Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Romans Chapter 5 - Part One

Romans 5:1

 Provided righteousness enjoyed
The apostle now turned to a presentation of the experiential results (suggested by the connective oun, trans. therefore) of the believers’ justification — God’s declaring them righteous — on the basis of faith (cf. 3:21-4:25). The participial clause since we have been justified (cf. Rom_5:9) through faith describes antecedent action to the main clause, we have peace (echomen) with God. Some of the important Greek manuscripts read, “Let us have peace (echōmen) with God.” This seems to be the preferred reading. If so, then the sense is, “Let us keep on having (in the sense of enjoying) peace with God.” Peace has been made by God through our Lord Jesus Christ (cf. Eph_2:14), which fact is demonstrated by God’s justification. A believer is not responsible for having peace in the sense of making it but in the sense of enjoying it. Justified: means just as if I had never sinned.
Being justified underscores that justification is a onetime legal declaration with continuing results, not an ongoing process.
Galatians 2:16 "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified."
Peace comes when we are assured of our salvation. It is not an internal sense of calm and serenity, but an external, objective reality. God has declared Himself to be at war with every human being because of man’s sinful rebellion against Him and His laws. The first great result of justification is that the sinner’s war with God is ended forever and this scripture refers to the end of this conflict as a persons’ being reconciled to God.
Romans 5:2

The Lord Jesus, besides being the Agent of the believer’s enjoyment of peace with God, is also the One through whom we have gained access (prosagōgēn, “privilege of approach” to a person of high rank; used elsewhere only in Eph_2:18; Eph_3:12) by faith into this grace in which we now stand. Believers in Christ stand in the sphere of God’s grace (cf. “grace” in Rom_3:24) because Christ has brought them to this position. He is their means of access.
In the Greek text the sentence, And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God, is coordinate to the clause, “We have peace” (Rom_5:1). We have access to the Father, because Jesus tore down the middle wall of partition and gave us access when He died on the cross.  We see how Jesus furnished us access to the Father.
Mark 15:38 "And the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom." This curtain was not torn down by man, but by God.
What was so unthinkable to the Old Testament Jews is now available to all who come.
“Stand”, refers to the permanent position believers enjoy in God’s grace.
“Hope in the Glory of God”: Unlike the English word “hope”, the New Testament word contains no uncertainty; it speaks of something that is certain, but not yet realized. The believer’s ultimate destiny is to share in the very glory of God, and that hope will be realized because Christ Himself secures it.
Without the clear and certain promises of the Word of God, the believer would have no basis for hope.
Like that clause, this one too may be translated, “Let us keep on rejoicing.” Because of Christ, Christians eagerly anticipate the time when they will share Christ’s glory, in contrast with their falling short of it now (Rom_3:23). In that sense He is “the hope of glory” (Col_1:27; cf. Rom_8:17-30; 2Co_4:17; Col_3:4; 2Th_2:14; Heb_2:10; 1Pe_5:1, 1Pe_5:10). Certainly such a prospect is cause for joy and even boasting! (Kauchōmetha, “rejoice,” is lit., “boast” or “exult,” here in a pure sense; this Gr. word is also used in Rom_5:3, Rom_5:11 where it is trans. “rejoice.”)
Romans 5:3-4

Believers can enjoy the peace with God that has been achieved and the glorious future in God’s presence that awaits them. But how should they react to the experiences of life that are often adverse and difficult? They are to rejoice in their sufferings. The word “rejoice” is kauchōmetha, the same word in Rom_5:2. “Sufferings” is thlipsesin, “afflictions, distresses, pressures.” James wrote along the same line: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds” (Jas_1:2).  Jesus taught that in this life you will have tribulation and that the only peace is in Him.
John 16:33 "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."
II Corinthians 1:4 "Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God." 
You see, the problems come to all. Christians have Jesus to lean upon in their troubles. In Revelation chapter 7 verse 14, we see all the Christians around the throne who have been taken out of great tribulations on this earth. He promises He will be with us and provide a way out for us.
Matthew 5:45 "That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust."
One of the greatest examples of someone who was perfect and upright in the sight of God, and yet has great tribulation, is found in the book of Job. Job is tested by tribulation and yet his patience never tires.  When we are going through tribulation (un-deserved), we must remember that it is to make us stronger in God. Jesus was tried for 40 days and nights, but never faltered. We can make it, too, if we keep in the back of our mind that it is for our own good and not harm.
Patience (also known as perseverance) refers to endurance, the ability to remain under tremendous weight and pressure without succumbing.
This is more than mere Stoic endurance of troubles, even though endurance or steadfastness is the first result in a chain-reaction outgrowth from distress. This is spiritual glorying in afflictions because of having come to know (from oida, “to know by intuition or perception”) that the end product of this chain reaction (that begins with distress) is hope. All Christians have the hope of the resurrection.
In Lamentations 3:26 "[It is] good that [a man] should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD."
I have discovered that God allows these little trials to come along to see if we will rely on Him while we endure under pressure. If we fold in the trial, then we have to go through another similar trial until we learn to lean on him in our trials. 
I Thessalonians 4:13 "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope."
Suffering brings about perseverance (hypomonēn, “steadfastness,” the ability to remain under difficulties without giving in; cf. Rom_15:5-6; Jas_1:3-4). Only a believer who has faced distress can develop steadfastness. “Experience” means character, or a better translation would be proven character. The Greek word simply means {proof”. It was used of testing metals to determine their purity,. Here the proof is Christian character. Christians can glory in tribulations because of what those troubles produce.
That in turn develops character (dokimēn  [“proof”] has here the idea of “proven character”), which in turn results in hope. As believers suffer, they develop steadfastness; that quality deepens their character; and a deepened, tested character results in hope (i.e., confidence) that God will see them through.
Romans 5:5

A believer’s hope, since it is centered in God and His promises, does not disappoint him. “Disappoint” means “put to shame because of disappointment” in unfulfilled promises. This affirmation concerning hope in God is a reflection of Psa_25:3, Psa_25:20-21 (cf. Psa_22:5; Rom_9:33; 1Pe_2:6). The reason this hope (resulting finally from affliction) does not disappoint is that God has poured out His love into our hearts. God’s love, so abundant in believer’s hearts (cf. 1Jn_4:8, 1Jn_4:16), encourages them on in their hope. And this love is poured out by (better, “through,” dia with the genitive) the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us. This Holy Ghost spoken of here comes and dwells within us as soon as we accept Christ as our Savior. It is the Holy Ghost in us that loves others unselfishly. 
God has implanted within our hearts evidence that we belong to Him in that we love the One who first loved us.
We are not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ unto salvation. If we are ashamed of Jesus or the Holy Ghost here, He will be ashamed of us in heaven. We must not be ashamed but boldly tell of our Lord and Savior and His blessed Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit is the divine Agent who expresses to a believer the love of God, that is, God’s love for him. The reality of God’s love in a believer’s heart gives the assurance, even the guarantee, that the believer’s hope in God and His promise of glory is not misplaced and will not fail. This ministry of the Holy Spirit is related to His presence in believers as the seal of God (Eph_4:30) and as the earnest or down payment of their inheritance in glory (2Co_1:21-22; Eph_1:13-14). Later Paul wrote that the Holy Spirit Himself has been poured out in believers (Tit_3:6). Each believer has the Spirit of Christ (Rom_8:9) in the sense that He is indwelt by the Holy Spirit (cf. 1Jn_3:24; 1Jn_4:13).
Romans 5:6-8

Having mentioned the pouring out of God’s love, Paul now described the character of God’s love, which explains why its pouring out assures believers of hope. God demonstrated His love by the death of His Son, Jesus Christ. This demonstration was first, at just the right time (cf. Gal_4:4). Second, it was when we were still powerless (asthenōn, “without strength, feeble”; cf. Joh_5:5). Third, it was for (hyper) the ungodly (asebōn, “impious”; cf. Rom_4:5). The mystery of it all is how He loved us enough to die for us while we were evil in every way.
Unregenerate sinners are spiritually dead and incapable of doing anything to help them selves.
“In due time”: Meaning at the time that God had chosen.
Jesus died for those who deserved to go to hell, because they had sinned. (There is no one righteous in his own right) everyone needs a Savior. God loves a sinner and has made way for him or her: the way is Jesus Christ our Lord. He gave each of us a free will so we must be willing to be saved, and then Jesus does the rest.
 Clearly Christ’s death was a substitutionary death, a death in place of others. The Greek preposition hyper often means “on behalf of,” but occasionally it means “in place of,” its meaning here. This is clear from the statement in Rom_5:7, which also has hyper. A person willing to die for a righteous man or for a good man obviously is offering himself as a substitute so that the righteous or good man can continue to live. This is just saying that it would have been a little more understandable that Jesus would die on the cross for us, if we had been good people.
As uncommon as such a sacrifice is, Paul’s point is that we were neither righteous nor good yet Christ sacrificed Himself for us. There are no good people.
Matthew 19:17 "And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? [there is] none good but one, [that is], God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments."
A death of this cruel nature would be hard to endure, even for righteous people, but for wicked people it is almost not understandable. The reason we do not understand is because God’s love is so much greater than anything we know about.
This is the highest expression of human love and devotion. However, God’s love contrasts with human love in both nature and degree, because God demonstrates (“keeps on showing”) His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (hyper, “in our place”). In verse eight, it is as if God forced His love to be shown by His mighty hand. The word “commandeth” means more than just give.
The greatest love ever known was when God the Father gave His only begotten son to die on the cross for you and me that we might be saved.  The mystery of it all is He does not wait until we are good enough to be saved.
Though a few people might possibly be willing to die to save the lives of good people, though that is rare, Christ went well beyond that. He died in the place of the powerless (“feeble,” Rom_5:6), the ungodly (Rom_5:6; Rom_4:5), sinners (Rom_5:8), and even His enemies! (Rom_5:10).
Romans 5:9-11

The participle translated have… been justified (“declared righteous”) ties these verses to the argument at the beginning of the chapter (cf. Rom_5:1). The immediate connection, however, is with what preceded (Rom_5:6-8). God gave proof of His love by having Christ die in the place of humans “while we were still sinners.” Because of the sinner’s response by faith (Rom_5:1) to Christ’s sacrifice on the cross, God has declared him righteous. Certainly that now-declared-righteous person will not be forsaken by God’s love, which has been poured out effusively in his heart. Since the divine dilemma of justification (Rom_3:26) has been solved on the basis of Jesus’ shed blood (cf. Rom_3:25), certainly Jesus Christ will see that justified sinners will be saved from God’s wrath. The wrath being spoken of here is not God’s temporal wrath to come on the earth as in the book of Revelations, but of God’s eternal wrath reserved for unrepentant sinners.
We see this in 1 Thes. 5:9-10: For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with Him.
“By His blood”: Not by His physical blood, but by His death we shall be saved from wrath through him, through His violent, substitutionary death.
References to the blood of the Savior include the reality that He bled in His death, a necessity to fulfill the Old Testament imagery of sacrifice, but are not limited to the fluid itself. New Testament writers also use the term “blood” as a graphic way to describe violent death. References to the Savior’s blood are not simply pointing to the fluid, but at His death and entire atoning work.
Because Christ bore the full fury of God’s wrath in the believing sinner’s place, there is no fury left for him.
Believers will never be condemned to hell (Joh_5:24; Rom_8:1) nor will they be the objects of God’s coming Tribulation wrath (1Th_1:10; 1Th_5:9).
Here this same truth is repeated in different words (Rom_5:10). Reconciliation, the third great achievement of Jesus’ sacrificial death on Calvary, is presented (also Rom_5:11). This great triumvirate — redemption (Rom_3:24; 1Co_1:30; Gal_3:13; Eph_1:7); propitiation (Rom_3:25 [NIV: “sacrifice of atonement”]; 1Jn_2:2; 1Jn_4:10 [NIV: “atoning sacrifice”]); reconciliation (Rom_5:10-11; 2Co_5:18-20; Col_1:22) — is totally the work of God, accomplished through the death of Jesus Christ. Redemption pertains to sin (Rom_3:24), propitiation (or satisfaction) pertains to God (Rom_3:25), and reconciliation is for people (cf. we were reconciled). Reconciliation is the removal of enmity that stands between people and God (cf. “enemies” in Rom_5:10; Col_1:21). Reconciliation is the basis of restored fellowship between people and God (cf. 2Co_5:20-21). When we were still God’s enemies, Christ was able by His death to reconcile us to God. Certainly now that we are God’s children, the Savior can keep us by His living power.
In John 11:25-26 "Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:" "And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?"
Because He (Jesus) lives, we shall live also. Jesus is life:  In John 14:6 "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." Jesus is life. If we have Jesus, we have life.
 If (Rom_5:10) may be rendered “since”; it assumes that the reconciliation through the death of His Son is true. In addition, reconciliation was done when we were God’s enemies (lit., “being enemies”). Since reconciliation was accomplished by Jesus’ death, certainly His life is able to insure the complete and final salvation of believers. “His life” is His present life (not His life on earth) in which He intercedes (Heb_7:25) for believers. He died for His enemies; surely He will save those, His former enemies, who are now fellowshipping in Him. Because Christians, God’s reconciled ones, share in Christ’s life, they will be saved. Not only is future salvation assured, but we also rejoice in God (“but also boasting [kauchōmenoi] in God”) here and now. This is what Paul already exhorted believers to do (Rom_5:1-3). The assurance and guarantee of it all is the fact that through… Christ… we have now received reconciliation (lit., “the reconciliation”). 2 Cor. 5:18 tells us:  “And all things [are] of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;”. All the aspects related to someone’s conversion and newly transformed life in Christ are accomplished by a sovereign God. Sinners on their own cannot decide to participate in these new realities.
Atonement, here, means restoration to divine favor. Notice, this atonement is by Jesus Christ. Even our joy is in Him. Since God has reconciled godless enemies to Himself, they should enjoy that peace with Him.