Devotions for April 11, 2014

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Romans 3:21-31

21But now God has shown us a way to be made right with him without keeping the requirements of the law, as was promised in the writings of Moses and the prophets long ago. 22We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.

23For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. 24Yet God freely and graciously declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. 25For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, 26for he was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus.

27Can we boast, then, that we have done anything to be accepted by God? No, because our acquittal is not based on obeying the law. It is based on faith. 28So we are made right with God through faith and not by obeying the law.

29After all, is God the God of the Jews only? Isn’t he also the God of the Gentiles? Of course he is. 30There is only one God, and he makes people right with himself only by faith, whether they are Jews or Gentiles. 31Well then, if we emphasize faith, does this mean that we can forget about the law? Of course not! In fact, only when we have faith do we truly fulfill the law.

Romans 6:20-23

20When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. 21And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. 22But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. 23For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

DEVOTIONAL QUESTIONS

Q: In these passages we see not only how great our debt was, but how full our redemption and atonement was. Do you find yourself walking in the fullness of that atonement, or do you feel like you’re just on parole with God?

Q: Romans 3 shows us that not only are we forgiven and brought to an even relationship with God, but brought us into a righteous relationship with Him. What would change in your life if you lived in His righteousness and favor today? What would change if you always lived according to the favor of God and not in fear of “parole violation?”

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