It is amazing the places in the Bible that provide comfort for God’s people with assured provisions for strength and power to do what is right. The human dilemma is more not a matter of knowing right, but the matter of ability to do right. First, wanting to do right without sufficient power or strength to do it is a common human problem that was expressed by the second greatest Christian to ever live, the Apostle Paul. Paul wrote:
“For the good that I will to do, I do not do; but the evil I will not to do, that I practice. 20 Now if I do what I will not to do, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells in me.
21 I find then a law, that evil is present with me, the one who wills to do good. 22 For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. 23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. 24 O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25 I thank God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (Romans 7:19-24)
This is a law like gravity or inertia, for it is known to always exist. It is not a written law but an immutable law of nature. It is a warfare of good versus evil inside every man, woman, or child just like gravity demands that you are going down if you step off the ledge, or the law that a body at rest tends to remain at rest until acted upon by some external force or in motion tends to remain in motion. As long as we are on planet earth, there is no escape from gravity and inertia. It makes even Paul call out for deliverance from this inward captivity, an addiction to do wrong counter to the will of the mind to know and do right.
“O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?” It almostseems that Paul leaves us dangling without an answer to this question, but in the next verse is the answer: thank God that we are delivered from the body of this death by the power of the Lord Jesus Christ!
Also Paul has previously answered that question in the chapter before of Romans 6:4.
“Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.”
This is not water baptism but what water baptism represents, a death to the life of sin and a resurrection of a newness of life as expressed in Ephesians.
“If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature, old things are passed away, behold all things become new”.
BOTTOM LINE: To be IN CHRIST provides the power and strength to both overcome evil and to do what is right.
And in conclusion to Romans, Paul mentions that POWER to do what is right provided by God through the Holy Spirit:
“Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began, But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith: To God only wise, be glory through Jesus Christ for ever. Amen.” (Romans 16:25-27)
In closing and lest we leave this subject of power to do what is right dangling, some of the many verses that provide assurance of power or strength, and to be considered later, should be briefly mentioned now.
1. Paul later wrote in II Timothy, “For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and love and of a sound mind.”
2. Also the Holy Spirit wrote through Paul that, “There hath no temptation taken you but such is common to man, but God is faithful who will not suffer you to be tempted above that which you are able, but will with the temptation make a way of escape that you might be able to bear it.”
3. We read in Isaiah of strength: “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary and they shall walk an not faint.”
We could go on and on, and this is exactly what we will do in the Comforting of the people of God in this series. And if you would like a copy of this comfort in order to extend your comfort and power by reading again these few Words from God, you are welcome to free download it from SunGrist at http://sungrist.org/PowerNumber1.pdf .