Believing In Christ Gives Peace With God

Have you ever asked yourself whether God really loves you? And considered how you can know with certainty that he does? Current racial, political, and international turmoil swirling throughout the world might cause some to ask, “If God does love us, how do we know?”

Perhaps there are many answers to that question. But Romans 5:6-11 says God demonstrated his love toward us by offering his son Jesus to die on the cross for our sins, and by raising him from the dead, so sinners would be justified by faith, reconciled to God, and delivered from God’s wrath.

Romans 5:8 and God’s Love

In Romans 5:6-11, Paul supports his preceding argument found in 5:1-5 that Christians have hope when they suffer. He introduces a reason for this hope in verse 5 when he says “because God’s love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” In 5:6-11, Paul provides an additional reason for hope: namely, Jesus’ death for sinners and his resurrection from the dead that guarantees future salvation from God’s wrath for those sinners for whom he died.

Paul introduces the death of Jesus in 5:6 with the words “Christ died at the right time for the ungodly while we were still weak.” He identifies the “weak” and the “ungodly” from 5:6 as “sinners” in verse 8 in order to specify that Jesus died for unrighteous people to accomplish their salvation. And these sinners, for whom Jesus died, are both Jews and Gentiles (Rom. 1:16-3:30). Paul emphasizes the uniqueness of Jesus’ death for the ungodly with the word “still” in 5:6. Jesus’ death for the ungodly happened while they were “still” sinners in a state of ungodliness, not when they were righteous.

In verse 7, Paul now clarifies the kind of death that Jesus, the righteous one, died for the unrighteous by contrasting Jesus’ ignoble death for sinners with heroic, patriotic, noble deaths in the ancient world. Ancient deaths were for a good or noble cause (e.g. Rom. 5:7). But in 5:6, Paul refers to Jesus’ death as a death for “ungodly” sinners. Unlike the kind of death mentioned in verse 7, Paul states in verse 6 and again in verses 8-10 that Jesus died for unrighteous people to achieve their justification, salvation, and reconciliation.

In Rom. 5:8, Paul explicitly mentions God’s love for sinners in association with Jesus’ death. He states “God demonstrated his own love for us like this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” This statement echoes John’s remarks in John 3:16. Both John and Paul suggest God’s love is an action instead of a personal emotion.

In verses 9-11, Paul mentions a few of the benefits that his love achieved for us because of Jesus’ death: justification, salvation, and reconciliation. First, justification refers to God’s verbal declaration of not guilty. This declaration provides legal and divine exoneration for the sinners for whom Christ died (Rom. 1:18-3:20). The verb translated as “to justify” basically means to declare to be in the right, and God’s justification comes to the sinner by means of Jesus’ blood.

Justification by His Blood

Justification is primarily a future verdict in Romans that has invaded this present evil age (see Rom. 2:133:20245:19). God offers this positive verdict in favor of those who have faith in Christ, against whom God has counted their transgressions (Rom. 4:6-8). In 5:9, Paul continues his thoughts from 5:1 about the present reality of justification for those who have faith in Christ, stating justification by Jesus’ blood results in future deliverance (e.g. salvation) from God’s wrath (see also Rom. 2:7-103:21-26).

Reconciled with God by His Blood

Second, Paul states Jesus’ death accomplished reconciliation for those for whom he died (Rom. 5:10). Reconciliation refers to the friendship that now exists between God and the sinners as a result of Jesus’ blood acquiring justification. This friendship is applied to sinners by faith in Christ, because of Jesus’ death. And this friendship will serve as a means by which the reconciled friend will be delivered from God’s future wrath in the day of God’s judgment (notice verses 9-10).

Salvation by His Death and Resurrection

Third, in 5:9-10, Paul mentions salvation. Salvation, like justification, is primarily a future hope that has invaded this present evil age (Rom. 5:9-10). Although justification refers to one aspect of salvation, Paul’s reference to salvation with the words “will be saved” means future deliverance from God’s wrath. The phrase “from wrath” supports this very point in verse 9. The phrase “through him” in 5:9 asserts sinners will be delivered from God’s wrath through Jesus who shed his blood to accomplish justification, salvation, and reconciliation. The dead and resurrected Christ is the one through whom God accomplishes salvation for the ungodly and weak sinners (see Rom. 5:689-116:1-11). And the wrath from which Jesus’ death and resurrection will deliver/save those for whom he died is God’s future wrath that he will pour out on the Day of Judgment upon the entire world (e.g. Rom. 2:7-10).

The combination of the justification of the ungodly, the blood of Jesus, reconciliation, and deliverance/salvation from God’s wrath through the blood of Jesus together with his death for the ungodly speaks to the substitutionary nature of Jesus’ death in 5:6-9. According to verse 6 and verses 8-10, the ungodly and weak sinners, who are enemies of God and who deserve the penalty of his wrath (2:7-10), will be delivered from it because Jesus died for them, because God raised Jesus from the dead (see also Rom. 4:25) and because faith links the ungodly to the benefits of the blood of Christ (4:24-25; 5:1, 6, 8-10). Paul’s remarks in 5:10 support the above interpretation when he states because of Jesus’ death and resurrection, those who were once enemies with God are now reconciled to God, and therefore will be saved by Jesus’ life and resurrection.

God’s Wrath in Romans

In Rom. 1:18-32, Paul emphasizes God has handed the rebellious over to wrath in this world (Rom. 1:18-32) and in 2:1-3:20 that he will pour out his wrath against all disobedience on the Day of Judgment. Now in verses 9-10, Paul asserts that those reconciled sinners by faith in Christ will be saved from God’s wrath for four reasons: the blood of Christ (5:6, 8-9), Jesus’ resurrection from the dead (5:10), justification by faith (5:9), and reconciliation with God (5:10-11).

The ungodly sinners show their hostility to God by disobeying him, and God shows his hostility toward them by handing them over to his current wrath (1:18) and by reserving them for a future day of wrath (2:7-10; 5:9). But by faith in Christ, God’s enemies become his friends because God showed his love for sinners by offering Christ to die for their sins (Rom 5:8-10; see also John 3:16).

5 Practical Applications

1. God has written every Christian a love letter, whose content is the death and the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. His death for sinners guarantees justification, reconciliation, and future salvation.

2. Jesus’ death for sinners proves that God loves us. And nothing can separate Christians from the love of God in Jesus Christ (cf. Rom. 8:31-39).

3. When we doubt God’s love for us, we should preach the Gospel to ourselves. When the devil tempts us to despair, and he reminds us of the guilt within, we should fight the devil off with the cross and resurrection of Jesus. We should kick the devil in the teeth with the bloody, resurrected-empowered, and exalted Gospel of Jesus Christ.

4. We who experience God’s love in Christ should therefore obey him in the power of the Spirit (Rom. 12:1-2). They should walk in the Spirit, and not fulfill the lusts of the flesh (Gal. 5:16-21).

5. The love of God in Jesus Christ is God’s solution to the current racial strife in the U.S. and beyond (Rom. 3:21-3014:1-15:33Eph. 2:11-22).

Christians, God has demonstrated his love toward us like this: while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Delight with joy in God’s love for his people. Amen.

Peace With God at Last

Image result for pictures of God's peace and the crossImage result for pictures of God's peace and the cross

 

And God shall wipe all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain. — Revelation 21:4

We now know what it means to be a Christian. We know the price that was paid to get these elusive things called peace and happiness. I know men who would write a check for a million dollars if they could find peace. Millions are searching for it. Every time they get close to finding the peace found only in Christ, Satan steers them away. He blinds them. He throws up a smoke screen. He bluffs them. And they miss it! But we Christians have found it! It is ours now forever.

We have found the secret of life.

The word peace has been used often in the last forty or fifty years. We talk about peace, and we have many peace conferences; yet, at the moment, it seems that the world is heading toward anything but peace.

“The way of peace have they not known,” the apostle Paul says concerning the human race (Romans 3:17). As we look around, we find that there is little personal, domestic, social, economic, or political peace anywhere. Why? Because we all have the seeds of suspicion and violence, of hatred and destruction within us.

Jesus said,

Blessed are the peacemakers. — Matthew 5:9

We are to try for peace. This does not mean pacifism. We are to work for peace. But Jesus also predicted,

Ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. — Matthew 24:6-7

Peace can be experienced only when we have received divine pardon — when we have been reconciled to God and when we have harmony within, with our fellow man and especially with God. “There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked” (Isaiah 57:21). But through the blood of the Cross, Christ has made peace with God for us and is Himself our peace. If by faith we accept Him, we are justified by God and can realize the inner serenity that can come to man through no other means. When Christ enters our hearts, we are freed of that haunting sense of sin. Cleansed of all feeling of contamination and unfitness, we can lift up our heads secure in the knowledge that we can look with confidence into the face of our fellow men.

When a man’s ways please the Lord, He maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him. — Proverbs 16:7

Even more important, we know that we can stand before God in the hour of our death with this same feeling of peace and security.

In the Bible Jesus told us there is going to be war until the end of the age. He knew that human nature is not going to change without a spiritual new birth. He knew that the vast majority of the human race were never going to be converted to Him. The vast majority of the people of the world today are not “born again.” So, we always have the potential that violence will break out in a home, in a community, in the world.

Peace with God

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Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. — Romans 5:1

Having made peace through the blood of His cross. — Colossians 1:20

There is a peace that you can have immediately — peace with God.

The greatest warfare going on in the world today is between mankind and God. People may not realize that they’re at war with God. But if they don’t know Jesus Christ as Savior and if they haven’t surrendered to Him as Lord, God considers them to be at war with Him. That chasm has been caused by sin. The Bible says that all have “sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). “Oh,” people say, “I have joined the church. I have been baptized.” But has Jesus come to live in their hearts? Not only as Savior, but as Lord?

It would be the greatest tragedy if I didn’t tell you that unless you repent of your sins and receive Christ as your Savior, you are going to be lost.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever [that “whosoever” is you] believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. — John 3:16

It’s not just head-belief. It’s heart-belief too. It’s total trust, total commitment. We bring everything to the Cross where the Lord Jesus Christ died for our sins. He made peace with God by His death on the Cross.

If we turn our backs on Him and don’t commit our lives to Him, we will have no hope in the future.

For one to have peace with God, it cost the blood of His Son. “With the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot,” said Peter (1 Peter 1:19).

If I were the only person in all the world, Jesus would have died for me, because He loves me. And He loves you! His love is pouring out from the Cross.

“Meet Me in Heaven”

I read a biography of Queen Victoria, and I learned that the queen would sometimes go to the slums of London. She went into one home to have tea with an older lady, and when the queen rose to leave, she asked, “Is there anything I can do for you?” And the woman said, “Yes, ma’am, Your Majesty, you can meet me in Heaven.” The queen turned to her and said softly, “Yes. I’ll be there, but only because of the blood that was shed on the Cross for you and for me.”

Queen Victoria, in her day the most powerful woman in the world, had to depend on the blood of Christ for her salvation. And, so do we. The Bible says that God is the Author of peace (1 Corinthians 14:33). God provided salvation through the cross. He made peace by the shedding of His blood. The war that exists between you and God can be over quickly, and the peace treaty is signed in the blood of His Son Jesus Christ.

Are you at peace with God? Or do the sins of your heart separate you from God?

 

For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thess. 4:16-17).

It was “very early in the morning” while “it was yet dark,” that Jesus rose from the dead. Not the sun, but only the morning-star shone upon His opening tomb. The shadows had not fled, the citizens of Jerusalem had not awaked. It was still night–the hour of sleep and darkness, when He arose. Nor did his rising break the slumbers of the city. So shall it be “very early in the morning while it is yet dark,” and when nought but the morning-star is shining, that Christ’s body, the Church, shall arise. Like Him, His saints shall awake when the children of the night and darkness are still sleeping their sleep of death. In their arising they disturb no one. The world hears not the voice that summons them. As Jesus laid them quietly to rest, each in his own still tomb, like children in the arms of their mother; so, as quietly, as gently, shall He awake them when the hour arrives. To them come the quickening words, “Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust” (Isa. 26:19). Into their tomb the earliest ray of glory finds its way. They drink in the first gleams of morning, while as yet the eastern clouds give but the faintest signs of the uprising. Its genial fragrance, its soothing stillness, its bracing freshness, its sweet loneliness, its quiet purity, all so solemn and yet so full of hope, these are theirs.

Oh, the contrast between these things and the dark night through which they have passed! Oh, the contrast between these things and the grave from which they have sprung! And as they shake off the encumbering turf, flinging mortality aside, and rising, in glorified bodies, to meet their Lord in the air, they are lighted and guided upward, along the untrodden pathway, by the beams of that Star of the morning, which, like the Star of Bethlehem, conducts them to the presence of the King. “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”
–Horatius Bonar

“While the hosts cry Hosanna, from heaven descending,

With glorified saints and the angels attending,

With grace on His brow, like, a halo of glory,

Will Jesus receive His own.”

“Even so, come quickly.”

A soldier said, “When I die do not sound taps over my grave. Instead, play reveille, the morning call, the summons to arise.”

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