[010617] Notes from God’s Greatest Gift by Andrew Farley

122516 God’s Greatest Gift

Romans 5:8-21
..God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.  Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.  For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.  More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned—  for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law.  Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.

But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many.  And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification.  For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.

Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men.  For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.  Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,  so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Christ is the perfect demonstration of God’s love. God’s greatest gift is Christ’s finished work at the cross, and Christ alive in us today. 
There’s nothing greater, no better gift that God’s favor upon us. This is extreme favor which states that He will never leave nor forsake us, that nothing can ever separate us from not just His favor and attention, but His deep love. We operate differently and we think differently as we continue to believe this… Because we are no longer attempting to get His favor, and because we will always have His favor, our priorities and attitudes change. 
When we believe that we were made spotless through Christ, it makes a significant difference in our perspective, our outlook of the life that we have. It was such a gift, so great and purchased at so great a price – Christ Himself was on the gift’s price tag. It came at the ultimate price, the greatest cost – The death of Christ, God’s Son made man, shedding the blood of what was to be the sacrificial Lamb. You’ve received the gift – take ownership of it! Receive it! Christ died for you, Christ paid such a great, great price for your life! HALLELUYAH!
Stop focusing on your sins – they have been erased, and God does not relate to us according to our sins anymore – as we have become His righteousness through Christ, so we are treated and provided with equivalent favor. Besides, it’s not like you can pay for your sins in the spiritual Ledger anyway. But what’s so great is that Christ has paid for your sins – all of them. They’ve been fully paid and there is no revocation, or any reason for Christ to pay for anything again! 
The death of Christ had its part in our salvation, but it is His life and resurrection that saved us. We have been reconciled by His death, but we have been saved by His resurrection. Joseph Prince states that His resurrection is the proof of our salvation. If Christ stayed dead we could only speculate, and we would not be certain if His sacrifice was enough for our sins. Christ’s death took care of our sins, but Christ’s life took care of my self, in the sense that His life is now our life, and now our life is His life! Salvation truly has us saying, it is no longer I who lives but Christ who lives within us!
Again, Christ’s death reconciled us, and Christ’s resurrection saved us. Thank You, Lord Jesus! Thank You, Father!
Enough with the focus on our sins and our performance. Let us have a deliberate focus – if we are to focus, let us focus on Christ! If we are to be obsessed with anything, do not let it be our sins! Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, who is indeed the Author and Perfecter of our Faith! 
The core problem was not the sins we see – these are a result of the death we have to our core, inherited from the sin that came into the world through Adam. With this said, it makes no sense for us to shave off the sins, because the core isn’t being addressed. True Christianity acknowledges the death that we have to the core, and acknowledges the need – not just for doctrine or methods, but for a literal Savior who could hit the problem and erase it from the core! 
The Law’s function was to expose this death to the core – that no matter how we try, we could never eliminate all of our sins because it isn’t what we do but the condition that we had through Adam. 
The effects of Adam’s actions are nothing compared to the finished work of Jesus Christ, through His death, resurrection and ascension. By Christ’s obedience, many will be made and declared righteous. True that Christ did all the work, but we ought to believe this! We ought to receive this! The gift has been given, and we should receive this gift! If Adam’s one act had so much impact, Christ’s finished work was more superior. If Adam could mess things up, Christ fixes and restores so much more! To this, we ought to respond by simply saying Halleluyah!
Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all (Jew & Gentile) men.  For as by the one man’s disobedience the many (nations, people groups) were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many (nations, people groups) will be made righteous. 
The law came in to amplify and reveal sin, but where sin abounded and increased, God’s grace abounded even more. When we mess up, there’s a bigger amount of grace that abounds! His grace is sufficient to us for all circumstances. This grace restores, reconciles, and so much more! It directs us, advises us, leads us – the grace of God forgives us, teaches us, tutors us. Christ is full of grace, and He Himself teaches us, directs us, tutors us. He is Eternity leading us, giving us visions. Grace is King because Jesus is King. 
Christ’s death reconciled us, and Christ’s resurrection saved us. He is the greatest gift of all. 

email me at jibee@rocketmail.com

May the Lord bless you and keep you. May the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord lift His countenance upon you and give you His Shalom. – Numbers 6:24-26

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