Sermon Overview & Prayer: "Much More: The Benefits of Justification"
Romans 5:1-11 | “Much More”: The Benefits of Justification
These written prayers are intended to fuel your meditation on this passage and your enjoyment of God in prayer.
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. 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. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 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. For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 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. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
We have peace with God.
Being justified, enmity, alienation, and separation are gone!
PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I thank you that I am justified, and no longer an enemy, but miraculously loved as your child. Please convict me of any attempts I may make to earn or merit your forgiveness. Holy Spirit, remind me that it was while I was still a sinner that Christ died for me; and may that reality affect the way I forgive, and pursue peace with others.
We have access to Grace.
Being justified, shows that God loves to be gracious to his children! (Romans 8:32)
PRAYER: Lord, thank you that in being justified there are no limits to the things for which I might pray, and there are no limits to blessings and grace you will bestow. Trusting in your perfect love, I know that whatever your response, or whatever my circumstance, your grace is always abundant and sufficient.
We rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
Being justified, we experience his present glory and are filled with hope for the experience of eternal glory!
PRAYER: Holy Spirit, from the the time we wake up, and throughout the day, prompt us with the reality that your glory is all around us. And let the eternal glory that awaits us fill us with hope, peace, anticipation, and joy, even as we live in this fallen world. Lord, stir our hearts to respond, and to pursue others, and always be prepared...to [share with] anyone who asks us for a reason for the hope that is in us.
We have joy in suffering.
Being justified, we know that God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
PRAYER: Father, although justified, we confess there are times when suffering is so inexplicable or heart-breaking or confusing that we are tempted to doubt you. In those moments, please take us back to the cross to see that it was in Christ’s suffering that we were gloriously justified. Impress that image into our hearts and minds that we might likewise see purpose, fruit, hope, and joy in our suffering.
We have the assurance of absolute safety on Judgment Day.
Being justified, we have no fear of future wrath and judgment.
PRAYER: Lord God, our finite minds have such a limited grasp of your perfect love and mercy, and of eternity in heaven with you. And we likewise have only a glimpse of your righteous wrath and judgment, and of eternal separation from you in hell. That we have been lavishly been granted the first, and so mercifully spared the second compels us to bow in humble praise, worship, obedience, and faith. Spirit of God, stir our hearts to live righteously. Stir us to encourage our brothers and sisters faithfully. And please stir us to share the gospel with the lost as compassionately and as frequently as we can.
We rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Being justified, we are free to enjoy God in the way we were made to enjoy God.
PRAYER: Holy Spirit, as you have been given to us to reveal and glorify God through our Lord Jesus Christ, fill us with the truth and joy...that we personally and intimately and eternally know the living God! Open our eyes to see him in the Word, in creation, and in fellowship. And may every sighting and every awareness that we know him, bring joy unspeakable andfull of glory!
OVERVIEW OF THE SERMON:
Paul begins his letter to the Romans by outlining our need for justification and God’s provision for justification. Then, in Romans 5:1-11, Paul discusses the result of our justification, or what we now have as believers through faith in Christ’s death for our sins. God lavishly gives more and more in Christ. As believers, we have peace with God, access to grace, hope, joy in suffering, assurance of absolute safety on judgment day, and—above everything else—we enjoy God himself. Therefore, believers should treasure the gospel and its results. We should express gratitude to God and joy in their daily lives.
- Reread Romans 5:1-11. How do these verses affect your understanding of the abundance that God has given you through the gospel?
- Drawing from the text, Mike lists six things we have in Christ because of our justification: peace with God, access to grace, hope, joy in suffering, assurance of absolute safety on Judgment Day, and ultimately God himself. Of these, what encourages or strengthens you right now in your daily life? How?
- Our present sufferings serve to strengthen our hope. How have your sufferings strengthened your anticipation for God’s glory?
- Mike exhorted us to treasure the gospel and to express gratitude and joy in God. What are some ways you practically treasure the gospel and cultivate joy? How can we do this as a community group and a church?
- Treasuring the gospel and gratitude to God are two things that should mark believers. How should these things affect how we display the gospel to a world that rejects the gospel?
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