We should often be people who meditate on the amazing grace of God, this is not something to think about just on Good Friday but rather all the year round. Paul in his letter to the Romans illustrates this well and I want to look briefly at the teaching of chapter 5.
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
The New International Version. (2011). (Ro 5:1–5). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.
Paul has been showing the believers at Rome that they are justified because they have put their faith in the finished work of Christ. It is through Jesus that we have peace with God, peace in Paul’s Hebrew mind was not only absence of conflict but also the presence of blessing. The believer stands in the grace of God because of what Jesus has done for them. This causes Paul and the believers to boast of the glory of God. What surprises us in our day is that Paul could rejoice in the midst of all the problems that life throws at him and he expects believers to do likewise. He sees how troubles can cause us to grow more Christlike. But in this context, he also emphasises the work of the Holy Spirit who has poured out the love of God into our hearts.These few words alone spell out the abundance of God’s grace yet in the rest of the chapter he adds, even more, content to this.
6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! 11 Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
The New International Version. (2011). (Ro 5:6–11). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.
Paul stand amazes at the grace of God which is shown to sinful people, Christ died at just the right time for the ungodly, we are all by nature ungodly and deserving of the wrath of God but God displays his love for us because it is for sinners that Christ died. although we receive our justification by faith, that justification comes to us at great cost because Jesus shed his precious blood that we might be saved. We are reconciled to God because of what Jesus has done for us. But Paul does not just stop at the subject of being reconciled through the death of Christ, he speaks also of the new life that comes from the risen life of Christ. so once again our boasting is to be of God and his amazing grace.
12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—
13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.
15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!
18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.
20 The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, 21 so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
The New International Version. (2011). (Ro 5:12–6:1). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.
In this passage Paul compares the roles of Adam and Christ, We must here see that Paul believes in the fact that Adam was someone who really was a historical figure. Paul here is contrasting the way Adam brought sin into the world with the way Christ brought salvation. Paul shows that god’s salvation is much greater than the power of sin. Notice how Paul says that the gift of salvation is far greater than the consequences of sin. The gift of salvation follows many trespasses. Jesus went to the cross to pay the price for our sin and he did so in the sure knowledge of the enormity of the cost. In Christ, we receive an abundant provision of grace and many will be made righteous.
As I said we need to meditate more on the wonder of God’s grace, we need to glory in the cross of Christ and see that at the foot of the cross we receive our forgiveness.