Tuesday, May 24, 2016

5 negative benefits of a knowing Jesus

Read Romans 8.

What are the benefits of a personal relationship with Christ?

1. No Condemnation. (vv.1-11)
Those who personally place their faith in Jesus are forgiven of their sins.  The judgment against them has been expunged.  This is not the result of anything the individual did.  It is solely due to the fact that Jesus paid our penalty on the cross.  At the very moment of belief in Him, the grace of God is applied to our account.

2. No Obligation. (vv.12-17)
We owed a debt we could not pay.  He paid a debt He did not owe.  Placing our eternal trust in Jesus spiritually frees us.  No longer are we slaves to sin, but we have become the children of God.

3. No Comparison. (vv.18-25)
Everyone in this life suffers.  It is the worldwide effect of sin ever since Genesis 3.  The world is in "bondage to corruption" (v.21).  This is the observable scientific law of entropy at work as opposed to the man-made theory of evolution.  All things are not evolving into something better, but the world is degrading with each generation.
All creation groans (v.22)
All people groan (v.23)
The Holy Spirit groans (v.26)
These groanings are like birth pangs, leading all creation toward the next step in God's sovereign plan.  Paul stated that the present sufferings "are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us." (v.18)  The physical, cultural, moral, and spiritual deterioration of this world will ultimately lead to hope.  Our hope is not in this world getting better but in the fact of Christ's return.  He will come.  He will rule.  All the groanings of this life will one day be turned to glory.  The wait will be worth it.  

4. No Desperation.     (vv.26-30)
In the meantime, we are not left alone in our present suffering and weaknesses.  The Holy Spirit who indwells every believer in Jesus (8:9),  helps us with our thinking (v.5), assures us of our right standing and relationship with the Lord, and intercedes for us in our praying.  There is no need to be depressed and give up.  Even when we feel so overwhelmed by what we see in our deteriorating world and our immediate circumstances, God is present with us.  Even when we do not know what God is doing and cannot put our prayers into words, the Holy Spirit does so on our behalf according to God's will.

5. No Separation. (vv.31-39)
No matter what the culture does, no matter what circumstances may come our way, nothing will ever change the love that the God of Heaven has for us.  Once we have become part of God's family through personal faith in Jesus, it is impossible to jeopardize that eternal position.

"He who testifies to these things says, 'Surely I am coming soon.'  Amen.  Come, Lord Jesus!" (Revelation 22:20)

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