I have been having a great discussion about the definition of “grace” in the Bible. In the midst of it I ran across Romans 5:17-18 and was really touched by it.
I am pretty sure I have read those two verses at least 50 times.
I’m sure you know how those things are. You can read a Scripture all your life, and then one day it suddenly comes alive. The Scriptures are indeed an infinite treasure.
The passage says:
For if by the trespass of the one, death reigned through the one; so much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one, Jesus Christ. So then as through one trespass, all men were condemned; even so through one act of righteousness, all men were justified to life. (WEB)
We all know about Romans 3. We all blame it on the fall. Sin and death work in us, passed on from Adam, who chose the lust of the flesh over the fellowship of God. We all are quick to claim “I’m just human” when we make a mistake or even when we rebel and sin.
But “even so” through one act of righteousness we can be made righteous. Just as the one act of unrighteousness of Adam cursed the sons of Adam, so if we follow in the steps of the last Adam, we can die to Adam and be part of the new man, the little Christ, the Christian, a younger brother of the Firstborn, our Lord Jesus.
If that is so, then just as we used to be human, inheriting the sin and death of Adam, we can be children of God, and what will work in us is righteousness toward life. As Paul put it, “The law of the Spirit of life in King Jesus has set us free from the law of sin and death” (Rom. 8:2).
It’s over folks. Follow Jesus into his death, rise again in him, and you can live by his life and growing righteousness. You can quit saying you’re just human, but you can say righteousness is working in you because of the unbelievable love that would have God not only calling us his children, but making us his children in the growing righteousness of his Son and our King, Jesus.