Life in the Spirit
1So now, those who are in Christ Jesus are not judged# Some Greek copies continue, “guilty, those who do not live in the power of their sinful selves, but in the power of the Spirit.” guilty. 2I am not judged guilty because in Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit that brings life made me free. It made me free from the law that brings sin and death. 3The law was without power, because the law was made weak by our sinful selves. But God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son to earth with the same human life that others use for sin. He sent his Son to be an offering to pay for sin. So God used a human life to destroy sin. 4He did this so that we could be right as the law said we must be. Now we do not live following our sinful selves, but we live following the Spirit.
5Those who live following their sinful selves think only about things that their sinful selves want. But those who live following the Spirit are thinking about the things that the Spirit wants them to do. 6If a person’s thinking is controlled by his sinful self, then there is death. But if his thinking is controlled by the Spirit, then there is life and peace. 7This is true because if a person’s thinking is controlled by his sinful self, then he is against God. He refuses to obey God’s law. And really he is not able to obey God’s law. 8Those people who are ruled by their sinful selves cannot please God.
9But you are not ruled by your sinful selves. You are ruled by the Spirit, if that Spirit of God really lives in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, then he does not belong to Christ. 10Your body will always be dead because of sin. But if Christ is in you, then the Spirit gives you life, because Christ made you right with God. 11God raised Jesus from death. And if God’s Spirit is living in you, then he will also give life to your bodies that die. God is the One who raised Christ from death. And he will give life through# Some Greek copies read “because of.” his Spirit that lives in you.
12So, my brothers, we must not be ruled by our sinful selves. We must not live the way our sinful selves want. 13If you use your lives to do the wrong things your sinful selves want, then you will die spiritually. But if you use the Spirit’s help to stop doing the wrong things you do with your body, then you will have true life.
14The true children of God are those who let God’s Spirit lead them. 15The Spirit that we received is not a spirit that makes us slaves again to fear. The Spirit that we have makes us children of God. And with that Spirit we say, “Father, dear Father.”# Literally, “Abba, Father.” Jewish children called their fathers “Abba.” 16And the Spirit himself joins with our spirits to say that we are God’s children. 17If we are God’s children, then we will receive the blessings God has for us. We will receive these things from God together with Christ. But we must suffer as Christ suffered, and then we will have glory as Christ has glory.
Our Future Glory
18We have sufferings now. But the sufferings we have now are nothing compared to the great glory that will be given to us. 19Everything that God made is waiting with excitement for the time when God will show the world who his children are. The whole world wants very much for that to happen. 20Everything that God made was changed to become useless. This was not by its own wish. It happened because God wanted it. But there was this hope: 21that everything God made would be set free from ruin. There was hope that everything God made would have the freedom and glory that belong to God’s children.
22We know that everything God made has been waiting until now in pain, like a woman ready to give birth. 23Not only the world, but we also have been waiting with pain inside us. We have the Spirit as the first part of God’s promise. So we are waiting for God to finish making us his own children. I mean we are waiting for our bodies to be made free. 24We were saved, and we have this hope. If we see what we are waiting for, then that is not really hope. People do not hope for something they already have. 25But we are hoping for something that we do not have yet. We are waiting for it patiently.
26Also, the Spirit helps us. We are very weak, but the Spirit helps us with our weakness. We do not know how to pray as we should. But the Spirit himself speaks to God for us, even begs God for us. The Spirit speaks to God with deep feelings that words cannot explain. 27God can see what is in people’s hearts. And he knows what is in the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit speaks to God for his people in the way that God wants.
28We know that in everything God works for the good of those who love him.# Some Greek copies read “We know that everything works together for good for those who love God.” They are the people God called, because that was his plan. 29God knew them before he made the world. And God chose them to be like his Son. Then Jesus would be the firstborn# Here this probably means that Christ was the first in God’s family to share God’s glory. of many brothers. 30God planned for them to be like his Son. And those he planned to be like his Son, he also called. And those he called, he also made right with him. And those he made right, he also glorified.
God’s Love in Christ Jesus
31So what should we say about this? If God is for us, then no one can defeat us. 32God let even his own Son suffer for us. God gave his Son for us all. So with Jesus, God will surely give us all things. 33Who can accuse the people that God has chosen? No one! God is the One who makes them right. 34Who can say that God’s people are guilty? No one! Christ Jesus died, but that is not all. He was also raised from death. And now he is on God’s right side and is begging God for us. 35Can anything separate us from the love Christ has for us? Can troubles or problems or sufferings? If we have no food or clothes, if we are in danger, or even if death comes—can any of these things separate us from Christ’s love? 36As it is written in the Scriptures:
“For you we are in danger of death all the time.
People think we are worth no more than sheep to be killed.” Psalm 44:22
37But in all these things we have full victory through God who showed his love for us. 38-39Yes, I am sure that nothing can separate us from the love God has for us. Not death, not life, not angels, not ruling spirits, nothing now, nothing in the future, no powers, nothing above us, nothing below us, or anything else in the whole world will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.