Tuesday, November 22, 2011
COMMENTARY ON ROMANS 7:7-13
(7) What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. (8) But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead. (9) For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. (10) And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death. (11) For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me. (12) Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. (13) Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good: that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.
Paul repels false inferences regarding the Law in the case of the unregenerate, and he illustrates this from his own experience.
Verse 7 What shall we say then? Is the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet. “Is the law sin?” It is as if the objectors had asked if the Law was a bad thing, or is it at fault — is it to blame. Is then the Law the cause of sin? Paul had said in the 5th verse that, when we were in the flesh, the Law stirred our inward corruption, and was thus the occasion of deadly fruit. Is the Law then to blame for this? Or as the apostle expresses it in Gal. 2:17, “the minister of sin?” The force of the objection may be thus stated: “If sinful propensities are excited by the Law, is not the Law the cause of sin?”
Paul vehemently denies this with his indignant negative, “God forbid,” meaning “let it not be” or “far be it from our thoughts.” In the conclusion of this 7th verse he shows how the Law cannot be the cause of sin. In the 8th verse he will show how the Law, though not the cause of sin, was yet the occasion of calling forth into active operation “the movements of sins” — the depraved propensities of our nature.
“I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.” Paul’s object is to show, from his own experience, both before and after conversion, that a state of subjection to Law is, in the case of fallen men, whether in his wholly lapsed or partially restored state, inconsistent with true holiness. Paul’s changing from the we of the 5th and 6th verses to the I here and continuing to the end of the chapter proves that he turns suddenly from the common experience of himself and all the Roman Christians to his own individual experience. He was not aware of the real nature of sin until the Law made it clear to him. It is the Law, he says, that brought him to a right understanding of the essential character and nature and meaning of sin (Psa. 119:96). He is about to make experimental statements of what passes within — of the working of the Law on the human heart. It is as if he had said, “Verily we speak what we do know, and testify what we have seen” (John 3:11; Gal. 1:15-16).
Paul, in the passion of his soul, thunders, “the Law is not sin; on the contrary, I had not known sin but by the Law.” The great instrument which the Holy Ghost uses in the special work of conviction of sin is the Law. “By the law is the knowledge of sin” (Rom. 3:20). It was by the inward application of the spiritually of God’s Holy Law that Paul came to “know sin” — its real nature, as opposition to God; its inveterate enmity against Him; its unsuspected lustings within. “The law entered that sin might abound” (Rom. 5:20): by deepening and widening the conviction of sin upon the conscience. Before God’s shining in Paul’s heart he did not know what is sin — putting evil for good, and good for evil (Isa. 5:20). He did not know how opposite to the Divine character and will of a Holy God sin is. He did not know himself to be a lost, guilty sinner — what I am in myself and the damnation that I deserve. Knowing the truth about sin is by the Law which is calculated to give the knowledge of sin, therefore the Law cannot be the cause of sin. God’s Holy Law reveals how criminal, loathsome, and destructive sin is and the Law strongly forbids, awfully denounces and condemns the commission of sin.
“For I had not known lust,” or inordinate forbidden desire (see vs. 8 below). Paul is saying that he would not have known that unrestrained desire was a sin at all (the Jewish Rabbins taught that it was not — the Pharisees thought of sin only in terms of external actions); assuredly I would not have known it to be the great sin that it is, and I would not know that I was a guilty sinner as I now know myself to be, had it not been that the Law in the 10th Commandment had explicitly forbidden inordinate desire, in the precept “Thou shalt not covet” or lust, and that taken home to my heart in awakening power by the Holy Ghost (1 Thes. 4:5). The Law had not only brought Paul to see that to lust was sin (it did far more than give Paul a correct theological view), it brought him to see, feel and mourn over the terrible power of lust in his own life and the corruption of his heart. To desire to sin is sin. We sin in our thoughts, imaginations and desires. Our Lord says this is as much sin as the very act, for sin originates “from within, out of the heart of men” (Mark -23).The 10th Commandment in its very form, in its literal expression, very clearly claims the whole inner life of man. To covet is a question of our inner life, not our outward act. Yea, the spiritual perfection of the whole Law becomes revealed in this 10th Commandment. The sin of covetousness is the desire to possess anything apart from God, against His will, anything that He does not give me and that evidently He does not want me to have. The sin of covetousness implies the longing for mere material things, apart and divorced from things spiritual.
This shows that God’s Law requires inward conformity as well as outward compliance: it is addressed to the motions of the heart as well as prescribes our actions. The apostle refers to the manner in which the true knowledge of sin came into his mind and heart by means of the application of the spirituality of the Law. He, as a pupil of Gamaliel, was “after the righteousness of the law,” according to the manner in which the Jewish teachers judged, “blameless.” He looked at the Law and claimed compliance “in the oldness of the letter.” The Law to him was an outward thing, and viewed in that light, he was a strict doer of the Law. He claimed no God but Jehovah; he abominated idolatry; he had never profaned the sacred name of God nor desecrated His Sabbath. He was above actual commitment of murder, adultery, theft or perjury — he was not touched by actual violation of any of the first nine commandments: but when his darkened eyes were opened to the meaning of the 10th Commandment he saw what a new light it shed over the whole Law as a spiritual thing, then he saw the corruption of his lustful heart and was awakened to the fact of his heinous nature — that he was a sinner, a great one, yea, the very chief. Now he knew by experience what his Lord taught about looking on a woman with lust in the heart as adultery, for Christ taught that the Law is spiritual — it is concerned with a person’s heart and attitude toward God (Matt. 5:27-28).
Verse 8 But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead. How does sin use the Law? It does so by arousing in us the element of rebellion that is in us. We are all born rebels; we are all born with an antagonism to God within us. Sin was already in us. The Law aggravates because of this spirit of lawlessness that is in us, and it actually incites us to sin (Rom. ). This commandment, though plainly it could not be the cause of sin, yet Paul said that it was the occasion of sin — “the motions of sin were by the Law.” It becomes worse by that which should amend it. It takes occasion to grow more and more wicked from that which God had appointed to restrain its wickedness. When the holy Law of God is applied to it, its rage and fury breaks forth with more violence. He was convinced of the sinfulness of inordinate desire in all its forms and did not immediately and forever abandon it for he found that “the Law was weak through the flesh” (Rom. 8:3). As Paul had, the convinced sinner discovers that “Sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence” — i.e., forbidden, inordinate desire. “Concupiscence” means lust and desire, especially in an evil sense. Concupiscence is “every imagination of the thoughts of man’s heart was only evil continually’ (Gen. 6:5; 8:21). Paul was saying that all manner of evil desires and lusts were within his mind and heart and he seemed to be nothing but a mass of corruption, and of evil thoughts, desires and imaginations, a cesspool of iniquity. Indwelling sin, aggravated by the commandment, wrought in us all manner of lusts (James 1:14-15). Effectual application of the Law causes the sinner to see clearly and to feel acutely how he had lived — in utter defiance of it; what he is — a vile sinner; what he deserves; eternal punishment; and how he is in the hands of a sovereign God, entirely at His disposal. Without the Spirit’s application of the Law, sin in his experience was dead, for we had no perception or feeling of its heinousness. “The more the light of the Law shines upon and in our depraved hearts, the more the enmity of our minds is roused to opposition, and the more it is made manifest that the mind of the flesh is not subject to the Law of God, neither can be” (John Murray).
“Sin” here does not merely mean acts of sin; he means sin as a principle and a power which works in fallen human nature — the corruption of our nature, the depraved bent and bias of the soul. This does not originate in the Law, but it takes occasion from the Law, to manifest and exert itself in a way in which, otherwise, it might not have done. Paul said it exited in him a more than ordinary degree of desire after that which was forbidden. As an unjustified and an unregenerate sinner, he was made to see the criminality of inordinate desires, the first tendencies of the heart of evil. And instead of ceasing to desire the forbidden he found his whole heart and nature in hatred and indignation of God and His Law which doomed him to death. His whole inner man rose in rebellion against this revelation the Law showed him of himself. And the word “sin” here means that the sinner is in a state of guilt and condemnation and spiritual helplessness.
“For without the Law sin was dead.” Before the extensive demands and prohibitions of the Law come to operate upon our corrupt nature and is spiritually applied in power in our hearts, “sin was (or is) dead.” The sinful principle of our depraved nature lies so dormant, so torpid, that its virulence and power are unknown and to our feeling it is as good as dead (John 15:22,24). Our condemned helpless state as sinners was dead as we were blinded by sin and Satan to our true condition. “Without Law” means without a knowledge of the spirituality of the Law, in its requisitions and sanctions, as it carries to the conscience a sense of the meaning and authority of the Law, and, of consequence, a conviction of guilt and danger. “Without Law” is to have little felt struggling against the precepts of the Law, for they are but imperfectly known, and their spirituality not at all apprehended; and there is no feeling of remorse or alarm, for the true nature and desert of sin are not brought home to the heart by the Holy Ghost. Only when the Law is applied does the sinner become keenly sensible of his depraved nature and deeply miserable condition as he then sees what sin is. He knows now that he is a sinner with a vile, incurable heart, and feels that he is utterly indisposed to obey the Law’s precepts, utterly incapable of enduring the Law’s penalty, and as unable to escape the obligations of its precepts, and the reach of its adjudged punishments. Apart from the Law, the guilty state of man is comparatively dead, as to the production of sinful propensity or painful feeling.
Verse 9 For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. In this section, vs. 7-13, the apostle Paul gives us some account of the way and manner of his conversion. He says that he “was alive without the law once,” and then sin was dead. What does he mean for there never was a time when he, or any man, was without the Law? Very early in life Paul was a jolly professor of religion — he obtained an extensive and accurate knowledge of the letter of the Mosaic Law. In his unregenerate days he had been a proud Pharisee and entertained good thoughts of his condition. He had received his training under the renowned rabbi, Gamaliel, where his chief occupation was the study of the letter of the Law, yet being totally ignorant of its spirituality he was, vitally and experimentally speaking, as one “without the Law” — without a realization of its design or an inward acquaintance of its power. He was so dull and deluded that he thought sin was dead (Phil. 3:5-6). He supposed that a mere external conformity unto its requirements was all that was necessary, and as he strictly attended to the same, he was well pleased with himself, satisfied with his own righteousness, and falsely assured of his acceptance with God. He thought himself to be somebody. When a man is without Law, he is anti-Law, for the spirituality of the Law of God, is an enemy to the peace of his soul. And the man who would guard his false peace will fight that which disturbs that peace. This is the state of millions in Christendom that have made a profession, being experimentally ignorant of God’s Holy Law — never having been slain by it — then, the more religious they are, the more proud and conceited they will be. “Thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing.” Religious folks think (and this is the thinking of most unrenewed sinners) that their soul is rich and happy enough, and that they are all right for eternity — that they are safe, eternally secure. But in reality in this state they know “not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked” (Rev. 3:17). But that was quite consistent with being “without the Law,” in the sense of not understanding its spirituality and true extent, and feeling the power, both of its precepts and of its threatenings, in the conscience. This was Paul’s state “once” — before his conversion on the road to Damascus. And this is the state of all unregenerate men and only the saving mercy of God changes that in the regeneration of the elect.
Paul said when in his experience he was without the Law in this sense, “sin was dead.” He meant that he was spiritually blind and the power of sin was not felt in him. He was not aware that He was “the chief of sinners.” In fact, he was sure that he was not a sinner at all. He had no risings of heart against the strictness and spirituality of the Law, for he was ignorant of them. He was not remorseful, nor was he terrified over his justly merited, certain coming, destruction. Paul was blind and deceived, as all unregenerate men are (Mark 7:8-13).
When sin was dead in his state of deception (in his awareness), he was alive; when sin revived — became alive in his perception, he died. He said “For I was alive without the Law once” — deeming myself as good as anyone else, and able to win God’s approval by my religious performances. The word “alive” does not mean “spiritually alive” for he was in his unsaved state at that time — he was, in this sense, twice dead. It means that he thought of himself as in a good, comfortable, desirable state, in his own estimation. His conscience never troubled him and he knew not his miserable state. He rejoiced in false hopes of eternal life; and he, as most false professors, would have been astonished and indignant had anyone told him that he was “dead in sin” — condemned already, standing guilty of eternally suffering the consequences of the righteous judgment of God.
There was a tremendously important change that came in Paul’s view “when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.” When the Holy Spirit used that Tenth Commandment as the arrow of conviction — when the words “thou shalt not covet” were applied to him, when they came in the Spirit’s enlightening and convicting power to his heart and mind, his self-righteous security was pricked and his complacency was shattered (Psa. 40:12). It was brought home to his heart that even the very desire was forbidden and this was applied to his conscience with startling great force — the strictness and spirituality of the Holy Law showed him the corruptness of his heart. He saw the evil of self-will and his heart was pierced as the realization that the Law demanded inward as well as outward conformity to its holy terms. Paul was never able to forget that this dead, lifeless form of words, the letter of the Law, assumed life and power, and entered into his mind and heart as a “discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Heb. 4:12). Paul, as well as every sinner, knows not the deep depravity of nature and incurable corruption of the heart, until the Law is taken to the heart with mighty efficacy and power by the Holy Ghost. Then it is that “sin revived” — became a fearful reality as I discovered the plague of my heart (Rom. 8:7). He was conscious and terrified at his lusts and corruption of heart which rose in protest against the holy and extensive requirements of the Holy Law and the Lawgiver (Rom. 7:21-23). The very fact that God said “thou shalt not lust” only served to aggravate and stir into increased activity those corruptions of which he was unconscious, and the more he attempted to bring them into subjection the more painfully aware did he become of his own helplessness. The sinful, guilty, condemned state of sinners displayed its true influence, its power to deprave, its power to make miserable. Paul became sensible of a measure of enmity against God and His Law, of which he had never previously been aware. He now saw the sinfulness of his own heart and ways, his blindness, his extreme hardness of heart, his weakness, his willfulness, his heartlessness. He sees that all he does, desires, or even thinks is sinful.
And Paul said that when the Law came and sin revived “I died” (to my own self-righteousness), in his own apprehensions, feelings, and estimate of himself. The object of the Law is to work death and this death referred to is the death in the sinner’s mind. It means conviction that we are utterly lost. That is the work of the Holy Spirit bringing conviction, making a man see that he is a sinner, making him feel that he is a sinner, that he is exceedingly sinful. The awful nature and extent of his sin became a living reality in his heart, and he died to all good opinions of himself. There was the slaying of self-righteousness and the being brought to true loathing of all sin and his sin nature. He saw himself to be a justly condemned criminal and he became a miserable man in his utmost consciousness. Remorse took the place of self-complacency, and a fearful looking for of judgment, of hope of a place, by grace, in the kingdom of God. His corrupt heart now seemed irreconcilable; and nothing seemed to remain for him but irreversible condemnation, hopeless depravity, and everlasting destruction which he agrees with God that he justly deserved. Now he realized his weakness, his helplessness, and his hopelessness.
Reader, have you been there? It is to such sinners that the passage from Rom 5:6 is addressed, “For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.” It is such sinners that are brought to feel that they are “poor in spirit” and “mourn” over their condition before God (Matt 5:3-4). Distrust totally this dry-eyed kind of preaching that has no godly sorrow, and no repentance — preaching that leaves a man thinking that he may be just a little sinner, needing a little Saviour, and believing that a little decision suffices for his salvation. A totally lost sinner needs a Saviour who Himself fully and entirely saves such helpless sinners. Sinners without strength must experience salvation that is of the Lord — salvation which actually saves.
Verse 10 And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death. The commandment is said to have been “ordained to life” — that is to the making men happy. This 10th Commandment, and indeed every part of God’s Law, was intended and calculated to promote the happiness of an innocent man. His inclinations would correspond to its requisitions, and to him the path of duty would be the path of pleasure. Obedience to this commandment, which is designed to secure in our minds and hearts full conformity to God’s will, makes all duty most delightful.
“In the original institute of the whole substance of moral obedience was summed up in the single precept, relative to the fruit forbidden. As the Law is a unity, and he who offends in one point is guilty of all; so when the spirit of obedience is tested in a single point only, and confined to that point, a failure here, brings upon man the guilt of the whole — he is liable to the whole penalty. Now this was the sum total of the Law, as a covenant given to Adam, that he should obey, and as the reward of obedience should receive life. This glorious reward was held up as the motive prompting to choice on the side of Law and right. The Law was ordained unto life (Rom. 7:10). This is its object, and to this it was adapted. But it failed in the hands of the first Adam, and the last Adam comes in to make it good, to establish its principle and secure its object” (G. Junkin). In suffering in the stead of the elect the full penalty of the broken Law and also rendering perfect obedience to its precept on their behalf, Christ not only makes complete atonement for all their transgressions, so that the guilt and pollution of sin are forever removed from the sight of the Judge of all, but thereby obtains for them a sure title to the reward of the Law so that they are justified or pronounced righteous before Him with full acceptance. He made good, for His people the reward of the Law which is “life.”
So in consequence of the state into which sin brings men, the case is completely altered, “and the commandment, which was to life” was now in fact “found to be unto death.” The Law as given to man in the state of integrity promised life upon obedience, but man’s sin turned that same Law into a sentence of death (Rom. 10:5; Gal. 3:12). Calvin rightly insists “that the Law is not injurious to us by its own nature, but because our corruption provokes and draws upon us its curse.” The Law, originally fitted to make men happy, corresponding as it did with the apprehensions and convictions of a holy mind, and the dispositions and desires of a holy heart, was now found, in consequence of its opposition to the false judgments and depraved moral principles of fallen man, to be to unregenerate men a source of misery. In his unregenerate state the misery of man renders even the best things to be the occasion of evil to him (Rom. 9:31-32). Prosperity does not produce gratitude but pride. Adversity irritates rather than humbles. The Law which is to be life, is found to be death. Even the “Gospel of salvation” is “a savour of death unto death;” and the foundation of hope “a stone of stumbling and a rock of offence.”
“How infatuated are those men — and they are the prodigious majority of mankind, even in countries where revelation is most generally known — who live at ease, while all things, even the best things in heaven and earth, are working together for their destruction” (John Brown). Charles Hodge has well said, “How vain therefore is it to expect salvation from the Law, since all the Law does, in its operation on the unrenewed heart, is to condemn and awaken opposition! It cannot change the nature of man.”
Verse 11 For sin, taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me. Paul shows that the problem is sin as he describes the manner in which he had found the Law to be unto death. “Sin” here means the personification of the state of guilt, condemnation, and helplessness, in which the sinner is placed. Paul’s meaning is, “In consequence of my being a guilty, depraved sinner, the Law, which should have guided me, deceived me; the Law, which should have contributed to my happiness, made me miserable.” That sin was the real instigator of Paul’s death, and the Law was only its instrument, is shown by the word “occasion.” “Sin, taking occasion by the commandment (‘Thou shalt not covet’) deceived me.” Sin is not only powerful but subtle and deceitful; it deludes us, beguiles us, and misleads us. In an innocent man, the only tendency of the commandment is to guide into truth and holiness, leading the soul to acknowledge God as spirit and exciting it to worship Him in spirit and truth. But what thoughts does the Law excite in the sinner? He sees the thoughts and lusts of his natural mind totally forbidden by the Law. He sees himself condemned for desiring that which his sinful nature cannot help but desire. He vents his anger at God’s Holy Law — declaring it to be too rigid and utterly unreasonable. He excuses himself and sees no purpose in attempting to keep such a Holy Law or satisfy such a Perfect Lawgiver. These are some of the false views which a discovery of the purity and extent of the spiritual Law of God occasions in the mind of sinful man. Thus does sin take occasion by the commandment to “deceive” men (2 Cor. 3:11; Heb. 3:13).
But the apostle represents sin as not only having taken occasion by the commandment to deceive him — to lead him into fatally mistaken views of the Law and the Lawgiver — but also by this Law “having slain him” — made me miserable, very miserable — put me to death. It is not the condemning power which, according to the Divine Law, sin exercises over the sinner that is here referred to. That sentence is passed whether the sinner is aware of it or not. It will be fully executed upon unrepentant sinners in the eternal world. What is spoken of here takes place in this world “when the commandment comes” to the sinner — as experienced by Paul (then Saul of Tarsus). He was slain by the Law — slain by the Law in consequence of his being in a state of “sin” — guilt, condemnation, helplessness. Before conversion all the Redeemed were under the dominion of the law of sin, which found its strength or killing power is the just and holy Law of God. Along with Paul the Law made us all miserable, showing us what great sinners we were — as to our state, condemned criminals, instead of objects of God’s favor; and — as to our character — instead of keepers of God’s commandments, or holy persons — sinners whose inward dispositions were most powerfully opposed to the requisitions of the Divine Law, and whose whole inner life had been a curse of rebellion against it. It filled us with remorse, and agitated us with alarm. It made us feel not only that Hell was our just doomed portion, but gave us a foretaste of its miseries in our experience of a state of rebellion against the Divine will.
This the Law did in our conscience; it could not do otherwise. It had no promise of pardon to hold before us. It could not possibly deliver us from the dominion of sin.
Verse 12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. “Wherefore,” with which the 12th verse commences, the apostle refers to the whole discussion, from the beginning of the 7th verse — “Is the law sin?” and concludes from that discussion, that though the Law, in consequence of the influence of sin, had deceived and killed him, that was in no degree the fault of the Law or the Lawgiver. It was entirely the result of sin, and was the manifestation of the inconceivably malignant and destructive nature of sin.
If a people have the Law only in its letter, actually they are without Law, for essentially the Law is spiritual (vs. 14). Just as Paul had experienced, so all the children of God come to see that which the Law has always truly been all the time — spiritual. The Law of God demands heart-holiness (Matt. 22:37-40). The Law of God demands our conformity to certain spiritual principles. The spiritual things commanded by the Law of God are summed up in the words of Moses in Deut. 6:4-5 and Lev. 19:18. The meaning of this outcry by Paul is that the Law was sanctified in his heart, just as it is in the heart of all true believers. When Paul says here is verse 12, “Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good,” when he says in verse 14, “For we know that the law is spiritual,” and when Paul says, “For I delight in the law of God after the inward man,” he, as a true believer, is saying that the Law is holy in his heart, that the Law of God is sanctified unto him in his God-given faith. When the Law of God is holy, spiritual, and a delight upon the inner person of a believer, the Law is sanctified in the heart of that believer. That child of grace then groans under the Law and serves God in the great principles of the Law (Rom. 7:6), with his mind focused on the Cross of Christ (Rom. 7:25).
“Wherefore the law is holy” — the word “holy” here means faultless or perfect: “The statues of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, and righteous altogether” (Psa. 19:8). So far from the Law being sin, absolutely no fault attaches to the Law. It is holy, just, and good, not stained with sin, just as is its Author. It forbids nothing but what is wrong and requires nothing but what is right. In its nature, design and rule it is worthy of its all wise, all holy Author. It stands for every thing that is holy and right and Godlike, and against every thing that is sin. Its requisitions are not too extensive — its sanctions are not too severe. It perfectly reflects the character of God Himself. It is a transcript of the Divine nature. Much of our modern pulpit and pew deny this but they but pit themselves against the Scriptures. Romans 8:7 tells us that “the carnal mind is not subject to the law of God,” and continues on to give the proof of this declaration, “for it is not subject to the law of God,” which, manifestly, is another way of saying that the Law is a transcript of the very character of God. Mr. A. W. Pink states the following observation of the Law, “what is that but a summarized description of the Divine perfections. If God Himself is ‘holy, and just and good’ and the Law is an immediate reflection of His very nature, then it will be ‘holy and just and good.’ Again, if God Himself be love (1 John 4::8) and the Law is a glass in which His perfections shine, then that which the Law requires, will be love, and that is exactly the case (Matt. 22:37-39).”
What is true of the Law in general, is true of the particular commandment, which, in the case of the apostle, had wrought all manner of concupiscence, and had been the occasion which sin employed to deceive and slay him. “The commandment is holy, and just, and good.” The commandment is “holy” — faultless, being both just and good. To be “holy” means that it is the absolute antithesis of sin and evil. It is holy for it is an expression of God’s character. It is the function of the Law to give a revelation of God, and His Being and character, in order that we may learn what we have to be, and to become, in order to have communion and fellowship, with Him. The Law is a perfect expression of His desire and of His will. As Paul on the road to Damascus was broken at Christ’s feet and cried “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” (Acts 9:1-6), a truly contrite soul will bow to the dominion of God, acknowledging His right to rule over us and our duty to live in entire subjection to Him, and will bemoan his insubordination (Phil. 2:10). He will eye God’s righteousness and own that “His Law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good,” and therefore we are without excuse in breaking it.
“Just” is another word for right and equitable. Had the commandment been an unjust one, it could not have been holy, faultless. It is just and right in what it demands of us; it makes no unfair demands of us whatsoever. Nothing can be more just than that for it requires that we do what is right and good toward God and toward man. God, who made us capable of thinking and wishing, has surely a right to regulate us in the use of these faculties. Indeed, if the commandments which forbid certain overt acts are just, the commandment which forbids the desire of what is prohibited must be so also; for, “out of the heart are the issues of life” (Prov. 4:23). If the heart be habitually wrong the life cannot be right. It is also just and right in the pronouncement and the sentence that it passes upon all sin and transgression, and on all failure to honor its requirements and keep them. At the bar of final Judgment the Law will justly exact its penalty. This was well illustrated in the case of Adam and Eve.
The commandment is not only holy and just, but also good. “Good” here means what is fitted to produce happiness. This is obvious as the term is contrasted in the next verse with “death” which clearly signifies misery. The whole tendency of the commandment is to promote good toward others and ourselves. The Law is good within itself as is so clearly manifested in the reading of Psalm 119 — the theme of which is the goodness of the Law of God in and of itself. John Murray observes, “As ‘holy’ the commandment reflects the transcendence and purity of God and demands of us the correspondent consecration and purity; as ‘righteous’ it reflects the equity of God and exacts of us in its demand and sanction nothing but which is equitable; as ‘good’ it promotes man’s highest well-being and thus expresses the goodness of God.”
Verse 13 Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful. The apostle’s assertion that “the commandment is good” — benignant in its tendency — might appear to some not very consistent with what he had stated in reference to the result of this commandment coming to him. “Sin revived — I died.” Sin, reinvigorated by the commandment, “deceived me and slew me by it.” This difficulty the apostle meets and removes in our 13th verse — “Was then that which is good made death to me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.”
By “that which is good,” we are to understand the Law, the excellence of which he had just declared in the previous verse. And by being “made death,” we are to understand — being the cause of that miserable state which was occasioned by it, and which he describes as his dying — his being put to death — slain. The apostle’s meaning is not, ‘Is the Law, so benignant in its tendency when obeyed, the cause of the misery of the sinner, inasmuch as when disobeyed it denounces adequate punishment on him, and secures the infliction of it?’ “Death” here, is the death the apostle died “when the commandment came to him.” The figurative word death here, does not denote what is termed legal death, a state of condemnation — for in that he was like others — being by nature a child of wrath (Eph. 2:3); nor does it mean what is termed spiritual or moral death, a state of depravity — for he was a depraved sinner from his youth upward; but it means that state of misery produced by the conviction of righteous condemnation for sin as an awakened sinner — sin of which he was previously unaware, and of which he does not, cannot, repent — that remorse, that fear, that sense of unsubdued, apparently irrepressible, and ever growing opposition of the heart to the requisitions of the Divine Law, resulting from the Law being apprehended by the mind and conscience in its spirituality and extent, and irrelaxable inflexibility and obligation. So the question is ‘was the Law the cause of extreme misery into which Paul was plunged’ when ‘the commandment came to him?’
To this question Paul answers by his strong negative, commonly used: “God forbid” — let it not be — and then proceeds to show what was the true cause of this death, this misery. “But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me” — But sin was made death to me, “that sin might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might appear exceeding sinful.” It’s the sinful nature of fallen man, and not the Law, which causes the increased rising of sinful actions within him. Then the deep meaning and authority of God’s Law will be more clearly manifest to the mind and conscience when God shows the sinner his wretched condition. That such results do and must arise from the Law coming to the carnally secure, unregenerate man, is intended by God for the purpose of manifesting the true character of the sinner’s state as guilty and helpless (Rom. 5:20; James 1:13-15).
The Law was never intended as the means of justification or of sanctification to unregenerate men. God did not design it for these purposes; but He did design, and intended it, in its operation on unregenerate sinners, to show how hopelessly depraved and miserable man is and must be, so long as he continues under the condemning sentence of the Divine Law, shut out by it from the only influence which can transform the sinful, miserable sinner into a holy, happy saint.
Sin does in this way appear in its true colors — “working death by that which is good” — that which is in itself only good in its nature and tendency. Sin, by the commandment, does appear to be, in the apostle’s emphatic language, exceedingly, in the highest degree, sinful. The guilty helpless state of man termed “sin” in opposition to the state termed “righteousness,” or justification, is proved by the Law to be the exhaustless source of depravity and misery. The Law thus, so far from securing that sin shall not have dominion over unregenerate man, secures that it shall have dominion over him, and makes no provision for regenerating him. It proves, indeed, that a man must be delivered from the Law, considered as a method of obtaining salvation, in order to obtain either justification or sanctification. The Law cannot make a bad man good.
“That sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.” The great evil and sinfulness of sin does not appear to a sinner until the awakening and converting work of the Holy Ghost takes place in his soul. The greatness and evil of sin is shown in Scripture in numerous verses, too many to name, but we refer to a few of them. Sin is called filthiness: “I will wash you from your filthiness” (Ezek. 36:25). Sis is called nakedness (Rev. 3:18). Sin is called blindness (Matt. 15:14). It is called folly (Psa. 85:18). It is madness. The prodigal son “came to himself” (Luke 15:17) and Paul said he was exceeding mad (Acts 26:11). Sin is called death; “Dead in trespasses and sins” (Eph. 2:1). It is called an abomination (Prov. 8:7). It does separate between us and God (Isa. 59:2). Sin identifies us as the children of the Devil (John 8:44). Our whole nature is sin, our hearts, our thoughts, our lives, our practices. The sin of our nature spreads over all our faculties — our understanding, reason, will, and affections. When we are regenerated by the Spirit and turned to the Lord Christ in truth, then the evil and wickedness of sin appears in the exceeding sinfulness thereof unto us (Job 40:4).
We address briefly when this experience took place in the heart and life of the apostle. It appears that it was the 3 days after our Lord met him on the road to Damascus, during which “he was without sight, and did neither eat nor drink” (Acts 9:9). On the Damascus road the entire revolution in Paul’s sentiments and feelings, necessary to his being broken at Christ’s feet and embracing Him as his Lord and Saviour, took place as he was regenerated by the Holy Ghost. Before that day Paul had not only no idea of his need of salvation in Christ, but he had no distinct idea of what salvation in Christ even was. He was not in need of a mere decision but his false religion and religious thoughts, his self righteousness, and all his opinions, strongly held, and his habits deeply-rooted, had to be destroyed. He had been given eyes that see by the Holy Ghost (Matt. 11:25) and he had seen the Lord Jesus Christ amid the radiance of Heavenly light (John 1:14). He distinctly heard the voice of the Son of God in his inner man. He who died on the Cross is the Son of God now on His throne as the Living Lord. And having seen and heard the Lord Jesus Christ with spiritual eyes and ears, Paul sees himself in a new light and asked, “And what am I?” Paul began to examine himself. He now saw that everything appeared valuable, or valueless, as it was, or was not, an expression of inward principle — of a right state of mind and heart towards God. He now saw himself as God saw him — in a new light. He was constrained to reckon his former estimate of himself as utterly false — he was brought in “guilty before God.” He felt he was a great sinner, the very chief of sinners. But his rebellious heart rose against the Law and the Lawgiver, and he and the Law had a fearful battle, here (vs. 7-13) so strikingly described, till the deep conviction he experienced resulted in his cry — I am a wretched sinner, guilty, depraved from head to foot, thoroughly miserable; and the question came from the inmost depths of his soul — What must I do to be saved? Out of this thick darkness broke forth the light. God commanded the light to shine out of darkness and shined in his heart “to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Cor. 4:6). By Divine revelation there came to and in him the message and Person of the Cross, the Gospel which he says he “first of all received” (Gal. 1:11-16) — “That Christ had died for our sins, according to the Scriptures” (1 Cor. 15:3). He now saw what true salvation was that he needed, and that the salvation obtained on the Cross by the Lord Jesus Christ for His elect was that salvation. He was now without strength (Rom. 5:6) and he now knew that salvation was not something to be wrought for, but applied in the heart by the Holy Spirit — the gift of God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Paul, by God- given faith, believed that the precious blood of Christ Jesus, God’s Son, cleanseth from all sin — that Christ was the Lamb of God bearing and bearing away , the sins of the elect — Paul’s sins. He understands now how Christ must suffer, and then enter into glory. “Behold he prayeth!” (Acts 9:11) — prayeth to the God and Father of our Lord Christ, God in Christ reconciling the elect world to Himself. He feels the bands of sin for ever broken, and “sin has not dominion over him, for he is not under the Law, but under grace.” Christ is most precious to him (1 Peter 2:7) and there is now no condemnation to him as he is now in Christ Jesus (Rom. 8:1). Henceforth Paul now “walks at liberty, keeping God’s commandments;” “serving in a new spirit, and not in oldness of the letter” (Rom. 7:6).
Dear reader, Paul was God’s pattern of how He saves a sinner: “Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might show forth all long suffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting” (1 Tim. 1:16). Something parallel to this experience of Paul — essentially the same as this (in a spiritual way), has been the experience of every sinner to whom the Law has been “a schoolmaster, bringing us to Christ (Gal. 3:24). The saint of God knows what it means to be “shut up” to the faith (Gal. 3:22-24). No sinner ever entered into the shelter of sovereign mercy till the avenger of blood was close on him, and every other door of escape shut against him. Only then does the sinner come in with all his heart as he is compelled by the Spirit to come in. We shall end this chapter but first we enter this close and searching question to your conscience. Do you know what it means to lie at the feet of our Sovereign Lord Jesus as a guilty, lost, helpless beggar of mercy? Has the constant cry of your heart become “God, be merciful to me a sinner?” Christ came to save lost sinners. God help us. RCLVC.
Worthy Doctrinal and Spiritual Notes and Quotes on Romans 7:7-13.
Verse 7. The persons who feel no malady of sin see not their want of a Saviour. — William Romaine (1714-1795).
When Adam was created he had a right will and understanding. He heard rightly, he saw rightly, and rightly managed all earthly things in faith and to the praise of God. But since the fall, the will, the understanding, and all the natural faculties are corrupt; so that the man is no longer upright, but warped by sin; he has lost his right judgment in the sight of God, and does everything perversely and contrary to the will and Law of God; he no longer knows God and loves Him, but flees from Him and dreads Him, and says in his heart that He is not a God that is merciful and good, but a judge and a tyrant. We are, therefore, by sin utterly adverse from God, so that we cannot have one right thought concerning God, but think of Him just as we do of an idol. Hence in the 51st Psalm, David defines sin to be a corruption of all the faculties, external and internal; so that no one member can perform its office now as it did in paradise before sin entered; and that we have all departed from God, are filled with an evil conscience, and are subject to disease and death, according to the words of the denounced punishment, “In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” This knowledge of sin is not a mere speculative knowledge, or an imagination which the mind may paint out to itself; but a true sensation, a real experience, and a most heavy conflict of heart. — Martin Luther (1483-1546).
The Law reveals the character of our God, and thus it breaks the sinner and drives him to Christ. “The law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ … knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified” Gal. 3:24 and 2:16. “For by the law (which reveals the will of a Holy God) is the knowledge of sin” Rom. 3:20b. And right there is where a sinner is broken down before the Lord. If you think the Holy Law of God is some little trifling something, and you think you are living up to the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule, then you just have another thought coming! Because I hasten to whisper in your ear that “it just ain’t so!” No man has ever truly seen all that is contained in that Holy Law, and certainly when the Law has come home to his heart in the spiritual reality of it, he knows better than to proclaim any satisfaction in his own works. You don’t know a thing in the world about the Law of God if you have not come before Him guilty and pleading for cleansing by His grace and the blood shed on Calvary! Then, my friends, when the blood is applied you can say, “For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. I am crucified with Christ” Gal. 2:19-20. Then you have truly seen “the vision of God,” for “God who commanded the light to shine out of darkness hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” 2 Cor. 4:6. — Wylie W. Fulton (b. 1939).
Verse 8. So the great characteristic of an age like this, which does not believe in God, is lawlessness, dislike of discipline and order in any shape or form. People today have a rooted dislike of Law and of sanctions and of punishment. We have almost reached the state in which they do not believe in punishing anyone; a murderer almost becomes a hero who engages public sympathy. The prisoner gets more sympathy than his victim. Thus the whole idea of right and wrong is rapidly disappearing from the human mind. — D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981).
Education and culture may result in a refined exterior; family training and other influences may lead to an espousal of religion, as in the case with the great majority of the heathen; selfish considerations may even issue in voluntarily undergoing great austerities and deprivations, as the Buddhist to attain unto Nirvana, the Mohammedan to gain paradise, the Romanist to merit Heaven — but the love of God prompts none of them, nor is His glory their aim. Though the Christian be “not in the flesh” as to his status and state, yet the flesh as an evil principle (unchanged) is still in him, and it “listeth” against the spirit (Gal. 5:17) or new nature, and therefore are we exhorted, “Let not sin (i.e. the flesh) therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof” (Rom. 6:12). — A. W. Pink (1886-1952).
The Law of God is not sin; it is purity itself. But it reveals to us the nature of sin; it helps us to see that coveting is sin. What has happened then? Oh, the terrible truth about man by nature is that this powerful thing called sin is able even to use that pure Law of God as a fulcrum to produce all evil in me. It provides it with a base of operations, the enemy ‘comes in like a flood’, and I end up being worse than I was before. This is the explanation, says the Apostle. — D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981).
Verse 9. We can never be thankful enough if the Holy Ghost has made us sensible of the condemned, dead, and miserable state we are born in — if He has laid open to our view God’s Holy Law. His righteous and terrible anger against us for our sins — if He has thereby stopped our mouths and made us justify Him in our everlasting condemnation in the Law. It is heavy work for a sinner to labor under such misery, to find the Law allows no room for hope, shows no place of repentance, makes no sort of composition with sinful debtors. It is, however, salutary work. Legal despair, self despair and Gospel hope are nearer neighbors than sinners under a law-work can believe or imagine possible. Besides, how can we see and love the glory of God in salvation before we have seen and exceedingly feared and quaked at the terrible sight of it in the Law? We cannot bless Him for saving us before we justify Him in condemning us. — J. K. Popham (1847-1937).
Would you read the best experience of a true believer in Christ that ever was wrote, here it is in this chapter. Try your own; judge of others by this. Commend me to holy, humble Paul’s experience. If we are taught by the same Spirit, ours will answer to his, as face does to face in a glass, in the following particulars: (1) A sense of sin will be revived in the conscience, which no human palliatives, or lulling opiates, can keep in a swoon any longer. You will so see, feel, and be sensible of its dread and terror, that you will confess yourself to be totally destroyed by it, and your case to be quite desperate under it. (2) This is effected by the Law; “For by the law is the knowledge of sin,” Rom. 3:20. “When the commandment came;” that is, when the purity and spirituality of the holy and perfect Law of God comes into your heart and conscience, then you see that it requires truth and perfection of obedience in the inward parts as well as in the outward walk: you see you have it not, you find it as much impossible for you a sinner to fulfil God’s Holy Law, as it is for you to create a world. (3) You die: you become as a dead man: seeing the exceeding sinfulness of sin in you, and the dreadful curse of the Law hanging over you, all hopes of life forsake you. Sin and Law live within you, they pierce your soul to the quick; the Law adds strength to sin; you can no longer flatter yourself that your state is good, that you can do any thing to bring yourself upon good terms with God; you have now done with all works of righteousness to that end; you can have no more hope from your obedience to the Law, than from your transgressions against it: you see yourself sin in all that you are, and in all that you do. But, (4) The hand of the Comforter is in all this: His loving design is to bring you to live by faith of the Son of God: instead of looking to and living by your own righteousness, you are to live wholly and solely upon His life and by His righteousness. But while alive without the Law, and striving to fulfill the Law, you overlook Christ, slight His righteousness, think your own better to trust to than His. Now the Spirit keeps alive sin and the Law in you for this very purpose, to make you wretched in self and happy in Christ: all experiences that do not effect this are not worth a straw. “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth,” Rom. 10:4. — William Mason (1719-1791).
So long as men are strangers to the spiritual nature of God’s Law, and to the woeful depravity of the human heart, they entertain a meager notion of religion, and a lofty thought of their own ability. If Christian faith be nothing but a mere assent to the Gospel history, every man may make himself a true believer when he pleases. And if Christian duty only consists in Sunday service, with a pittance of sobriety, and honesty, and charity, we might expect that men would vaunt of will and power to make themselves religious. — John Berridge (1716-1793).
Verse 10. He who is insensible that there is that in him which is inclined to take occasion to sin from the commandment of the Law, as well as from the promise of the Gospel, is a stranger to the plague of his heart. — John Brine (1703-1765).
The soul that has been thus killed by the Law, to the things it formerly delighted in, now, O now, it cannot be contented with the slender groundless faith and hope that it once contended itself withal. No, no; but now it must be brought into the right saving knowledge of Jesus Christ; now it must have Him discovered to the soul by the Spirit; now it cannot be satisfied, because such and such do tell it so. No; but now it will cry out, “Lord, show me continually in the light of Thy Spirit, through Thy Word, that Jesus that was born in the days of Caesar Augustus (when Mary, a daughter of Judah, went with Joseph to be taxed at Bethlehem) that He is the very Christ.” Lord, let me see it in the light of Thy Spirit, and in the operation thereof; and let me not be contented without such a faith that is so wrought even by the discovery of His birth, crucifixion, death, blood, resurrection, ascension, intercession, and second (which is His personal) coming again, that the very faith of it may fill my soul with comfort and holiness. And O how afraid the soul is lest it fall short of this faith, and of the hope that is begotten by such discoveries as these are. For the soul knoweth that if it hath not this it will not be able to stand in death or judgment, and therefore saith the soul, “Lord, whatever other poor souls content themselves withal, let me have that which will stand me instead, and carry me through a dangerous world, that may help me resist a cunning devil; that may help me to suck true soul-satisfying consolation from Jesus Christ through Thy promises, by the might and power of Thy Spirit.” And now, when the poor soul hath any discovery of the love of God through a bleeding, dying, risen Jesus, because it is not willing to be deceived, O how wary it is of closing with it, for fear it should not be right, for fear it should not come from God. — John Bunyan (1628-1688).
Not until the condemning sentence of the Law has been applied by the Spirit to the conscience does the guilty soul cry “Lost, lost!” Not until there is a personal apprehension of the requirements of God’s Law, a feeling sense of our total inability to perform its righteous demands, and an honest realization that God would be just in banishing us from His presence forever, is the necessity for a precious Christ perceived by the soul. — A. W. Pink (186-1952).
Verse 11. It is truly by the Law that a knowledge of sin is sent home to the conviction of quickened souls; but if a knowledge of the mere letter or reading of the precepts of the Old Testament could effect that conviction, why was Saul of Tarsus without such conviction until he undertook his journey or mission to the city of Damascus? And why are not American sinners, who abound in Bibles, convinced of sin? That very Bible of which we speak declares the reason: because that it should be the peculiar work, not of the Bible simply, but of that Spirit which Jesus should send, to convince of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment to come. And when the Spirit executes this work, He employs the Law, and brings the commandment home to the sinner’s heart in its spirituality, and sin revives, and the sinner is slain. — Gilbert Beebe (1800-1881).
There is only one explanation of the moral state of society; it is this terrible power which the Bible calls ‘sin’. Men in their cleverness and sophistication no longer believe in sin. They have been trying to explain it away in terms of psychology, saying that it is non-existent. They have confidently claimed that they can easily train and teach people how to behave in a decent manner, and that they can deliver delinquents. And yet they are failing — failing so badly that their own servants are saying so in public. No, there is only one explanation; sin ‘taking occasion’, using even the Law of God, leave alone men’s moral teaching, as a vantage point, as a military base of operations, as a fulcrum, is the cause of all the trouble. ‘Sin, taking occasion’ — Paul repeats the phrase he has already used in verse 6. — D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981).
Verse 12. The Law being written on stones denotes the duration of it, which continued not only during the times of the Old Testament dispensation, and to the times of John, and had its fulfillment in Christ, but still continues; for though Christ has redeemed His people from the curse and condemnation of it, yet it is in His hands as a rule of direction to them, as to their walk and conversation. Nor is it made void by any doctrine of the Gospel, and nothing more strongly enforces obedience to it than the Gospel. The moral Law is immutable, invariable, and eternal in its nature, and it is in the matter of it. — John Gill (1697-1771).
Yet, notwithstanding we neither are, nor can be, justified by the Law; still the uses of the Law are numerous and important: whence the apostle takes care to add, that the Law is good, or answers several valuable purposes, if a man use it lawfully. Nothing can be more evident than that, by the Law, in this place, is meant the moral Law. The ceremonial could not possibly be intended; because it is not now to be adhered to, and is no longer in force: whereas the apostle speaks of a Law which is, to this very day, unrepealed, and of standing use; the Law is good, if a man use it lawfully. Of this Law there is a two-fold use: or rather, an use and an abuse. The use of the Law is, among other things, first, to convince us of our utter sinfulness; and then, secondly, to lead us to Christ, as the great and only fulfiller of all righteousness. Now the Law does not answer these important ends directly, and of itself; but in a subserviency to the Holy Spirit’s influence; when that adorable Person is pleased to make the Law instrumental to the conversion of a sinner. In which case, having shaken us out of our self-righteousness, and reduced us to happy necessity of closing with the righteousness of Christ; the Law has still another and a farther use, no less momentous: for, thirdly, it from that moment forward stands as the great rule of our practical walk and conversation: seeing a true believer is not without Law, (a lawless person) towards God, but is within the bond of the Law to Christ (1 Cor. 9:21); not exempted from its control, as the standard of moral action; though delivered from its power and execration as a covenant of works. — Augustus Toplady (1740-1778).
Verse 13. There is nothing of more certainty to the souls of any than what they have real spiritual experience of. When the things about which men are conversant lie only in notion, and are rationally discoursed or debated, much deceit may lie under all; but when the things between God and the soul come to be realized by practical experience, they give a never-failing certainty of themselves. — John Owen (1616-1683).
It is a mercy to be made sensible of our besetting sins and lusts, that we may feel our need of the atoning blood of Christ, and to be fully satisfied that if we depend on anything short of the blood and righteousness of Christ we must perish eternally, for all other hopes are cut off. Such a sense of sin and vileness cuts up Arminianism by the roots, and prepares us to hear the Gospel, and to know that it brings glad tidings to the poor, lost, and helpless sinners. — William Tiptaft (1803-1864).
Conviction of sin, it is evident, is the first mark of Divine teaching. — J. C. Philpot (1802-1869).