God Commendeth His Love
“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
- In light of the morning sermon, let us consider how much God loved His enemies (Matt 5:45; Acts 14:17).
- God is angry at the wicked every day (Psalm 5:4-6; 7:11-13; 10:3; 11:4-6; Matt 7:23; Rom 2:5; I Thes 1:10).
- We need a great deal more than sunshine and rain for our deliverance from judgment (Matt 5:45; Acts 14:17).
- God does hate His sinful enemies, when considered in legal and final terms (Psalm 5:4-6; 11:4-6; Matt 7:23).
- His general benevolence to mankind does not alter at all His hatred for all sinful creatures and enemies.
- But He chose to love His elect when they were sinful enemies to exalt and magnify His love for them! Glory!
- Romans 5:6-11 is a wonderful passage that exalts the love of God by the depravity of the objects of His love.
6 For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
- Paul used a first person plural pronoun for the Romans and himself, but we apply it to ourselves!
- The condition we were in when Christ died for us was one of weakness, helplessness, and total inability to cooperate, assist, pay for the gift, or ever return anything in proportion to the gift.
- We were the foolish and depraved enemies of God: we were fully ungodly in spirit and conduct.
- There was nothing we could offer the Lord; we would be 100% takers of God’s grace in Christ.
- Most men are like the priest and Levite in our Lord’s parable of the Good Samaritan, because the wounded Jew could not assist, cooperate, or repay any benevolence to be shown toward him; the effort to show Him kindness would be complicated, time consuming, and expensive.
- Jesus Christ died for us at the time appointed of the Father, 4000 years after we fell in Adam.
- Consider the profanity of the object and the infinity of the gift to fully appreciate God’s love!
7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die.
- Righteousness does not move most men to do die for another man – it is a very scarce event.
- If there was a reason to die for another man, it should be because the man was righteous or good.
- There is the scarce chance (peradventure and dare) that righteousness might cause it to happen.
- Men love their friends, yet dying for a friend is the highest degree of human love (John 15:13).
- Human love only rarely extends to dying for another, and then it must be a friend and good man.
- But the condition of man is not righteous, good, or friendly, as we have learned above (5:6).
- But the condition of man is not righteous, good, or friendly, as we shall learn below (5:8).
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
- But God sent His Son Jesus Christ to die for His elect when they were weak and ungodly sinners.
- It is by this arrangement of circumstances and timing that exalts and magnifies God’s love for His elect, for He died for them when they had nothing positive to assist or offer Him at all.
- Instead of being God’s righteous and good friends, we were His ungodly and sinful enemies.
- This commends – exalts, honors, praises – God’s love: we were total enemies in mind and fact.
- The Good Samaritan did a very commendable thing; but God’s loves infinitely outstrips his love.
- The great God did not wait for us to improve or only give partial assistance: His Son died for us!
- To this point (5:6-8), Paul commends God’s gracious gift in His Son by our corrupt condition.
- Paul then commends God’s gracious gift yet to be realized by the justified elect (5:9-10).
- Paul then commends God’s gracious gift by the subsequent life of Jesus Christ for us (5:9-10).
9 Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
- This verse and the next comprise the second lesson in this wonderful section of verses (5:6-11).
- There is a great day of judgment coming toward which the whole creation moves (Eccl 12:13-14; Matt 25:31-46; John 5:28-29; Rom 2:5,16; 14:10-12; II Cor 5:9-11; Heb 9:27; Rev 20:11-15).
- Jesus Christ paid for our future deliverance from this great Day of Wrath (I Thessalonians 1:10).
- Though we have saved legally by justification and saved vitally by regeneration, we yet await the fullness of our salvation when we shall be declared righteous by God and glorified with Him.
- If God justified us from weakness, ungodliness, sin, and enmity by His Son’s death, how much more then can He guarantee the deliverance on Judgment Day of justified men by His Son’s life!
- If God gave His Son in death for us, how much more shall He certainly give the rest (Rom 8:32)!
- Two things are much more: (1) we are now in a justified state as opposed to our previous condemned state, and (2) it is the life of Jesus Christ working for us rather than His death.
- Surely the life of Christ can save justified men, if His death justified them from ungodly enmity!
- The Day of Judgment should be no worry to those that grasp, believe, and live by these words!
10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
- Paul used this verse to further explain the precious lesson introduced in the previous verse (5:9).
- Notice the “much more” in this verse and the previous verse, for he moved up from 5:6-8! Glory!
- If the death of Jesus Christ could reconcile us to God from wicked enmity, then how much more certainly will His life deliver reconciled children of God from the Day of Judgment! Glory!
- If His death accomplished the work of reconciliation, how much more will His life accomplish!
- If His death reconciled ungodly and sinful enemies, His life can surely save reconciled sons!
- Jesus died for our sins, but now He lives to make intercession for us (Romans 8:34; Heb 7:23).
- The two advantages over 5:6-8 are (1) we are now justified and reconciled as the sons of God and (2) it is the victorious life of Jesus as our Surety and Mediator that guarantees the future!
11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
- Paul laid the legal foundation of God’s glorious love toward us in Christ Jesus (5:6-8), promised our future and final deliverance in Him on the Day of Judgment (5:9-10), and then added the present benefit of rejoicing in God through Jesus Christ based on our being put “at one” again!
- Paul moved from legal salvation (5:6-8) to final salvation (5:9-10) to practical salvation (5:11).
- Christ has died for us in the past; He will surely deliver us in the future; and we can rejoice now!
- Note the precious words, “and not only so,” which indicate that Paul wanted to tell us even more.
- Not only were we justified and reconciled by the death of Jesus from a horrible state of enmity, and not only will He surely deliver us from the final day of wrath by His life, but we also can rejoice right now in our restored relationship with God our Father. Glory!
- The practical phase of salvation is knowing what great things God has done for us (Rom 1:8-17; 5:1-5; Eph 1:3-14; I Cor 1:18,24; II Cor 2:14-17; II Tim 1:9-10; 2:10; Titus 1:1-4).
- Jesus Christ gave Himself an atonement for us, which means He put us “at one” again with God – He destroyed the enmity and reconciled us to God (Rom 5:1-5; II Cor 5:14-17; Col 1:19-22).
- The love of God for His people through Jesus Christ crushes all conceivable comparisons with human love.
- We should live for Him (II Cor 5:14-15), love our enemies (Matt 5:43-48), and love the Lord’s Supper.