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Chapter 21 [VIII.]—The Same Continued.

It is not nature, therefore, which, sold as it is under sin and wounded by the offence, longs for a Redeemer and Saviour; nor is it the knowledge of the law—through which comes the discovery, not the expulsion, of sin—which delivers us from the body of this death; but it is the Lord’s good grace through our Lord Jesus Christ.16651665     Rom. vii. 25.

Chapter 21 [IX.]—The Same Continued.

This grace is not dying nature, nor the slaying letter, but the vivifying spirit; for already did he possess nature with freedom of will, because he said: “To will is present with me.”16661666     Rom. vii. 18. Nature, however, in a healthy condition and without a flaw, he did not possess, for he said: “I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) dwelleth nothing good.”16671667     Rom. vii. 18. Already had he the knowledge of God’s holy law, for he said: “I had not known sin but through the law;”16681668     Rom. vii. 7. yet for all that, he did not possess strength and power to practise and fulfil righteousness, for he complained: “What I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.”16691669     Rom. vii. 15. And again, “How to accomplish that which is good I find not.”16701670     Rom. vii. 18. Therefore it is not from the liberty of the human will, nor from the precepts of the law, that there comes deliverance from the body of this death; for both of these he had already,—the one in his nature, the other in his learning; but all he wanted was the help of the grace of God, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

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