“God Commended His Own Love …”

… toward us in that while we were sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). This verse is lifted from a greater context which enlarges upon the truth that the Holy Spirit had spread abroad the love of God in our hearts through His divine revelation of the wonderful story of love. The writer muses that while we were weak, in due season (at the right time) Christ died for us. Then he reflects on the incredible truth that Christ died for us. For a righteousness man … one who was just, one might die. Peradventure for the good man … one who was lovable as well as good … some one might even dare to die. But, we were neither of these. We were weak and sinful (Rom. 5:6-8). Yet, Christ died for us! Therein is the greatness of Christ’s love. We were not righteous, godly, good or friends. Our friendship with the world had made us enemies of God. Still, He loved us!

Thus, “much more, being justified by his blood shall we be saved from the wrath of God through him” (Rom. 5:9). Many are the things the blood of Christ is said to do for us. It was shed for the remission of sins (Matt. 26:28). With it, Christ purchased the church (Acts 20:28). We have been redeemed through His blood (1 Pet. 1:22). We are cleansed by the blood (1 Jn. 1:7). To justify is to pronounce “not guilty.” How God accomplished this for man who was guilty the writer has shown in Romans 3:24-26. Christ took upon himself the penalty we deserved. By his stripes we are healed (Isa. 53). He died for us … that we might be saved from the wrath of God through Him.

Wrath is conceived to be fierce anger but in this instance we must not think of fiery wrath calling for vengeance. We must think of the judicial penalty inflicted upon the guilty. God labored to prevent the just penalty inflicted upon man, the creature. God cannot be just unless sin is punished. His righteous nature demands such. Nevertheless, God wished to save man from the awful consequence (God’s wrath) of his disobedience and through the death of His Son He accomplishes this — He brings about His heart’s desire to justify man.

Through Christ we have received reconciliation (Rom. 5:10). This reconciliation is lengthily discussed in 2 Corinthians 5:17-21: “Wherefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature: the old things are passed away; behold all things become new. But all things are of God who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave unto us the ministry of reconciliation, to wit that God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself, not reckoning unto them their trespasses, and having committed unto us the word of reconciliation. We are ambassadors therefore on behalf of Christ, as though God were entreating by us: we beseech ye, be ye reconciled to God. Him who knew no sin he made to be sin on our behalf; that we might become the righteousness of God in him.”

God loved us while we were weak, sinners and enemies. Christ saves us from the consequences of our own wrong doings! Truly, God commended His love toward us!

Jim McDonald

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