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An Entirely New Situation

United With Christ  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  48:45
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This morning we begin a new sermon series on Romans 5-8 called United with Christ. One of the main purposes of this series will be to explore the wonders of our salvation.
I invite you to go on a journey of exploration and discovery. It will be like an treasure hunt in a far away land. At times our study will feel like we are walking through a beautiful oasis at night and as you look up into the sky, there are thousands upon thousands of stars glowing back at you. Our breathes will be taken away and we will stand with our mouths open in wonder, awe, and adoration at the infinite beauty of our salvation.
At other times we will be on the dig site. We will have pick and shovel in hand and we will get down and dirty in the sand and dirt and stone. We will with much labor and difficulty mine away the rock and with sweat on our brow we will uncover the most beautiful diamonds know to man. We will have to wash away all the dirt and debris to get down to the diamond itself and then we will have to spend much time polishing the stone until it sparkles in the sunlight. And then we will spend much time with our face pressed against the stone staring at each stunningly beautiful angle and pattern. And as we turn the gem of our salvation over and over in our hands we will marvel at its glory!
This is the journey I invite you take with me through Romans 5-8 as we ponder our Union with Christ and the resulting wonders of our Salvation.
The first path on our journey begins in Romans 5:1-11
An Entirely New Situation / Present and Future Benefits of Justification
In Romans 5:1 Paul states:
“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith...”
Transitional statement- Paul sums up his central argument of chapters 1-4.
Review: Thesis statement of Romans
Romans 1:16–17 ESV
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”
For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed by means of faith and faith alone!
Paul spent the first three chapters arguing for why salvation must be by faith and faith alone:
Because of the righteous wrath of God
Because of the perfect justice of God
Because of the total depravity of humanity
Because of the necessity of justification
Then in chapter 4 Paul explained exactly what justification means, or what God does for us when we are justified by faith alone.
Romans 4:6–8 ESV
6 just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works: 7 “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; 8 blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.”
Justification- a change in God’s records in which all our sins are forgiven, and the righteousness of Christ is credited to us. — Myron Houghton
By believing in Jesus Christ all Christians have been declared innocent of all charges justly brought against those who sin and fall short of God’s glory. —Douglas Moo
The one who has been justified is a blessed person. Happiness is found in the doctrine of justification! Justification is able to make a person truly happy: Why is that?
Because justification is based on God’s promise no our performance.
Because justification is based on credited righteousness not our works.
Then we transition to Chapter 5.
“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith...” From here in 5:1 through the end of chapter 8 Paul begins to speak of justification as a past event. “Since we have been justified.” Justification is a once-for-all act by which God changes your records- all our sins are forgiven, and the righteousness of Christ is credited to us.
This once-for-all change brings about an entirely new situation! In Romans 5 Paul is going to show us exactly what that means. What is the exact nature of this new status for those who have been justified? What are the implications for our present lives and for the future?
“Paul proclaims that Christians are not only ‘justified’—‘acquitted’ in a legal sense—but placed into an entirely new situation, both in the present (‘reconciliation’) and in the future (‘sharing the glory of God’).” —Douglas Moo
How does the past act of justification change our present and future situation?
Paul teaches us two ways in which our justification has caused us to enter into an entirely new situation.

I. Because of justification we presently enjoy reconciliation with God (vv. 1-2a, 11)

Romans 5:1 ESV
1 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1Δικαιωθέντες οὖν
Therefore, since / because we have been justified
ἐκ πίστεως
by (means of) faith
εἰρήνην ἔχομεν[1]
PEACE we have
πρὸς τὸν θεὸν
with God
We have PEACE
[1]Present tense- something that we gained in the past with ongoing present results.
At the moment of our justification we entered into a new situation with God- one of the results of justification is the moment we believed we gained peace with God. And that peace has present ongoing results. We still have peace with God and will continue to have peace with God forever!
Here in this context Paul does not mean the peace OF GOD- that inner sense of well being or feeling at peace. Paul means an outward situation of being in a relationship of peace with God.
And how is this new situation possible?
διὰ τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ
through our Lord Jesus Christ
Peace with God is one of the results of our justification- since we have been justified, therefore we have peace with God! And it is possible only through Jesus. It is his sacrificial death on the cross that makes a relationship of peace with God possible? Why?
Let’s take a moment to ponder all that was necessary in order for this relationship of peace to become possible.
Before justification this was not your situation with God!
Original State
Here is the original state of all humanity. We are turned away from God, our sin separates us from God, and God is turned away from us.
Not only is God a perfectly just, holy, and righteous God who cannot look at wrong. Not only does our sin separates us from such a perfectly holy God. But we, in our sin corrupted state want nothing to do with God.
What does it mean that were turned away from God?
What We Were
Romans 5:10 (ESV)
10 For if while we were enemies
Ephesians 2:1 ESV
1 And you were dead in the trespasses and sins
Ephesians 2:12 (ESV)
12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ...having no hope and without God in the world.
Ephesians 2:13 (ESV)
13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off...
Colossians 1:21 ESV
21 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds,
Our New Situation!
What does it take for a holy God to be able to turn towards us?
Propitiation- God’s justice had to be satisfied, His wrath had to be appeased. This is only possible because Jesus became the object of God’s wrath in his death on the cross.
1 John 2:2 ESV
2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
What does it take for the problem of sin to be removed?
Redemption- We were slaves to our sin, we were in the slave market of sin, but Christ provided our ransom payment. He bought us out of the slave market. He paid our ransom with is precious blood.
Ephesians 1:7 ESV
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace,
What does it take for God’s enemies, for those dead in sins, for those hostile in mind and deeds to be turned toward God?
Reconciliation- the gracious work of God were He places the sinner in a position of nearness.
Ephesians 2:13–14 (ESV)
13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. 14 For he himself is our peace,
Ephesians 2:16 ESV
16 and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility.
Ephesians 2:17–18 ESV
17 And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.
This is the glory of your salvation! If you have been justified you have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. God’s justice has been satisfied, sin’s ransom has been paid, and you have been brought near to God by the blood of Christ!
Romans 5:2 (ESV)
2 Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand,
2διʼ οὗ καὶ
through Him also
τὴν προσαγωγὴν[2]ἐσχήκαμεν[3]
ACCESS we have obtained
[τῇ πίστει]
by faith
εἰς τὴν χάριν ταύτην
into this grace
ἐν ᾗ ἑστήκαμεν
in which we stand[4]
What else does Paul highlight that is ours through Christ?
Through HIM (through Christ) we also have obtained ACCESS.
Access- a way of approach. Jesus has provided for us a way of approach into what?
Into this grace in which we stand. Not just grace, or the unmerited kindness of God in general, but into THIS grace in which we stand.
Jesus has made it possible for us to obtain access into a new state or realm. The realm of God’s grace. God’s work on our behalf through Christ causes us to obtain and to stand in the realm of God’s grace. This grace is the new status of the believer. This new realm that we have access to is dominated and characterized by grace! It is part of the wonders of our reconciliation. We have peace with God and we have constant access to the realm of God’s grace. We are standing in it- we are standing in a position of nearness to God and God is free to act graciously on our behalf because of Christ.
This is the beauty of our salvation! Because of our justification we presently enjoy reconciliation with God!
Illustration: This idea of reconciliation is illustrated for us in I Corinthians 7 through the example of divorce.
1 Corinthians 7:10–11 ESV
10 To the married I give this charge (not I, but the Lord): the wife should not separate from her husband 11 (but if she does, she should remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband), and the husband should not divorce his wife.
Think about all the hurt and pain and offence that stands between a divorced wife and husband. Not only is there a mountain of offenses separating the two, but each one has their backs turned against the other. I have often thought in my years of ministry as I have counseled with husbands and wives seeking divorce, “it would take a miracle for these two to get back together.” Maybe you know someone in your life that has gone through divorce. What would it take for that marriage to be restored? How amazing would it be if the offences that were commited were forgiven, and the wife and the husband turned back toward each other and were reconciled to one another? Praise God that would be a marvelous trophy of the grace of God wouldn’t it?
Friends God has done something so much more wondrous for everyone in this room who has been justified by grace through faith! God has removed the offence of sin through the work of redemption, He has turned toward you the sinner by Christ’s propitiation, and God has reconciled you the sinner by bringing you near to himself through the blood of Christ!
Paul want us to understand how the past act of justification has changed your present situation. He wants you to understand and believe and marvel over the fact that because of your justification you presently enjoy reconciliation with God!
This is one of the sparkling facets of the diamond that is our salvation. And God wants you to polish this truth in your minds, and to turn it over and over again as you stare with wonder at all that is yours because of Christ! Believer you are presently reconciled with God!
How else does the past act of justification change our present and future situation?
Let’s look at the second way we have entered into an entirely new situation!

II. Because of justification we have hope that we will share in the glory of God (vv. 2b-10)

Romans 5:2 ESV
2 Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
Now Paul turns his attention to how our justification affects our future situation.
καὶ καυχώμεθα
and we are rejoicing / exulting / boasting / joyfully confident
ἐπʼ ἐλπίδι τῆς δόξης τοῦ θεοῦ.
In the hope of the glory of God / In the hope we have of sharing God’s glory.
We as believers can have a joyful confident expectation that one day we will share in God’s glory.
What does it mean to share in God’s glory?
Humanity was created in the image of God, they had a “God-like-ness”, that was corrupted by sin at the fall, but will be restored one day for every Christian.
Romans 8:17 ESV
17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
Romans 8:18 ESV
18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.
Romans 8:21 ESV
21 that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
Romans 8:30 ESV
30 And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.
Friends because of your justification, you have entered into an entirely new situation- you have the future hope of glorification or sharing in the very glory of God! It is cause for rejoicing!
That’s all well and good to say the believer can rejoice as they look ahead to the shinning glory awaiting them one day, but what about here and now? You say that believers enjoy peace with God, you say they have great cause for rejoicing, but many believers that I know are facing hard times like illness, persecution, poverty, and tragedy. What about them?
Romans 5:3 ESV
3 Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance,
3οὐ μόνον δέ, ἀλλὰ καὶ καυχώμεθα
And not only that, but we also are rejoicing / joyfully boasting / joyfully confident
ἐν ταῖς θλίψεσιν,
in our sufferings,
Paul does not say we are rejoicing in the midst of our sufferings. It is not, I am suffering and that’s awful but I can always hold my head up high. Paul says that we are rejoicing in the sufferings themselves!
How is it possible to rejoice in sufferings? It is all tied back to our entirely new situation- it is all tied back to the realities of our justification.
εἰδότες ὅτι ἡ θλῖψις ὑπομονὴν κατεργάζεται,
(because) we know that suffering produces endurance,
If we respond rightly to suffering, that suffering will produce endurance, that is a spiritual fortitude, an ability to bear up under or to hold out in the face of difficulty.
Illustration: riding my bike in the heat
Romans 5:4 ESV
4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,
And endurance produces character (dependability / the quality of having been proved)
and character produces hope.
If you go through suffering with the right attitude, at the end of the line, you will find that your hope has been strengthened.
The Bible looks at our hope like a muscle that will remain weak and ineffective if it goes unused. But trials are God given opportunities to strength our hope. How does that work exactly?
Illustration: God has given us a wonder illustration of this exact principle in the life of Abraham.
Romans 4:18 ESV
18 In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.”
What is basis of Abraham’s hope? God told him he would be the father of many nations. “So shall your offspring be” like the stars in the heavens and the sand upon the seashore!
Remember our chain- what comes first? SUFFERING- we rejoice in our suffering:
Romans 4:19 ESV
19 He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb.
What was the suffering for Abraham? Child-less-ness. How could Abraham become the father of many nations without an heir?
And suffering produces what? ENDURANCE
How long did Abraham have to wait for a son? What kind of endurance did Abraham develop in his life?
And endurance produces what? CHARACTER
Romans 4:20 ESV
20 No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God,
What kind of character did the trial of childlessness produce in his life?
And character produces what? HOPE
Romans 4:21 ESV
21 fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.
What did the trial do to his hope? When Isaac finally arrived after years of enduring, building character, reminding himself of his hope that God had promised him a child, what happened to the conviction of Abraham’s hope? It skyrocketed! God kept his promise! He gave me a son! But it was just one son and God had promised that Abraham would be the father of many nations. Do you think that Abraham’s hope increased or decreased by having to go through the trial of waiting for a son?
This is Paul’s point. You may think that trials and suffering would destroy our hope, but when we go through the trial with the proper perspective God can use the hopeless situations in our lives to produce an ever-deeper conviction of the reality and certainty of that for which we hope!
Hinging off of this point Paul goes on in his argument:
Romans 5:5 (ESV)
5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
5ἡ δὲ ἐλπὶς οὐ καταισχύνει,
And hope does not disappoint us or put us to shame!
Why not? This is the rest of Paul’s argument. We ought to be rejoicing in our hope, even trials produce hope. And our hope will never disappoint us! How do we know that?
ὅτι ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ θεοῦ ἐκκέχυται ἐν ταῖς καρδίαις ἡμῶν
because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts
διὰ πνεύματος ἁγίου τοῦ δοθέντος ἡμῖν.
Through the Holy Spirit who has been given to you.
Why should you never doubt the hope that you have of your future glorification? Why should you never question if that hope will one day disappoint you? Because of the love of God.
And pay careful attention here: Look into the beauty of this aspect of your salvation.
It is the love of God that has been poured out int our hearts.
What does it mean that the love of God has been poured into our hearts?
Poured- to become expressed without restraint, to cause someone to experience something in an abundant or full manner. To cause to fully experience something.
What is it that gives us the assurance that hope will not disappoint us? It is the internal, subjective, emotional sensation within the believer that God loves you. God, through His Word and the Holy Spirit who has been given to us, wants us to fully experience the wonderful love that He has for us!
How can we begin to fully experience the love of God, how can the love of God be poured out into our hearts?
Romans 5:6 ESV
6 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.
6Ἔτι γὰρ (Χριστὸς) ὄντων ἡμῶν ἀσθενῶν
For while we were still helpless
ἔτι κατὰ καιρὸν
at the right time
ὑπὲρ ἀσεβῶν[1]
for the ungodly
ἀπέθανεν.
(Christ) died
Ungodly- Irreverent person, impious
This is a hard word to get right! A pious person or a godly person is someone who responds in an appropriate manner to God. That is when they come face to face with the things of God they respond properly, with reverence, and awe, and worship, and love. So when a godly person reflects on the death of Christ during the Lord’s supper and he looks up at the cross tears flood his eyes and he might even have an overwhelming desire to bow or prostrate himself before his Lord. This is a pious person- it aims at the heart response of the individual towards God.
And impious person, an ungodly or irreverent person is exactly the opposite. When confronted with the things of God they respond in a demeaning and vulgar way. For instance, an ungodly person has no problem taking an unborn child, a miracle of creation by God, a innocent precious gift and tearing it to pieces inside its mother’s womb. They have no problem collecting the parts of a little baby gathering them in a box and selling them for profit. When they are confronted with the things of God, like the sanctity of life, they respond in a vulgar manner.
Please understand this- Christ died for the ungodly! If you want the love of God poured out into you hearts you must understand this!
Christ died for the irreverent person of whom I am one! I was helpless, I was ungodly. I was not good, I was not desirable- I was a monster of iniquity!
Friend, if you can sit here this morning and think this, “I’m not that bad, I’m a pretty good person, I don’t need much saving.” You have never known the love of Christ poured out in your heart. Why would Christ’s death mean anything to you, if you didn’t need it in the first place.
The truth is we are all ungodly- we are all monsters of iniquity. And we are totally helpless and hopeless- AND YET, Christ still died for you and for me!
Let that truth flood your soul. These verses are not meant to be read as an academic exercise! This is not a point of theology simply to understand. This must affect your heart!
This is like staring up into the starry sky of our salvation and having our heart flooded with its beauty! The thousands of sources of light in the night sky each glimmer another reality of God’s love for us.
Romans 5:7 ESV
7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—
What is Paul’s point here? It’s part of his argument in vv. 6-8.
Human love, at its best, will cause or motivate a person to die for a truly “good” person.
Christ, on the other hand, was sent by God to die, not for righteous people, or even for good people, but for rebellious and undeserving people!
Romans 5:8 ESV
8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Therefore, God’s love for us is far greater in magnitude than even the best human love.
The utter magnitude of the love of God that He has already displayed for us through the cross causes our hope to glow!
hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts
Romans 5:9 ESV
9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.
Here Paul employs a major to the minor argument.
God has already done the most difficult thing imaginable! God has already justified us! God has taken monsters of iniquity, and by means of the blood of Jesus Christ, He has forgiven our sins and counted us righteous.
If God has already done that- how much more can we depend on Him to accomplish the easier thing— saving us from His wrath?
Because God has loved us, by sending Jesus to shed his blood so that we might be justified, we can have a strong hope that He will save us all the way to the end. He will not pour out his wrath against us one day when we stand before him.
Romans 5:10 ESV
10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.
Here again Paul employs the greater to the lesser argument, but in view of our reconciliation.
God reconciled us, drew us near to him, and he did that while we were his enemies. How was that possible? Through the death of his Son.
Much more, now that we are reconciled, now that we are already in this entirely new situation- we have peace with God and we have access to this grace in which we stand- now that we are no longer enemies but children, how much more will God save us by his life?
Romans 5:11 ESV
11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
Here Paul returns to his original point of our reconciliation. And he does so using the phrase more than that. One one hand he wants us to think about the future hope that we have and the wonders that all that brings to our souls, and yet on the other hand we have something here and now that deserves our wonder. we have now received reconciliation! And it is through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Application:
1). If you have never accepted Jesus as your Savior, if you have never know the blessedness of justification- I invite you to do that right now. My friend God loves you very much. Jesus died for you because you are ungodly and helpless to save yourself. But, Jesus offers to you the free gift of His salvation. Receive it by putting your trust in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.
2). For the believer how should you make application of this great text?
v. 2- We rejoice in hope of the glory of God
v. 3- we rejoice in our sufferings
v. 11- we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
Paul tells us in chapter 4 that the person who is justified is a blessed. It is one thing to be called blessed or happy, it is quite another thing to appropriate that happiness in your life. God does not want his children to live a faltering or downhearted life. Our salvation was meant by God to cause us to rejoice right now!
Friends, you have entered into an entirely new situation!
Because of justification you presently enjoy reconciliation with God.
Because of justification you have a hope that you will share in the glory of God.
When you mine these truths from the rock, when you dust them off, and polish them till they shine, and stare longingly at every facet of them it can only lead to rejoicing!
“And so the fact of his saving us, and saving us too when we were in such plight, and doing it by means of his only-begotten, and not merely by his only-begotten, but by his blood, weaves for us endless crowns to glory in.” —Chrysostom
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