisms that is important and necessary for all Christians are: Baptism into water that is essential to obedience and to a “good conscience” after one is saved and in Christ (Matt. 28:19; 1 Pet. 3:21; 1 John 5:6-10); and baptism into the Holy Spirit that is essential to receiving power for service (Luke 24:49; John 14:12-17; Acts 1:4-8).

‘Buried with him by baptism’ – baptism is by burial, regardless of what kind of baptism it is.

‘That like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life’ as Christ died completely, so those who profess Christianity must be completely separated and saved from sin having no more connection with it than a dead body has with the departed spirit (6:3-5; Jas. 2:26).

‘Glory of the Father’ glorious power. Just as it took the mighty power of God to raise Christ, it will take this to bring alive the dead soul of sinners and make them new creatures in a moment (2Cor. 5:17-18; Eph. 4:22-24).

‘Planted together in’ [Greek: sumphutos] planted together with; plainly proving a burial of His literal body and burial in baptism. No planting or burial is possible by a sprinkling or pouring (cp. John 12:24; 1Cor. 15:36).

‘Old man’ this is none other than satan himself, “the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience” (Eph. 2:2; 4:22-24; Col. 3:9; John 8:44; 1Jn. 3:8; 5:18). To call this the old Adamic nature is erroneous, for nothing happened to Adam other than his submission to satan and a moral fall. Adam had the same body, soul, and spirit after the fall as before. The only difference was a change of masters. There is no such thing as an old nature other than man’s own body, soul, and spirit dominated by satanic powers, as in the above passages.

‘Crucified with him’ Being “dead to sin” (6:2), “crucified with him” (6:6), “dead with Christ” (6:8), “dead to the law” (7:4), and like expressions are common among Hebrews, Greeks, Latins, and other people. To die to a thing or person is to have nothing to do with and to be totally separated from it or him. To live to a person or a thing is to be wholly given up to and to have an intimate connection with that person or thing. Having the old man crucified means that one has no further dealings with him. In fact, 1John 5:18 says the wicked one does not touch the one who is born again. ‘Destroyed’ [Greek: katargeo] annulled. ‘Dead is freed from sin’ being dead to sin does not mean that the person or sin is dead. Both are still in existence the same as ever, but to each other, they are as being non-existent.