All creation lives under God and so there must be a rule to a way of life under God; even those who rebel against God follow a rule, which is their own (not of God). This precisely is the contrast between the Law of Sin and death and the Law of the Spirit of Life.
22 For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man,
23 but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.
24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?
25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, on the one hand I myself with my mind am serving the law of God, but on the other, with my flesh the law of sin.
One of the reasons why we all have different ideas on what’s right and what’s wrong is because from Adam we have received our own standard of knowledge concerning what is right and wrong (Gen 2:9,17) that is separate from the Law of God. Adam has given us all a nature of rebellion against God and we resort to it naturally. Many have gone under far deeper to recognize themselves as good people but in this they are only suppressing the truth in unrighteousness like a person trying to hold down a floating buoy.
Our nature to sin is the very fabric in the members of our body (flesh) and the Bible refers to it as the Law of Sin and Death. This may be merely observed in some people and rampant in many for the simple reason that God shed common grace on the wicked as He does on the righteous, making the rain fall and the sun shine on them both just the same. Through this common grace He restrains the wretch who is totally depraved from being utterly depraved thus withholding man from unleashing hell on earth.
The natural person is one who is prisoner to the law of sin and such a person will only recognize this by way of the Law of God, which stands white as snow as compared to the filthy rags of the law inherent and working in each person. It is this Law of God given by way of the Holy Spirit that exposes sin in the hearts of those who keep His Law; it shows the hopeless destructive state of man left to himself.
8 And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment;
I wonder if a person who knows not his slavery to sin will ever know a Savior in Jesus Christ, who saves from sin!
2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.
12 For all who have sinned without the Law will also perish without the Law, and all who have sinned under the Law will be judged by the Law;
13 for it is not the hearers of the Law who are just before God, but the doers of the Law will be justified
17 Even so faith, if it has no works, is dead, being by itself.
26 For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead.
If we look at James 2 and Romans 2 as mentioned above, we see that grace is in that we are given a spirit of obedience to the Law (Rom 15:18), which Christ purchased for us by His blood… complete Salvation for His people. The Holy Law of God is so critical to Christian life that it is referred to as the ‘measuring rod’ (Ezek 40:3-5; Rev 11:1; Rev 21:15) of God’s temple and city, who are his chosen people. Man was probably given two hands that he may hold the two great commandments of God Almighty, which are to love God above all things even himself and second to love his neighbor as himself. This Law just does not make sin known but also serves as the evidence of Christ work in the believer’s life. It thereby becomes the measure of holiness in the Christian’s life.
So since there is such a thing as the Law of God, there are also penalties for those who do not adhere to them, such may be observed as below.
12 “He who strikes a man so that he dies shall surely be put to death.
13 “But if he did not lie in wait for him, but God let him fall into his hand, then I will appoint you a place to which he may flee.
14 “If, however, a man acts presumptuously toward his neighbor, so as to kill him craftily, you are to take him even from My altar, that he may die
The reason I sight these is to show that the blueprint for ecclesiastical as well as civil government for society has its foundation in the Bible and in many ways worldviews concerning these have been borrowed from the teachings of scripture. The reason people today want to do away with the Law of God is because even a whiff of His Holy Law gives them the taste of disgust which comes from the flesh and since man is self-centered since Adam, the last thing he will truly admit about himself is the wretched sinner he is before God. Add to all this the accountability required from the believer to face the repercussions of his actions makes for a Gospel from which the natural man would run away from.
However the Gospel bears the power of God therefore when the Father call His elect from language and nation unto Christ, these are brought to repentance by the Law of the Spirit Life who reveals unto the elect the futile law of natural man’s rebellion against God.
Romans 5 (Note: Grace did not substitute the Law but worked with the Law in saving the elect)
19 For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.
20 The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,
21 so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.