The Gift That Keeps on Giving

Romans 5:1-5

Posted by Ian Rush on June 2, 2024
The Gift That Keeps on Giving
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Main idea: Justification doesn’t only transform your future; it transforms your present, too.

  1. Rest in peace (v. 1).
  2. Receive grace (v. 2a).
  3. Rejoice in hope (v. 2b–5).
  • Automated Transcription
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    Good morning, everybody. Thank you musicians for leading us that was a sweet time singing through those songs. My name is Ian rush. I am the youth pastor here at Faith Bible Church. I am abnormal. What I mean is for those of you that were laughing, Dan Jarms is usually the guy that stands up here and preaches on Sunday mornings. He's our, our lead pastor here and he does most of the teaching. He's out he's out on sabbatical. So he's away for three months with his wife, Linda, they're over in Europe, getting some spiritual refreshment, physical refreshment, they'll be back with us in August. So I'm here. This week I was here last week. I'm here next week. And then we've got a rotation of other guys we're working through over the summer working through the book of Romans. So we're going to continue that this morning. So turning your Bibles to Romans chapter five, and please stand for the reading of God's Word.

    So we're going to begin in verse one. And then I'm going to read down to verse five. If you don't have your Bible you prefer it's up on the screen behind me as well. So Romans five, starting in verse one. Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand. And we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, endurance produces character, and character produces hope. And hope does not put us to shame. Because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. This is the word of the Lord. Let's pray together. Father, we're so thankful to have the opportunity to be together this morning. We're thankful to be here to worship together. We're thankful to be able to fellowship together and we're thankful now to be able to come around your word together, I pray that You would help us to be attentive as you instruct and direct us through Your Word. Help us not only to hear it and understand it here, but to take it away into life, that we would live by the things that we hear from you this morning. Help us to recognize every Sunday when we come, the reading and the preaching of the of Your word is is the delivery of your word to us your instruction to us, to help us to hold it with the appropriate weight as its word that comes from you. I do pray that you'd help us to pay attention to what you have to say, and then apply it in our lives. We pray for Dan and Linda. We're so thankful for them. We're thankful for their ministry within the body here, we're thankful that they have an opportunity to be away and unrest and get some refreshment and recuperation. Pray that it would be a spiritually encouraging and strengthening time for them as they're away. And just pray that you'd continue to unify us as a church in their absence. And after they return as well help us to continue pursuing you together and pursuing your glory. We pray as well. Father, we know that we're not the only church that gathers this Sunday morning in particular, think of Grace Christian Fellowship, their central location here and the North location. And then brothers and sisters, Indian Trail church as well. Just pray that You would help all of those churches to be centered on the gospel of Jesus Christ, to make it their aim to proclaim those truths to the the city around us but also to the world around us and get Christ to everybody who so dearly, needs to hear about him. And we pray as well. Father This week, we said goodbye to Jared and Claire as they went overseas into the Czech Republic. We pray for them and the kids to say, acclimatized is going to take some time as they learn language and settle into church life there and start ministering to the church and also being served by the church. I pray that you'd bring encouragement and strength to them as they go through that and that they would be increasingly dependent upon your grace. So Father, we pray all of these things together this morning in Christ's name. Amen. Please do have a seat. You, I'm sure you've probably heard this slogan before, the gift that keeps on giving. Something comes to mind, probably when you hear that slogan is being used as an advertising slogan, according to my internet research, for the last 100 years, at least. Okay, so I did, I undertook the task of looking at one website. And that website gave me all the information I'm going to tell you about this slogan, okay. So we know like we've heard it. It's an appealing slogan, right? Because it gives the buyer the impression that the gift that they would buy, is not going to lose its appeal is the gift that keeps on giving, it's going to hold its appeal is going to hold its usefulness, it's not going to wear out, you are really, really going to get your money's worth, if you buy this thing. It's not just going to fade away, as soon as the wrapping paper is torn off. And it's like, oh, initial excitement. And then let's move on to the next thing. No, this is the gift that keeps on giving. How many of you would like to receive a gift like that? How many of you would love to know what that gift is? So that you could give it to someone on their birthday, like the gift that keeps on giving. It doesn't lose its appeal, they're going to continue to be excited about it. So let me tell you some of the things over the years, the last 100 years that that slogan has been useful. In the 1920s a victor radio was described as the gift that keeps on givin does anybody know what Victor radio is? I guess it's a radio. So you open the box, you get the radio out, you turn it on, and you keep you get to keep listening to it. Like you get enjoyment out of it for a long time. So the victor radio later in the 1920s, it was used for a hot point used it to sell white ranges a Christmas and they were like this is the gift that keeps on giving. You don't just get to open an oven on Christmas Day. But you get to continue cooking, and using it to make all of these delicious things is the gift that keeps on givin. And over the years beyond that it's been used for TVs, is being used for Kodak cameras. Obviously, that doesn't work. boxes of chocolates, I read that one it was in I think this one was 2017 Godiva chocolates, they came out with this thing where it's like a box that you opened. And then when you finish the first layer, you kind of opened it up. And then there were four other layers underneath. It's like, that's a gift that keeps on giving the I could get behind. So what's true of all these gifts, they eventually stopped giving up all of the chocolate, you watch the TV, those white hot point ranges, who knows where they are anymore? The Victor radio is probably in a museum somewhere? I don't know. Maybe not? I don't know. I don't know. But eventually, it all wears out. Right? We move on to the next thing. It gets replaced. And and we move on. So what we're going to do this morning a couple of times early on, is we're going to do some redeeming, okay, we're going to redeem a couple of phrases. And the first one is this one, the gift that keeps on giving. Okay, we're taking it back. We're going to apply it to the real gift of God's grace through His Son, Jesus Christ that actually, eternally keeps on giving. In John chapter four, Jesus himself said to the woman at the well. Everyone who drinks of this water, the water that you can get out of the will, will be thirsty again. You're just gonna have to keep coming back. You have to come back every day. You have to come back multiple times a day. And you're gonna have to keep drinking. It's never going to completely satisfy you. But then he says whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life. And then just a couple of chapters later in John chapter six, through the feeding of the 5000 Miracle, he says something similar to the crowds, I am the bread of life, Whoever comes to me, shall not hunger. So essentially what he's saying there is like, yeah, we just did the feeding of the 5000. And like, even all the way back in the Old Testament, you remember, the Israelites were in the wilderness, and they got manna from heaven, that was provided for them. But you know what, every day, they needed more, like, I'll give you 5000 this for lunch, and dinner, you're gonna be hungry again. Tomorrow morning, after that, you're gonna be hungry again. Then this time, tomorrow, you're gonna be hungry again. And you're gonna keep needing more and more and more. But he says, Whoever comes to me, shall not hunger. And whoever believes in me shall never thirst.

    So last week, we talked about how God has justly made a way for sinners to be declared righteous. And this way was made by the work of His Son, Jesus Christ. And we can be beneficiaries of that work through faith in him. But this week, what we're going to do is we're going to take it a step further. And it might be a step further than you've ever taken before in understanding this work that God has done through Christ. So that brings me to our main idea this morning. And it's this justification doesn't only transform your future, it transforms your present to justification doesn't only transform your future, it transforms your present to what do I mean by that? Well, we'll see in Romans five, but I'll say it this way. We often think of justification, in the sense that that's how we're saved. And one day we will enter into heaven because we're justified. We think about it in the sense of our eternal future. And that that's sealed. And that that's great. And all of that is true, we should think about it that way. But justification affects way more than that. It starts affecting us today. It has implications on our life right now. This very moment, this very day. Everything that's going to happen to you throughout this week. Justification has implications in your life, beyond just your eternal future. So we're going to work through these five verses, I'm just going to split them into three sections. And the first one is this verse one. Rest in peace, rest in peace. I told you, we're going to redeem some phrases. This is the next one. Okay? Because when you hear that phrase, it sounds a little bit morbid, doesn't it? Sounds like this is supposed to be an encouraging message. How's he telling us to rest in peace? That's what you say to dead people. Right? That's what goes on the tombstone, the graveyard of somebody that's already dead. Sounds a little bit morbid. But we're taking it back. Okay. That's all phrase. And this morning, we're going to see especially from verse one, that we can rest in peace. And what I mean by that is, you don't have to wait until you die, to rest in peace, like Rest in peace, like the tombstone suggests. You can rest in peace today. Because of the work of Christ on your behalf. verse one says, Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. So here, we're told that justification and peace are not just future prizes, but present realities for followers of Christ. You don't have to wait as I said, until you're dead to rest in peace. You can rest in peace, here. And now. So he says, Therefore, therefore, we have a great theologian that I'm going to quote to you now, who was the teacher of our high school students on Wednesday night, and his name's Logan long. If you don't know him. You should get to know him. He said this on Wednesday night. To our high schoolers. If you see a therefore, you have to find out what is therefore. Alright, so that's just a good Bible interpreting principle, okay? Therefore, when you see in Scripture is always pointing back to something that's already happened and already been set. So our task as interpreters is to figure out okay, what's he following on from? Because you never just go up to someone and start a conversation and say, therefore, whoa, like it doesn't make sense, right? Therefore always comes after something that you've already said. So what has Paul already said? I'll give you a brief outline of Romans. And then we'll get into where we've been the last two Sundays with Brian and myself. So you could say really generally, Romans chapter Romans has got 16 chapters, chapters one through eight. Show us the doctrinal foundations and the realities of the good news of Jesus Christ of the gospel of salvation. It's kind of like the what, and the how of salvation. And then we get to nine through 11. So Romans chapter nine through 11, which explained that God's ongoing relationship with and commitment to his covenants with the with the nation Israel, so like you read the Old Testament is all about God with Israel. And then it seems like you get to Romans and you're kind of like, well, what's happened to Israel? Like, is Israel still a part of the picture? What goes on? So Romans chapter nine through 11, give us some insight to that. And then we get to chapters 12, through 16. And this is typical of Paul, in his letters, he often lays these doctrinal foundations, he teaches us all of these things about what it means to be saved us as soon as what we have in Christ. And then he builds upon that. What are we to do? What are the practical implications of this? How does this change life, and that's what he does, in chapters 12 to 16, the real life out workings of someone who has been given a new heart by Jesus. So that the last two Sundays, we've been Brian and I have been in Chapters one through four. So in that first section, those doctrinal foundations, and we've heard about our sin. We've heard about our condemnation because of our sin, that the wrath of God is upon us for sin. We've heard about the work of Jesus, and justification for all who belief. And that's where we ended up last week. And it is exactly why Paul says in chapter five and verse one, therefore, since we have been justified by faith, there, he's just summarizing everything that he's just gone over in Chapters one through four. Everyone is unrighteous. Everyone is without God. Everyone is condemned as a sinner, by him, worthy only of the sentence of eternal death in the lake of fire. His punishment is upon us for all eternity. But Jesus Christ, the righteous one, came and lived a completely righteous life. He perfectly obeyed His Father, because he is perfect and righteous, and the eternally righteous one, Jesus Christ, therefore was uniquely positioned to be able to take the punishment of sinners upon himself. There was none like Christ. He's the only one who is eternally perfect, and therefore is the only one who can take our sin upon himself. His death on the cross was the plan of God being played out, in which the eternal wrath of God towards sinners like us, was absorbed by one who is eternally righteous. So not only then was the punishment taken by Christ, but sinners who believe would actually be declared righteous by God and exchange taking place, his positional righteousness for their position of sin, to the position of righteousness of Jesus exchanged for the position of a sinner

    and all the consequences that go with those. He took sin and death upon himself on our behalf. So that we might be declared righteous, and inherit all of the blessings of that righteousness, that relationship with God. All of that can be summarized in one theological word. And it's the word justification. And that's what we talked about all last Sunday. And how is it received? Well, it's a gift that's given by God. It's unearned. And it's unmerited. Is received only by faith. That just means there's nothing that you can do. There's nothing that you don't do. That makes you write enough to receive this gift on your own. There's nothing that you can give up. That merits God giving you this gift. There's nothing that you can be there's no type of personality that you can have. There's no church that you can attend. There's no family that you can belong to. That gets you this gift of justification. It's all through God and through His Son, Jesus Christ. And we receive it by faith, which is a wholehearted expression of dependence upon Jesus for everything. Understanding that without him, we are completely hopeless. So he says, since we have been justified by faith, next was new. We have peace with God. We have peace with God. I think to find the fullest understanding of what this expression means we must realize the animosity that existed between God and unbelieving sinners. Chapter Five, if you look down to verse 10, unbelieving sinners there are called enemies of God. And that word enemies it just means to be subject to hostility, or to be subjected to hatred. So the unbelieving sinner is subject to the hostility of God towards sin, subject to the hatred of God toward sin. All of his anger and wrath towards those towards sin is poured out on the unbelieving sinner. Throughout Scripture as well, Satan and death are also defined as enemies of God. So the unbeliever is in the happy company of Satan and death, as God's enemies. It's an unhappy place to be. And wow, as enemies of God. Unbelievers still presently receive and experience the common grace of God things like you get to live on this earth, and enjoy some of the things of this earth. You get a heartbeat, you get breath. They still get to experience those things. The truth is, Christ conquered his enemies at the cross. And in so doing, he has passed a death sentence upon them. And we know from Scripture that he will return he will come again he will come a second time, and he will execute that sentence upon all of his enemies. So that's shipped should be a fearful place is a fearful place for an enemy of God to stand. But we know as well from scripture that God is patient. That's another of his common graces. He has given us opportunity to repent. He doesn't just bring the judgment down immediately, when the offense is committed his patient we see in chapter five and verse eight, it is while we are yet sinners, that he sent Christ To die for us is while we're his enemies, is while we're doing the worst of the worst and completely rejecting him spitting in the face of his son, hitting him pulling out his beard sentencing him to death. The by His grace and mercy, He reconciled those who believe to Himself through His Son through that death that we inflicted. So the intended applied contrast here is between the the turmoil, and the opponents that we might face as believers in this life, the trial and the difficulty that believers face and the peace that we now have with God. And we see the RPS that we have with God affects our lives today. It affects everything. Last week, if you were here, you remember I talked about Martin Luther. Previously he had become frustrated with God, because of the impossibility of being able to attain God's righteous standard through his own works. He got to this point of frustration and just thinking, hey, God's just this mean God, He sent us this standard that none of us are able to keep and then he punishes us for it. He's just mean. Luther said, obey himself. And this is a phrase and a word that I encourage you to try and use today. If a monk got to heaven by his monk curry, it was I, if ever a monk got to heaven by his monk curry, it was I say, he was the most monkish monk. Like Paul says, In Philippians, chapter three, he was the best, best Pharisee he did all of the things. He prosecuted everybody that came against the Pharisees against Judaism. And yet, he still realized Luther still realized, gained him nothing. It did nothing for him. And Luther, as we know, from his story came to a correct understanding of God's righteousness, which was available to sinners through faith in Christ because of the work of Christ because of justification. And as a result of that, he had a newfound peace with God. Where before he saw God as the main enemy. Now he saw God as a gracious and forgiving father. Now he was his loving father, and he was his son. But that piece, like I think we all get that part of it pretty well. But it's the next part that maybe we miss sometimes that that that piece spread even further than that. It spread into Luthers, everyday life. He was willing to endure such suffering as being put to death for his devotion to Christ, and rejection of Roman Catholicism, because he was at peace with God. He did not feel what the world might bring to his front doorstep, even to the point of death and torture, and being cast out and completely rejected and having to change his name, because he knew he was secure in Christ and a peace with God. So then, how do we apply this? What does this mean for us? We don't face death, like Luther did. But I think it applies in the exact same way as it applied to Luther. Like, no, yeah, yeah, we're not like, in a big battle with the Roman Catholic Church and write in a bunch of stuff that we might get killed for it. We're not doing that. But Luthers temptations were exactly the same as our temptations. He didn't think for a moment that Martin Luther was tempted to think I could have just all of the enjoyment of a normal life on this planet and eat the things I want. Be friends with the people I want. earn a good living, and be quiet and just be comfortable without any of this fear or trouble. If I would just give all of this up. If I just turn my back on Christ, and not believe these things He said he was tempted in the, with the exact same things to attempt to with. Those things get like they appeal to us.

    Like, you're saying, If I follow Christ, that I have to give this up, or I might need to be willing to do this, the same for Luther as it was for us as it is for us. So what do we do? We need to keep truths like this at the forefront of our minds. You need to write them down and stick them places so that you remember them. I've got this little book of flashcards that I go through with verses on it, that talk about important things about God and about my relationship with God. And I like I don't do it perfectly every day. But when I do, I'll just read through every one of them in the morning after I do my Bible reading, just to remind me of these important truths about who God is, so that they can be at the forefront of my mind. reviewing these truths, meditating upon these truths, that's how we keep them Central. And that's what keeps us going. That's what keeps us focused. We take them with us throughout the day. And I'm reminded of these truths when something difficult comes up, have conversations with other people about it, and be encourages of one another, remind other people of these graces of God and these great truths. So why do that? Let me give you an example. It's because of what happens in our days, every day, you'll be overwhelmed by a life circumstance, something like this. You can't pay the bills, you have a debt that you don't think that you will ever pay off. In fact, it keeps increasing. And you feel like, I've already reduced all of our expenses already work tons and make as much money as I can. But like this, I feel like there's no more I can do, and the debt doesn't go down. In fact, it keeps creeping up, then your thoughts start to spiral. And you start getting agitated thinking about the things that could happen. I'm not gonna be able to provide for my family, we're not gonna be able to invite people over, we won't be able to eat, I won't be able to put my kids in the school I want to put them in, they won't be able to go to college. I have to sell my car, or my car is going to be repossessed, all miss mortgage payments and lose the house. Well, if I lose my job, then I'll be even worse, will end up on the streets. I'll go to jail because I can't pay my taxes. That's how the spiral goes. And it might not be about financial things, but you name the thing, you've got something in your life. And those worries come right. We meditate on all of these uncertainties, and all of these things that might happen. And what we need to do is discipline ourselves to get into the pattern of meditating upon truth. So first thing I'll say, before I get into that a little bit more is with those types of struggles. We have people here within the body within the church who can help with those things. They can give you advice, they can walk through steps with you to help you with the things that you're struggling with. So ask someone about that if you need help. But second, if you're a follower of Christ, no matter what God sovereignly ordains, to bring up, bring across your path, including any or all of the things that I just said. Guess what? You're a peace with God. You are at peace with God. He doesn't ordain these things because he hates you or because you're his enemy. You're no longer an enemy, but you're his beloved family. So I'd say just keep doing the right things. Keep working on paying the bills in this example. Keep buying the groceries as best you can at rest in the sovereign plan of God knowing that this is the path that he has for you right now. And then as I said, correct your thinking for me is when I'm laying in bed at night when I'm like churning over things that I'm worried about. So wherever that is for you laying in bed or wherever you might when you're on your drive or whatever it is you're doing. Whenever you're spiral down, that tends to happen. don't meditate on the might be nice to discipline your mind to meditate upon the truth, the things that are things like through the work of Christ, I am at peace with God. And nothing can ever change that. That's where he goes to in the end of chapter eight, right? There's no thing. No, nothing can separate me from the love of Christ. And this will bring you to peace, that you can rest in. So, believer, you can rest in peace because of the justifying work of Christ. What are the blessings are ours in Him, verse to receive grace. So it's one piece to grace, three hope. Okay, so number two, Grace receive grace. Verse two begins through him. We have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand. So not only have we been justified by faith, but we have also been given access to his grace, by faith. So in this beginning part of verse two, he uses two verbs to describe the believers relationship to something that God has given us to his grace. Okay, the first of those verbs, describes the continual access that we have to God's grace. The picture is this, the door is never closed for the believer. God's grace is always available. The point of access is always there. His abundant, eternal grace is always flowing and overflowing. And the door is open for it to pour out. And he's not stingy with it. You guys have seen some of you parents, like the little kid that's being taught how to share, right? They've got a billion blocks. And then there's another little kid over here who's like, unlike to play with the blocks, and you share share with the other kid. And then they're kind of like, I'll give you the brown one. But these are mind. Like, God is not like that. I mean, that's funny, because we're thinking about kids, we do that too. So let's laugh ourselves as well, like, we're really stingy to God is not stingy. His grace overflows, our bounds and the door is wide open. It's wide open.

    He doesn't just open the door a little bit. It's like, open up, let a little bit of grace squeak out just enough now slamming shut again. Just give them what they need, just enough to keep them happy. No, he says, he says, the doors open. Come on in. Tree is if is your source. There's nothing that's off limits. Use things as much as you need to. He gives us more than we need. And the point here is that your access to what you need is unhindered is always there. It's like a lifetime membership that you have 24/7 365 days a year, even the extra day when there's a leap year. It's all there. It's all available. The second verb describes the permanent position or standing that we have in God's grace. It says something like this that the believers standing before God started when we believed and it continues into the future with no end. His favor is always upon you if you are a belief. It doesn't fluctuate. It's not like you're standing in grace at this point. And then it's no you're out of it now. Oh, now you're back in again. No, you did this and now you're out there again. We stand in it continually. His favor is always upon us. He's not only gracious toward us when we ask him to be or when we've been good. But instead believer because of the work of Christ, you now stand permanently in an abundant, not begrudged, gladly given in a position of favor and blessing before God. So what's grace? What is this grace in which we stand? To say, Yes, it is the gift of God. Yes, it is the acronym. God's riches at Christ's expense is the gift of God, though not only in Christ, but also all of the unearned blessings of life that we receive. Christ, and these blessings are manifestations of God's grace, but grace itself is God's divine favor. It's his goodwill towards someone that results in these actions. So the important part then to get from these verses is that God's grace is not only administered through Christ at the point of our salvation, but it continues to be administered to the believer, for the whole of the rest of life. all the way into eternity, and now in the present. So a couple of words of application. You might have heard someone say something like this, believe that you need the gospel every day. You need it every day, not just the day you get saved, I might say, you need grace every day. You don't need grace to salvation. You need it every day. And he kind of left wondering, like, what does that mean? What does that mean? To me, I always need to confess my sin and ask for forgiveness and kind of be saved every day, over and over again, like what does that mean? I need his grace every day? Well, a couple of things. First, in a positional sense, it's similar to what I said about peace. At the end of the first point that we went through from verse one, we can be encouraged through all the turmoil of life, that are standing in God's grace never fails. We are secure in him. And we should meditate on this profound truth every day for our encouragement and our strength. And second, I'd say it this way, probably the easiest way to describe it is by saying that God's grace is not only a saving grace, it is a saving grace, but not only in the sense that he freely gives the one who believes a ticket into heaven, for when they die. But it's also a sanctifying grace. God's goal in extending grace to sinners is not merely to change your destination in eternity, but to sanctify you, to forgive you of your sin, and to transform you into one who lives a perfectly sinless life, and eternally glorifies Him. Now, we know that we don't do that now. And we'll get into these things more in chapter six and seven. But this is a work that will be perfected beyond this life. But it certainly begins right now. And he accomplishes it by His grace in us. So how, how does God transform us? Starting from the moment that we're saved? Is it like a go to bed at night? He gets the magic Grace pixie dust out, sprinkles a little bit on me every night. And when I wake up, I'm a little bit more like Jesus. No, not the way. Not the way. It's not how he does it. God graciously helps us in life through things like the Bible. Right? Through the Bible, he shows us our sin. He shows us the consequence of our sin. He shows us the way to be saved from it through Christ. He also provides us with everything we need to know in order to be able to glorify him in this life as a believer. He instructs us, he points us in the right direction. He gets us on the right path on the right track and tells us how to keep going. And all of this comes through His Word and His Holy Spirit helping us to understand his word. This is why reading your Bible regularly and meditating upon what it teaches. is so important. Thinking about how to apply the truth of Scripture to your life? If you're struggling with something, the answer is to go to God's word. Find the remedy there. This is why being a part of a Bible preaching church is essential for a believer. You need to be somewhere where the preacher is bringing the Word of God to you week in and week out, explaining it, covering all of it, not skipping over parts, and applying it helping you to see what this means for life. So God graciously helps us in life, through Scripture through the Bible. He helps us through prayer is how we communicate with God. It's how we talk to him about the things that are going on in life. It's the way that we worship Him is how we confess our need to him is how we ask him for help. We must be praying our way through life. The last one I'll mention but definitely not the last gracious gift that he gives us to help us is church life. Sunday worship together, the gathering of the saints, singing together, meeting together for spiritual encouragement, those little conversations that we have before in between and after services. That's how God does it. So believers can rest in peace must receive grace. And third, and finally must rejoice in hope. The last part of two through five, Paul says and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings. Knowing that suffering produces endurance and endurance produces character, character produces hope. And hope does not put us to shame. Because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. So here in these verses, we're told the believers can rejoice in two things. First, we can rejoice in hope of the glory of God. We can rejoice in the fact that God will glorify himself. He is working his plans out. Everything that he has determined and planned will come to fruition. This means he will administer justice, all wrongs will be made right. All enemies will be conquered. And all rewards will be administered.

    Every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father, He will be glorified. And in this, we have hope, certain hope. And second, he tells us to rejoice in our sufferings. Rejoice in your suffering. That's hard to hear, isn't it? That sounds like the opposite of Hope Giving. That sounds demoralizing. Suffering, how can I rejoice in that I can get behind rejoicing in the hope that we have in God's glory and his plans being worked out, but rejoicing in suffering. I think to add to this, when you read it, you have to remember the Pete like the person who's writing in who he's writing to first century Christians. They were persecuted for their faith, to be a believer then sometimes had economic, relational and even physical implications. The Paul is clear here. He tells us to rejoice in our suffering. And that word means to take pride in something to the point of bragging. It's kinda like the proud parent who has their newborn child or the proud parent whose kid has just accomplished some momentous feat in the life of a baby that just took that first step. They just did the piano recital, one of those kinds of things. That's how we're to respond to suffering Paul says. So next he gives us the why And then how he says, Knowing, first of all, so it's through our knowledge of something the suffering accomplishes.

    So, through all our knowledge of what suffering accomplishes, that helps us to respond in this rejoicing way. So we're to remind ourselves of these things, when we suffer, he gives us three things here. And he says, essentially says, when you know these things, it will help you to respond to suffering with rejoicing. So first, he says endurance. suffering produces endurance. It means that word, being able to bear up under difficulty. It means being able to patiently wait for something, basically, not throwing in the towel. You know that something better is coming. And you're not going to give up as soon as trouble comes. Suffering provides an opportunity for us to grow in endurance. And endurance, we're told produces character, this word points to the result of endurance, it proves your character. It gives you assurance that you are in Christ, it proves that you are one who belongs to him. And character then produces hope. And this is not a vain hope we're told at the beginning of five. It's not just a wish that one day something will be different. It's a confidence in something that is certain. And finally, we're told them that we won't be left wanting in our hope, we will not be left ashamed in our hope, because our deliverance is dependent upon God. And his enduring love is confirmed by him permanently sealing us with the Holy Spirit. And the Holy Spirit, as we'll see in the coming chapters is the one who enables all of this. So to be sure, Paul is not telling us to enjoy suffering. We're not to be masochistic. He's not telling us to pursue suffering. But he's saying If suffering is something that God pray brings across your path as a believer, which he will take it as an opportunity to endure with Christ, faithfully trusting God with your present and your future. And hoping in the fact that this is all momentary. That the abundant treasure that you have in Christ is eternally overflowing. I know there are certain times when it doesn't feel momentary, right? It doesn't feel like it's passing. It doesn't feel like a light affliction. So I'd say to you don't endure alone. Be constant with God, through your difficulty through your suffering, and invite other believers in as well once that you're close to mature believers, who can help you carry the burden alongside you. fellowship with the saints. establish relationships with them. So just as we close, I'll give you one more quote from a famous faith Bible Church theologian, Josiah Amundson, he teaches our middle school students on Wednesday nights. He's a seminary student. He's about to go off and do missionary training in Mexico in August. And he said this as we were talking about Romans five. He said something like if you're not a Christian, all of the stuff that we've just read is the opposite of what you get. If you are an unbeliever if you don't have Christ, you haven't been pronounced righteous by God. You are an enemy of the Almighty, an enemy of the Creator of all things in the sustainer of all things and the sovereign overhaul things. You are an enemy of the one whose plans are established and are being worked out. If you're an unbeliever, you have no access to God's grace. You do not stand in a position of favor with him but unfavored, he is displeased with you. You have no hope. You have no reason to rejoice in stead you should be sorrowing because of your position with God. You have no hope when trouble comes, you have no hope when trials are on the doorstep. In fact, the trials are just a small taste of what eternity will be like for you. You will be the one who is left ashamed. In the end, you will be vainly disappointed as all the things of this life fizzle away. The love of God is not yours. This is the most miserable condition that you could be in. But you do not have to stay there. God, by His grace is calling you to come to him. He's calling you to trust in His Son, Jesus Christ and follow Him. Yes, the cost is great. It will cost you everything. But the price, the treasure is so much greater. Jesus Christ, and you'll enjoy him forever. Starting right now. This is the gift that keeps on giving. Let's pray. Father, we're so thankful for the truth of this passage. We're so thankful for all that you've made available in Christ and pray that You would help us to trust in him. Help us to meditate on these truths, and that they would give us endurance and hope in this life. And I pray for any here who aren't believers that they would see their need for Christ, and that they would turn to Him in faith. We pray this in Christ's name. Amen.

Ian Rush

Ian is the Youth Pastor of Faith Bible Church. He and his wife, Claire, have 5 kids and recently spent a few years serving in a small church in England.

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