Putting Ourselves “Under the Law”

This past Sunday we looked into Romans 7:1-6. There the Apostle Paul uses marriage as an illustration of the implications for the Christian of being one with Jesus Christ by faith. We saw that we are now dead to the law (verse 4). What does that mean? It means that because of our union with Christ we are no longer under the law’s condemnation nor are we looking to the law as a means for our justification.

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, in his commentary on the book of Romans, makes the assertion that Christians- those one with Jesus Christ by faith in his life and work- often put themselves back under the law. Here’s the quote that was read this past Sunday that I believe is very helpful for believers:

Christian people often put themselves “under the law.” It is when they fail to attain the standard which they find set out for the Christian in the New Testament…. They read the various descriptions of the Christian man [or woman] and they say, “I am not that; I have not attained to that.” Then because they have not attained to it, they begin to say, “I wonder if I am a Christian at all; for if I were a Christian, surely I would not be living that way.” They begin to test themselves in the light of Scripture. That is good and right; but when they find that they have not attained to the standard of Scripture, instead of saying they are poor Christians they begin to say that they are not Christians at all; and that is where they go wrong. They put themselves back “under the law.”