Verse of the Day Devotion: Romans 5:1
“Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, ” – Romans 5:1
All of us can look back and see our lives the way they were prior to accepting the salvation offered to us through Christ Jesus. Speaking for myself, I can see the many ways I did not follow God’s ways but my own. The truth is, all of us did not follow His ways, for as Paul says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” Romans 3:23. And because of this, we were all declared guilty and subject to punishment, and there was nothing we could do to erase this guilt. However, what we could not do, God did for us. It was required that a perfect sacrifice be made on our behalf. This is where Jesus comes in. As expressed above, our salvation comes through accepting the gift of salvation offered to us because of the perfect sacrifice made on our behalf: the sacrifice of the perfect Son of God, Jesus the Christ.
Because of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, we all have the opportunity to be justified, pronounced and treated as righteous. And through our acceptance of this work on the cross we are justified, and justification is the act of God not only forgiving the believer’s sins but imputing to him the righteousness of Christ. And according to our focus verse, it is only through faith. It is not earned through anything that we have or can do. “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9, And also, “But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior,” Titus 3:4-6
Remember, this is not anything we can earn or buy. It is strictly a free gift from God. “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23. We can do nothing to earn justification. But the sad truth is, many people believe that they must earn salvation. In practically every religion, including some churches who falsely claim Christianity as their foundation, man is working his way to God and His approval. They are being taught that man must do all the right things in order to be saved. However, the truth is that only God can provide this, and all we need to do is accept it.
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, a day we can spend time with family and friend giving thanks for the salvation as well as all the other blessings God has provided for us. It is also a time where we can spend time in prayer to our God who loves us so much, He gave His only begotten Son to address our sins through a merciful act of justification. Without this, we would be eternally separated from God in a horrible place.
So, I want to encourage all of us to spend time giving thanks to the one who provided our salvation which we were unable to provide ourselves. And also, throughout the year, help those who still do not understand that God did all the work for we were unable to do anything regarding our salvation; that Christ’s death, burial and resurrection, accepted by us through faith, is the only way to have peace with God. Our thankfulness should be the impetus for us to help others be saved and present this same thankfulness to our Almighty God.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.