In Romans 5, we discover the gifts that Jesus is eager to give those who place their faith in Him: peace with God and access to God. These are essential to remember when circumstances tempt us to think that God is against us.
Paul knew we would encounter suffering. But he also knew that suffering produces perseverance, which produces character, which produces hope. This happens when we stand in the grace that God has given us and remember that God is for us, not against us. Trials, tribulations, difficulties, and bad days are NOT God being displeased with us or judging us. If you are in Christ, you have been justified—God sees you as sinless!
So the next time the devil reminds you of your past, stand firm in the grace of God and remind him of his future.
The next time the accuser reminds you of your sin and says, “Who said you could go to God?” remind Him that Jesus has justified you and has given you peace with God AND to God—then go to God and receive grace and mercy.
The next time you endure a trial or difficulty and Satan tempts you to think that it’s because God is mad at you, remember that nothing in all of creation could separate you from the love of God.
God is using suffering to produce in you the priceless qualities of perseverance and endurance, which will produce strength of character structural moral integrity, which will eventually produce hope.
So stand, dear friend—not on your own two feet, your own merit, or your own strength. Stand firm in the grace God has given you!
So far in the Book of Romans, Paul has provided the ordered and logical argument that the only way of salvation is to be justified by grace through faith.
In the fifth chapter, we learn about the practical benefits of this justification, beginning with this incredible truth: “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ…” (Romans 5:1)
Through Jesus and Jesus alone, we have peace with God. But it gets better! We also have access to God: “…through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand…” (Romans 5:2)
Through faith in Christ, we have peace with God AND access God’s throne of grace—where we will receive mercy and grace to help us in our time of need!
This grace truly is amazing! Watch our study from Romans 5:1-5 as we opened up the word of God to read, hear, trust, and obey.
It is written…
Jesus loves Thomas and Mary and John—the three people we meet in John 21 who encountered Jesus in real and tangible ways. Jesus met them right where they were at. They all saw and believed.
And yet, Jesus loves you as much as He loves them. He says Himself that there is a special blessing for those who have not seen and yet still believe. He freely gives a special blessing—a gift of faith—for those who have not seen, but who have heard God’s word. And that’s because faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17).
We have the blessing to open the Bible week after week together, and day after day with Him to read the things that were written so that we can have the hope of resurrection and the help to find faith in Him.
In the pages of the Bible, we encounter the One who can forgive us, the One who loves us, the One who tells us the truth, and the One who gives us purpose.
These things have been written…”that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.” (John 20:31)
John 20:1-31 – “It is…Written.”
On Good Friday, we consider Jesus. We consider Him, who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself so that we won’t grow weary and give up. For the joy that lay before Him, He endured the cross so that we could enjoy unhindered fellowship with Him forever!
As Jesus approached Jerusalem the week leading up to His crucifixion, death, and resurrection, He wept. Not for the horrors that He would encounter that week. No, the Prince of Peace saw the city of peace and was overwhelmed with sorrow because they did not have peace with God.
Though the multitude cried “Hosanna!” that day, a few days later they would cry “Crucify!” and fail to recognize that God had come to them to give them peace. Because of that rejection, destruction came when the Romans completely destroyed Jerusalem.
Have you recognized Jesus coming to you to seek and to save that which was lost? One day, we will all have to stand before God alone. He will inspect your heart to see if you have peace with God.
If you don’t know the things that make for your peace and haven’t received Jesus, the coming destruction will be eternal—eternal separation from God. But it doesn’t have to be that way! This is why Jesus came—to save you from destruction.
You can ask Jesus today—right now—to forgive you of your sins, to fill you with His Spirit, and to make you a brand new creation in Christ. Cry out to Him and He will save you! Trust Him as your Savior and follow Him as the Lord of your life.
Luke 19:28-44 – “Hosanna!!!”
For the last several weeks, we have been studying “the things that make for our peace” in our study of the book of Romans.
This past Sunday, we met some people who refused to recognize “the things that make for their peace,” which would eventually lead to destruction that didn’t have to happen.
This caused the heart of Jesus to be broken as He wept over the city of Jerusalem on what we know as Palm Sunday.
Watch our study from this past Sunday as we considered Jesus’ emotional entry into Jerusalem in Luke 19:28-44.
God not only gave life to the dead, He continues to give life to the dead.
This is the gospel.
God did not come to make bad men good. God came to give dead men life. He came to give life to those who were dead in their sins and transgressions.
We see God giving life illustrated through the birth of Isaac to Abraham and Sarah, even though their bodies where as good as dead (see Hebrews 11:11-13).
But this was not written just for Abraham and Sarah. The promise of life to the dead is was not just for them, but for us too—so that we would understand and believe that no matter how dead we are spiritually because of our sin and our transgression, God CAN and DOES and WANTS to GIVE LIFE to the DEAD.
Do you believe in Him? Do you believe Jesus was raised up from the dead? Do you believe Him who was delivered up because of our offenses and was raised because of our justification?
That’s what it takes to receive God’s righteousness, redemption, and salvation—belief. There is nothing we can to do to earn God’s righteousness. There is nothing we can do to merit His favor. There is no amount of work we can accomplish to gain what He wants to freely give through faith.
His full and complete acceptance is possible by just simply believing and receiving it by faith as a gift.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”
As we continue our study in the book of Romans, we are learning that God’s righteousness, redemption, and salvation is received by trusting, not by trying. In fact, all of God’s gifts are received by simply and merely trusting and believing, not by trying harder.
The futility of trying harder versus trusting God was something the Apostle Paul understood. Before Paul met Jesus, he endeavored to earn right standing with God through his own good works, religious rites, and religious rules. But once he encountered Christ, Paul realized that salvation comes by simply and merely believing God and receiving from God by faith.
This is the theme Paul has been emphasizing so far in the book of Romans. Watch our study from Romans 4:9-25 as we continued our study of God’s amazing grace.
From Pastor Dom...
When I first gave my life to Jesus, there were friends in my life who helped me to grow in my understanding of God, through His word, and for those friends
Strengthened by grace is the Bible Teaching ministry of Pastor Dominic Dinger.
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