Redemption of Our Body

Paul declares that there is “now no condemnation” for anyone who is “in Jesus.” This happy condition exists because the “law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set them free from the law of sin and of death.” And he links the salvation of the believer to the inheritance of Christ and the coming redemption of the creation itself. Adam’s one transgression condemned the entire creation to bondage and death, not just humanity, however, “much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.”

Even under the Mosaic Law and via obedience to it, humanity cannot liberate itself from bondage to sin and death. That will take something or SOMEONE else. Moreover, Paul connects the salvation that God wrought in Jesus to the resurrection that will occur when he returns at the end of the age.

The Apostle to the Gentiles presents a forward-looking faith. Everlasting life is an inheritance that will be received in all its fullness at the resurrection of the righteous, an event that will coincide with the arrival of Jesus - (Romans 8:1-4).

In Paul’s theology, “flesh” refers to man in his mortal and fallen state, a nature that “prefers death, but the Spirit prefers life and peace.”

The “fleshly man” is the product of Adam’s disobedience, and it remains hostile to God since “to the law of God it does not submit itself, neither can it. They who in flesh have their being cannot please God.” To be “in the flesh” is equivalent to being “in Adam” - (Romans 5:18-19).

The discussion on “flesh” and “spirit” contrasts the old Adamic life in bondage to sin with the new life that is free from bondage to it, and that life is found in Jesus. The contrast is not between something that is physical and something nonphysical, but between the old nature, “in Adam,” and the new one, “in Christ.” In either case, the man or woman is a physical and embodied creature.

Nor is Paul speaking about two “natures” that reside within an individual and are locked in mortal combat, the “old man” versus the “new man,” but about the PAST life “in flesh” of the Adamic man versus the NEW life “in the spirit” achieved by Jesus and empowered by the Spirit.

  • But you have not your being in flesh but in spirit, if, at least, God’s Spirit is dwelling in you. And if anyone has not Christ’s Spirit, the same is not his. But if Christ is in you, the body, indeed, is dead because of sin, but the spirit is life by reason of righteousness. If, moreover, the Spirit of him that raised Jesus from among the dead is dwelling in you, he that raised Christ Jesus from among the dead will make alive even your death-doomed bodies through the means of his indwelling Spirit within you” - (Romans 8:9-11).

The disciple of Jesus does not have his life in the flesh but in the spirit, “IF God’s Spirit is dwelling” in him. But if anyone does not have his Spirit, “the same is not his.” It is that same Spirit that equips disciples to walk uprightly - (Galatians 5:13-18).

Though our physical bodies are “dead because of sin,” the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead now dwells in us, and therefore, the Spirit will resurrect us in the future.


Next, Paul introduces the resurrection into the equation. Integral to his concept of salvation is the BODILY resurrection of the saints. Final redemption is actualized in the resurrection, which, by necessity and logic, includes the redemption of the human body.

The entire man that God created was condemned to bondage, not just Adam’s soul or inner self. Therefore, if God is to redeem humanity and recover all that was lost, the redemptive act must include the individual’s body. Likewise, the creation that was also condemned to corruption and death by Adam’s sin must be rescued from its bondage - (Romans 8:12-14).

Though believers have been declared righteous, their receipt of final salvation is not a foregone conclusion. They must not live “according to the flesh.”

If they do after the “flesh,” they will “die. But if by the Spirit they put to death the practices of the flesh, they will attain life.” It is the men who are “led by God’s Spirit who are His sons” - (Romans 8:15-20).


The Spirit of God that dwells in believers “bears witness with their spirit that they are His children,” and this means they are “heirs of God and coheirs with Christ.” But to be a joint heir with him entails suffering in this life for his sake so we also may be “glorified” like and with him.

The creation itself has been subjected “to vanity” - to death and decay - because of the disobedience of Adam. Accordingly, all creation now suffers until the present hour.

But the creation is “ardently awaiting the revelation of the sons of God.” When his sons are “revealed” for all to see, then the “creation itself shall be freed from the bondage of decay into the freedom of the glory of the sons of God.” THAT DAY WILL MEAN NOTHING LESS THAN THE NEW CREATION.

  • That creation itself also shall be freed from the bondage of the decay into the freedom of the glory of the sons of God; for we know that all creation is sighing together and travailing-in-birth-throes together until the present, and not only so, but we ourselves also who have the first-fruit of the Spirit, we even ourselves within our own selves do sigh, sonship ardently awaiting, the redemption of our body” - (Romans 8:21-23).

And so, the redemption of the entire creation is dependent on the resurrection of the “sons of God” - the promises of bodily resurrection and the New Creation are inextricably linked and integral parts of Paul’s understanding of redemption and salvation.

Disciples who are declared righteous in Christ Jesus receive the Spirit of God, and if they continue to live accordingly, they will receive their final redemption at the time of the resurrection when Jesus returns. And that day will result in nothing less than the “new heavens and the new earth.”



Son of Destruction

Rosh Means Head