My son is realizing that when he disobeys mom and dad that he is sinning. We will say to him, "I will only tell you one time. When you do not do as mom says, you are disobeying. You will get a spanking for disobeying mom or dad." He does pretty well most of the time, but lately we've noticed that he really feels remorse for his sin (not all the time, he is only 3 years old). He will tell us, "I don't want to disobey. I want to obey mom."
That really has made me look at Romans 7:14-20 a lot more seriously. I always called it the "Do Do Do" verses because it can get a little confusing. But reading it as a mom who has a little boy that is now struggling with his sins, I see it in a fresh way.
(14) We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin.
(15) I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.
(16) And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good.
(17) As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me.
(18) I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature.For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.
(19) For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing.
(20) Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
I know that he wants to do good, but he can't. And neither can I. I struggle with things that I know are wrong and I continue to do them. And it is the sin living in me. I can only, daily, surrender myself to the Lord. I can only ask for His grace and forgiveness when I inevitably screw up. Now, I don't read these verses and see a license to sin, I read them as an encouragement to submit myself to the Lord. That I need the Lord to carry out the good that I desire to do. That I need to rely on Him to do good and to obey.
I have a feeling that my children will lead me to ponder Scripture in different ways. Thanks to my son for clearing up the "Do Do Do" verses for me. ;)