If Christ has overcome, and sin has been defeated what explains Paul lament of Romans 7:15, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” Even though saved, Paul vividly depicts the struggle the believer is in.
Paul’s confession comes as a shock to the Christian, for we are taught that Christ defeated sin at the cross. That is indeed true, but we must remember the old era has not been eradicated. The old era of a sin dominated world still exists and believers can still be influenced by the power of sin. Therefore, the battle still goes on, and we must wait for the day we are delivered from the frustration that Paul so bravely admitted to. It is a matter of an “Already/Not yet” tension that we believers must live in. We are “Already” justified and reconciled, indwelt by the Sprit, but we are “Not yet” glorified and resurrect, and thus still subject to sin’s lure.
What is Paul point? He is saying that sin has been defeated, but its’ power has not been entirely done away with, and the Christian must still be careful of its attraction. Sin and death are still powerful forces with which the believer must deal with. Paul has gone out of his way, even to the point of damaging his own reputation, to depict the seriousness of the struggle that we still have before us.
Set your mind on Christ,