The Gift that Transforms
My Lord and Savior, I yield myself to You. I surrender my hopes, dreams, and ambitions to You today.
Read Romans 5:1-11
Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
“…A Christ-possessed life is uniquely endowed with power to fight his battle for what’s right with him leading each step of the way” (Lloyd John Ogilvie).
Have you ever been given an unexpected gift—perhaps even something of considerable value—given simply because the giver wanted to bless and encourage you? In a world where there is “no such thing as a free lunch,” such gifts can give a renewed sense of confidence.
Paul’s focus in this passage, which seems to start a new section in this letter, is on the sheer sense of gift in what God has done for us in Jesus. Using terms that echo the key themes of chs. 1 to 4, he reinforces what God has done for us in three areas. First (1), he has set us right with him, bringing into the present the End Times judgment of God that we have lived rightly, by virtue of Jesus’ own sacrifice. The language here is that of the temple: we can now enter God’s very presence and experience his glory within the holy of holies. Second (6), Jesus gave himself for us when we were unable to help ourselves. Paul identifies Jesus with God himself: to show his love, God does not send someone else, but came himself in the human likeness of the Messiah. Third, God “reconciles” us (11), turning the “otherness” between himself and humanity into friendship, giving us “peace” with him (1).
What God has done in the past now equips us to face the future. Instead of being shaped by the pressure of the difficulties we face every day, we find our characters formed by this great gift of grace as we see how much God loves us, a love made real by the presence of his Spirit in our lives. We can be confident that his love will carry us through the judgment that all must face at the great reckoning.
What challenges or difficulties do you currently face? Pray about them and thank God for what he has done for you in Jesus that equips you to face them.
Lord, I want a Christ-possessed life so I can live effectively and powerfully for You. Clean out, search out, root out all that is not in line with Your Kingdom.
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