GENERAL BLESSINGS OF THE GOSPEL
Because of Jesus Christ’s substitutionary work for you…
- You have deliverance from sin and its consequential judgment against you.
- You received eternal life.
- You received the gift of holy spirit and all spiritual blessings.
- You are saved and reconciled to God.
- You are holy and blameless in God’s sight.
- You became a member of the Body of Christ.
- At the return of Jesus Christ you will be gathered together with all who have believed on Jesus Christ to forever be with the Lord in the promised glory.
PROMINENT BLESSINGS OF THE GOSPEL
1Corinthians 1:30 gives us three of the most prominent aspects of the gospel:
"But you--and it is all God's doing--are in Christ Jesus: He has become for us a wisdom which is from God, consisting of righteousness and sanctification and redemption." WNT
1. RIGHTEOUSNESS: Forms of this word are used over 65 times in the book of Romans alone, i.e. “right,” “righteous,” “righteousness,” “just,” “justify,” “justified,” “justification.” This is the most foundational aspect of the gospel.
“In a broad sense: righteousness is the state of him who is as he ought to be, the condition acceptable to God.” (On-line Bible CD, 1997) It is being right in the sight of God, the just Judge.
“Justify: In theology, to pardon and clear from guilt; to absolve or acquit from guilt and merited punishment, and to accept as righteous on account of the merits of the Savior, or by the application of Christ’s atonement to the offender.” N. Webster, 1828
God is righteous. Those who meet His conditions for righteousness are righteous.
TWO KINDS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS: 1. The righteousness of God. 2. Our righteousness.
The righteousness of God is made unto us when we believe on Jesus Christ. In this case God imparts His righteousness unto us. Our righteousness (man’s righteousness) is achieved by keeping God’s standard for perfection, the Law of Moses. In the Bible the context and phraseology will determine which kind of righteousness is being addressed. Examples of both kinds are addressed in Romans 10:1-4 and in Philippians 3:9. (Read the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7. Which kind of righteousness is being addressed? Note verses 17-20 of chapter 5, and 7:12.)
WHAT IS RIGHTEOUSNESS FROM GOD: Romans 4:6-8 give us a clear definition from scripture: “In this way David also tells of the blessedness of the man to whose credit God places righteousness, apart from his actions. ‘Blessed,’ he says, ‘are those whose iniquities have been forgiven, and whose sins have been covered over.’ ‘Blessed is the man of whose sin the Lord will not take account."
WE’RE MADE THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN CHRIST: 2Corinthians 5:21. God desired partnership with Man: 2Corinthians 6:14.
Romans 5:19 - We ARE made righteous just as we WERE made sinners. We couldn’t change from being a sinner because we were made that way in our first birth. We can’t change from being righteous because we were born into this reality by the second birth.
Romans 6:1-2 - Grace would abound if we continued living contrary to God (See 5:20). But it is a detestable thought to do so after all God has done to reconcile us to Himself.
The apostles of Jesus Christ were instructed by him to be witnesses of his death and resurrection, and to preach repentance and remission (forgiveness) of sins among all nations (Luke 24:46-48). This was the purpose of Jesus’ mission from God. He was “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” When they hung him on that cursed tree to die for your sins and mine, he said, “It is finished!” His job was done. Sin was paid for by substitution. Now any and all could believe on him and be made the righteousness of God.
God wants us to wake up to the reality of being righteous: 1Corinthians 15:34.
The purpose of God making us righteous is addressed in Romans 8:10 and Galatians 3:21. God made us righteous so that we could have life with Him.
The gospel is the power of God to those who believe it (Romans 1:16). Why?… Look at the next verse! “Because therein is the righteousness of God is revealed…” Do you see the importance of the righteousness of God? The righteousness of God is powerful to clean up our life like light is powerful to dispel darkness. This is God’s solution to the problem of sinning against God: We walk in our deliverance from sin by the cross. We are righteous in the sight of God now and forever.
If you want to study these next several verses, how would you describe what God is trying to tell us by these verses?
(Remember, “justified” means rendered righteous, such as one ought to be.)
“Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” Romans 3:24
“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:” Romans 5:1
“Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.” Romans 5:9
“How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” Romans 6:2
“For he that has died is justified from sin.” Romans 6:7 (“Justified" is used here as a once in the past accomplishment, never needing to be repeated.)
“But now being made free from sin, and become servants to God,” Romans 6:22
“Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth” Romans 8:33
“And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.” 1Corinthians 6:11
“For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are sanctified.” Hebrews 10:14
“According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame (without blemish, flawless) before him in love:” Ephesians 1:4
Ephesians 1:7 and Colossians 1:14 Literally, we “are having redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins.” It’s a present tense reality!
1Peter 2:24 “being dead to sin.” We are right now, dead to sins so that we would live unto righteousness.
2. SANCTIFICATION: We’re sanctified in Christ Jesus. This also is an unalterable truth. It is another aspect of the gospel.
WHAT IS SANCTIFICATION: To be set apart for the service or worship of God. We are set apart by being made holy, purified, consecrated. We are separated unto God from things common or profane, such as the Old Testament tabernacle and its instruments in Numbers 7:1. Once something or someone is sanctified, made holy, it is set apart for God’s purpose for which it was intended.
Sanctification is the state, which is produced by the act of being sanctified. God sanctified us in Christ Jesus. Sanctification is the spiritual reality for all who have believed on Jesus Christ. This is a prominent aspect of the faith. It is a reality “in Christ.” We are in Christ by way of the spirit of God. Therefore we are sanctified by the spirit of God (1Corinthians 6:11, 2Thessalonians 2:13, 1Peter 1:2). Sanctification is the state that we are in through our Lord Jesus Christ. We are set apart for the service and worship of God. This is our intended purpose.
Only what is pure, without blemish, can be devoted and offered to God. That which had a defect, a blemish, was not to be used in service or worship of God. Leviticus 22:20-21, Deuteronomy 15:21, 17:1. This is seen in a study of the service and worship of God throughout the Old and New Testaments as in Acts 21:28.
THE WALK: We are sanctified by the Word of truth: John 17:17, Romans 6:19, 2Timothy 1:9. We are called with a holy calling in Christ Jesus. We are not of the world, even as Jesus Christ was not of the world (John 17:14 & 16). Our calling is in holiness, sanctification.
We are called saints: Holy, sanctified ones, set apart for God; properly, reverend, worthy of veneration: Romans 1:7, 1Corinthians 1:2, 2Corinthians 1:1, Ephesians 1:1, Philippians 1:1, etc.
We should think of, and greet all the brethren in Christ Jesus with the reverence and respect of which they have been made worthy. God has chosen us. He calls us saints.
Colossians 1:21-22: We lived separate from God, even as enemies of Him. But through Jesus Christ’s death we were made holy and blameless (without blemish, faultless) and unreprovable (cannot be called into account, unblameable, not accused) in God’s sight. Now we are free to live for God. We have been sanctified for this purpose. You are holy (sanctified) in God’s sight!
3. REDEMPTION: We are redeemed by the redeeming work of the Lord Jesus Christ. This is also an unalterable truth.
WHAT IS REDEMPTION: The state that we are in as the result of being redeemed. To redeem is to release effected by payment of ransom. We have been released, freed from the misery and penalty of sin to which we were enslaved. The payment of ransom was the death of Jesus Christ. Now we have this deliverance as a result. He sacrificed his life as the legal payment for our redemption.
As was the redemption of the nation of Israel (Exodus 3:7-8: FROM the bondage of Egypt TO the promised land) so our redemption is deliverance FROM & TO:
- FROM: the penalties of sin including judgment against us from the just Judge, God.
- TO: the realm of the kingdom of God (John 3:17-18, John 5:24. Colossians 1:13, Philippians 3:20). We are now citizens of heaven. We are guaranteed to jointly share in the glory to come with our Lord Jesus Christ and with all the saints (Romans 8:18, 1Peter 1:3-5). We have received the gift of holy spirit and have been blessed with all spiritual blessings in Christ. All the blessings through Jesus Christ that are recognized now and those yet to be revealed after our Lord’s return are resultant of our redemption.
Isaiah 53: This chapter is about the promised Christ substituting his life for benefits to us. He would be tortured and beaten, mocked and ridiculed, both mentally and physically punished in substitution as the penalty for the sins of the world. He is the redeemer of mankind.
Other verses regarding our redemption: Romans 3:24, Ephesians 1:7, Colossians 1:13-14.
Our redemption through the Lord Jesus Christ is an “eternal redemption.” (Hebrews 9:12)
Our redemption is eternal. It is an unalterable truth!
4. RECONCILIATION: Man had separated himself from God through Adam’s disobedient act (Romans 5:12). God planned to resolve this problem through the death of His son, Jesus Christ. Man couldn’t fix this problem by his own means (Psalms 49:7-8). God sent His son to reconcile us back to God.
WHAT IS RECONCILIATION: The state of having been restored, brought back, to God by an adjustment of the difference. To reconcile is to adjust the difference. It’s likened to a scale that is heavy with sin on one side. God removed the sin and the scale was balanced. The difference between God and man was the huge chasm of sin. God desired that man would be unified with Him. So, God adjusted the difference of sin by redemption. He was appeased by the sacrifice of the life of His son for our sins (Isaiah 53:11). By Jesus Christ’s sacrifice we were restored to God.
Romans 5:6-11. We needed God’s help to be restored to Him. He sent His son in our behalf. Now we’re reconciled to God by the death of His son.
See also 2Corinthians 5:18-19
Our reconciliation to God was by the death of Jesus Christ. The grace extended to us from God was all by the work of His son in our behalf. It is free to us, but it cost Jesus Christ plenty. Our reconciliation to God is also an unalterable truth!
5. PEACE WITH GOD: We have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
WHAT IS PEACE: The root word means “joined.” We are joined to God through Jesus Christ. Peace implies security, safety, prosperity, felicity, (because peace and harmony make and keep things safe and prosperous). Peace also refers to the believer of the hope of Christ’s return at the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God as the Judge of man.
Read 2Chronicles 18:1-3. These two kings were allies. They had peace with each other. What does the record tell us about them being joined together?
See Romans 5:1- 2: We have peace with God because we’re justified by the death of Jesus Christ. Remember what resulted to us from Jesus Christ’s death?
John 14:27: Peace resolves the heart being troubled and afraid.
John 16:33: In Christ is peace.
Romans 8:5-6: Being spiritually minded results in the realization of life and peace.
Christ is our peace. Ephesians 2:14. Apart from Christ we don’t have the peace that is in him. But in Christ we are joined to God.
Colossians 3:15: “And let the peace of Christ preside in your hearts…” (Darby Translation)
Jesus Christ gave up his life in our behalf so that we could have peace with God. By Jesus Christ’s substitutionary work anyone, and all, can be joined to God. Those who have been joined to God are to let this peace we have through Christ be the director of their hearts. God is no longer against us. We are no longer His enemies. God is on our side because we have been joined to Him. All differences have been removed. He says to us, “All that I have is yours. All that you have is mine. I have joined myself to you. Now, join yourselves to me. Learn to let this peace of Christ direct your lives. Then you will experience the joy of being a partner with me.”
6. ACCESS TO GOD: Our access to God is through our Lord Jesus Christ.
The word translated “access” incorparates the idea of being led or brought into the presence of another; moreover, it is a continuous granting of access - freedom of access. Jesus Christ brought us into the presence of God, whose presence we now have freedom to enter at any time.
Exodus 26:31-33: The veil of the temple was to separate the holy place (where only the priests were allowed) from the holy of holies (where the high priest would meet with God only once a year). When Jesus Christ died this veil of the Temple was torn in two from the top to the bottom (Matthew 27:50-51).
Hebrews 9:6-8: For men, the way into the holy of holies had not yet been made known. Jesus Christ made the way known (John 14:6).
Hebrews 8:1-2, 5: The high priest and the temple served as a copy and shadow of the true high priest, Jesus Christ, and true temple.
Ephesians 2:18: “For through him (Jesus Christ) we both (Jew and Gentile) have access by one spirit unto the Father.”
Ephesians 3:12: “in whom (Christ Jesus our Lord) we have this bold and confident access through our faith in Him.”
This term was used when someone would be escorted into the presence of a king to petition him regarding an issue. Jesus Christ made available open access to God by the sacrifice of himself for our sins. On account of this we can approach God as our Father at any time boldly and confidently. We are acceptable to Him by the death of Jesus Christ. By this truth we are assured that God is favorably disposed towards us.
7. ONE BODY: The one body of Christ is a result of Jesus Christ’s redemptive work.
According to Ephesians 1:22-23 the church (those who believe regarding the Christ) is the body of Christ. We are all the same in Christ, equal to each other. This means that nobody is above another and no one group is above another in this body. Together we are the habitation of God. All who believe the gospel are “one body.”
Colossians 3:11 (In the new man) “where there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, bondman, freeman; but Christ is all, and in all.”
Galatians 3:28 “There is no Jew nor Greek; there is no bondman nor freeman; there is no male and female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus:”
1Corinthians 12:12-13 “For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of the body, being many, are one body; so also is Christ. For in one Spirit were we all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether bond or free; and were all made to drink of one Spirit.”
Ephesians 2:19-22 “So then ye are no more strangers and sojourners, but ye are fellow-citizens with the saints, and of the household of God, being built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the chief corner stone; in whom each several building, fitly framed together, groweth into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of God in the Spirit.”
We are now clothed with these new realities through Jesus Christ. This is our true identity and it is unalterable. The practice of each of these truths and all of the aspects of the faith is to live according to them by simply accepting them to be true. The renewing of the mind is the key. A big catalyst to the renewing of the mind is to dwell on these realities and make them that which we are fully persuaded about.. The mind gets conditioned to truth, then, we walk in the realities of Christ, manifesting the power of God and the fruit of the spirit.