Romans 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
4 And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.
The word “therefore” in verse 1 shows us that what is coming next is being built on that which came before. God is continuing to lay out the truth about salvation. He declared his authority in chapter 1. Then He showed the result of rejecting God in chapter 1. He built upon that in chapter 2 with pointing out the self-righteousness of the Judaizers. They had their own form of godliness, but they were just as wrong as those in chapter 1. In chapter 3 God pointed out that the Jews were given the law and the privilege of copying out the law throughout the generations. There are those who dismiss the authority of God’s Word, with the claim that it was written by men and we know that men make mistakes.
I was doing some bookwork for a person just this week and I made a typing mistake in it. It did not affect the outcome, but it would have affected the ability to trace one of the records used to finalize the work. It was caught and that is a good thing.
Before these devotionals get published, my wife helps me to proof read them to try to eliminate mistakes in the final copy. It is true that we as people make mistakes.
What is also true is that the Bible is God’s Word. God used fallible men to copy out His Word. These men had to copy them out quite often. God made sure that each time they copied them, the end product was without any errors. God gave His Word through holy men who were moved by the Holy Ghost. He made sure the copies were also without error. The reason God did this is because He wants you and I to know the truth. Over the past 100+ years there has been a concerted effort to corrupt God’s Word. That effort first began with the devil in Genesis 3. Over time there have been those who were careless with God’s Word and did not care to keep it accurate. There have been those who deliberately changed the Word of God into a lie. However, God has always had His Word protected for each generation.
Intellectual prowess has caused many over the past number of years to reject Biblical infallibility. They argue that we cannot know for sure what God said, and we just need to get the general story right. They claim no doctrines have been affected with the many perversions that have been published. They are lying when they say that, but to them, doctrine is not important anyway. After all, they claim as long as a person loves Jesus, that is all that matters.
God makes it clear that we cannot love the true Jesus unless we have the Word of God to guide us in identifying the true Jesus.
God is good and He wants every person to know the truth. Every person will also be judged according to God’s perfect Word. Since God will judge all people according to His Word, and since God is just, He must make sure that every person has access to the truth. He has done that.
In chapter 4 God used two Old Testament righteous men to help to illustrate the importance of true Biblical faith. We know enough about these two men to know that they were not saved by works.
Now in chapter 5, God is building on this fact of justification by faith. Those who are justified by faith, have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Saved people build their lives on the truth. Lost people are content with mediocrity. They know they make mistakes and they do not care about complete accuracy. Lying is quite acceptable among the lost. As long as things work out okay in the end, then the means to the end do not matter.
That does not work for God. Lost people avoid the truth like the plague. They are not at peace with God and thus they must avoid the truth. Those who are saved are justified by faith and they have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
In verse 2 we are told that through the Lord Jesus Christ we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand. Notice that this is a particular grace. This is that helping grace that we need to be able to succeed in the Christian life.
Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord and he could build the Ark to the saving of the souls of his family. He needed God’s grace to build that ark properly. We know after the flood that Noah took his eyes off God’s grace for a short time when he decided to make some alcoholic wine and get drunk. God condemns drunkenness. Proverbs 20:1 tells us that those who use alcoholic wine in any amount, are deceived by it. Noah was deceived by it and he caused others to stumble due to his sin.
Noah sinned, but he was not lost because he sinned. He was forgiven and his soul is in heaven at this time. His soul was released from Abraham’s bosom after the crucifixion of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Those who are saved stand in the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. We do not trust in our self-effort. We do not try to keep ourselves saved. We trust in God’s promise of salvation.
Those who are saved rejoice in hope of the glory of God. We are not in heaven today. We have been promised heaven. We have been promised eternal life. We accept that promise by faith just as Abraham and David trusted God’s promises. Those who are saved understand the greatness of God and we trust in Him. We know that one day soon we will be in the presence of the Lord and we will continue to glory in Him. Heaven is not about us. It is about God. For the saved, this life needs to be about God as well. We can endure persecution because we know that we can be a help to others when we stand true to God.
In verse 3 we see that we glory in tribulations also. We don’t wish for tribulations, but we rejoice in the fact that we are counted worthy to suffer for the glory of God.
Acts 5:41 And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name.
That is talking about Peter and John who were beaten and threatened for not only believing in the Lord Jesus Christ, but also for proclaiming Him to be the Messiah and Saviour of mankind. They took the beating, but they did not stop preaching the truth.
Over the past three years many religious groups were threatened by ungodly governments, Most yielded to the threats and followed the ungodly dictates of the government. Some people even became snitches for the ungodly government. Police officers willingly did the bidding of the ungodly governments. Judges and lawyers also broke the law and followed the ungodly and lawless governments. A few people chose to identify with the true God and some of those were awarded tickets from the ungodly system. However, those who walked by faith, continued to preach the Word and did not allow the ungodly authorities to usurp the place of God.
Paul was directed to remind us that tribulation worketh patience. God has promised to be with His children. He does not immediately strike the ungodly down. He is longsuffering and some of those ungodly people will get saved. Those who are saved need patience. We need to trust God and leave justice in His hands. We have already witnessed that we will not win by following the lead of those who want to try to “strong arm” the government into making changes we would agree with. The more people pushed back publicly against the government, the more the government pushed back against the protestors. Those who just carried on with the work of God were far more successful than those who got their names in the news.
As we learn patience, we gain necessary experience in walking by faith. We learn more of what that means. We also increase in our hope of God. This hope will never make us ashamed. The world can scoff all it wants. Those who trust in God know He is not a liar. They know the end will be good for them. Abraham never owned the land that God took him into. He walked through it, but he had to purchase a parcel of ground to bury his wife and then he was buried there as well. It was not until some 400 years later that his descendants were given control of that land.
King David benefited from living in that land. He also learned to walk by faith. He faced enemies that were much greater physically, than he was. He took down Goliath with a sling and a stone. He understood it was the LORD that actually took down Goliath. He was protected against king Saul for over a year before God took him out of the way. He faced the Philistines on several occasions and was successful in battle against them every time. His failure was in his own life due to the lust of the flesh. He learned some important lessons the hard way because he lacked the needed faith to avoid the sin.
Abraham and David are not ashamed of their hope today. They are not in torment in hell. Their faith was not in vain. They are resting in the Lord, awaiting the resurrection of their bodies. All those who have put their faith in God through our Lord Jesus Christ have a hope that does not make ashamed. The reason is because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given to us.
We are reminded here that those who are saved do not need to seek for the Holy Ghost. He indwells the true child of God at the moment of salvation. We do not pray for Him. The ALPHA course is an ungodly program that has been used by many religious groups. The goal of that program is to introduce those who attend it to a “deeper, fuller” realization of the Holy Ghost. It cannot do that, and it does not do that. Many people have been deceived into believing lies regarding Who the Holy Ghost is and how He works, through that ungodly program.
Those who are truly saved, receive the Holy Ghost as a gift from God. Ephesians 1:13 tells us we have been sealed with Holy Spirit at the moment of salvation. We do not seek for Him. We need to yield to His leading after we are saved. Don’t fall for the lies of the Charismatic camp. Follow the truth. God’s Word is truth, not the assumed experiences of deceived people.