Summary: This series is based on A. M. Hills book "Holiness in the Book of Romans."
The recent hurricanes have shown the need for safe harbor.
Read Romans 5:1-2.
I. Consider the FIRST Blessing—Justification by Faith
I was Jesus whose death on the cross, provided for our salvation. It is by faith that we are saved.
A. The conditions of salvation are PLAIN
There are some conditions for salvation.
It is not by works: church attendance, etc.
a. Repentance of SIN
Sin is what messed us up to begin with. We revolted against God. We have to confess and repent
Faith is more than mere intellectual assent. It involves the fiber of our being. When we have faith we are saved.
B. Notice the RESULTS
1. We are JUSTIFIED
When we are justified we are declared to be in a right relationship with God. The Amplified Bible says, “justified—acquitted, declared righteous, and give a right standing with God.”
2. We have PEACE with God
This isn’t inner peace. This is being right with God. As sinners we are enemies of God.
The US has peace with Britain even though we were enemies 200 years ago.
3. This settles the SIN question
We must forsake our sin. Sin is something that we can play around with. 1 John 5:18 says, “We know that everyone who has been born of God does not keep on sinning, but he who was born of God protects him, and the evil one does not touch him.”
The king’s driver illustration. Stay away from sin.
II. Notice the BLESSING in the second verse.
There is a noticeable addition in verse 2. “Also” means something in addition. This is after salvation. We “obtain” this in addition to our salvation.
A. The GRACE in which we STAND
The word here translated “stand” means more than just standing. It means standing firm, making a stand, or stand up.
Like in tug-of-war where the anchor digs in his heels to keep from being moved.
God’s grace gives us the power to live a life without sin.
1. It removes ABNORMAL physical appetites
Sin causes appetites that are abnormal and unhealthy. I have heard testimonies where people have given up powerful habits by the power of God’s grace. It’s not a matter of willpower.
2. It removes the ABNORMAL our of the natural appetites
There are some very normal appetites that are imperative to our life, but are distorted by sin.
I have natural appetite for ice cream, but to desire to eat 47 gallons in one sitting is abnormal.
3. It CLEANSES from the depraved propensity to sin
This second gift of grace cleanses our inclination to sin. As sinners our lives are governed by our self-will. This gift of grace turns our focus and inclination toward God.
This helps us stand firmer. Our heels are dug in deeper. It gives us safe harbor from the wind and waves of the hurricane the devil would throw at us.
B. It is described as the “JOY-GIVING” grace
There is a difference between happiness and joy. Happiness depends on our circumstances. Joy is a God given state of being that exists despite our circumstances.
Paul wrote, “More than that, 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” (Romans 5:3-5)”
C. It is described as an experience of HOPE
Have you ever met a grumpy Christian? Some are like Oscar the Grouch. They are never happy. They respond with a “no” before you finish the question.
The reality is that in addition to joy we have hope. Our hope is also not dependent on our current circumstance.
APPLYING THE WORD
The access that we have is only through Jesus. Access is either ushering one into the presence of royalty or putting a ship in safe harbor out of the storm. Both meanings are appropriate for this passage. Jesus ushers us into the royal presence of the Father, where we obtain safe harbor.
Are you in the safe harbor of God’s grace? How does this passage make you feel? How will this passage change your life? What do you need to do to stand in God’s grace?