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The text that stood out from the Day 164 reading was Romans 8:9, 11 because it teaches that the Holy Spirit dwells in a believer.  If you are a Christian just ponder the wonderful biblical truth that “the Holy Spirit dwells in me!”  I thought it would be encouraging to briefly look at the reality of the Holy Spirit “dwells in” a believer.

For context, verses 9 and 11 are contained in the block of text comprising Romans 8:1–11 (ESV), which reads:

1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. 3 For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. 5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. 6 For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. 7 For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. 8 Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. 9 You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him. 10 But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.

In reference to the meaning of the verb “dwells” as used in verses 9 and 11, the ESV translates the phrase oikei en (vv. 9, 11) as “dwells in” and the verb enoikeō (v.11) as “who dwells.”  These phrases have the sense of to exist or be situated within so as to be in union with or be joined closely to (see Exegetical Guide, Logos 8) wherein the dwelling is something that is real and of which there is no assessment of completion.  If you are a believer, it is eternally exciting to know for a fact that the Holy Spirit lives in you so you are closely joined to the Holy Spirit.  As one commentator writes:

The Spirit, then, of the resurrecting Father “lives” in the Roman Christians. He does not pay a fleeting visit, but “has its home” (Way) in them.

Morris, L. (1988). The Epistle to the Romans (pp. 310–311). Grand Rapids, MI; Leicester, England: W.B. Eerdmans; Inter-Varsity Press.

The practical aspect of being indwelt by the Holy Spirit is that one’s life, although not perfect, will display control by the Holy Spirit.  Other commentators write:

In essence, Paul says, if the Spirit of God lives in you, you will be controlled by the Spirit. That does not mean believers will not quench the Spirit, for they will (1 Thess. 5:19). Nor does it mean that believers will not grieve the Spirit, for they will (Eph. 4:30). Nor does it mean that one in whom the Holy Spirit dwells cannot sin, for he or she surely can. But it does mean that a person in whom the Holy Spirit dwells should be manifesting the control of the Spirit.

Boa, K., & Kruidenier, W. (2000). Romans (Vol. 6, pp. 252–253). Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers.

I “phrased” verses 1-11 and I saw some contrasts of eternal significance.  These contrasts include: (1) law of the Spirit of life vs. law of sin and death (v. 2), (2) walk according to the flesh vs. walk according to the Spirit (v. 4), (3) those who live according to the Spirit vs. those who live according to the flesh (v. 5), (4) set the mind on the flesh is death vs. set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace (v. 6), (5) the Spirit of God dwells in a person vs. a person who does not have the Spirit of Christ (v. 9), and (6) the body is dead because of sin vs. the Spirit is life because of righteousness (v. 10). 

These contrasts reinforce the reality that each person is either saved or lost.  There is no middle ground or fence straddling when it comes to one’s eternal destiny.  What this means is that if you are reading this post and are not a Christian, unless God intervenes, your eternal destination is hell.  But, your destiny can change.  Today can be the day of your salvation.  Please see my blog (https://stevebelsheim.com/2020/04/20/for-god-so-loves-you-2/) for a description of how you can be saved.

I also discovered that the phrase “in fact” (v. 9) does not appear in the Greek text in those specific words.  The ESV translates the Greek verb eimi as “if in fact” and it means “to possess certain characteristics, whether inherent or transitory.”  See Louw, J. P., & Nida, E. A. (1996). Greek-English lexicon of the New Testament: based on semantic domains (electronic ed. of the 2nd edition., Vol. 1, p. 148). New York: United Bible Societies.  Morris writes:

If the Spirit of God lives in you is not a way of throwing doubt on the divine indwelling. Paul’s if means “if (as is the case)”.

This teaches me that before I stress a certain English word in a passage, I need to make certain it is, “in fact”, present in the Greek text or at least explain why it is absent.

The Professor Grant Horner Bible Reading System is a great 500 day Bible reading plan.   The following link presents a description of the plan ( https://sohmer.net/media/professor_grant_horners_bible_reading_system.pdf).  My goal is to briefly share my thoughts on the passage that stands out the most for me each day.  For Day 160, John 4:35-36 was the passage that stood out.

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