Romans 5:1-5

Wednesday Evening Bible Study

December 16, 1998


We have seen Paul present the case that man is not made right before God through his own deeds or the keeping of the law, but simply through faith. Our salvation is not a matter of something we’ve earned, it is a "grace", a free, undeserved, gift from God. All we do is trust Him to receive it.

As his main illustration, Paul has used Abraham, who was not declared righteous because of his actions, but because of his faith, as Paul wrote,

(Rom 4:3 KJV) For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:

being justifieddikaioo – to render righteous or such he ought to be; to exhibit one to be righteous; to declare one to be just, righteous, or such as he ought to be

we have – present tense – we are continually having this peace.

peaceeirene – a state of national tranquillity; peace between individuals, i.e. harmony, concord; of Christianity, the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatsoever sort that is

1) State of peace – Peace with God as in the opposite of a state of war.

Once we’ve learned to receive God’s gift of salvation by trusting in Him, a truce has been declared between God and us. We are no longer the enemies of God because of our sin, we have been made right.

2) Practical – receiving salvation through faith as opposed to having your salvation depend upon your works.

There is a real, practical sense about this verse as well. When we’re trying to be right with God through our own works, we get frustrated. When we learn to just trust God, believing that what Jesus has done on the cross was enough to pay for my sins, I will find a real sense of peace, God’s peace in my life. I no longer have to strive to please God, I find that He’s already please with me, simply because I trust Him.

:2 By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand

accessprosagoge – the act of bringing to, a moving to; access, approach, to God, i.e. that relationship with God whereby we are acceptable to him and have assurance that he is favorably disposed towards him

we have – perfect tense – something that happened in the past, but the results carry on into the future.

we stand – perfect tense – something that happened in the past, but the results carry on into the future.

We could translate this: "through Jesus Christ we have gained access to God in the past, and still enjoy that access, and we gained the gift or grace of this access through our faith, and we not only have stood in this access, but are still standing in it."


Access to the throne

We don’t seem to really have a good grasp on this in our modern, democratic society.

In the ancient times, you didn’t just go up to a king to talk to him any old time that you wanted to. It could be very dangerous.

Esther knew all about this. When the wicked Haman had hatched a plan to have all the Jews in the Persian Empire destroyed, Esther’s cousin Mordecai came to ask Queen Esther for her help. She just happened to be married to the emperor of all Persia, King Ahasuerus. But she knew that approaching the king could be dangerous:

(Est 4:11 KJV) All the king's servants, and the people of the king's provinces, do know, that whosoever, whether man or woman, shall come unto the king into the inner court, who is not called, there is one law of his to put him to death, except such to whom the king shall hold out the golden sceptre, that he may live: but I have not been called to come in unto the king these thirty days.

We are talking with a far greater king than just the Emperor of Persia. We are talking access to the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We are talking about having access to the Creator of the heavens and the earth.

And yet I find that sometimes I’ve lost a little on the edge of my prayers because I become too unaware of the awesome privilege I have in addressing Almighty God. And to think that God would even stoop to call me friend. Wow.

:2 and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

rejoicekauchaomai – to glory (whether with reason or without); to glory on account of a thing; to glory in a thing.

If you’re trying to keep the Greek words straight here, the word "rejoice" here is the same word translated "glory" in verse 3, but is different from the word "glory" in verse 2. Got it?

glorydoxa – opinion, judgment, view; in the NT always a good opinion concerning one, resulting in praise, honour, and glory; splendour, brightness, magnificence, excellence, preeminence, dignity, grace, majesty; a most glorious condition, most exalted state (like our condition in our resurrected bodies).

I think that Paul is talking about the future glory that we will share with God in heaven.

:3 And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also

glorykauchaomai – to glory (whether with reason or without); to glory on account of a thing; to glory in a thing.

This is the same word that’s translated "rejoice" in verse 2.

tribulationsthlipsis – a pressing, pressing together, pressure; metaph. oppression, affliction, tribulation, distress

It’s not hard to get into rejoicing over glory, but over tribulations?

It sounds to me like somebody is a little sick here!


LOST DOG with 3 legs, blind in left eye, missing right ear, tail broken and recently castrated. Answers to the name of "Lucky."

-- Barbara Johnson, Stick a Geranium in Your Hat and Be Happy, Word, 1990, p.1.

:3 knowing that tribulation worketh patience;

workethkatergazomai – to perform, accomplish, achieve; to work out i.e. to do that from which something results

patiencehupomone – steadfastness, constancy, endurance; in the NT the characteristic of a man who is not swerved from his deliberate purpose and his loyalty to faith and piety by even the greatest trials and sufferings. NASB – "perseverance"


Patience comes through hard times.

We can come to admire those who know how to persevere. Like the Energizer Bunny, they just keep going and going and going, no matter what the circumstances.

The contrast is when we go through hard times and just give up and quit.

Sometimes our quitting is just a proof that our faith is very shallow. Jesus described this in the parable of the sower and the seed as the "rocky" soil:

Mat 13:20-21 But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; {21} Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended.


Our word "tribulation" comes from the Latin "tribulum"


In the pictures of the ancient Roman method of threshing grain, one man is always seen stirring up the sheaves while another rides over them in a crude cart equipped with rollers instead of wheels. Sharp stones and rough bits of iron were attached to these cylinders to help separate the husks from the grain. This simple cart was called a tribulum -- from which we get our word "tribulation." When great affliction comes to us, we often think of ourselves as being torn to pieces under the cruel pressures of adverse circumstances. Yet as no thresher ever yoked up his tribulum for the mere purpose of tearing up his sheaves but to disclose the precious grain, so our loving Savior never puts us under the pressure of sorrow and disappointment needlessly.

The quality of perseverance can only be developed through hard times, by going through trials.

It’s only as you’re actually in a trial, and that you learn that you can actually keep holding on and enduring, that you develop the quality of "endurance".

James says the same thing:

(James 1:2-4 NASB) Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, {3} knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. {4} And let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

I thought it was very interesting to read what Calvary Chapel Costa Mesa was going through when Chuck was teaching through this portion of Scripture:

Right now we are waiting on the Lord in regard to the bid we made upon the site in Newport Beach. The school board tells us that in two weeks that they will make their decision. I can honestly say that I am not tense I am not nervous, I am not really concerned, if we get it we get it, if we don't we don't. When we bought the Greenville School from the Santa Ana School District we put in a bid and we didn't even go to the board meeting where they were going to have the oral bids, once they had opened the sealed bids that had come in we just submitted a bid on a school and let it go at that. One morning the school secretary called me and said, "You just bought a school." I said, "Well praise the Lord."


Perseverance makes the difference. Wilma didn't get much of a head start in life. A bout with polio left her left leg crooked and her foot twisted inward so she had to wear leg braces. After seven years of painful therapy, she could walk without her braces. At age 12 Wilma tried out for a girls' basketball team, but didn't make it. Determined, she practiced with a girlfriend and two boys every day. The next year she made the team. When a college track coach saw her during a game, he talked her into letting him train her as a runner. By age 14 she had outrun the fastest sprinters in the United States. In 1956 Wilma made the U.S. Olympic team, but showed poorly. That bitter disappointment motivated her to work harder for the 1960 Olympics in Rome -- and there Wilma Rudolph won three gold medals, the most a woman had ever won.


My dad used to say, "You can tell a lot about a man by the way he handles these three things: a rainy holiday, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights."

-- H. Jackson Brown Jr., author of Life's Little Instruction Book and Live and Learn and Pass it On. From USA Today, 6-19-92, p. 11A

:4 And patience, experience;

experiencedokime – proving, trial; approved, tried character; a proof, a specimen of tried worth. NASB – "proven character"; NLT – "strength of character"

You can tell a lot about a person’s character not by what trials they’ve gone through, but what trials they’ve endured.


In the Christian life we may acquire some wisdom in times of prosperity, but oh, the deeper lessons we can learn in the school of tribulation and sorrow! A.B. Simpson declared. "You will have no test of faith that will not fit you to be a blessing if you are obedient to the Lord. I never had a trial but when I got out of the deep river I found some poor pilgrim on the bank that I was able to help by that very experience."


When the green leaves decorate the trees and the season is fair, one cannot readily find the birds' nests, but when the winter strips the trees, anyone with half an eye may see them. In the same way the Christian may scarcely be discerned amid the press of business and prosperity; his hidden life is concealed amid the thick and throng of the things of earth. But let affliction come, a general sickness, or severe losses in the family, and you shall see the Christian man plainly enough in the gracious patience by which he rises superior to trial. The sick bed reveals the man; the burning house, the sinking ship, the panic on the exchange--all these make manifest the hidden ones. In many a true believer, true piety is like a drum which nobody hears of unless it be beaten.

-- Charles Haddon Spurgeon

It’s hard times and endurance that produce Christians like Corrie Ten Boom:


It was Christmas, 1944. Betsie had died. I was in a hospital barracks in Ravensbruck. Dark it was in my heart, and darkness was around me.

There were Christmas trees in the street between the barracks. Why, I don't know. They were the saddest Christmas trees I ever saw in my life. I am sure it was with the purpose of blaspheming that they had thrown dead bodies of prisoners under the Christmas trees.

I tried to talk to the people around me about Christmas, but they mocked, ridiculed, and sneered at whatever I said. At last I was quiet. It was in the middle of the night that I suddenly heard a child crying and calling, "Mommy! Come to Oelie, Oelie feels so alone." I went to her and saw a child not so young, but feebleminded.

"Oelie, Mommy cannot come, but do you know who is willing to come to you? That is Jesus."

The girl was lying on a bed next to the window, not far from my bed. Although Oelie was completely emaciated from lack of food, she had a sweet face, beautiful eyes, and wavy hair. It was so touching to hear her call for her mother. Oelie had been operated on and the incision on her back was covered by a bandage of toilet paper.

That night I told this poor child about Jesus. How He came into the world as a little baby -- how He came to save us from our sins.

"The Lord Jesus loves Oelie and has borne her punishment on the cross. Now Oelie may go to heaven, and Jesus is there right now. He is getting a little house ready for Oelie." Later I asked her what she remembered of what I had told her.

"What is the little house like?" I asked.

"It is very beautiful. There are no wicked people as in Ravensbruck -- only good people and angels. And Oelie will see Jesus there."

Then Oelie folded her hands; together we gave thanks.

Then I knew why I had to spend this Christmas in Ravensbruck -- 1944.

-- Corrie's Christmas Memories

:4 and experience, hope:

hopeelpis – expectation of good, hope

Practically - It seems to me that as we endure trials, we learn that some things in life can be counted on, others can’t. I can’t depend upon people. I can’t depend upon circumstances. I can always depend upon the Lord.

The trials of life are like a fire that burns in our lives. The stuff that can stand the fire makes it through. The stuff that can’t stand the fire is burned up.

(1 Pet 1:6-7 KJV) Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: {7} That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

When the gold is put through the fire, the impurities, the dross, is brought to the surface and skimmed off by the goldsmith. The goldsmith knows when His gold is pure when He can see His own reflection in the gold.

The trials we go through are burning off the impurities of our lives, leaving only the good part, especially our realization that we can only hope in God.

(Psa 46:1-3 KJV) To the chief Musician for the sons of Korah, A Song upon Alamoth. God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. {2} Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; {3} Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.


:5 And hope maketh not ashamed;

maketh not ashamedkataischuno – to dishonour, disgrace; to put to shame, make ashamed; one is said to be put to shame who suffers a repulse, or whom some hope has deceived

When our hope is in the Lord, and not in people or circumstances, He will never disappoint us. We will never be ashamed by Him.


Once upon a time, certain strong laborers were sent forth by the great King to level a primeval forest, to plow it, to sow it, and to bring to him the harvest. They were stout-hearted and strong, and willing enough for labor, and much they needed all their strength and more. One stalwart laborer was named Industry--consecrated work was his. His brother Patience, with muscles of steel, went with him, and tired not in the longest days under the heaviest labors. To help them they had Zeal, clothed with ardent and indomitable energy. Side by side there stood his kinsman Self-denial, and his friend Importunity. These went forth to their labor, and they took with them, to cheer their toils, their well-beloved sister Hope; and well it was they did, for they needed the music of her consolation before the work was done, for the forest trees were huge and demanded many sturdy blows of the axe before they would fall upon the ground. One by one the giant forest kings were overthrown, but the labor was immense and incessant. At night when they went to their rest, the day's work always seemed so light, for as they crossed the threshold, Patience, wiping the sweat from his brow, would be encouraged, and Self-denial would be strengthened by hearing the sweet voice of Hope within singing, "God will bless us; God, even our own God, will bless us." They felled the lofty trees to the music of that strain; they cleared the acres one by one, they tore from their sockets the huge roots, they delved the soil, they sowed the corn and waited for the harvest, often much discouraged, but they still held to their work as by silver chains and golden fetters by the sweet sound of the voice that chanted so constantly, "God, even our own God, will bless us." They never could refrain from service, for Hope could never refrain from song. They were ashamed to be discouraged, they were shocked to be despairing, for still the voice rang clearly out at noon and eventide, "God will bless us; God, even our own God, will bless us." You know the parable, you recognize the voice. May you hear it in your souls today!

-- Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Hope in the Lord is what keeps us going.


A few years ago the psychology department of Duke University carried on an interesting experiment. They wanted to see how long rats could swim. In one container they placed a rat for whom there was no possibility of escape. He swam a few moments and then ducked his head to drown. In the other container they made the hope of escape possible for the rat. The rat swam for several hours before finally drowning. The conclusion of the experiment was just the opposite of our common conclusion. We usually say, "As long as there is life, there is hope." The Duke experiment proved, "As long as there is hope, there is life."

-- Bruster & Dale, How to Encourage Others

:5 because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

the love of God – the love that God has for us.

shed abroadekcheo – to pour out, shed forth; metaph. to bestow or distribute largely. It’s a "perfect" tense, meaning that the action happened in the past, and the results continue on into the present.

Part of the work that the Holy Spirit does in our lives is to remind us how much God loves us.

As we are reminded that God loves us so much, we will find that we are not disappointed or ashamed of what God is doing in our lives.