Peace with God
Let us continue our journey through the book of Romans. I want to thank you for the significant and positive response to our study. I pray that these emails are beneficial to your walk with the Lord and help you on your journey.
Read: Romans 5
Peace with God. That is a statement that we may not have full comprehension. Building upon what Paul has already stated, we are not at peace with God. Humanity has exchanged the truth of God for a lie. We have worshipped the creation instead of the creator. We have exchanged the truth for a lie. Let us dive into Romans 5 together and see what the Lord has for us.
1. Peace with God (1-2). In the very first verse of Romans 5, we find tremendous hope. Because we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through Jesus. It is not because of works that we are justified. We’ve already established that there is nothing that you can do to establish favor with God, see chapter 3. Because of faith in Christ, we are justified; we are forgiven, we are redeemed. It is because of the work of Christ that we are justified, and because of this justification, we have peace with God. We are no longer enemies of God; we are children. We have grace, unmerited favor, from God in which we stand! These first two verses are beautiful verses that we can take great hope in.
2. God’s purpose in our suffering (3-5). Paul begins verse three with a particular set of words. Rejoice in our sufferings. When is the last time that you have been glad to suffer? Suffering in the Christian life is a result of many factors, but none of it is wasteful. First, God uses some suffering for corrective measures. When a child does not obey its parents, it is disciplined. We know from God’s Word that He disciplines those whom He loves. Secondly, for the glory of God. We can often suffer to bring glory to the name of Jesus. This one can be difficult for non-believers and many Christians. Our suffering is meant to bring our dependence on the Lord as well as point others to Him. We know this is true because, in John 9, a man is born blind with only the reason to bring glory to God. Thirdly, because there is sin in our world, we often suffer as the result of our sin, someone else’s sin, or because our world is infected by sin. Our world is broken; people get cancer, earthquakes, etc. Lastly, to build your character. God is in the business of making us more like Christ. He will often use suffering to humble and prune us to become more like Christ.
3. God’s Love for us (6-8). Verse 8 may be one of my favorite verses in the book of Romans. This verse is even better understood in light of everything that has been said thus far in the book of Romans. Remember that we are immoral and wicked people. We’ve exchanged the truth for a lie, and we worship creation over creator. We deserve the full wrath of God. But because of Christ, we have hope. At the right time, the perfection of time, Christ died. He didn’t die for the perfect; He died for the ungodly. The ones that have been describing in the previous books. Paul writes, who would die for a terrible person? Someone might be willing to risk their life for a great person, but scum? No way. But that is exactly what Christ did! While we were scum, the worst of the worst, He died for us! Praise God! I can’t help but praise Him at this great and beautiful truth!
4. Justified by His blood (9-11). In this section, there are some great truths that are easy for the Christian to overlook and forget about. Paul writes that we have now been justified by His blood and saved from the wrath of God. As Christians, we often do not speak about the wrath of God enough. The wrath of God is to be poured out on sin. Because of sin, wrath is to come. We often think of wrath as someone angry and red in the face. This is not a good illustration of God’s wrath. God’s wrath is described as weeping and gnashing of teeth, the lake of fire, etc. This is what we deserve, yet, because of the blood of Christ, we have been justified! We’ve been made right with God! He took our wrath for us! We need to celebrate this fact day in and day out. We were enemies of God, choosing Hell over Him. But because of Christ, we’ve been reconciled.
5. Death in Adam (12-14). Sin entered the world through the sin of Adam. Because of the sin of Adam, sin came into the world. Now because we are children of Adam, we are sinners by nature and by choice. Paul explains to them that even before the Law was given, sin was there. The Law was meant to expose this sin to those who know the Law. When we are born, we are born sinners. It’s in our nature; it doesn’t take long to notice in a child their sinful nature. You don’t have to teach a child to be selfish or to lie; they naturally know how to do those things. Now, these verses have caused lots of controversy in the Christian faith. There are several views on what this means for us today. I will present them and give a brief explanation.
A. Pelagianism. Pelagian was the opponent of St. Augustine. This view says that sin is directly related to the person and not to Adam. That we are our own, this is a prominent teaching in liberal theology and easily refuted by scripture.
B. Corruption view. This view says that we are all corrupted by sin. Though we are condemned because of our sin apart from Adam, while we are condemned because of our sin, we are also judged because of our sin nature, which is because of the fall of man.
C. Augustinianism. This is the view that was proposed by St. Augustine. It holds that the human race sinned in Adam because, in a literal physical sense, all future generations were in Adam at the time. So, when he acted, the whole race acted, and when he was judged, the entire race was judged literally in him. This view is still held by many today, while it may be convincing; it does not capture the meaning of this text fully.
D. Federalism. Federalism is the view that is most commonly held by protestants today. This view states that Adam was our representative head. That Adam was the representative for all humanity. Think of an ambassador. He stood to represent humanity before God.
In this view, the point is not that all people sin, though they do, but instead that Adam stood for them so that, when he sinned, not only was Adam judged, but they were judged, too. It is because Adam sinned that death passed upon all.
Boice, J. M. (1991–). Romans: The Reign of Grace (Vol. 2, p. 566). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.
This is the view that Southern Baptist predominantly holds to and the one that is seen in scripture.
6. The free gift (15-17). Paul contrasts this section with the previous. Contrasting Christ to Adam. Now those who have placed their faith in Christ are represented by Christ. He is our new representative head. Through Adam, we are brought condemnation, but through Christ, we are brought justification. We now reign in life because of the work of Christ.
7. Made Righteous (18-21). As Paul continues to compare and contrast Christ with Adam, this is where you and I must sin praises to God for what is done through Christ. That through the act of Christ, we are made righteous. That because of Christ, we are no longer condemned, rather we are justified. That because of the representation of Adam and our sin, we are doomed to suffer wrath, because of the righteousness of Christ and faith in Him we are promised eternal life! This is something to celebrate!
I am so sorry that this email is so long. I genuinely love Romans 5! There is so much that we can learn from this chapter and more to celebrate!