“. . . this gift of God, even our justification and sanctification, brings us to the happiness of eternal life. Or, if you prefer, it may be thus stated,–’As the cause of death is sin, so righteousness, which we obtain through Christ, restores to us eternal life.’” (John Calvin, Commentary on the Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Romans, at Romans 6:23).
“The demands or duties of grace are co-extensive with the divine work of grace. The pattern of regeneration-faith, in which the Spirit inaugurates us into union with Christ, is continued throughout the whole of life. God is sanctifying the whole person, body, soul, and spirit (1 Thes. 5:23); the believer must therefore sanctify the whole person, body, soul, and spirit. God is working in believers both to will and to do of his good pleasure; believers are, therefore, to work out the significance of their union with Christian death to sin and life to God, in lives of universal obedience obedience and consecration (cf. Phil. 2:12-13).” (Sinclair Ferguson, The Holy Spirit , p. 151).
Looking at 1 Thessalonians 5 in Sunday afternoon’s Bible Study at Trinity Presbyterian Church.
As the New England Primer indicated (reflecting Paul’s teaching in Romans 5), the sin of the one man, Adam, brought death into the world. The sin of the one man, Adam, is placed on our account. We are all guilty and we are all sinners. The law of God serves like a projector, showing us our sin. But in Romans 5:16-17 the pattern of sin-condemnation-death is balanced by the pattern of righteousness-justification-life.
Sin increased, but God grace has increased even more. Paul adds a prefix (from which we get our term hyper–as in hyper-drive) to the verb increase. God’s grace is super increasing, or super-abounding. The act of righteousness of the God-man, Jesus Christ, declares us just, and gives us life. Parallel to Adam, but in contrast to him, the righteousness of Christ is placed on your account as you trust in him. Continue reading