“For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.”
King James Version (KJV)
8:15 For ye - Who are real Christians. Have not received the spirit of bondage - The Holy Ghost was not properly a spirit of bondage, even in the time of the Old Testament. Yet there was something of bondage remaining even in those who then had received the Spirit. Again - As the Jews did before. We - All and every believer. Cry - The word denotes a vehement speaking, with desire, confidence, constancy. Abba, Father - The latter word explains the former. By using both the Syriac and the Greek word, St. Paul seems to point out the joint cry both of the Jewish and gentile believers. The spirit of bondage here seems directly to mean, those operations of the Holy Spirit by which the soul, on its first conviction, feels itself in bondage to sin, to the world, to Satan, and obnoxious to the wrath of God. This, therefore, and the Spirit of adoption, are one and the same Spirit, only manifesting itself in various operations, according to the various circumstances of the persons.
Ro 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage. The time is referred to when they were born again, and entered the kingdom of God. They did not receive the spirit of bondage, of slavery to sin, so that they would obey its dictates, and thus be in fear of death. Instead, they received the Holy Spirit according to promise (Ac 2:38). But ye have received the Spirit of adoption. The Spirit God bestows upon those who are accepted as his children. Paul was writing to the Romans, among whom the adoption of children, not their own by nature, was common. They would understand this to mean that those converted, or born again, are adopted as children of God; upon those thus adopted he bestows his Spirit; this Spirit in their hearts produces a loving trust that enables them to address God as Father. Abba, Father. "Abba", Chaldee for "Father".