January 18 Free gift of redemption

But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness is given through faith in[h] Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. Romans 3:21-24

The Old Testament promises were as equally for the Jews, who failed to keep all of God’s written law, as the Gentiles who failed to live up to their own consciences. All are sinners. All have fallen short of what God demands. But equally, all who trust in the redeeming sacrifice of Jesus for their sins are promised that they are counted as righteous before Father God (Galatians 2:16). However much wrong they have done, they are forgiven. Christ takes the blame for them, and they accept His righteousness. God is being just (1 John 1:9) ; the punishment has been carried out and all those who believe it was for them, are put ‘in the right’ with God.

What Jesus did was foretold in the Old Testament. His plan was magnificent: to allow Jesus to die – so that people held in the slavery of sin could be redeemed – like the slaves in Egypt released through the blood of the lamb (Exodus 12:21-23) – and those facing God’s judgement could know in advance that they will not be found guilty. This wonderful news (the gospel) is for everybody. If you already know it, share it! Workers on building sites, information scientists, homemakers, teachers, retail workers and factory operatives all need to know that if they believe in Jesus, they can be made right with God. It is a huge relief now, and much glory to come!

Most merciful God. Thank You for sending Jesus Christ to be my Saviour. Thank You that He took all of my guilt and was punished for what I have done and been. I am sorry when I have not treasured this truth, or even sinned willfully presuming on Your grace, not considering how much that offends Your free gift of redemption. Please help me to live a new life in gratitude, and to speak out the message of Your gospel, so that my friends and colleagues may also know the joy of being ‘in the right’ with God. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

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