There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (Romans 8:1 KJV)
When the KJV translators read Romans 8:1, they understood what Paul meant but feared the consequences. They added the second part, “who walk not after the flesh…”, a portion copied from verse 4, not present in the verse 1 portion of the original Greek text. What frightened these translators, and which continues to frighten many pastors and leaders today?
To condemn someone is to find them guilty of breaking the law and then commit them to the punishment due to those who break that law. The condemnation of sin is death—eternal, spiritual, and physical.
In the Old Covenant, God often immediately judged the people’s sins with death. They did not have “no condemnation”, the grace in Christ we have today. In the New Testament, Christ’s death has brought the blessing David saw but did not fully enjoy: “just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works: “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.” (Romans 4:6–8 ESV).
No condemnation means God does not condemn us for our sins—He does not see us as guilty of death and punishes us with death. If God does, whole congregations, from pastors to Christians, could be wiped out on a Sunday morning.
As expected, some people abuse this verse and use it as a license to sin. I have addressed this issue in a previous Deshen Daily. However, we must not be afraid of the extravagance of God’s grace and try to protect it as the KJV translators did. If grace is fully understood and received, it will never produce sin. Instead, it will set people on fire for Jesus.
What is “no condemnation “ in your own words? How does this relate to Romans 4:6-8?
Apply the Word
It is impossible to find rest in Christ until the truth mentioned above is settled in our hearts. If you are always afraid for your salvation, struggle with self-condemnation, or feel guilty as a Christian while living a holy life, then you need the truth to be grounded in your heart.
Ask the Father to help you receive His grace and allow that grace to transform you.
- The Truth That Frightened the King James Translators
- The Litmus Test of Grace
- The Ongoing Battle of Law Versus Grace
- The Danger of Self-Condemnation
- Neither do I Condemn Thee
- What is a Devotional?
- View All Deshen Daily Devotionals
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