7:9I was once alive apart from the law . . . I died. He was alive, not in the sense of having spiritual life (6:11), but in his own estimation. Knowing the law, which promised life for obedience (v. 10), made Paul realize that law-keeping was required. Trying to obey it made him realize that inwardly, in the desires of his heart (especially coveting, v. 8, the sin forbidden in the tenth commandment), he was constantly breaking the law even before he knew it, and when he saw what he was doing he could not stop it. Thus, Paul writes that sin, the anti-God, anti-law driving force within him, “deceived me and . . . killed me” (v. 11). He became convinced that spiritually he was lifeless and lost. Paul offers his personal experience as an index of how sin and law relate in everyone.
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