“For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.” (Romans 5:17).
God never intended to man to suffer. His plan in the beginning was for life. Yet by one man’s sin, “death reigned.” The word used here for, “reign” is the Greek word, “basileuō.” According to Strong’s Lexicon this word means, “to be king, to exercise kingly power, to reign.” It is quite clear that death ruled the earth because of Adam’s sin. Yet when we look to the Cross we can see a bright future. This Scripture tells us that in the same way as death was ruled because of one man’s offence, we can reign in life through Christ. How do we do this? By doing two things. We are called to receive an abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness. When we tap into these two conductors, we will begin to see our lives radically change.
What is grace? To me it is not just a belief system or doctrine, it is the gospel. Christ is grace personified. He is the picture of what it means to reign in life. Grace is unmerited favor. God blesses us not because we deserve it but because Christ deserves it.
Nothing is free in this world, so how can God bless us freely? He causes us to have favor on our lives because of the Cross. Too many times when we pray to God, we try to think of reasons why we deserve it. Yet the reality is it is not about earning, it is about receiving. Jesus once said, “For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Mathew 5:20). I bet you could have heard a pin drop when Jesus said this. Why? Because the Pharisees were focused on works and deserved favor. The only person whose righteousness surpassed the scribes and Pharisees was Jesus.
We are called to receive Christ’ righteousness. This is what grace is all about. It is about receiving the unmerited favor of God. This not only applies to Salvation but to almost every area of our Christian life. It is time to take in an abundance of grace!