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No Cross, No Gospel

 

 

Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand. (Romans 5:2)

 

When you set yourself to seriously pursue holiness, you’ll begin realizing what an awful sinner you are. If you aren’t firmly rooted in the gospel and haven’t learned to preach it to yourself every day, you’ll soon become discouraged and will slack off. In the pursuit of holiness, nothing’s more important than learning to preach the gospel to yourself every day.

In doing so, we must be careful not to preach a gospel without a cross. All the wonderful promises of forgiveness in Scripture are based upon Christ’s atoning death. Through it He satisfied God’s justice and averted from us God’s wrath. We must be careful not to rely on the so-called unconditional love of God without realizing His love can flow to us only as a result of Christ’s atoning death.

This is the gospel by which we were saved, and the gospel by which we must live every day of our Christian lives.

In Romans 3:24, Paul said we are justified by grace, referring to what we might call our point-in-time salvation, the day we trusted in Christ. In Romans 5:2, however, Paul spoke of this grace in which we now stand. Here he refers to our day-to-day standing before God as being on the same basis as our justification—the basis of grace. But this grace—unmerited favor to those who deserve wrath—comes to us through the Lord Jesus Christ.

God is the “God of all grace” (1 Peter 5:10) and is disposed to deal with us by grace, but not at the expense of His justice. But with justice satisfied, God can now deal with us in grace, both in our salvation and in our day-to-day relationship with Him.

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