Realizing what you have in Christ puts you much closer to victory. Unless you know who you are and what has been provided for you, you will never experience the freedom that the Bible teaches. Paul is going over in detail this freedom so that we will understand how we have been freed and how to live out of that freedom instead of living out of bondage. Paul gives us the means whereby we experience this freedom... it is through Christ.
Notice that Paul is talking about his flesh when he says that nothing good lives in him. He was recognizing that nothing within his flesh could save him. It was utterly wretched and pitiful. He knew that living in the flesh made him a slave to what he had previously been freed from, the sin nature. He is stressing that this is no way to live. If we live according to it then we are allowing the lingering effects of the old nature influences us. An unrenewed mind will allow the sin nature to operate in our lives. Our thoughts, attitudes and emotions still pose problems, so how do we overcome the flesh?
"Thanks be to God..." God has provisioned a way for us to be free and to live free. It is through Jesus Christ, he is the only way to be free. Once we have accepted his payment for our sin and believed in him by faith then we are free in every sense of the word. After that, the key to living free is by walking in the spirit, when we do this we will escape the effects and left over desires of our previous nature. The battle takes place in our mind, but we can weaken the flesh by renewing our mind to the Word of God and living by the Spirit. The Amplified Bible puts it this way, "...with the mind and heart, serve the Law of God, but with the flesh the law of sin" ( Romans 7:25 Amp ). So by renewing our minds we are cutting off the desires and dictates of the flesh... this is the key to living a victorious Christian life and escaping the flesh. Join us as we embark on an adventure in how to live by the Spirit of God.