After explaining the different angles in which we are justified through faith alone, Paul speaks to how our suffering is not wasted by God. Instead it produces in us things to make us more like Christ.
Question: When was a time where you saw suffering produce in you these types of things Paul mentions in this section? When was a time you turned from God in a difficult situation and did not experience these things?
7-8: On rare occasions, a person may do for a righteous or “good” person. However, God shows his tremendous love for us by dying for people who willing sin against Him. On top of that, Christ died for us while we were still sinners. God took the first step towards us!
9-11: Christ’s sacrifice on the cross has saved us from the wrath of God. Since God reached out to us through Christ while we were enemies of Him, once we have been reconciled to God, we will be saved in the judgment day to come.
Question: Why does Paul use the word “reconciled” for those who have trusted in Jesus? What does it mean to be reconciled?
12: Sin and death (spiritual and physical) entered the world through one man (Adam), and everyone has sinned and faced death (Rom. 6:23).
13-14: Sin was in the world even before the Mosaic Law was given. Even though people’s transgressions before the Law were not like Adam’s (since Adam disobeyed a commandment revealed to him by God). People still violated their conscience moral law.
15-18: Christ’s free gift of salvation is even greater in degree than Adam’s sin by which death was introduced into the world. Therefore, because death has reigned because of one man, how much more will people reign in life through Jesus.
Question: Sin produced spiritual and physical death. How does life through Christ reverse that?
20: The law increased trespass because now people were willfully and knowingly sinning against God. But yet, where sin increased, grace abounded all the more. God has given us unimaginable grace.
Question: What has abounded more; sin or grace? What does this tell us about God’s Character?