The Book of Romans – Death to Sin

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“Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?  Or have you forgotten that when we were joined with Christ Jesus in baptism, we joined him in his death?  For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives. Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as He was.” Romans 6:1-5 Paul is asking, because of the wonderful grace of God, do we keep sinning? No, we must repent and change how we live. If we believe that we can keep on sinning, we don’t understand salvation and what Jesus did for us on the cross. How can a person who is a Christian go back and continue to live in the sin that he used to live in? Something has drastically happened from within. We have been talking about justification. Now we are changing gears. Though the word is never mentioned, now we are looking at regeneration; of what takes place in salvation. Something happened on the inside. Something died. When I put my faith into Jesus Christ and in His death, I am identified with Him. What I was in Adam, my old lifestyle was controlled by sin, I couldn’t help myself. Paul says we have died to sin. This is important because some people say repentance is not necessary. Do you realize how we mess up witnessing to people if we don’t show them first of all that they are lost? If they are lost and […]

The Book of Romans – Righteousness Reigns over Sin

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“God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were. But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant. So just as sin ruled over all people and brought them to death, now God’s wonderful grace rules instead, giving us right standing with God and resulting in eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 5:20-21 Paul has been showing us that the law does not justify us. Now he shows that in itself, the law does not even make us sinners, Adam did that. What purpose does the law serve? It shows us that we are sinners in need of God’s grace. The law makes sin clearer and greater by clearly contrasting it with God’s holy standard. Many people have the idea that where grace reigns, there will be a disregard for righteousness and a casual attitude toward sin. That is not the reign of grace at all. Paul wrote in another letter, “For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people. And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God, while we look forward with hope to that wonderful day when the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will be revealed.” (Titus 2:11-13) God reigns through righteousness, and grace teaches righteousness. Grace does not accommodate sin; it faces it squarely and goes above sin in order to conquer it. Grace does not wink at unrighteousness; it confronts sin with the atonement at the cross and the victory won at the open tomb. Grace is no friend of sin; it is its sworn enemy. We cannot help being part of Adam as sinners, but we can change […]

The Book of Romans – Victory

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“Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone. Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other person obeyed God, many will be made righteous.” Romans 5:18-19 This is continued from the last devotion. In the long conflict from Bethlehem to Calvary, the most terrific battle ever waged, the actual and only Heir to the throne of dominion and the false pretender to the throne was locked in moral combat. This battle lasted until the time of the cross. Satan’s real purpose in this battle was to compel Jesus to fail just once in His submission to God. When at last Jesus bowed His head and died without once failing in His submission to His heavenly Father, Satan was defected in this conflict. The death of Jesus not only defeated Satan, but it also cancelled Satan’s claim upon the earth and the entire human race. When Jesus dismissed His Spirit without giving Satan any claim upon Him, Satan became a murderer of an innocent victim upon whom he had no claim; he therefore became subject, in the court of universal justice, to the death penalty. “Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could he set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying.” (Hebrews 2:14-15) On the day of Calvary Jesus won the victory. He won the victory for all of us. We look at the world and we do not see much of […]

The Book of Romans – The Battle

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“For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:17 In this devotion I am going to continue to write about how Jesus saved us from death and gave us the life that is life more abundant. When Jesus appeared, a mighty battle took place between Jesus and Satan. All the destiny of the world and the human race depended upon the out-come of this battle. If Satan could find or produce one tiny flaw in the life or character of Jesus, Satan would have control over Jesus and would have won the battle. This battle started when Jesus’ ministry started. When Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, Jesus went into the wilderness to be alone with God and prepare Himself for what He knew was about to happen. This was when Satan tempted Him. “Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted there by the devil. For forty days and forty nights he fasted and became very hungry.” (Matthew 4:1-2) This is the point at which Satan tries to tempt us, when are weak and don’t have the strength to fight. Satan offered Jesus the world and all that is part of the world, but Jesus never gave in to these temptations. Jesus defeated Satan by the Word of God. “Get out of here, Satan,” Jesus told him. “For the Scriptures say, ‘You must worship the Lord your God and serve only him.” (Matthew 4:10) Satan did not give up on this battle. This battle continues in the Garden of Gethsemane. Jesus fought this temptation with […]

The Book of Romans – Christ’s Obedience

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“But there is a great difference between Adam’s sin and God’s gracious gift. For the sin of this one man, Adam, brought death to many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of forgiveness to many through this other man, Jesus Christ. And the result of God’s gracious gift is very different from the result of that one man’s sin. For Adam’s sin led to condemnation, but God’s free gift leads to our being made right with God, even though we are guilty of many sins.” Romans 5:15-16 In the last devotion we wrote about Adam giving away the dominion of the earth to Satan. Because man transferred the title for the dominion of the earth to Satan, the only way that God could legally recover it for man was through man, the original trustee of the earth. When Adam’s allegiance went from God to Satan and with it the dominion of the world, man ceased to be free and became a slave of Satan. Being owned and controlled by Satan, he could not free himself. A man must be found upon whom Satan has no claim or control in order to head a movement for swinging the world back to its original allegiance. This man must be able to remove Satan’s legal claim to the earth before it can be restored to its original rulership. This Man had to be a member of the trustee group in order to qualify to enter the legal battle to take back the earth. He had to be without stain or taint of sin. He had to be absolutely perfect in order not to furnish Satan with any claim upon him. He could not be Adam’s son because then he would have the taint of Adam’s sin. If he did […]

The Book of Romans – Adam’s Sin

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“When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned. Yes, people sinned even before the law was given. But it was not counted as sin because there was not yet any law to break. Still, everyone died—from the time of Adam to the time of Moses—even those who did not disobey an explicit commandment of God, as Adam did. Now Adam is a symbol, a representation of Christ, who was yet to come.” Romans 5:12-14 The book of Romans is a book about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It is about our salvation and how God saved us. We need to understand the gospel. Paul in the following verses is explaining the gospel. Because of the sin of Adam, we are all sinners. We are all outside of God’s Kingdom. Was it fair for God to condemn the whole world just because of one man’s disobedience? Yes, it was not only fair, but it was wise and gracious. If God had tested every human being the result would have been the same, disobedience. More important, by condemning one-man God could then save the world by one-man Jesus Christ. Each of us is racially united with Adam, so his deed affects us. Man was originally made for authority. He was created to have dominion over the earth. God gave the entire earth to man. It was his to do with as he should decide. There were certain strings attached. What man did with this dominion and authority was his responsibility. If man fumbled the ball, God could forcibly take away His gift. When Adam sinned, man transferred his allegiance from God to Satan, he also transferred his dominion. The kingship, the rulership of this earth which was originally given to man, […]

The Book of Romans – Guarantee

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“And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, he will certainly save us from God’s condemnation. For since our friendship with God was restored by the death of his Son while we were still his enemies, we will certainly be saved through the life of his Son. So now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God because our Lord Jesus Christ has made us friends of God.” Romans 5:9-11 I get calls all the time that my guarantee on my truck is about to expire. Yes, it is, my truck is a 2007 model and the guarantee expired many years ago. So many times, the guarantee we receive on products that we buy is with a limited warranty. I really don’t know what that means other than it means that it will not guarantee the product for long, maybe until you get out of the store. Paul in this scripture is telling us that our salvation is guaranteed by God and when He guarantees something you can count on His promises. In my business I will guarantee my work and I will stand behind what I do, but I am only human and I don’t control the future. My guarantee is only as good as if I live long enough and I stay in business long enough to honor the guarantee. If we look at our world, we see that we have no true guarantees, but we can depend on God’s guarantee. God is in charge of the future and He knows everything so I can depend on His guarantee. Our salvation in God is the only thing in life that we can depend on.  “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. […]

The Book of Romans – God’s Love for Us

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“And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love. When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good.  But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.” Romans 5:5-8 “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life.” (Proverbs 13:12) As we wait for this hope to be fulfilled, the love of God is poured into our hearts. It has nothing to do with our love, this is God’s love for us. God sent His Son at the right time, at the due time. To some it may seem that it was late, but it was in God’s perfect time. The world was prepared spiritually, politically, philosophically and geographically to spread the word of Jesus to the world. Jesus died for all sinners and this includes me. This is what makes me love Jesus more and more, because this was true love for us. Jesus died for us sinners because we had no power in ourselves to save us, only by sending Jesus could God save us. The work of Jesus on the cross for us is God’s ultimate proof of His love. He may give additional proof, but He can give no greater proof. If the cross is the ultimate demonstration of God’s love, it is also the ultimate demonstration of man’s hatred. It also proves that the height of man’s hatred can’t defeat […]

The Book of Romans – Access to God

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“Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.” Romans 5:1-2 The second blessing of justification is access to God. The Jews were kept form God’s presence by the veil in the temple, and the Gentiles were kept by a wall in the temple with a warning on it that any Gentile who went beyond would be killed. But when Jesus died, He tore the veil and broke down the wall. “The light from the sun was gone. And suddenly, the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn down the middle.” (Luke 23:45) “For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us.” (Ephesians 2:14) In Jesus Christ, believers both Jew and Gentile had access to God. Now both Jews and Gentiles could have access to God by His inexhaustible riches of grace. The word access means entrance to the king through the favor of another. This favor was provided by Jesus Christ. Peace with God took care of the past; He no longer holds our sins against us. Access to God takes care of the present, we can come to God anytime for the help we need. Hope of glory takes care of the future; someday we will share His glory. The word joyfully means boast, we have nothing to boast about; we did nothing to receive these wonderful blessings. It was a gift from […]

The Book of Romans – Peace with God

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“Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.” Romans 5:1-2 Paul has proved that the whole world is guilty before God, and that no one can be saved by religious deeds such as keeping the law. He has explained that God’s way of salvation has always been by grace. “God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.” (Ephesians 2:8) Paul has used Abraham as his illustration. If we stop at this point in the letter, we would know that we need to be saved and that we could be saved. But there is much more that the sinner needs to know about justification by faith. In chapter 5 Paul explains the last two words in chapter 4, “our justification.” Paul explains two basic truths: the blessings of our justification and the basis for our justification. Paul answers two questions, can we be sure that it will last? How is it possible for God to save a sinner through the death of Christ on the cross? The first blessing that we have is, to me the best, peace with God. In the world that we live in we all need the peace of God in our lives. The unsaved person is at enmity with God because he cannot obey God’s law or fulfill God’s will. “But there is no peace for the wicked,” says the Lord.” (Isaiah 48:22) “And this righteousness will bring peace. Yes, it will bring […]