Summary: Lent 2 (B) - Believers have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Our peace is in God’s forgiveness, full and free. Our peace is in having heavenly hope.
WE HAVE PEACE WITH GOD THROOUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST (Outline)
February 17, 2008 –
LENT 2 -
INTRO: Peace is a word filled with meaning. Peace is also a word that is hard to fulfill on this side of heaven. Our world is not a place of peace. Our world really cannot offer any hope of true peace. Consider Jesus as he comforts his disciples. Jesus spends quality time with his chosen in the upper room right before he is betrayed and crucified. Jesus wants to strengthen his disciples to face the coming events of the next few days. Jesus gives them peace, divine peace, unlike anything else they already have. "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid"(JOHN 14:27). This is God’s peace. God’s peace takes trouble out of the hearts of believers. God’s peace removes the fear from the believer’s life. Today’s verses reveal our theme.
WE HAVE PEACE WITH GOD THROOUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST.
I. There is God’s peace from free forgiveness.
II. There is God’s peace having heavenly hope.
I. PEACE FROM FREE FORGIVENESS
A. Verse 1. Therefore is the first word as Paul describes the depth of God’s peace for believers.
1. The believer has peace with God through Jesus and, only through Jesus. This peace is divine.
2. This miracle of God’s gift of peace is further explained in verse 6. Christ died for the ungodly.
3. This act was not normal, verse 7. Very few give up their life even for righteous or good men.
4. This is God’s great love that the Son would still willingly die for sinners! Verse 8.
B. Everything has now changed for those who were once enemies of God, verse 9.
1. God’s righteous wrath is removed by Jesus’ death. This is God’s peace.
2. Mankind is forgiven because of Jesus’ death. Believers live because of Jesus life, verse 10.
C. What does this all mean for the believer? Back to verse 1, 2a. Believers stand firm in God’s grace.
D. The sinful nature can be hard for some to comprehend. Everyone begins this life as an enemy of God. There are not any babies who look like they oppose God. No one is exempt. Everyone on earth still faces death. Scripture declares that the soul who sin is the one who will die. As long as there is death sin is still alive and well among mankind. The world would love to forget about that word sin. We don’t like to hear how bad we think, speak or act. God’s word is still the truth. "Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me"(PSALM 51:5). Admitting our sinfulness we know we need help.
E. Maybe in our life we live more as enemies of God than we would like to admit. After all, we do spend a far greater amount of time living in the world than in the church. We spend a far greater amount of time planning out worldly affairs than planning our daily Bible reading or study. Our own sinful flesh can quickly drag us away from that which is really, truly important. Scripture warns. "You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God"(JAMES 2:16). As God’s enemies we need God’s peace.
F. Thankfully and joyfully our loving heavenly Father does not leave us to our devices. Our gracious God provides his help, his strength, and his solution to our soul’s salvation. Left on our own we would most certainly be lost forever. In his infinite mercy and wisdom God knows exactly what we need for our eternal salvation. God gives us his peace. "But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace"(EPHESIANS 2:13, 14a). Though we may live and act like God’s enemies the blood of Christ cleanses us from all sin. Even though we may try to separate ourselves from God’s love he brings us back. This is God’s peace for us. Thankfully this does not depend our efforts but on God’s grace. We stand firm in faith freely and fully forgiven.
WE HAVE PEACE WITH GOD THROOUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST. There is divine peace in God’s free and full forgiveness.
There is also God’s peace having heavenly hope.
II. PEACE HAVING HEAVENLY HOPE
A. All the Scriptures, the prophets, the apostles try to direct God’s people to be more heavenly-minded.
1. Thus verse 2b. Believers rejoice in hope, in God’s glory. God’s glory is heaven itself.