The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"The Gift of Righteousness"
Part 2 - The Throne of Grace
"If by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:17).
The Apostle Paul declares that righteousness - rightness with God - involves reception of abundant grace as a gift. "Thereby being justified (made righteous) by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:1). This leads to a "reign in life" through Christ, as opposed to being overwhelmed by the challenging realities of our present earthly existence.
How does this happen? What leads to a life of overcoming, as experienced by receiving God's righteousness as a free gift in Christ? The answer lies in relationship and fellowship with Him. Those who know the peace of being right with our Heavenly Father through the merits of His Son walk with Him in communication and access of His grace for living. "He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit" (John 15:5). Conversely, those who seek to walk with God by their own dedication and determination inevitably end up felled by pride and/or frustration. Paul and the writer of Hebrews (possibly Paul) unite to powerfully confirm this truth of the believer's "reign in life by one, Jesus Christ:"
"He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things" (Romans 8:32)
"Let us have grace, that we may serve God acceptably, with reverence and godly fear" (Hebrews 12:28).
Christ and His grace alone lead to the rightness with God that not only makes possible our access to Him, but also our confidence that we can come to Him for the ongoing reception of enabling to walk in faith and faithfulness. Again, the writer of Hebrews affirms such freely given entree to God:
"Let us therefore come boldly (confidently) unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need" (Hebrews 4:16).
Only by grace and righteousness received as a free gift can any human being be confident of our access to God. We could never achieve by our own merits the standard of perfection required whereby we approach the aptly termed "throne of grace" to seek - and receive - the means whereby we "serve God acceptably." We come through the merits of Christ's Person and work on our behalf. Or we do not come at all.
Born again believers in the Lord Jesus bear the robe of His righteousness. God receives us as spiritually united to Christ, and thus bids us with no less welcome than He bids His Son. Those who know and affirm such freely given righteousness will be those who come and commune with God on a consistently basis. Thereby grace will be received for living in a manner that honors our Lord, enabling the "reign in life" made possible by the reception of life accessed at the only throne of God to which we could ever approach, the throne of grace.
"And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work."
(II Corinthians 9:8)
Weekly Memory Verse
He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit."