Carnal Man: 3) The Battle Within
A Sermon on Romans 7:21-23
So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. (ESV)
Paul asks why is it that he cannot do what he really wants to do. As he deals with this inward struggle, he acknowledges once more that the law is spiritual and that he is carnal and sold under sin. He does what he does not want to do and he fails to do what he wants to do. In this passage from Romans 7:21-23, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones says that Paul is talking about two different types of law: the law of the mind, which is God’s law, and the law of the members of his body. The outward members of our body such as the eyes, feet, and hands have a persistent power and law that controls them. The inward part, such as the mind and spirit, are controlled by God’s law. This conflict wages war within his body! He has a desire to keep God’s law and this shows the struggle of a regenerate man, a believing Christian. Paul also laments that the law controlling the members of his body makes him a wretched man. However, there is hope! In death, Christ will deliver the inward man, the regenerate man, from his earthly body and sin will no longer have an effect on the Christian.
About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.