Monday, May 16, 2016

8 benefits of knowing Jesus Now

Read Romans 5.

After several chapters explaining the wrath of God upon sinners, the Apostle Paul now unfolds the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  Forgiveness and eternal life are available as a free gift through belief in Jesus.  Being saved from the wrath to come and enjoying a personal relationship with God is not something in the future only.  God does not offer a "hope so" salvation or make us wait until we die to see how things turn out.  It may be enjoyed this life!

Notice the verb tenses of the statements of a believer's condition with the Lord.
1. "...have been justified..." (v.1a)
The Judge of heaven has declared believers innocent of the charges against them.  They have been judiciously set free.

2. "...have peace with God..." (v.1b)
There is no more animosity.  We are in agreement.  There is a oneness, a quietness in our relationship with Him.

3. "...have also obtained access by faith into this grace..." (v.2a)
Grace is "the divine influence upon the heart, and its reflection in the life."  Over and over, in the second half of this chapter, Paul reminds us that what God has done is a free gift.  It is impossible to earn this.  It is by faith through God's grace that we are saved.

4. "...we rejoice in hope..." (v.2b)
Being free from God's judgment, experiencing His love and forgiveness, knowing for certain that there awaits for us a home in heaven, causes one to live with joy.

5. "...God's love has been poured out into our hearts..." (v.5b)
Our assurance of salvation in Christ comes from the work of the Holy Spirit within us.  He confirms to the believer of God's eternal love for us.  It is a sacrificial love, demonstrated by the fact that Jesus died for our sins (5:8).  It a faithful love in that the Holy Spirit reminds us continually of His presence.

6. "...the Holy Spirit has who has been given to us..." (v.5c)
The Holy Spirit takes up residence within the believer at the very moment when one places their faith in Christ.  Paul reminded the Romans of this.  "Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him." (Romans 8:9)

7. "...we have now been justified by his blood..." (v.9a)
Hebrews 9:22 states, "...and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins."  It was the death of Jesus on the cross that made the full and final payment for sin.  "He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world." (1 John 2:2)

8. "...we have now received reconciliation." (v.11b)
Atonement has taken place.  God did not change; we did.  Once we were at cross purposes with God, enemies.  Now, we are in the family of God.


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