Romans 6:1- 8:17 – A Commentary

Romans 6:1 – “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?”

To “continue in sin” means to continue to break Almighty Yahweh’s holy laws. One of the Biblical definitions of sin is found in 1 John 3:4;

“Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” 1 John 3:4

Having that understanding, let’s substitute the actual definition of sin in place of the word “sin” in Romans 6:1; 

“What shall we say then? Shall we continue to transgress the law, that grace may abound?” Romans 6:1

Of course, the answer would be no. We would be tempting Yahweh by expecting His grace to abound even though we knowingly continue to sin by transgressing His laws.

Romans 6:2 – “Elohim forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?”

Paul responds to the question in verse 1 by saying in effect, “May Yahweh never allow it!” How shall we who are dead to transgressing the law continue to live by transgressing the law? 

Paul then explains the believer’s death to sin in the next nine verses. 

Romans 6:3-5 – “Know you not, that so many of us as were baptized into Yeshua Messiah were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Messiah 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:” 

Baptism is an outward sign of our being buried with Messiah Yeshua. Total immersion under water is like being buried under ground. Coming up out of the water is like coming up out of the ground at our resurrection to live a new life. 

Romans 6:6-7 – “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.”

We do not die to sin through baptism. We die to sin by figuratively being crucified with Messiah upon our receiving him as our Savior. At that moment, we are freed from sin’s hold on us. At one time, we served sin (breaking the law), but now we serve obedience (vs.16). 

Romans 6:8-11 – “Now if we be dead with Messiah, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Messiah being raised from the dead dies no more; death has no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he lives, he lives unto Elohim. Likewise reckon you also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto Elohim through Yeshua Messiah our Master.” 

Just as Messiah can no longer die because he was raised from the dead ad given eternal life, so the believer should consider himself to have a new life to live unto Yahweh. 

Romans 6:12-13 – ” Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield you your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto Elohim, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto Elohim. ” 

As unbelievers, sin was our king and we obeyed it. We yielded the various parts of our body to sin and sin used them to commit all sorts of unrighteous acts. As believers, however, we are to yield ourselves to Yahweh as King. We are to allow Him to use the various parts of our bodies to do righteous deeds.

Romans 6:14 – “For sin shall not have dominion over you: for you are not under the law, but under grace.”

Sin shall not be your ruler because you are no longer under the condemnation of the law. When a person transgresses Yahweh’s law (sins) he is immediately condemned to death, “for the wages (or payment) for sin is death” (vs.23). Since we all have sinned (Rom.3:23), then all are under the condemnation that results from breaking the law. 

Messiah Yeshua, however, paid the death penalty for us through Yahweh’s grace (undeserved kindness / mercy) thereby removing the death penalty and condemnation. 

Picture a man on death row awaiting his execution. He has no joy, no hope, no freedom. Every day the burden of his crime against U.S. law weighs heavily upon him. Then one day the President of the U.S. grants him a full pardon. Immediately his burden is lifted, his joy abounds, his hope is renewed and he is free. He was saved by the grace of the President. His freedom was not procured by destroying all the laws of the U.S., but by removing the penalty of breaking those laws. The law still remains. He now has a choice; does he respond to that grace by obeying the laws out of love and gratitude or does he continue to transgress the law and trample on the grace extended to him?

The true believer will not trample on Yahweh’s grace, but will respond positively to it by living a life of obedience to those laws he originally broke.

Romans 6:15 – “What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? Elohim forbid.” 

‘What then? Shall we transgress the law because we are not under the law, but under grace? Elohim forbid.’ Just the opposite. We obey the law out of love and gratitude towards Yahweh for delivering us out of its grip.

Romans 6:16 – “Know you not, that to whom you yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants you are to whom you obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?”

If we obey sin by transgressing Yahweh’s laws, then we become servants of sin. If we obey Yahweh’s laws, then we become servants of obedience. 

Romans 6:17 – “But Elohim be thanked, that you were the servants of sin, but you have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you.” 

What form of doctrine did the Roman believers obey?

“For not the hearers of the law are just before Elohim, but the doers of the law shall be justified.” Romans 2:13 

“Do we then make void the law through faith? [Yahweh] forbid. Yea, we establish the law.” Romans 3:31

They began to obey the law of Yahweh because they knew that breaking His law was what landed them on death row in the first place.

Romans 6:18 – “Being then made free from sin, you became the servants of righteousness.”

We become servants of righteousness through obedience (vs.16).

Romans 6:19-21 – “I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as you have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness. For when you were the servants of sin, you were free from righteousness. What fruit had you then in those things whereof you are now ashamed? for the end of those things is death. “

The word “iniquity” in the KJV means “transgression of the law” or “lawlessness”. At one time we were breaking Yahweh’s laws continually, but now we are called to be servants of obedience which leads to holiness. As servants of sin (by continually transgressing Yahweh’s laws) we were far from righteousness. We bore no fruit in our lives, only death.

Romans 6:22-23 – “But now being made free from sin, and become servants to Elohim, you have your fruit unto holiness, and the end everlasting life. For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of Elohim is eternal life through Yeshua Messiah our Master.” 

But now, having been pardoned from our death penalty, we become servants of Yahweh (we obey Him as our King). That obedience to His will brings forth the fruit of holiness and everlasting life. That life is a gift through our Master and Savior, Yeshua the Messiah.

Romans 7:1-4 – “Know you not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives? For the woman which has an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he lives; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband lives, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man. Wherefore, my brethren, you also are become dead to the law by the body of Messiah; that you should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto Elohim.”

The law “rules” over a man all his life. Once he dies, the law can no longer rule over him. Paul then gives the example of the marriage relationship to show how that works. His conclusion is that believers have died to the law and are therefore, no longer bound to it or ruled over by it. Instead, we are ruled over by Messiah. 

The question must now be asked, “To what law have we died?” Paul answers that in the ensuing verses. 

Romans 7:5 – “For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.” 

“When we were in the flesh” means “before Yeshua became our Savior and we received the Holy Spirit.” At that time, our inability to obey the law of Yahweh brought forth death. 

Romans 7:6 – “But now we are delivered from the law, being dead to that wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.”

Now that we have died in Messiah, we should serve with a new Spirit and not as we did in the past (trying to obey the letter without the Spirit in us). 

Romans 7:7 – “What shall we say then? Is the law sin? Elohim forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.” 

This is the main function of the law; to point out sin. We have no way of knowing what sin is except the law telling us. If we remove any commandment from the law, then we are free to do what was once forbidden. For example, if we remove, “Thou shalt not covet” from the law, then we are free to covet all we want. Chaos reigns in a society where there is no law. 

Of course, in the above example, it was sin to covet prior to the command being removed. However, after its removal it is still sin. Its just that the coveter now has no knowledge of his sin. Christianity has removed the Sabbath command and speak of their freedom from it, but in reality, the Sabbath remains as does their sin against it. They just don’t have a knowledge of their sin and won’t until they see the immutable Sabbath in the law.

Romans 7:8-11 – “But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead. For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death. For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me.”

Paul said he was alive without the law once. It is not clear when that was. He may be speaking about his life prior to reaching the age of accountability or he may be speaking figuratively about a time before the giving of the law at Sinai. Either way, he died spiritually by breaking it. 

Romans 7:12 – “Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.” 

The law serves a beneficial purpose for man. It is good for us (Deut.10:12,13). Not only does it control evil doers from wreaking havoc upon society, but it drives us to the Savior as Paul taught in Galatians 3. 

Romans 7:13 – “Was then that which is good made death unto me? Elohim forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.” 

The law does not kill. Sin or transgressing the law kills.

Romans 7:14 – “For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin.”

Those who wish to do away with the law have it backwards. They believe they are so spiritual, but the law is carnal. Paul says, “I am carnal.” He now begins to discourse as though he were a man living in the flesh. I do not believe this is Paul’s personal experience as a believer.

Romans 7:15-22 – “For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwells no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwells in me. I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of Elohim after the inward man:” 

Prior to receiving Messiah as our Savior, the carnal, fleshly man has this inner turmoil. He knows what Yahweh has commanded and his desire is to obey, but his flesh is a stumbling block to obedience. 

Romans 7:23 – “But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.”

“Another law” – The first law is the law of Yahweh in verse 22. A second law (the law that we are freed from in verse 4) is the law of sin. It is the law of sin that rules over a person all his life and keeps that person in bondage (vs.2) until Messiah comes to free them. The law of sin is at war with the law of Paul’s mind (the law of Yahweh).

Romans 7:24,25 – ” O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? I thank Elohim through Yeshua Messiah our Master. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of Elohim; but with the flesh the law of sin.” 

The master Yeshua is the only one that can deliver the carnal man who lives in the flesh. The latter part of verse 25 are the words of carnal man. This is still not Paul’s personal experience. 

Romans 8:1 – “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Messiah Yeshua, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.” 

Now Paul begins to relate the believer’s experience. The believer who walks not after the flesh does not serve the law of sin as does the carnal man. Instead, the Spirit empowers him to obey.

Romans 8:2 – “For the law of the Spirit of life in Messiah Yeshua has made me free from the law of sin and death.” 

The bondage is broken. We are free from the law (of sin and death, not the law of Yahweh).

Romans 8:3-5 – “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, Elohim sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.”

The law is weak to bring about obedience when it is approached carnally without the Spirit. When approached with the Spirit, we can fulfill “the righteousness of the law”. Yes, believe it or not, there is a righteousness inherent in the law that only walking in the Spirit can fulfill. 

Romans 8:6-7 – “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against Elohim: for it is not subject to the law of Elohim, neither indeed can be.”

“Death” results because the carnal, fleshly minded man hates Yahweh and cannot possibly submit to His laws. On the other hand, the man who walks in the Spirit loves Yahweh and can easily obey His laws as a fruit of that love. This results in life and peace. 

Romans 8:8-10 – “So then they that are in the flesh cannot please Elohim. But you are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of Elohim dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Messiah, he is none of his. And if Messiah be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.”

All believers that have received the Holy Spirit are no longer in the flesh. This is why the man in Romans 7:14-25 is not the Apostle Paul. Paul did not live in the flesh. He was filled with the Spirit and walked in the Spirit. 

Romans 8:11 – “But if the Spirit of Him that raised up Yeshua from the dead dwell in you, He that raised up Messiah from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwells in you.”

The Holy Spirit within a person is the spark that allows a resurrection from the dead to take place. 

Romans 8:12-13 – “Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if you live after the flesh, you shall die: but if you through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, you shall live.” 

We don’t owe our flesh anything that might obligate us to serve the flesh. If we serve our flesh (cater to our flesh) we will die an eternal death. Instead, we must put to death the evil deeds of our flesh (bodies) that we may live. Those evil deeds are enumerated in several New Testament passages, most notably Galatians 5:19-21.

Romans 8:14-17 – “For as many as are led by the Spirit of Elohim, they are the sons of Elohim. For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you 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 Elohim: And if children, then heirs; heirs of Elohim, and joint-heirs with Messiah; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” 

Once we receive Messiah Yeshua as Savior and receive the Holy Spirit of Yahweh, we become adopted children of Yahweh. As such we become heirs of Yahweh and will share in the inheritance that Messiah Yeshua received. Our choice to follow Messiah Yeshua will result in suffering for his sake. Through much tribulation we must enter the Kingdom of Yahweh (Acts 14:22). 

I hope this commentary has been a blessing to you. If you seek further information on how the believer relates to the law, please read the study entitled, “The Law and the New Covenant Believer”.


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