Romans - Lesson 22

Romans 5:1-11

In exploring Romans 5:1-11, you gain insights into the contrast between the Old and New Realms, emphasizing the shift from slavery to sin to slavery to righteousness in Christ. Paul underscores the significance of grace, boasting in hope amid suffering, and assurance of salvation rooted in God's love and past actions. Through this lesson, you grasp the essence of living in the realm of grace, finding hope in God's glory despite suffering, and experiencing the assurance of eternal security grounded in Christ's sacrifice and God's love poured into believers' hearts by the Holy Spirit.

Lesson 22
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Romans 5:1-11

III. The Assurance Provided by the Gospel: The Hope of Salvation (5:1–8:39)

A. The Hope of Glory (5:1-21)

1. From Justification to Salvation (5:1-11)

2. The Reign of Grace and Life (5:12-21)

B. Freedom from Bondage to Sin (6:1-23)

1. "Dead to Sin" through Union with Christ (6:1-14)

2. Freed from Sin's Power to Serve Righteousness (6:15-23)

C. Freedom from Bondage to the Law (7:1-25)

1. Released from the Law, Joined to Christ (7:1-6)

2. The History and Experience of Jews under the Law (7:7-25)

a. The Coming of the Law (7:7-12)

b. Life under the Law (7:13-25)

D. Assurance of Eternal Life in the Spirit (8:1-30)

1. The Spirit of Life (8:1-13)

2. The Spirit of Adoption (8:14-17)

3. The Spirit of Glory (8:18-30)

E. The Believer's Security Celebrated (8:31-39)

Class Resources
  • This lesson offers a deep dive into Paul's Letter to the Romans, revealing its pastoral aims, Paul's intentions to visit Spain, Jerusalem, and Rome, and its relevance to early Christian dynamics and theological inquiries about the Law in Christ's time.
  • This lesson offers a fresh view of Paul's theology, focusing on Romans. It emphasizes the first-century context, highlighting Gentile inclusion and unity in Christ, challenging traditional views. Gain insights into Paul's message and its relevance today.
  • Explore the book of Romans for modern faith conflicts: balance tradition with contemporary practices, learn from history, and grasp Paul's ministry and Gospel's complexities.
  • Follow along with Dr. Moo as he begins a thorough review of Romans 1:2-5. You will learn how Paul emphasizes Jesus' earthly life, resurrection, and his appointment as the Son of God in power. This lesson examines the interconnectedness of faith and obedience, underscoring that while faith initiates salvation, genuine faith inherently entails obedience to Christ as Lord, maintaining a balanced Christian life.
  • By delving into Romans 1:16-17, you'll understand the Gospel extends beyond individual salvation, encompassing God's reign over creation and His establishment of justice. The Gospel challenges worldly powers, offering hope and transformation to all who embrace it.
  • Listen along as the class discusses questions and answers revolving around Romans 1:16-17.
  • In Romans 1:18-28, you learn that all people are held accountable by God, having knowledge of Him through natural revelation but some turn away. This passage highlights the manifestation of God's wrath against sin, the exchange of truth for falsehoods, and the absence of excuses for humanity's actions, ultimately emphasizing God's fair judgment.
  • Listen in as the class and Dr. Moo discuss aspects of Romans 1:18-28.
  • The lesson discusses Romans 2:1-11, it highlights the use of the diatribe device and the transition from focusing on Gentiles to Jews. It underscores the Jewish belief in their special status and their potential misunderstanding of God's judgment. The lesson reviews the focus of the text on key themes such as judgment, righteousness, and the relationship between faith and good deeds.
  • In this lesson, you'll review the significance of the Law, notably the Law of Moses, in God's judgment. Paul stresses that mere knowledge of the Law isn't sufficient for righteousness; obedience is key. The primary message is that salvation ultimately relies on God's grace and the Gospel of Jesus Christ, as human efforts and consciences alone cannot secure salvation. This lesson highlights the importance of understanding these concepts in interactions with people of different religious beliefs.
  • The key takeaway in this lesson is that while being a Jew comes with a great heritage, it doesn't guarantee salvation. Obedience to God's law is crucial, and reliance on religious heritage or rituals won't save you. The lesson emphasizes the universal human condition of being under the power of sin, and people cannot be declared righteous in God’s sight by observing the Law or by the works of the Law. Only through faith in Christ are we made righteous.
  • This lesson explores the New Perspective on Paul, emphasizing that the Law was for Jewish covenant status, not just salvation. It promotes a holistic faith view, balancing vertical and horizontal aspects, Spirit-led obedience, and 1st-century Judaism diversity, enriching Pauline teachings in the church.
  • In exploring Romans 3:21-26, you'll gain insights into the relationship between righteousness, faith, and salvation. Paul highlights God's righteousness, which is accessible to all through faith in Jesus Christ. By weaving together themes of righteousness, faith, and inclusivity, Paul challenges conventional Jewish and Gentile perspectives, emphasizing the continuity of God's salvation plan while underscoring the centrality of faith in Christ for all believers.
  • In this lesson, you will gain insights into the potential challenge in translating Romans 3:23-24, particularly the term "all" and its connection to the debate on universalism in evangelicalism. Dr. Moo stresses the importance of coherence in biblical interpretation and explores the themes of God's righteousness, faith, and grace in justification. The lesson reviews the cultural background of redemption, drawing parallels with the Greco-Roman slave market and emphasizing the need to understand both the problem of sin and the Gospel solution.
  • Embarking on this lesson, you'll gain insight into the historical development and contemporary challenges surrounding the doctrine of justification. Through exploring classic Reformation principles and contemporary reassessments, you'll understand the tensions between Protestant and Roman Catholic perspectives, particularly regarding the infusion of righteousness and the role of grace.
  • The lesson explores the intricate connection between faith and works, justification, and sanctification in contemporary theological discourse. It delineates divergent views on justification, with scholars like Piper advocating for the preservation of biblical distinctions amidst modern theological trends. The lesson examines key questions regarding the meaning, basis, time, and means of justification.
  • Students in Dr. Moo's class ask multiple questions about justification.
  • By studying Romans 3:27-4:25, you gain insight into Paul's theology, where faith, exemplified by Abraham's righteousness, transcends works and ethnicity, emphasizing the universal scope of salvation through Christ.
  • Hear the questions the students ask regarding Romans 3:27–4:25. And discover Dr. Moo's answers to the questions posed.
  • In Romans 5 – 8, you gain insights into profound theological concepts like justification, identity in Christ, and the tension between present reality and future hope, guiding you to embrace your changed identity and hope for future transformation amidst life's trials.
  • Students as deep questions about Romans 5-8. Hear what Dr. Moo presents as answers to their questions.
  • Through Romans 5:1-11, you'll review the contrast between the Old and New Realms, understanding the essence of living in grace, finding hope amid suffering, and experiencing the assurance of eternal security rooted in Christ's sacrifice and God's love poured into believers' hearts by the Holy Spirit.
  • In Romans 5:12-21, Paul contrasts Adam's sin with Christ's redemptive grace, emphasizing humanity's hope and victory over death through union with Christ, while various interpretations of original sin underscore the universal need for redemption and Christ's pivotal role in restoring humanity to God.
  • Listen to the thorough questions the students ask regarding Romans 5:12-21.
  • The students ask excellent questions of Dr. Moo in this insightful discussion on Romans 6:1-14.
  • Through this lesson, you will gain a deeper understanding of the theological implications of Christ's death and resurrection as explained in Romans 6. You will explore different interpretations of Paul's language regarding the old self and the new self, considering the implications for the Christian life. Ultimately, you will be challenged to recognize your identity in Christ and to actively live according to that identity, rejecting the slavery of sin and embracing servitude to God.
  • Hear the questions the students ask of Dr. Moo regarding Romans 6:1-23.
  • In diving into Romans 7, you'll explore the Law's role in Christian life. Paul's discourse clarifies the distinction between law and gospel, emphasizing the Torah's significance in understanding divine commandments.

Dr. Douglas Moo, from Wheaton College Graduate School, offers an exegetical examination of the book of Romans. This course was recorded during a D.Min. seminar at the Carolina Graduate School of Divinity in May 2012.

Please note that the audio mp3 file numbers on downloaded files are two greater than each lecture number beginning with number 15.

Dr. Douglas Moo 
Romans 5:1-11  
Lesson Transcript


Romans 5:1-11

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.


A. The Realm to Which We Belong:

Let’s begin talking about these chapters now.  Here’s an idea that I think is significant for particularly this part of Romans, not only this part of Romans but it is again another fundamental framework in which Paul is thinking. 

There is a contrast between an Old Realm and a New Realm. This picks up some language Paul uses in these chapters about the reign of sin verses the reign of Christ. The Old Realm is dominated by Adam where we were slaves to sin, doomed to eternal death, ruled over by Torah, and dominated by the flesh. That is the Old Realm; that is who we were, that’s where we once belonged.

All of that is contrasted then with the New Realm where we are no longer in Adam but now in Christ. We are no longer slaves to sin but instead we are slaves to righteousness. No longer doomed to eternal death, rather destined for eternal life. No longer ruled over by Torah but ruled over by grace. We are no longer dominated by the flesh but dominated by the Spirit. 

You see how much of the content of 5 – 8 is covered by these antithetical categories. It is helpful to begin here, and we will talk about this particularly when we come to Romans 6. But a lot of times we begin by thinking about an old nature and a new nature; this is the way we think about what Paul is doing in these chapters. I think that spells trouble and it’s going to make it hard to understand what Paul is really saying. The category that we should begin with is this broader category of the realm that we belong to; the place where in a sense we are situated and the contrast that Paul uses to describe it. We will see how this works out very specifically when we come to Romans 6 especially. We will try to come back to this and see how much of what Paul is saying relates to it.


B. Grace and Peace:

Romans 5:1-11. (A student) said that we have 11 affirmations here. I haven’t counted them to be honest, but I will trust you on that. Paul is moving from our being justified, which is his argument in chapters 1 – 4, to what we now have. 

First of all, we have peace with God, Paul says. This is not the peace of God but the peace withGod. In other words, the enmity that once existed between us as sinners and a holy God has now been broken down and there is peace between us. At the end of the passage, Paul talks about reconciliation in verse 11 which is making the same point. Reconciliation and peace, very closely related ideas here.

“Through Christ” verse 2, “we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand.” I love the phrase here, ‘the grace in which we stand.’ For Paul, grace is just so fundamental to what it means to be a Christian. That is the realm we stand in. Grace is not something then that we just need to get saved; grace is the realm in which we continue to live as Christians. 

There is an old saying, you are saved by grace, and you are sanctified by struggle. That is notPaul’s view of the matter. It is grace throughout; God doesn’t stop giving us His grace, empowering us by His grace after our conversion. We live in the realm of grace.

Again, a word that is so badly needed in our performance-oriented American life. People bring into their Christianity the sense that I have to earn my way to God just as I have to earn my raises and promotions in the company I work at. It is up to me to make something of myself. 

There is a sense in which we do have to grasp God’s grace and respond to it. We are responsible for that, but it is always God’s grace that we have to come back to. It is not our performance, but the Person to whom we are attached that matters.


C. Boasting in Hope of the Glory of God and Suffering:

In what I think the key idea in this paragraph at the end of verse 2, Paul says that we are boasting in the hope of the glory of God. While (the student mentioned above) was right, we have all these different affirmations Paul gives us here, I think the central idea that he begins developing is this hope for enjoying the presence of God, for being in glory with Him. 

Interesting though, before Paul develops that, he backs up a bit to talk about suffering in verses 3 and 4. It is almost as if Paul wants right at the beginning here to say that his understanding of what it means to be a Christian isn’t some overly optimistic naïve idea that doesn’t take into account the realities of the world we live in. My belief, my hope in Christ, my hope for glory fully takes into account the reality of the suffering we are still going to go through. But paradoxically, Paul wants to argue in verse 4 – 5, that suffering itself can be put to our benefit. Paul says that our suffering leads to perseverance which leads to character, which encourages our hope at the end of the day. 

All believers face suffering, obviously; the question is how we react to the suffering. That is the challenge that each of us faces. In our own experience, I speak for myself in saying as much as I don’t like to admit it and as much as I wish that it were not true, without that suffering I have gone through I would not be as close to Christ as I am. I wish I could be close to Christ and intimate with Him without having to suffer, but in my own experience I find that God has to bring things into my life that remind me of the problems of this world, of my own finitude, of my own mortality in order to drive me more effectively to be the Christian that I am supposed to be. 

Suffering comes, Paul is saying; it’s part of our experience in this life between the already and the not yet. But if we respond to suffering with the right attitude of boasting and rejoicing in the suffering, we then can use suffering to accomplish God’s purposes. Even the evil in this world, God uses for His own end and glory. That is the kind of God that He is.

I hear a few word changes: “produces” versus “leads to.” I was wondering if suffering may “lead us to” but may in fact not “produce.”  

Dr. Moo:  
Yeah; suffering is not automatically – you’re right - going to bring the things Paul is talking about. It is as we have the right response to suffering that it’s going to have these positive effects. I agree entirely.


D. Hope and the Love of God 

Paul then comes back to his theme of hope as you can see in verse 5. Hope is not going to put us to shame. We are not going to be people on the day of judgment are found to have a foolish hope, an unfounded hope. No. The reason for that is because God’s love has been poured into our hearts by His spirit. We are people who God has brought into His family and loves as His children. 

Not only that, but in verses 6-8, God has demonstrated very clearly the depths of His love by sending His Son for us. So, we not only have that sense that God loves us in our hearts, verse 5 talks about that kind of internal, emotional sense, but we also have the obvious, very clear demonstration in history of the love of God in sending His Son for us. 

We have already talked a little bit about verses 9 – 10 but again here is, to me, verses that are central to the entire argument of Romans 5 – 8. Someone mentioned the commentary where I set out the parallels between the two. These are very parallel verses in which Paul says if you are a person that has been justified, you can be confident of being saved. If you are a person who has been reconciled, you can be confident of being saved. The one will lead to the other and all of that is the basis for our hoping in the glory of God. I have a sure and confident hope in God’s glory, or being saved, because He has already justified me and reconciled me. 

In a sense, what Paul is saying is that God has already done the more difficult thing. He has turned an enemy into a friend. He has brought us from condemned sinners to adopted children. And having done that, surely, He is going to complete that work in bringing us ultimately to salvation on the last day. 

Believers still have to face a day of judgment. The wrath of God is still a reality that awaits. We are going to stand before God some day and Paul’s point is we can stand on that day with confidence about the verdict because of the God’s work He has already done in us and for us.

In the linkage of that term wrath, Paul uses that in again in 1 Thessalonians 1:10, where He has delivered us from the wrath to come. 


E. Eternal Security:

Dr. Moo: 
And note “delivered us” – past tense – from the wrath to come. Yes, it is kind of a similar point he is making there in a very short space. “Already delivered” because we have been justified from the wrath yet to come. 

You can see, by the way, at some point I want to stir up the audience here and get our blood boiling a bit.  You can see on the basis of verses like this why someone like me believes in eternal security. We will talk about some of these issues that divide us I’m sure in terms of soteriology, as we go. People ask me why are you convinced of the doctrine of eternal security when there are texts that go both ways in Scripture we all recognize that I think. To me, it is the logic of a passage like this. 

Let me take it a step further, do you believe in pre-trib?

Dr. Moo: 
No. I don’t why we’re getting into that!

I think we can all agree in the eternal insecurity of the unbeliever.

Dr. Moo:   
Yeah, in a sense the unbeliever is secure in knowing they are not going to be, sure. 

Again, I’m not trying to stimulate a big fight here.  For me, when I read Scripture, I do end up myself on a more Calvinist side of things. I think eternal security is one of those things that Scripture does ultimately affirm. It is kind of because of verses like this. People ask me why are you pushed to that particular view? The way in which Paul says if you have been justified you will be saved. He doesn’t say, if you’ve been justified you have a good hope of being saved or you might be saved; but it is almost as if he is saying in our justification your future salvation has already been secured. I realize there are other texts that go on other ways, and we’re going to come to some of those. Romans 11 is a good text that goes the other way as we will see. 

In verse 9 you have “we have been saved through Him from wrath” and in verse 10, “we are reconciled through the death of His Son and now much more having been reconciled we will be saved through His life.” I get the saved through His death, but what does “saved through His life” mean? 

Dr. Moo:   
There are two possibilities there. And I’m not sure which to go for, to be honest.  I think I talk about them both in the commentary, and I think I land on one or the other, but I don’t even remember which one now. 

Saved through Christ’s resurrection.  In being raised from the dead, we, in a sense, raised with Him As we look forward to that, we will be saved in a sense, brought, delivered by our belonging to Christ in His resurrection.  

Or saved by our being united with Christ now. As Christians, we are united with Him so through His Life, in a sense, through the life He now leads as the ascended Lord, our union with Him in that relationship is what will give us salvation. 

Don’t you think it would have been much more convenient if he had left that out? Not that I’m objecting to the inspiration, but as far as the logic goes, my brain sticks on that when I read it.

Dr. Moo: 
Which should stimulate us to ask the question, why did Paul do that? He must have a reason for it that we should probably try to figure out and again I’m not sure it’s easy to figure out. 

If you go back to Romans 4:25, a verse we skipped over, He (Christ) was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification. There in the context Paul has brought the resurrection in. That’s why you could say that the life that Paul is talking about here is Christ’s resurrected life. Our being saved has to do with that.


F. Knowing the Love of God and Our Emotions

I have a question on verse 5, the love of God that the Spirit poured into our hearts. You talked probably just in passing you talked about it that it’s just that sense that we almost feel God’s love. I have always looked at it that God’s love is more concrete than that in the death and resurrection of Christ. John says “in this we know love that God sent His Son that He would die for us.” Can it be more concrete that the Spirit declares to our spirit we are the sons of God, that He declares to our spirit the Gospel? That is God’s love? It is more than just a sense. 

Dr. Moo:  
I think it is both, I really do.  Again, we certainly have to maintain the objectivity of God’s love. How do we know that God’s loves us? Paul says, look at the cross. But I also think he says how do you know God loves you?  I think he also wants to say, look within.

I realize that we want to be careful of emotionalism here that has no boundaries that isn’t based on reality, but emotions are part of who we are as humans. I think God wants to deal with our emotions as well as He wants to deal with our minds. I do think that this is a verse that talks about if we truly belong to Christ, we should be able to sense within that God does love me. That should be part of our experience. 

Is it the Holy Spirit, in some kind of spiritual sense, that makes us feel this love?

Dr. Moo: 
I think, yeah, Paul is bringing it in terms of the Spirit here, yeah.  The Spirit works on our emotions. We are all aware of the danger of an emotional Christianity that has no contact with the reality of the Gospel in what God has done for us. We shouldn’t go to the other extreme and omit our emotions. That is part of who we are as humans and God wants to work with our emotions, change our emotions, teach us through our emotions, as well as our minds, our hearts, and so on.

Are you saying it’s simply that the Spirit is working on us emotionally that we would know the love of God, or is it both/and? 

Dr. Moo: 
It’s a both/and, clearly. You have verse 5 which is more I think the interior thing, and then verses 6 through 8 which is more the external, look at what God has done in history.

Am I wrong to think look at what God has done, that the Spirit takes that and internally declares it to us?  Is that a wrong way of looking at it? 

Dr. Moo: 
The cross manifests God’s love just as God’s love is felt within, so I’m not sure I want to connect it by means of the cross in the way you are.

You know the term, the phrase “pour out” is used metaphorically in Proverbs 1:23 for the metaphor of communication. So, Wisdom says that I will pour out my wisdom on you, I will make known to you my words. So, he may be using it metaphorically here for the love of God was made known to us or made known to our hearts by the Holy Spirit. What love of God are we talking about?  Christ died for our enemies, Christ died for the weak and infirm, and that is the love that he is communicating. Therefore, we can know that we are saved.

Dr. Moo: 
I don’t disagree with that as long as we don’t omit what I think is the genuinely internal emotional side of this. The other text where the language of “poured out” is used is Joel 2:28 passage quoted in Acts 2: “God will pour out his Spirit on all flesh.” That might be part of where he is using the language of “poured out” too in conjunction with the Spirit.

Is it possible to say, is it legitimate, to take, here is Joel, and here is Proverbs, and say that we could use these to justify our interpretation of this. Is that legitimate? 

Dr. Moo: 
It’s always the problem, isn’t it? Paul uses this language of pour out. Which Biblical text, if any, did he have in mind? How do you prove it one way or another? 

Professionally, would they let you get away with it? 

Dr. Moo: 
Oh, yeah. I think with the both/and kind of interpretation, we have to sometimes be a little skeptical about it. Again, it can be a recipe for laziness. There is a view and here is a view, but I don’t have time to figure out which one is right, so I will assume that both are right. 

Very often, a Biblical author is not going to be confined just to one text or one image. They are going to be picking up the richness of Scripture from a variety of places. We would do an injustice to Scripture by forcing it to say that only one thing when the biblical author might want to be saying two or three things.