Atonement (Justification)

How are we saved from eternal punishment?

v21. “But” This is the turning point. All are lost, now here is the solution.

v23. All fall short. We need to stop comparing ourselves to the moral standards of Hitler or Mother Theresa.

God has a perfect moral standard. (Luke 18:9-14)

Why is Jesus the only way to Salvation?

v26. If God is just (he is the standard of justice) how can He let us off the hook for our sins? He has to justify us by punishing someone else. The problem is that it has to be someone that hasn’t sinned. So He finds Himself (the Justifier).

If God is unchanging and the immovable standard, than justice can exist. What does that mean for sinners like you and me? That we deserve punishment, unless a sinless substitute is punished in our place. Jesus is the only sinless substitute. That means Jesus is the only way to Salvation.

Justice is getting what you deserve.

Mercy is not getting what you deserve.

Grace is getting what you don’t deserve.

Trying to make up for past sins is like driving 20 MPH under the speed limit after getting a ticket for 20 MPH over.

What is a good judge? One that punishes for what one does wrong? Or figures it’s OK if you’re a good person the rest of the time?

v27-28. We have nothing to boast about since we are justified by faith; our works did nothing for our Salvation. (Jer 9:23-24)

v30. The same faith.

v31. The Law shows us that we need a Savior, but it doesn’t save us.

Chapter 4

v1.   I think we all know the answer, but unfortunately some people think that even people after Abraham can be saved by works.

v3.   Couldn’t Abraham have been saved by obeying the Law? No. The Mosaic Law and the Ten Commandments hadn’t been given yet. Not for another 600 years!

v5.   God does all the work.

v8.   Every other religion is man trying to work his way to God (do, do, do), but Christianity is God comes down to man and does all the work Himself and says it’s a free gift, take it (done, done, done).

Abraham had direct communication with God, but so do we through the Bible. Abraham actually had less revelation than we have.

v9.   Blessings from verse 6.

v10. Abraham was circumcised 14 years after the covenant.

v11. “Sign” points to the covenant like baptism is a sign of our faith, but it isn’t our Salvation.

Just because someone was circumcised or baptized doesn’t make the person saved.

Sealed because of his faith. (2 Cor 1:21-22) A seal denoted ownership.

v15. Laws don’t legislate morality. Think about legal abortion, drugs, homosexual marriage, etc.

v16. (Gal 3:17) Faith of Abraham (Gen 22)

Chapter 5

v1-2. “Peace”, no longer God’s enemy.

“Introduction”, the separation is gone between God and man, the curtain was rent. (Heb 6:19-20)

What does having peace with God mean? That the war between man and God has been overcome by the sacrifice of Christ. We gain access through faith. It does not mean all of our problems are gone. (2 Cor 11:24)

v3.   We actually suffer more. How should we face suffering?

If God exists, why is there suffering? Free will.

Suffering brings us closer to God. (Ps 119:71)

If humans are to be free, they cannot be forced to obey God. freedom without choice is like a square circle, it’s a logical contradiction. No choice, no freedom. The first humans abused their freedom, bad choices. God is responsible for the fact of freedom. Humans are responsible for their acts of freedom. We don’t suffer alone. God will put an end to suffering and evil. God became man to suffer with us. God is good and he wants people to know Him, but the free choice is yours.

Our biggest trials as Christians is when things are going great, because that is when we have the tendency to fall. We think we have it all figured out.

We also suffer so we know how to help others that are suffering. i.e. sympathy and encouragement. (2 Cor 4:8-18)

Christianity isn’t about not doing the wrong things; it’s about doing the right things.

v8.   How did God demonstrate his love for us?

If Christ had to learn obedience through suffering, then so do we. Christ died for his enemies. (John 15:13)

v11. The war between God and man is over if we want it to be.

God does not promise to take us from, but through our circumstances.

v12. Depravity. Is it easier to be bad or good? Selfish or selfless? Consider the heart, thoughts or history. (Eph 2:3)

How were people saved before Christ’s crucifixion? By faith in God and for the coming Messiah.

Was there death before Adam? Not for men, but there may have been other death before.

Why did God put Adam and Eve in the Garden if the universe was a paradise? Maybe the universe was already fallen.

v13. Sin was what caused death, but grace was available.

Transgression – a violation of a law, command or duty.

v14. What did Adam do to us? He put us in a great bind.

v16. One sin brought condemnation, one sacrifice brought justification (and so much more, see v17)

Justification = “Just As If” it never happened.

v17. Righteousness = Christ’s righteousness.

v20. The Law made sin even more sinful by revealing God’s holiness (the perfect moral standard).

Is original sin unfair? What does fair mean? Are we affected by others?

Is it fair to penalize the whole team if one guy jumps off sides?

Original sin is not fair, it’s beyond fair. It is gracious. If you were put in Adam’s situation, would you do any better?

God gives us the solution!

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