Summary: In Jesus is your salvation. In Jesus is resurrection life. In Jesus is justification, the forgiveness of sins. Give your life to the one who can truly save, Jesus Christ, and him alone.
If you missed last week, we began a four week series called Stories to Tell. For these 4 weeks I’m going to tell you 4 stories of 4 heroes of our faith, which many of you have probably never heard. My hope is that these stories give you new heroes who encourage you in new ways, and that you have stirring new stories of faith to pass to your children and your children’s children. (turn to Romans 5)
Each of these stories are deeply rooted in a biblical truth that at one point was challenged, and God raised up a hero of the faith to be a defender of that truth. The biblical truth we’re looking at today is the…
Solo Christo is the biblical truth that Christ is the only mediator between God and man, and there is salvation through no other. Our hope is to be pinned on nothing other than Jesus Christ and his finished work for us on the cross and his victorious resurrection three days later. In him, and him alone, we have new life. Ro 5:1-11
Through faith in the finished work of Christ we have been justified, our sin has been removed from us as far as the east is from the west. That’s what justified means, to be blameless, to be completely free of guilt. You and I, through faith in Christ actually have the capacity to stand before a perfectly holy God, blameless, not cowering in shame, but standing confidently in his presence, having been justified by Christ, 5:1-2.
Think about that Christian, if you were somehow able to record in a ledger, every sin you’ve ever committed, and every sin you ever will commit, nothing excluded from the ledger, all the dirt, all the things you cringe in shame when you think about, all the things you hope nobody ever finds out about you, all of it. Justification, is God taking that ledger and stamping across it, ‘paid in full by the blood of my son,’ then taking the ledger and destroying it. That’s what you and I have in Jesus Christ.
Christian, if you think God is still angry with you, keeping you at arm’s length because of some sin, you need to know Jesus has set you free from that. You are forgiven, blameless, without guilt before God, through faith in Christ. I remember well the moment I put my faith in Jesus, I could sense immediately I was a new man. I was no longer a guilty sinner, I was a justified son. My desire is for all of you to know the saving work of Jesus.
5:6-8…The justification we have with God through Christ, is NOT the result of us cleaning ourselves up enough to earn it. It’s not about any good work we’ve done. When we were powerless, dead in our sin, ungodly pagans, Christ died for us. That’s how much God loves you, even when you were a wretch, he gave his all to save you.
Aren’t you so glad God’s love for you isn’t based on your goodness. What an incredibly exhausting way to live, trying to clean yourself up enough to be accepted by God. That’s the difference between Christianity and every other world religion. In every other world religion, God’s love is earned by good behavior. In Christianity it’s given by grace to wretched people, unable to earn it on their own. That’s grace, and it’s the best news the world has ever known.