Benefits of Justification
What are the benefits of justification? Escaping hell? Going to heaven? Yes! In the future. But how about right now?
The first few chapters have shown us our need for justification and how we receive it. Then he illustrated it thru Abraham in chapter 4. Now we're in a new section looking at the blessings and benefits of justification. Not just the benefits in the sweet by and by, but in the nasty here and now.
1. Peace with God.
v. 1 There are many kinds of peace in the Bible, like world peace, which will never happen until the Prince of Peace establishes it. As long as there's sin in the hearts of humans it won't happen.
Then there's the peace OF God, which is tranquility in your soul. Contentment and anxiety free living.
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
It's the peace that passes [surpasses] understanding.
Sometimes I have this peace of God, it is always available to me, but often I allow life to rob me of this. I become worried, paranoid, fearful, bitter, aggravated. That's not the peace of God. They are mutually exclusive. I cannot be bitter and have the peace of God. If I'm worried them I'm not trusting. If I'm aggravated w/ someone I'm not praying for them.
But peace WITH God is different. It's the opposite of being under the wrath of God. It's taking care of the state of hostility that exists between God and man prior to salvation. The war between God's holiness and man's sinfulness is won thru justification and a benefit is we are at peace with God!
Before salvation we are God's enemies.
ill.--an atheist was on his deathbed. His Godly grandmother visited and asked if he made his peace with God. Smarting off he replied, "I didn't know we'd been fighting."
Most lost people don't know they are God's enemy because they don't actively oppose the work of God. They feel they are neutral towards God...but there's no such thing.
He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.
Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.
You're a child of God or of the devil. A citizen of God's kingdom or the devil's. A friend of God or an enemy.
6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.
7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
All unbelievers are the enemy of God. Let's take it a step further: God is the enemy of all unbelievers. He is angry with them and condemns them.
21 They have moved me to jealousy with that which is not God; they have provoked me to anger with their vanities: and I will move them to jealousy with those which are not a people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation.
22 For a fire is kindled in mine anger, and shall burn unto the lowest hell, and shall consume the earth with her increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains.
23 I will heap mischiefs upon them; I will spend mine arrows upon them.
24 They shall be burnt with hunger, and devoured with burning heat, and with bitter destruction: I will also send the teeth of beasts upon them, with the poison of serpents of the dust.
16 When ye have transgressed the covenant of the LORD your God, which he commanded you, and have gone and served other gods, and bowed yourselves to them; then shall the anger of the LORD be kindled against you, and ye shall perish quickly from off the good land which he hath given unto you.
"But God would never send anyone to hell."
Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.
'these things' is a list of sins in previous verses.
If we are at enmity with God, what can be done? There has to be a mediator!
v. 1 'through Jesus'
A mediator tries to bring reconciliation, but it has to be agreeable to both sides.
[baseball strike / Israel and Palestinians / you and your spouse!
1 Timothy 2:5-6
5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
6 Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
19 For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell;
20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.
21 And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled
22 In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:
Jesus is our go between. Hanging on the cross He was suspended between heaven and earth. He reached down to sinful man and reached up to the Holy Father and brought us together by paying our penalty and breaking down the wall of division between us!
"Peace on earth and mercy mild, God and sinner reconciled!"
That peace is permanent.
25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.
1. Peace with God
v. 2 Ever tried to call the President? You don't have access!
But thru justification we have access to the Author of life, of salvation, and of the Bible!
14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;
15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;
16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:
17 And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.
18 For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.
11 According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:
12 In whom we have boldness and access with confidence by the faith of him.
'Access' means entrance to the king thru the favor of another.
ill.--years ago a little boy living in the British Isles wanted to see the king of England. He slipped away from his parents to Buckingham Palace and presented himself at the gate. He had no business there...no credentials. He was turned away by the guards. He went and sat on a curb and put his face in his hands and began to weep. Another older boy walked by and asked why he was crying. "I wanted to see the king!" The young man said, I can help you. He took him by the hand and walked right past the guards unchallenged, in the doors, up the stairs and right to the living quarters. The little boy got to meet the king. He didn't buy his way in, he performed no great feats or tricks to get the king's attention.
The only thing that changed was he was holding the hand of the prince, the king's son! That's how he got access to the king. Just like Jesus did for us!
The veil of the temple kept the Jew out, and a wall kept the Gentile out.
Eph. 2 says Jesus tore down that wall of partition. And that veil was torn in two.
Knowing the price paid so we might have access, I wonder how Jesus must feel when we do not avail ourselves to that access thru constant prayer? Not just having a prayer time, but a prayer life!
There are more benefits to justification we'll continue looking at in coming weeks.
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