5. For those who are according to the flesh, study the things of the flesh; but those who are according to the spirit, feel the things of the spirit.
6. For the wisdom of the flesh is death; but the wisdom of the spirit is life and peace.
7. Because the wisdom of the flesh is hostile to God:for it is not subject to the law of God, and cannot be.
8. And those who are in the flesh, cannot please God.
9. But you are not in the flesh, but in the spirit: if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. And if anyone has not the Spirit of Christ, he is not his.
5. Carnal men think of, study, care for, and make it the object of their existence to compass the ends and objects of this passing life; and do so with a skill and persistence which has elevated their pursuit into a science. Those who are of the Spirit, study what is of heaven. As the heart is, so will be the life, animal or spiritual, of earth or heaven. This science of the flesh is the death of the soul (verse 6); the science of the spirit is the life and peace of the soul. The wisdom of the flesh is the death of the soul, because it is hostile to God (verse 7), or, as the Syriac says, at enmity with God, and repugnant to his law: naturally, necessarily, eternally at war with it. Irreconcilable war between the creature and the Creator means the ruin and destruction of the creature; for the creature subsists only by God’s love and mercy.
8. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God. The study and pursuit of objects which have their source and origin in the fall of man, and arise out of his degradation, cannot in their own nature be a source of pleasure and interest to the Eternal; and those who give their lives to the pursuit of such objects, cannot, so long as they do so, please God.
9. You who have been baptized, and have received the Spirit of God, are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit. Living for God, not for time. That is so, unless the Spirit then given has withdrawn from you. If from anyone the Spirit of God has withdrawn, that man is not in reality any longer a Christian. The spirit of the world is vain, carnal, earthly. The spirit of the devil is proud, arrogant, envious. The Spirit of Christ is gentle, humble, heavenly, and this is the spirit of Christ’s religion. And if anyone has not this spirit, he is not Christ’s.
10. But if Christ is in you, the body indeed is dead on account of sin, but the spirit lives on account of justification.
11. But if the Spirit of him who raised up Jesus from the dead, dwells in you: he who raised up Jesus from the dead, shall quicken also your mortal bodies, on account of the spirit that dwells in you.
10. If Christ is in you. If Christ dwells in you by his Spirit, you have indeed a body which is subject to death on account of Adam’s sin, but your spirit, through the justice of Christ, lives the life of grace, and will soon live the life of glory.
The Greek has, the Spirit is life, on account of justice. Your soul lives the life of grace through the justice of Christ.
The Christian is made up of a dead body, that is a body subject to death, and a spirit that lives, by grace now, by glory hereafter. Sin and concupiscence are the source of death within us; the Holy Spirit is within us the principle of life. He is essentially life in himself; in us he is the source of spiritual life. We cannot but fear, for death is in our veins; we cannot but rejoice, because true life dwells in us.
11. But the life of the soul is not our only life for eternity. The Spirit that dwells in you is the Spirit of God the Father, who raised up Jesus from the dead, and who will, therefore, one day raise up your bodies also, from mortal made immortal, because they are the habitation of the Spirit. On account, says St. Thomas, of the dignity with which your bodies are invested as dwelling-places of the Holy Ghost. The Apostle’s doctrine has no sympathy with the false philosophy which condemns the material creation as unholy. It is God’s handiwork, and capable of the highest sanctification. Christ himself, in his material nature, is seated in glory at the right hand of God. Our resurrection is the sequel of our baptism. The Holy Spirit is given us in our justification as an earnest of what is to follow: eternal life of soul and body. Christ, in whom the fulness of the Spirit dwelt, rose full of immortality and glory, in the highest possible degree; and in proportion as our souls receive the fulness of the Spirit, our bodies will participate in the glory of Christ.