Advent: Jesus Gives us Peace with God
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“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, and 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. For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—but 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.” (Romans 5:1–11)
“God put [Christ] forward . . . to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.” (Romans 3:25–26)
Read: Romans 5:1-21
Paul, the writer of this letter to the Roman church, gives us an amazing reminder of what Christ accomplished on the Cross! Through Christ, we can receive peace with God through faith (Romans 5:1). The Christian has been justified by the blood of Jesus and his or her relationship with the Creator has been made right in every way. Jesus is the “just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus” (Romans 3:25-26). The first few chapters of Romans are incredibly direct and highlight the separation of our sinfulness from God’s righteousness. But, praise God that He sent Christ to provide peace with Himself through faith.
Without a doubt, we are all ungodly (Romans 5:6) and enemies of righteousness (Romans 5:10). There is no denying that the brokenness of our hearts and our world deserve the holy wrath of Almighty God. Our very existence stands in rebellion to our Creator’s identity (Romans 1:18-32). But this is not the end of the story. One day, a baby was born in Bethlehem. This baby, God in the flesh, would destroy the curse our sin by living the holy life we could not. He died the perfect death we could not, and carried our sin upon His shoulders. On our own, we are without hope and separated from the Father. Jesus is the One who came from the seed of the woman (Genesis 3), and He alone is able to reconcile us back to God.
“God’s purpose is to give you peace by being the most glorious person in your life. Five times in the New Testament He is called ‘the God of peace’ (Rom. 15:33; 16:20; Phil. 4:9; 1 Thess. 5:23; Heb. 13:20). And Jesus said, ‘My peace I give to you’ (John 14:27). And Paul said, ‘[Jesus] himself is our peace’ (Eph. 2:14).” – John Piper
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing.” (Romans 15:13)
- Do you feel far from God right now, or do you feel the Father’s pleasure filling you with peace? Romans 8:1 tells us that there is “no condemnation” for those who are found in Christ. You can be at peace with the Father, through the Son. Rest in that and remind yourself of this truth daily!
- Remember, you were once an enemy of God without any hope of new life or reconciliation. The Advent changed this. The coming of Jesus paved the way for us to have rich personal fellowship with God the Father.
- Think back through this past year and evaluate whether or not you’ve walked in the peace of Christ. If you’re a child of God, then remember that the Lord lovingly looks on you with the grace and peace that Christ has provided. Nothing can separate you from His love.
Father, thank you for the eternal peace you’ve provided us through the coming of your Son. Through Christ, you enabled us to be redeemed and reconciled to yourself—even though we were enemies of your holiness. Forgive me for the times I haven’t received and walked in your peace. And remind me, through your Spirit, of my new identity found in Jesus.
Family Discipleship Time
- Paul is writing this letter (Romans) to Christians in Rome. What does it mean when he says, “we have been justified by faith”? (Jesus can wipe our sin away and bring us into a perfect relationship with Himself.)
- How can Paul and the Roman church rejoice in suffering? (Because they rejoice in the hope of God’s glory. The glory of God outshines any suffering in this world. Jesus gives His people a joy that overwhelms any sorrow or suffering.)
- Who is the Holy Spirit? (The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of God that comes into a person’s heart after they repent and trust in Jesus.)
- Article – “The Incarnation of God and the People of the Incarnation” by International Mission Board (IMB)
- “The coming of Jesus is a story about what God has done to offer us salvation and a story about being called by God to participate in his mission—to make himself known among the nations.”