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The Law of Sin and Death    Listen to .mp3 propecy podcasts.

Lyn Mize

The Law of Sin and Death states very simply in:

Ezekiel. 18:4b, 5, 9 {4b}“the soul that sinneth, it shall die.” {5} But if a man be just, and do that which is lawful and right, hath executed true judgment between man and man… and {9} Hath walked in my statutes, and hath kept my judgments, to deal truly; he is just, he shall surely live, saith the Lord GOD.  

The Law of Sin and Death clearly refers to the soul and not the spirit. The regenerated spirit of the Christian can never die or perish. However, the soul of the Christian can perish or die when this Christian is judged at the Judgment Seat of Christ. Thus, the Law of Sin and Death pertains to the souls of Christians, and not to the unsaved reprobate. The unsaved reprobate is already dead spiritually, so his spirit cannot die either.  

The “law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:2) means that the Christian who crucifies his flesh nature has the life of Christ Jesus living in him, and he is “free from the law of sin and death.” The law of sin and death states that the soul that sins shall die. If the Christian has died to self or killed the “old man”, then he is free from this law. All Christians are not free from the law of sin and death, since many Christians have not crucified the old flesh nature. A Christian only becomes free from the law of sin and death when he has crucified the old man. If the Christian falls away from the faith and ceases to crucify the old flesh nature, then he is again subject to the law of sin and death. Ezekiel 18 provides a detailed explanation of the principles for soul salvation and the law of sin and death.  

The following verses in Romans address the law of sin and death:

(Rom 8:12 KJV)  Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.  

Therefore, Christian brothers, we are not obligated to the flesh nature to live according to the flesh nature. (Many Christians do live according to this flesh nature, but they do not have to live according to it.)  

(Rom 8:13 KJV)  For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

(Rom 8:13 Paraphrase) For if you live according to the old flesh nature within you, then your soul will die (i.e., perish), but if you through the power of the Holy Spirit put to death the deeds of the body (i.e., kill the soul or die to self), then your soul will live and not perish at the Judgment Seat of Christ.  

This verse is a restatement of the law of the spirit of life in Christ Jesus, which sets us free from the law of sin and death.  

We will look at two additional verses in James that speak of the death or perishing of the souls of Christians in response to the law of sin and death.

(James 1:15 KJV)  Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.  

This verse is addressing the Christian who allows lust to spring up in his life, and this lust brings forth sin.  If this sin is allowed to grow to maturity in this person, it will in the end cause the soul of this Christian to die or perish at the Judgment Seat of Christ.

(James 5:19 KJV)  Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him;

(James 5:20 KJV)  Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.  

Verse 19 above is included to confirm that this is a Christian that is caught away into sin.  If another Christian brings him back into the correct path, then that Christian who brought him back has saved his soul from death.  This one passage establishes without doubt that a Christian can perish or die at the Judgment Seat of Christ, and this death is of the soul or life, and not the spirit.  The spirit nature within the Christian can never die or perish, but the soul or life of a Christian can perish.  If a Christian’s soul perishes at the Judgment Seat of Christ, this results in the loss of reward and glory in the coming kingdom.  The Christian will still be in heaven, but without any authority in the kingdom.  

(Rom 7:1 KJV)  Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?

This verse is addressing the soul of the Christian. The law of sin and death has dominion over a Christian as long as he lives. This is why the Christian must die to self.  If the Christian crucifies himself (i.e., dies to self), then the law of sin and death no longer has dominion over him. He is freed from the law to live his life in accordance with the wishes and desires of his spirit nature.

(Rom 7:2 KJV)  For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband.  

Paul uses the example of a woman who has a husband to illustrate the law of sin and death. The woman is bound by the law to her husband as long as he is alive. When her husband dies, she is loosed from the law of her husband. The Christian is similar in that when his soul dies, he is loosed from the law of sin and death.  

(Rom 7:3 KJV)  So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man.

In a similar manner, a Christian cannot be married to Christ until “the old man” dies. The Christian must first crucify the old man in order to release the new man in Christ.

(Rom 7:5 KJV)  For when we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members to bring forth fruit unto death.

In this verse Paul clarifies that when Christians are in the flesh, the motions or afflictions of sin did work in their bodies to bring forth fruit unto death. Please note that these warnings are to Christians about bringing forth fruit unto death, and the death is of the soul, and not the body or the spirit.

(Rom 7:6 KJV)  But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.

Paul states that they are now delivered from the law of sin and death because they have died to self. Since their souls have died, they are no longer subject to the law of sin and death. Paul emphasizes that this is something that they must continue doing by serving in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter. This newness of spirit means the new state of life that results from the death of the old man and allowing the new man to live in accordance with the life of Christ. This results in eternal life, which pertains to the soul and not the spirit.