By Brooke Holt
“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died – more than that, who was raised – who is at the right hand of God, who is interceding for us.” Romans 8:31-34
I have always been a competitive person, someone who loves to win, whether on a court, a field, or even playing a game of Spades. That competitive nature in me gets excited when I read this passage of Romans. Paul describes a scenario here in which you and I, as God’s children, cannot lose. Through Jesus, we are not just winners but more than conquerors!
Paul creates this winning scenario with the imagery of a courtroom. Picture yourself sitting in that courtroom before the judge. You experience a healthy fear as you wait on this judge who has the power and authority to determine your destiny. Present there because you committed a crime, you know your responsibility and guilt. The question about the impending consequences of this crime lingers in your mind. Will the judge be gracious and lenient with you or wrathful and hard?
As you wonder and wait, you look around the courtroom and see everyone present is on your side – the judge, the attorneys, and the jury. Despite your guilt, everyone present is working on your behalf. Jesus stands there as your judge, your attorney, and your jury. He pleads your case perfectly. Yes, you sinned, but he already made the payment for that sin. Your debt is paid, and your sentence fulfilled. Both judge and jury concur – you are not condemned but forgiven and free.
In fact, you are even more than free. Through the shed blood of Jesus on your behalf, you are washed completely clean. Jesus takes your ragged robes of guilt and shame and covers you in his robe of righteousness. You are free to leave the courtroom wearing this robe. In fact, Jesus assures you that you need never come back. You have a righteousness that can never be lost.
That is the best winning scenario ever! But remember, you did not earn or achieve this victory. Jesus, as your attorney, judge, and jury did all the work on your behalf. As one who Christ has declared righteous, you have full assurance of ongoing victory through him. If God is for you, who can be against you?
You are the winner!
Are you living in this great victory free from shame, guilt, and fear? God is for you! Declare this truth and live into it today! We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Let's face it, the Christian life is hard. Relationships take work. Christians forget. Sometimes it is tempting to go back to the days when God was not the center of our lives - to backslide. We are all faced with tremendous pressures to drift away from intimacy with Jesus and the community of the Church. However, the Lord invites us to pay attention, to move forward, to draw near, and to live lives of worship. Draw Near: Hebrews on Christian Worship is a small group Bible study on the Book of Hebrews intended to lead participants into a deeper intimacy with the living God in the context of New Testament worship. Draw nearer to God in authentic worship today!
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