Romans 7 has been the testimony of a person groaning under the weight of slavery. That slavery is to sin, and we have seen the great frustration that this slavery brings. It leaves us powerless to do the good we want to do, and it leaves us trapped doing the things we hate. Ultimately, all of this frustration and groaning has been leading to the desperate exclamation in verse 24:
What a wretched man I am! Who will deliver me from this body that is subject to death?
Here we have a cry for deliverance that echoes a similar cry earlier in the scriptures. In the book of Exodus, we find the people of Israel enslaved to Egypt. Exodus 2:23 tells us:
The Israelites groaned in their slavery and cried out, and their cry for help because of their slavery went up to God.
Then comes the good news in verses 24 and 25:
God heard their groaning and he remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac and with Jacob. So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them.
God does not turn a deaf ear to the cries of the people. Instead, he hears and becomes concerned. Then comes the story of God moving on the people’s behalf. Through a man named Moses, God delivers the people from slavery.
The God who did not turn a deaf ear to the people in Exodus is the same God at work in Romans 7. Notice that the chapter doesn’t end with despair. Instead, an answer is given to the desperate question of verse 24. Verse 25 says this:
Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Once again God has heard and become concerned. Once again he delivers, this time through the God/Man Jesus. The good news about Romans 7 is that we aren’t stuck there. Instead, God has initiated a new exodus in Christ, which means that Christ’s people are on their way to freedom! We may be powerless against the hold of sin, but God is not. Through Christ he redeems us and sets our feet on the path to fullness of life.