August 13, 2023
SERMON SERIES: GOD’S WORLDWIDE PLAN FOR EVERY PERSON
BOOK OF ROMANS
Sermon # 7: Reasons Why We Can Rejoice!
Have you ever thought about what life would be like as a caterpillar? You might assume it would be uneventful and boring. The caterpillar plods along until he spins a cocoon and then he waits. But after a period of time, a transformation occurs and out of the cocoon flies a beautiful butterfly.
Like this slow-moving creature, we sometimes tend to look at our current situation and wrongly conclude that we are going nowhere, that all is lost. Far too many people tend to think there is no way out, that the grass is always ‘greener on the other side.’ Why? Because…
· They suffer set-back after set-back
· They never seem to get a break in life
· They lose hope that anything will ever change for the better
But God still has a plan for the believer. In fact, He comes to us while we are still caterpillars and declares us to be beautiful butterflies—a new creation. This is the wonder of justification: God declares dead people to have new life in His Son. Only God has the power to justify. Only God has the power to transform us from death to life. Only God has the love that will do such a wonderful thing.
Paul completed his case that God justifies sinners on the basis of faith alone. In the first three chapters of Romans Paul reveals the grim, depressing fact of the sinfulness and lostness of all people. In chapter four Paul explains how all sinful people can be justified and made right with God by grace through faith.
With this firmly nailed down, Paul now moves forward in his discussion of the, doctrines of salvation. Now, in Chapter five, Paul begins to tell his readers the benefits of being saved by grace through faith. In the first five verses of chapter five, Paul is telling us REASONS WHY WE CAN REJOICE in our salvation. Just as the caterpillar was transformed into a beautiful butterfly, we are transformed into a new creation. REASON WHY WE CAN REJOICE!
I. OUR POSITION AS BELIEVERS v. 1a
The first reason that we can rejoice because of our position in Christ Jesus.
A. Our position declared – Paul says that we who believed have been “justified”. Justification means to count someone righteous. It means to reckon, to credit, to account, to judge, to treat, to look upon as righteous. it does not mean to make a man righteous. All Greek verbs which end “oun” mean not make someone something, but merely to count to judge, to treat someone as something.
We are all sinners! Even though most of us claim to be Christians, we are still sinners! Justification does not mean that God is not aware of our sins. It does mean that in spite of our sins, God treats us as though we were not sinners.
God is willing to justify man because He loves man that much. God loves man so much that He sent His Son into the world and sacrificed Him in order to justify man.
B. Our position described – because of our faith in Jesus! I am grateful this morning that salvation is the product of faith alone!
Reasons why we can rejoice!
1. Our Position as Believers
II. OUR POSSESSIONS AS BELIEVERS v. 1b-2
Since we are considered righteous by the Lord, there are certain things that belong to us this morning.
A. We possess acceptance v. 1b – Paul said that we have peace with God! This means we are no longer in rebellion against God. The spiritual war with God is over; we are no longer fighting God. You see, every lost person is the enemy of God, Rom. 8:7. But, when that lost person turns to Jesus Christ by faith, God declares an end to the hostilities!
We don’t make peace with God. He made peace with us at the cross.
Christian people are not at war with God, but the Evil One.
B. We possess access v. 2a – This verse teaches us that through Jesus Christ, we have direct access to God Himself. The word “access” means we have freedom to enter regularly into God’s presence.
Paul is letting us know that through Jesus, we have full access to the father in Heaven!
A little boy once stood outside the gate of Buckingham Palace in London. He wanted to talk to the king, but was sternly turned away by the guards at the gate. As he stood there crying, a well-dressed man approached him and asked the little fellow why was he so upset. The little boy told the man his story. When he heard the reason behind the little boy’s tears, he smiled and said, “Here, hold my hand, sonny. I’ll get you in. Just you never mind those soldiers! The little boy took the stranger’s hand and together they approached the gate.
When the soldiers saw them coming, they all snapped to attention and open wide the gate for the stranger and the little boy to enter. He was lead through the gate, across the courtyard, down carpeted hallways and through open doors, until finally, he was brought into the very presence of the king himself. What got him there? He was holding the right hand! You see, the kind stranger was none other than the Prince of Wales, the king’s own son.
Church, are you holding the right hand? There is only one way to Heaven: Jesus.
C. We possess assurance v. 2b – The assurance we have is two-fold:
1. Assurance here – Notice the phrase, “grace wherein we now stand.” When you talk about the word “stand” carries the idea of permanence and immoveable. This tells us we are absolutely secure in the Lord Jesus Christ. Our security in Jesus leads us to live a clean, holy life.
2. Assurance hereafter – “And rejoice in hope of the glory of God v. 2b. Hope is not wishful thinking or planning. The Greek word translated hope (ELPIS, el-peece’) means “confident expectation, or to anticipate with pleasure.” Hope is being sure God will do what He promises. Eternal security extends beyond the grave. The glory hoped for by the believer is to extend beyond the grave!
Reasons why we can rejoice!
1. Our Position as Believer
2. Our Possessions as Believers
III. OUR PRIVILEGES AS BELIEVERS v. 3-5
We are saved and we are secure, but right now, we live in a world of trials and tribulations. When we are truly saved, we are no longer defeated by trials and sufferings. When we become Christians, our problems take on a whole new perspective and purpose. We have some great privileges that will help us in our trials and tribulations.
A. The ability to rejoice in trouble v. 3a - Paul is saying we can rejoice in the bad times of life. How can this be true? Because of the little word “knowing”. When the trials of life come across us, we know that God is working out His will in our lives and attempting to produce in us a state of Christlikeness.
The word tribulations mean pressure, oppression, affliction, and distress. It means to be pressed together ever so tightly. Pressure is the process used to turn coal into diamonds. And, it is pressure in the life of the believer that forces out more of the old, sinful nature and reveals more of the image of God.
B. The ability to recognize our troubles v. 3b-5a – Now, Paul tells us about the benefits derived from the “pressures” of life.
1. Tribulation - Pressure
2. Patience – Endurance
3. Experience – Proven Character or Maturity
4. Hope – The confident expectation that we will not be disappointed.
Tribulation produces patience, the opposite of panic. Patience is the ability to handle the pressures and problems of life. Experience stirs hope: to expect with confidence; Hope never shames: never disappoints, deludes, deceives, confounds, confuses.
C. The ability to rest in our troubles v. 5b – Paul is telling us that there is the constant experience of God’s love----all through the indwelling presence of His Spirit.
Responsive Reading: Romans 5:1-5