The Old Man

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scottmaciver

Puritan Board Sophomore
In Romans 6:6, we are told that the old man is crucified. Most of the ministers who have been trained at the Free Church of Scotland College have been taught and are of the view that this verse teaches that the old man is dead.

I read a Spurgeon sermon on Acts 10:14 (http://www.spurgeongems.org/vols31-33/chs1823.pdf) where Spurgeon states that this verse teaches us that the old man remains in the Christian and though crucified, is dying rather than dead.The more I think about it, the more I struggle with the view that the old man is dead.

What is the view here on the board?
Is 'the old man is dead' a minority view?
 

Scott1

Puritanboard Commissioner
Westminster Confession of Faith

Chapter XIII
Of Sanctification

I. They, who are once effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart, and a new spirit created in them, are further sanctified, really and personally, through the virtue of Christ's death and resurrection,[1] by His Word and Spirit dwelling in them:[2] the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed,[3] and the several lusts thereof are more and more weakened and mortified;[4] and they more and more quickened and strengthened in all saving graces,[5] to the practice of true holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.[6]

II. This sanctification is throughout, in the whole man;[7] yet imperfect in this life, there abiding still some remnants of corruption in every part;[8] whence arises a continual and irreconcilable war, the flesh lusting against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh.[9]

III. In which war, although the remaining corruption, for a time, may much prevail;[10] yet, through the continual supply of strength from the sanctifying Spirit of Christ, the regenerate part does overcome;[11] and so, the saints grow in grace,[12] perfecting holiness in the fear of God.[13]

The context of Scripture (remember, Scripture interprets Scripture, we interpret the less clear in light of the more clear) is that a remnant of the old nature abides in the believer after his regeneration.

It no longer has dominant control, but abides, slowly weakened as the believer avails himself of the ordinary means of grace God has appointed (especially the Word and sacraments).

Another way we might say this is in language Martin Luther used, the will is no longer in bondage to the sin nature (old man). Yet, as Mr. Luther stated and was so aware of in his own life, we continue to struggle against the world, the flesh and the devil.

All defeated as to determining our nature, or our judgment, but present to recede by God's grace in this life.

This struggle (sanctification) is much of what the Christian life is about.
 

Contra_Mundum

Pilgrim, Alien, Stranger
Staff member
I'd call the old man a "zombie".

Remaining "flesh" is the problem. "...that is, in my flesh there dwelleth no good thing." There's "another law in my members."

"Who will free me from this body of death?"

My remaining earthly life is a continual cutting-away of that dead stuff still clinging to me.
 

MW

Puritanboard Amanuensis
The more I think about it, the more I struggle with the view that the old man is dead.

Do you believe that Jesus Christ was crucified in your place? In the eyes of the law that means you have been crucified. The law now no longer pursues you as a transgressor of the law because it regards you as already having suffered its penalty in the death of Jesus. Romans 6 teaches us to live out of our union with Christ. As the law now reckons us to be dead we should likewise reckon ourselves to be dead.
 

Skyler

Puritan Board Graduate
One of the men in my church whom I respect highly differentiates between the "old man" and the "flesh" or "indwelling sin." The old man is dead, but we continue to struggle with the sin dwelling in our members.
 

MarieP

Puritan Board Senior
One of the men in my church whom I respect highly differentiates between the "old man" and the "flesh" or "indwelling sin." The old man is dead, but we continue to struggle with the sin dwelling in our members.

I agree! I heard an excellent exposition by Mark Chanski (sadly I don't think it's online- it was on cassette tape!) in which he outlines the different views and makes a case for the old man being dead. He links this to the context of the previous chapter concerning the headship of Adam and of Christ.
 
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