Faithlife Sermons

Bragging Rights

Romans  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Because I have been justified, I have a new status and ought to boast in God's glory, in our Grief, and in Jesus

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Romans 5:1–11 NASB95
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.
As a kid, I played a lot of sports- it didn’t really matter- baseball, basketball, football, etc. In school, you always have that ‘rivalry’- you know what I mean? When I was a freshman in high school, I played a lot of intramural basketball. I’ve never been all that good at basketball- but I always enjoyed playing and competing. But as the year went on, I had a team and we eventually ended up playing different groups. We didn’t win any trophies or anything, but when we won, we won bragging rights for a week. That meant that anytime we saw the losing opponents, we got to give them a hard time and talk about how we slaughtered them… we had bragging rights. Well, this will be a little different, but we will have fun with it anyway!
Context: Last week, we studied about how we could be justified, that is reconciled with God. And we drew on the whiteboard a bit, discussing how we are all sinners in desperate need of saving. And through faith, by repenting and believing God- trusting in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation, we become justified. Today, we continue to talk about what it means to be justified and how that impacts our life on a daily basis.
Context: Last week, we studied about how we could be justified, that is reconciled with God. And we drew on the whiteboard a bit, discussing how we are all sinners in desperate need of saving. And through faith, by repenting and believing God- trusting in Jesus Christ alone for our salvation, we become justified. Today, we continue to talk about what it means to be justified and how that impacts our life on a daily basis.
As we begin working through our text, we immediately see that Paul is making an argument- verse 1 begins, “Therefore…” and as we’ve said many times, when we see the word “therefore,” we must ask the question, “What is it there for?” In this case, it is there to to mark out Paul’s argument. In fact, what we will do for the sake of order and understanding is rearrange the first part of this sentence.
“Because we have been justified by faith...” and then Paul gives us a picture of what this means. He begins where we begin and that is an explanation of our justified status.
There are two descriptors that we need to look at here in .
The first is this:
Because we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God...
This means that we are reconciled to Him. You see, in our unrighteousness, we not only were apart from God, but we were enemies of God. (verse 10). This means that there was turmoil- an enemy is one who stands opposed to someone, and that was US! We stood, in our sins, waging a war with God Almighty. And we were destined to lose!
But here’s the picture of the war: We are on death row- no, scratch that, we are in the electric chair. We are hooked up to the wires, we are guilty and helpless... But, as verse 6 says, “at the right time, Christ died for the ungodly- that’s you and me and we have been justified through Him- forgiven, reconciled. You and I have been pardoned by Jesus!! And now we have peace with God.
Secondly, Paul says that:
“Because we have been justified by faith, we stand in grace.” (2a)
This is a picture of God’s character displayed upon us because of Christ. And here’s what it means:
Not only have we been given peace and pardon, but we also have unmerited favor with God! God looks upon us with compassion and concern.
So, not only have we been let off the hook, we’ve had our slate wiped clean!
He sees us as only the Gospel can make us- clean, pure, righteous. Paul encourages the Corinthian church to walk in a manner worthy of the calling (). By God’s grace we are made righteous apart from our actions because of Jesus!!!
Folks, I can’t get over this! (Nor do I want to get over it!)
Now that we understand what it means to be justified, I’d like to walk us through 3 areas where we have bragging rights. Hear me out here: Because we have been justified by faith...

We Brag in The Hope of God’s Glory ()

What is God’s glory? How do we begin to think of God’s glory?
Well,
God’s glory is His honor, His power, His worthiness, His majesty! It is what ought to bring us to our knees before Him, it is the reverence and wonder of WHO He is!!
We don’t fully grasp it here, as is written in
1 Corinthians 13:12 NASB95
For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known.
I remember getting my first apartment. It wasn’t really all that nice, but I told all my friends. I invited them over, I took pictures… I bragged about it
And you know what’s amazing? We get to share in His glory!! We have been adopted into His family!
This is what we study in , the Kingdom of God that is and is to come- where in it’s fullness, there will be no more of the effects of sin- no more tears, heartache, sickness or death, no more of the curses which we endure in this life.
We talk about things we are excited about- a new restaurant, football team, that upcoming youth event, etc. Hey folks, aren’t you excited about heaven?!?!
It is the pearl of great price that Jesus spoke of in
It is the field with hidden treasure only it is beyond our understanding!
We talk about things we are excited about- a new restaurant, football team, that upcoming youth event, etc. Hey folks, aren’t you excited about heaven?!?!
We boast in the hope of God’s glory which is ours to share in throughout eternity.

We Brag in Our Tribulations ()

Lost ya, huh? Why on earth should be brag/ boast in our tribulations?
Well, Paul gives us a formula of sorts that helps explain this. Listen to what he says in
Tribulation —> Perseverance
This means endurance. It means, that tribulation forces us to deal with unfortunate circumstances and trust God to see us through.
It helps us develop confidence in God’s power and sovereignty
We lean on Him for our strength, wisdom- He is our help and our hiding place.
Perseverance —> Proven Character
Proven character is the revelation on our identity- who we really are
It affirms in us and to others where our faith is and what we truly believe (life, death, etc)
It displays the unchanging nature of God as we rely on Him
Proven Character —> Hope
This isn’t like your hope to win the lottery. This is perhaps better translated as “expectation”
It is the expectation which is given through the love of God having been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit has been given to us as believers as a seal that we are God’s. And we have the hope (which does not disappoint) that because we belong to Him, we will never be snatched away from Him. We have the hope, the expectation of our Creator’s love and purpose fulfilled in us.
We have the expectation of Heaven and glory to come and the expectation that the same Power who raised Jesus from the dead lives in us today!
We brag in our tribulations because we learn to trust God NOW, that His hand is upon us NOW, that we are sealed with the Holy Spirit NOW, and that we are a new creation in Christ Jesus NOW. And through our tribulations, that which God says to be true about us, is revealed.

We Brag in Jesus ()

This is our testimony.
Because of Jesus, I am reconciled to God
I am saved from the wrath of God and delivered to His glory.
Because of Jesus, I have love, joy, peace, and other fruits of the Spirit!
Jesus is who defeated sin
Jesus is who defeated death and because He lives, we too live in fullness of God’s grace and glory!
It is Jesus who will judge the earth one day- He is the KING, He is my SAVIOR, He is my LORD!
It is through Jesus alone that we have eternal life
Folks, there is no other way.
I see folks who claim to be Christian saying things like, “God is like a mountain top and there are many trails…” NO! God is not like a mountain with many trails. God is nor who we say He is, He is who HE SAYS HE IS! He has revealed Himself to us through the Bible and has revealed to us how we can know Him… There is but one way to God the Father and that is through Jesus ()
There are a lot of things that people do boast in- just look at the homes and vehicles as you leave today.
We display the American flag and pledge allegiance to it
We put bumper stickers on our cars that brag on schools and politicians.
We wear t-shirts and jerseys that proclaim the greatness of our sports teams
But, friends, do we boast in Jesus?
If you have trusted in Jesus- truly repented and placed your faith in Him for salvation, then you are justified - reconciled to God; a new creation in Christ.
This is cause for boasting- not in ourselves
Boast in the hope of God’s Glory
Boast in your tribulations
Boast in Jesus Christ.
I want to ask you: Are you living life as one who is justified?
If you are not boasting in these 3 things, perhaps you do not grasp the truth and hope of the Gospel.
If that’s you, I urge you this morning to pray that God would give you eyes to see and ears to hear, for the Kingdom of God is at hand.
Let us pray
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