Two weeks ago Paul confidently proved that we are justified/made right with God through faith in the Christ. Now Paul will show us the fruits of this justification.
What is the fruit of our justification that Paul mentions here?
“peace with God”
Is this “peace” internal or external”?
It’s an external peace with God that leads to an internal peace; but Paul, here, chiefly speaks of external peace.
Given this, what was the relationship between God and sinful man prior to his salvation?
Man was in rebellion against God, but, moreover, God was a war with us. As Paul states in Ephesians we are “by nature children of wrath” (Eph 2).
It is not only important for us to understand our relationship with God now, after our justification, but also before all justification; God has us dead to rights, justly condemned under His holy righteousness, unable to save ourselves from His perfect wrath against our nature; and yet He still showed love to us.
He first loved, He moved first and completely to save us. Had it not been for God’s work, and His work in our lives we’d still yet be His enemy and He would still be ours.
I said that this peace is external that leads to internal peace; do y’all agree with that?
[Let them answer]
How does it lead to internal peace?
If our biggest problem in life is our war with God and Christ was the peace offering; thus ending the war, then our chief problem in life is solved by God alone; now, will He not continue to care for us now that we are His sons and daughters.
Also, do take note of the confidence of Paul’s statement, “we have been justified by faith”; justify in the past tense, our salvation is totally accomplished and thus the fruits of that accomplishment are brought for us as well.
I don’t if it’s this way for y\’all; but sometimes I’ll read the word and it’ll be like a brink to me- no bread of life for my soul, no water of life, but others I feel utterly crushed under the weight of such truth and glory as this verse. And I hope in unpacking it some it becomes that for y\’all too.
So same question once more, what are some of the fruits of our justification the Paul mentions here?
Gained access to His grace
We stand in grace
We rejoice in the hope of God’s glory
So let\’s take these 3 gifts of God and try and see the weight of them. In order to properly understand any verse of the bible, we must remember the context.
So remind me, to whom is Paul writing this letter?
Both Jew and Gentile
What does it mean that we have access to His grace?
We, mere mortals, in the midst of our sin, have God with us because of His unmerited kindness, or grace, toward us.
What would the Jew’s reaction to such a statement have been given Jewish religion/rites etc?
Awe, shock, gratitude, perhaps fear.
The Jew did not have such common access to God as we did; he had a high priest go to God once a year to cover, but not atone, for his sins under the Law.
I mention this because it underscores the weight of what Christ did for us in His life and death; we, in everyday life, have access to a holy, almighty God.
Given this, let’s discuss ’standing in grace’. So what’s grace?
Let me try and explain this “standing” in grace part to y\’all:
So I got up to Mr. Ward and I say to him, “Hey buddy I’ve fallen behind on a loan payment, can you give me the money for it? Thanks.”
So what’s Mr. Ward’s reaction to such a request?
He’ll deny it.
Because I have no right/privilege, to stand in his presence and make such a request. I am not His son.
So why can I stand in the presence of God and make and even more bold/daring request to forgive my sin/to be granted mercy by a holy God?
Because, by His grace, He has made me a son and thus He is my Father; it is a relationship that is founded and continued and grown by His grace, not my merit.
Thus, I go to Him on the basis of His grace toward me not my works toward Him.
Third, “we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God”. Our translations could have said, “we glory in hope of the glory”; but rejoice is fine too.
Let\’s define our terms first and foremost:
Give me an example of you rejoicing in something?
A fat check, a gift, a success/victory, a belly full of chickfila.
What about those things causes delight/overflowing happiness?
Simply, it\’s pleasing to you. It was good, beneficial, and it met a want or need of yours.
So thus far, we delight, or take pleasure \”in the hope\”…
What’s a biblical definition of hope?
Faith, trust in God to fulfill all of His promises.
Or, trust in God to do all that He has said He will.
“so we delight in the promises of the \”glory of God”.
So here we have “glory” and “God”.
Let’s define our terms.
First, who is God?
God is the sovereign, supreme, perfect being in all of existence.
How would y’all define the “glory\” of God?
The glory of God is God manifesting His perfect supremacy through all things, to everyone.
Or, simply, the glory of God is God Himself.
Thus, we delight in the future promises of the supremely perfect (or perfectly supreme) being of all existence.
Do y\’all see why I was crushed under the weight of this verse now? You cannot only trust in the supreme being of existence but also delight in all that He is doing and will do.
I recommend you remember what we just did for your private devotions when you have trouble understanding a text/passage.
What we just did was what you could call, “corporate mediation\” on God’s word, we read the verse, analysis, defined the terms/words in a way the was true to the bible and put it all back together again.
We looked at the engine, took it apart, understood each part of the engine and put it back together again; and now we can properly use it for our growth/benefit.
“Not only that…” So Paul’s about to add at more weight to the delight we have in the promises of the supreme Lord.
According to this verse, how do we have joy/rejoice in our suffering?
We know/remember that our suffering makes us more enduring.
Suffering increases our endurance.
Note that Paul assumes suffering. Why do we suffer?
Because the foreordained salvific plan of God is now but not yet.
IE God is not done with humanity or the Church; He still has a plan/purpose for us here.
Once that purpose is completed and fully accomplished, once every soul that can be saved is saved then God will return to renew the Earth and all of Heaven will reside with us forever.
For now, we continue to labor the purposes of God by His strength till then.
I say this particular answer because of the word “hope”; chiefly hope in God’s promises-particularly His promise that He will renew all things and literally dwell with humanity once more.
The salvific plan of God is now, but not yet complete.
Thus, suffering puts muscle on your faith in God till that final day of complete redemption. We suffer because God, like any loving father, wants us to grow/mature.
That said, what does it mean to grow as a Christian?
Too continually, and increasingly, submit to God even when you don’t feel like it. Or too continually rejoice in suffering and temptation.
“and hope does not put us to shame” or ‘hope doesn’t disappoint us”.
What is Paul’s reason for putting stock in trusting in God?
God’s overflowing love toward those with the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the aqueduct through with God gives His love to us. Given that this love is poured out to those with the Holy Spirit, I submit to you that this is a particular love of God toward His own people; it is a personal, eternal, overflowing love that God has for you because His Spirit dwells in you.
Let me pick yall’s brain on this:
What is the relationship between suffering and sovereignty of God? IE is your suffering from God or merely allowed by God?
I ask this question here because, if we read this passage backward, God gave you His Spirit, through which He gives His particular love for you, out of that love you have hope in suffering all because of what Jesus accomplished for us in His life, death, and resurrection.
The Holy Spirit, love, hope, and justification are all particular toward you-sons and daughters of God-thus it seems rather unlikely that the suffering in your life is anything but general rather is seems reasonable to conclude that your suffering particular toward you as well.
Given that all of this-love, hope, the Spirit, your justification through Christ, were all foreordained I believe Paul is also showing that our suffering is also foreordained as well.
If this is indeed so then you have all the more reason to have trust and hope in the supreme being is not only sovereign over your salvation, in that He brought you and keeps you, but that your suffering is also from Him and therefore is a purposeful suffering meant to fill you more and more with His eternal love for you.
For whom did Christ die?
The ungodly, those that are without God.
It is for this reason that we must hammer home the wrath and condemnation of the heathen; they must see their godlessness/lostness before they can have God; if they keep their pride and believe in themselves to earn salvation then they shall never have it.
“still weak” Meaning what?
Weak as in unable-unable to save ourselves-rather than the opposite of strong.
IE it\’s uncommon for such a sacrifice. Moreover, Paul points out that we are neither of those yet Christ still sacrificed Himself for us.
What was the motive for Christ’s death?
To show the love of God, to express the glory of God. There was nothing in us that that motivated God to love us; He loved us because He is love.
And we also see that His love leads to salvation.
So how are we justified?
According to this verse by His blood.
Turn to 4:25.
I present the question once more, how are we justified?
According to this verse, by His resurrection.
Same question with two different answers. Is that a contradiction?
Because we are justified by all the righteousness of Christ. He lived a perfect life, died a perfect death and was raised to perfection. All of Christ and all His life is His righteousness which is imputed, given, to us and that is our justification.
How are we saved by the living Christ?
Christ lives to keep you or save you, from the wrath of God. He ensures your peace with God eternally. This is why the resurrection and ascension are so important; He lives eternally thus we do as well.
“reconciled” What\’s that word mean?
We were separated, or estranged, from God and He brought us back to Him; or we’re reconciled to Him. That’s the main theme of this chapter.
5:12-17 Lecture then questions/discussion
Ok, how many of you could re-phrase Paul’s argument here?
Basically, Paul sets out to show how one man’s death can provide salvation for many. To prove his point he uses Adam to establish the principle that it is possible for one man’s actions to affect many other people.
IE Paul uses Adam to show a “negative imputation” to prove Christ’s \”positive imputation\”.
There are 2 main views on Original Sin; I will present both as we go because I think both works well.
1) Adam is man, he sinned, we are man, therefore, we inherit Adam’s sin
2) Federal Headship where Adam was our Chief representative before God
First off, who is “Adam”?
Adam our first parent; through whom the whole human race came from.
What was Adam’s role in the Garden?
I submit to you that Adam’s chief role in the Garden was Shepherd-High Priest. He was man’s first representative before God.
Do y’all think Adam succeeded in his chief role?
Because we listened and obeyed to the one who first brought sin into existence, that is Satan. So Satan through the deceiving of Adam brought sin into the human race.
Now that the groundwork is laid out let me take us deeper into the essence of this passage.
Sin entered the human race through Adam and humans became sinful by nature. Adam passed to all his descendants the inherent sinful nature he possessed because of his first disobedience. That nature is present from the moment of conception (Ps 51:5), making it impossible for man to live in a way that pleases God.
Satan, the father of sin (1 John 3:8) first brought temptation to Adam and Eve (Gen. 3).
Since his sin transformed his inner nature and brought spiritual death and depravity, that sinful nature would be passed on to all his children as well. And Adam, prior to his sin, was not subject to death, but through his sin, it became a grim certainty for him and his descendants. Death has 3 manifestations:
spiritual death/separation from God
eternal death/second death
Moreover, because all humanity existed within Adam, and have through procreation inherited his fallenness and depravity, it can be said that all sinned in him.
Thus, humans are not sinners because we sin but rather they sin because they are sinners.
“yet death reigned” But even without the law, death was universal. All men, from Adam to Moses, were subject to death, not because of their sinful acts against the law (which they did not yet have) but because of their own inherited sinful nature.
“sinning…not like…of Adam” those who had no specific revelation as did Adam or those with the law of Moses, but nevertheless sinned against the holiness of God, even without Law.
“who was a type of the one to come” In what way was Adam a type of Christ?
Both Adam and Christ were similar in that their acts affected many others. This phrase serves as a transition from the apostle’s discussion of the transition of Adam’s sin to the crediting of Christ’s righteousness.
Whereas Adam failed in his role of Shepherd-High Priest Christ fulfills all His salvific duties entirely.
This passage Paul explores the contrasts between the condemning act of Adam and the redemptive act of Jesus Christ. They are different in effect (5:15) , extent (5:16), efficacy (5:17), essence (5:18-19), and energy (5:20-21).
“many died” Paul uses the word “many” with 2 distinct menials in 5:15, just as he will the word “all” in 5:18. He has already established that all men bear the guilt of sin and are therefore subject to death.
So the “many” who die must refer to all Adam’s descendants.
“much more” Christ\’s one act of redemption was immeasurably greater than Adam’s one act of condemnation.
What’s Paul mean when he says “the free gift”?
Salvation by grace.
“condemnation” the divine guilty verdict; the opposite of justification.
“many trespasses” Adam brought upon all men the condemnation for only one offense of God’s law. Christ, however, delivers the believer from the condemnation of many offenses.
“death reigned” Adam’s sin brought universal death-exactly opposite the result he expected and Satan had promised: ‘you will be like God (Gen. 3:5). JC’s sacrifice brought salvation to those who believe.
In what way do those in Christ “reign in life”?
Unlike Adam’s act, Christ’s act has and will accomplish exactly what He intended- that is spiritual life.
5:18-19 Paul summarizes the analogy of Adam and JC.
“one act of righteousness” Not a reference to a single event but generally to Christ’s obedience culminating in the greatest demonstration of that obedience, death on a cross (Phil. 2:8).
“justification…for all men” This cannot mean that all men will be saved; salvation is only for those who exercise faith in Christ.
Rather, like the word “many” in 5:15 Paul is using “all” with two different meaning for the sake of parallelism, a common practice of the OT.
“made righteous” This expression probably refers to one’s legal status before God and not an actual change in character, since Paul is contrasting justification and condemnation throughout this passage, and he has not yet introduced the doctrine of sanctification which deals with the actual transformation of the sinner as a result of redemption.
“the law came in” How did the Law “increase” sin and trespass?
Although the Mosaic law is not flawed its presence caused man’s sin to increase. We are by nature rebels against God; and actually, seek out new ways to rebel against Him. The Law gave us a guideline to do just that. Thus it made meant more aware of their own sinfulness and inability to keep God’s perfect standard and it serves as a teacher to drive them to Christ.
The final summary of the analogy of Adam and JC.
Look at the word “grace”. What does this grace of God lead to for us?
“righteousness that leads to eternal life”. God’s grace is a purposeful grace in your life with the intent and effect to bring you and keep you to eternal life.
Thus, Paul proves the “negative imputation” of Adam and we, therefore, rejoice in the “positive (and perfect) imputation\” of Christ. Once more, Paul shows us our total sinful nature from Adam to exemplify just how much Christ has done for us; leading us to rejoice in Him even in suffering.