Marriage Metaphor and the Law
In the first paragraph of Romans 7 Paul helps us to understand what happens in salvation by using a metaphor of marriage. Here is what he writes: “Or do you not know, brethren (for I speak to those who know the law), that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives? 2 For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of herhusband. 3 So then if, while her husband lives, she marries another man, she will be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from that law, so that she is no adulteress, though she has married another man. 4 Therefore, my brethren, you also have become dead to the law through the body of Christ, that you may be married to another—to Him who was raised from the dead, that we should bear fruit to God. 5 For when we were in the flesh, the sinful passions which were aroused by the law were at work in our members to bear fruit to death. 6 But now we have been delivered from the law, having died to what we were held by, so that we should serve in the newness of the Spirit and not in the oldness of the letter.” I hope the metaphor is pretty self-explanatory. As a wife is no longer bound to a dead husband, so a believer is no longer bound to a “dead” law. The metaphor isn’t perfect, however. A wife couldn’t marry a second husband and proclaim the first one dead. But when a believer is “married” to Jesus Christ, the law becomes dead to him or her. The union with Jesus has freed us from the law and bondage to it. We are now free to live in Christ and bear fruit to Him. What an amazing truth! I hope that you are living in the freedom that Jesus Christ affords you.