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"Blessed Assurances by Dennis Kiszonas (1-2)

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"Blessed Assurances by Dennis Kiszonas (1-2) Empty Re: "Blessed Assurances by Dennis Kiszonas (1-2)

Post  Admin on Tue 22 Mar 2011, 12:03 pm

*"Blessed Assurances" *
*Part 2 of 2 *
*by Dennis Kiszonas *

*Paul's next phrase is, "We have ... "

''Therefore, having been justified by faith, "Paul writes, ''we have ... "

What does it actually mean to say, 'we have'? This is a present tense
verb that indicates continual possession. An uninterrupted, continual
possession of all of the following blessings. Having settled the matter
of salvation, we presently and continually have as our constant
possessions the blessings that are coming up. These are not blessings
that come and go, or vary from day to day depending on our
circumstances, or our obedience or faithfulness or spiritual experience,
these are constants, real 'Blessed Assurances.' Things that every
believer in Christ can be sure of all the time.

1 Peace with God

"Peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. " We have at all times
now that we are saved, peace with God. He no longer has anything at all
against us, in fact we can now be assured that He is "for us" -- ''If
God be for us who can be against us?" Romans 8:31. Because of the cross
where the Lord paid for everything we've ever done or ever will do
wrong, God says to the believer that we have as our constant possession
at all times, peace with Him. He is for us, on our side, in our corner.

Of course, we each have a personal struggle with an enemy who restlessly
wants to convince us otherwise. Satan uses every possible circumstance,
every possible "wile of the devil" to try to shake our confidence, and
make us wonder if indeed God is really on our side at all. But as long
as we remember and believe that God has nothing against us and is on our
side, we are invincible, unbeatable.

I mean, as Paul says, If Almighty God is on our side--think of
that!--then really, who can be against us--they try to be, but who can
succeed against us if God is on our side?

But we need to always remember, it is ''peace with God through our Lord
Jesus Christ." This is all by the grace of God and not by our own
worthiness, our own efforts and good works. It is all because of Him and
His cross work for us. Believe it and be thankful forever!

#2 Standing in Grace

Romans 5:2 "through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in
which we stand. "

Not only do we have peace with God as our present continual possession
through Christ, but also through Him we have "access by faith into this
grace"

'Access' could well be translated here as a 'welcome.' Through the Lord
Jesus, God actually welcomed us into His grace through faith. The
red-carpet was rolled out, enemies were invited to come, even welcomed
into this amazing grace when we put our faith in the Lord Jesus who paid
the penalty in full for us.

And once we enter into this grace of God salvation by believing in the
Lord Jesus as our Savior, we are now told even further, not only were we
welcomed into this grace, but now we are 'standing in this grace.' We
were welcomed into this grace at the moment of our salvation, and now
ever after we are standing in grace.

For one thing, that means that there is no way we can "lose our
salvation." We're not standing in our own works, or our own
faithfulness. We would all fail. But we are standing in His grace--"And
if it is by grace it is no longer by works, otherwise grace is no longer
grace." Romans 11:6. Our standing before God no longer depends upon our
works but is in His grace. We are not standing in a performance system,
but in His grace.

#3 We have a sure hope.

Paul finishes verse 2 by writing, "and (we) rejoice in hope of the glory
of God"

We had read in Romans 3:23, that we all fall short of the glory of God.
If we didn't let God save us by His grace, none of us would ever see the
glory of God in heaven. Now, though, because of the cross and His grace,
we are rejoicing in hope of the glory of God.

"Hope" here is not the weak sort of "hope" that we often speak of in
English. We sometimes hear a person say, "I hope I'm going to heaven."
That's more like "wishing" for it.

Like saying, "I hope it doesn't rain and ruin our picnic." That is a
wish, some-thing that we want but are very unsure whether we'll get.

You can't "rejoice" in a hope like that! How could anyone rejoice in
some-thing that they aren't even sure that they have?

This "hope" that Paul writes about though is not like that. It is a hope
that is sure for the future. I am sure, I expect to see the glory of
God, I know I'm going to heaven because the Lord has paid for everything
wrong that I've ever done or ever will do, therefore I am rejoicing
ahead of time. When a believer thinks about the Lord's coming for us, or
when we think about dying, we see these things as events full of joy. We
have here an assurance in the face of death and the uncertainties of life.

Let's stop and quickly review the blessings of these first two verses in
Romans 5.

#1 We have peace with God -- He is on our side, He is for us-- at all
times and in every circumstance.

#2 We were welcomed into His grace and now we are standing in His grace
by faith in the Lord Jesus. We are not on a performance system to earn
God's love or to keep this relationship alive. We are standing in His
grace, and therefore it is, "no longer of works, otherwise grace isn't
grace any more. " (Romans 11:6)

#3 We are rejoicing in our expectation ad hope of one day sharing in the
glory of God in heaven. In the present we have peace and grace, for the
future we have a sure hope of glory. What more could we ask?

Now we go on to a surprising statement in Romans 5:3-4. We might think
that having God on our side, and standing in His grace would guarantee
that our life would be "problem-free. " No more worries about financial
problems. No more concern that we might get cancer or die in a war or
lose our job or have a divorce in our marriage or a problem with a child
on drugs or in prison.

That's what I thought when I became a Christian. I thought that all my
problems would be solved because now God is my Father and He's going to
bless my life with abundance in every way---abundant health, finances,
love from family and friends. All the good things in life would be mine.
If you believe that, you're going to have some big problems in the
christian life! Just read the next verses--Romans 5:3-4:

And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that
tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and
character, hope.

There you have it: Tribulations are part of the christian life--and Paul
even welcomed them! If anybody ever tells you that problems are not
going to be your lot when you're saved, just remember these verses. God
says that tribulations are part of His plan for us and that we should
welcome them because He allows them to come into our lives for His good
purposes.

Of course, whenever we're facing problems, especially long, hard,
problems that just seem like they're never going to be solved, we begin
to wonder, why did God do this to me? Did I do something that caused Him
to turn against me?

The devil just loves when we begin to question, and doubt God. If he can
drive a wedge between us and God, he's got us beat.

At times like that we need to review verses I and 2. "I have at all
times as my permanent and constant possession peace with God. He is on
my side, He has nothing against me, it was all paid for by my Savior at
the cross. And I am now standing in the same grace that I was welcomed
into on the first day that I believed. And I am going to glory. So how
can I think that God has somehow now turned against His word and His
promises and has somehow turned against me?" Impossible! Unthinkable!
"God is faithful.... "

So Paul writes, tribulations are part of life even for us who have God
on our side, even while we're standing in His grace and on our way to glory.

Paul even says, don't just groan about those tribulations, but actually
rejoice in them! They come for a good reason even if they feel awfully
hard to accept. God uses tribulations in our lives to cause us to grow.
"Knowing that tribulation produces perseverance ... character ... hope. "

Its "knowing" God's purpose in allowing the tribulations that causes us
to have a new attitude about them.


*GraceNTheTruth@ COX.NET*
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"Blessed Assurances by Dennis Kiszonas (1-2) Empty "Blessed Assurances by Dennis Kiszonas (1-2)

Post  Admin on Mon 21 Mar 2011, 3:30 pm

"Blessed Assurances"
*Part 1 of 2**
The Blessings of Romans 5 -
by Dennis Kiszonas

A famous old pastor in Chicago came to the end of his life. He had
preached the grace of God for decades to a large congregation and an
even larger radio audience. On his death bed, in the last moments of his
life, he recited from memory a passage of scripture which spoke of the
assurances that he enjoyed as he faced the near end of his earthly life.
The passage? Romans 5: 1-11.

In Romans 5 God tells us of a set of blessings that are basic to the
Christian life. Here is a great chapter to study, and blessings that we
need to under-stand and apply in our lives, and a great chapter to
memorize so that we can recall these vital truths whenever we need them,
whether in the midst of life or at the time of death.

Rom 5:1-11

1 Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God
through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2. through whom also we have access by
faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the
glory of God

3 And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that
tribulation produces perseverance; 4 and perseverance, character; and
character, hope.

5 Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured
out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

6 For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for
the ungodly.

7 For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good
man someone would even dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love
toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be
saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were
reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been
reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

11 And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus
Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.

Let's study this passage thought by thought.

Romans 5: 1 - "Therefore, having been justified by faith, ... " The
chapter begins with Paul looking back over his shoulder to the things
which he explained in Romans 3 and 4. If we're reading thru Romans as we
get to chapter five, we've already read, "being justified freely by His
grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus," Romans 3:24.

To be 'justified' means to be declared 'righteous' in the sight of God
the Judge. Not only are we forgiven for all of our sins (Col. 2:13), but
we are actually declared by God to be righteous in Christ--all that God
expected and demanded and required of us is now credited to us, so now
He can bless us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in
Christ (Eph 1:3). How could God do this for sinful people?

Remember again Romans 3:24, "being justified freely by His grace through
the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." 'Justified freely,' that means
'without a cause in ourselves.' Its not because we're so good or
righteous, in fact God says "there is none righteous no not one" Romans
3:10, but now, without a cause or reason in ourselves, God has declared
us righteous in his sight "by His grace thru the redemption that is in
Christ Jesus! "

Because of what the Lord Jesus did for us at the cross when He took the
blame and accepted the guilt of our sins and made the full payment for
them all by dying for us, now God says, "Don't look for a cause in
yourself, but by My overflowing grace I consider you to be righteous in
my sight and will treat you as a righteous person forever."

What did we have to do to receive this amazing righteousness? "But to
him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his
faith is accounted for righteousness. " Romans 4:5.

We have to do nothing -- it's to him who does not work! --stop even
trying to save ourselves and let Him save us by His grace thru the
redemption/payment that is in Christ. On the cross the Lord did all the
work that was required by God for Him to be able to save any person who
puts his faith, trust, reliance in the Lord as his Savior.

So our passage in Romans 5 begins with this backward glance to the
previous chapters in the letter and sums them up with this opening
phrase: "Therefore, having been justified by faith, ... " Paul is
saying, now that we have settled this matter of salvation by the grace
of God thru faith, now let's go on to see what the results of that
salvation are.

GraceNTheTruth@ COX.NET*
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