Sermon Summary
This message is about a process known as Sanctification. "The process of being
made holy resulting in a changed life-style for the believer!" Because of God's amazing Grace
we've been granted access to, we have the power to be victorious over the power of sin in our daily lives. Through God's Grace we have been granted direct access to God in prayer!
We also have been given access to God's Word in the Bible. As a result, we can learn the amazing principles of Christian living as we read God's Word daily. God's grace and the power of His Spirit has also qualified us to serve. As we get busy serving God our priorities change! We begin living a new life. One of the practical things we must do is change
the influences in our lives. We still care for our lost friends, but we no longer follow them in their worldly ways. As we begin to live in victory we rejoice in the hope of the Glory of God, knowing our new life has purpose and meaning!

Small Group Discussion Guide

1. This is a test! After the last two sermons, can you describe the difference between
Justification and Sanctification?

2. Why do you think so many will trust God with their past and their future, but not
with their daily life?
1What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?
2By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?
3Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized
into his death?
4We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as
Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

Romans 6:4 (NIV)


3. How have prayer and reading God's Word been helpful to you in overcoming the
power of sin in your life?

6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with
thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts
and your minds in Christ Jesus.

8Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is
pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if
anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Philippians 4:6-8 (NIV)


4. How can we continue to reach out to our non-believing friends without allowing
them to influence us in negative ways?

1Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the
way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.

Psalm 1:1 (NIV)


SERMON STARTS HERE!!
Your Daily Life Through the Lens of the Cross
Romans 4:25-5:2

Last week we talked about our past and how we are justified and made right with God through the precious Blood of Christ He shed on the old rugged Cross. Today we're going to talk about the practical application of the work of Christ on the Cross in our daily lives! So the work of Christ in dealing with our past is known as justification. The work of Christ in our daily lives is known as...

Sanctification!

What is Sanctification? It is...

"The process of being made holy resulting in a changed life-style for the believer!"

Notice it is a process! It is not a one time thing, but a daily, moment by moment work of God in our lives as we become more like Jesus!
Justification, being put in a right relationship with God, happens when we admit we've done wrong and need a Savior! When we call on the name of Christ, He seals the deal for our eternal salvation. However, the work to make us more like Jesus in our daily lives is only just beginning. God begins a glorious process of creating in us a whole new attitude, and motivation which will in turn change the way we live our lives. Our new attitudes and motivations will result in new actions! God will begin building into us the character of Christ!

Today we will discover some exciting things about how this process works and next week we will begin a new series to study the essence of Christian Character. What it is and how we should exemplify the very character traits Jesus lived by in our daily lives!

You might remember our text from last week in the Book of Romans. We're going to use the same verses as our main text this morning!

Let's read Romans 4:25-5:2, then we'll pray and jump right into our message today.

25He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.

1Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

2through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.

And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.

Let's Pray!

Do you remember the words we underlined last week?
Let's look at these three verses again with the words underlined...

25He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.

Last week we talked about the fact Jesus' life was not taken from Him, He was delivered by the Father and Jesus went willingly to His death.

He went there to pay for our sins so when He was raised to life He could justify us by the Blood He had poured out for us! Let's read on...

1Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

We discovered last week it is through faith we are justified by Christ Blood and it is through faith we have peace in our hearts knowing our sins and past mistakes are covered and washed away by the Blood of Christ! Thank you Lord!! Now to the verse we didn't get to last week. We'll read verse one again because they go together...

1Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

2through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.
And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.

Wow!! Through Jesus Christ and His work on the Cross we have been given access by faith to a powerful grace that allows us to stand victoriously in this life now matter how bad our circumstances or the consequences of our past sins. We even have the power to rejoice in the hope of the Glory of God!!!
Amazing Access, Amazing Grace, Amazing Rejoicing, Amazing Hope, Amazing Glory!!

Are you ready to have your daily life transformed? Are you ready to discover how to live a victorious life in this old world? Get out your notepads, I pads, I phones, Androids, or you might even go the old fashioned route and use a pen and the worship guide note section.

Here's what happens when a person receives Christ as their Savior… they are forgiven of their sins and justified, made right with God. God also takes away the penalty of sin! In other words, we all deserve eternal death and separation from God, but Jesus took the penalty of our sins. Remember, for that moment in time on the Cross He who knew no sin became sin for us! Jesus took an eternity of separation, an eternity of punishment, for you and me! We can't even begin to imagine what He went through for us! But here's a tragedy that has been repeated many times down through the years. People are willing to let Jesus Justify and forgive them.
They are willing to let Christ take the penalty of sin for them, but they stop there! They accept what Jesus did for them to cover their past sins and mistakes. But they don't allow Jesus to give them power over sin in their daily lives. They continue to live the same old destructive and defeated lives they lived before. This doesn't make any sense at all, but it happens all the time. Here's what happens. We are willing to trust God with our past, "I'm forgiven!" And with our future, "I'm going heaven!" But we won't trust God with our live today! We continue to do our own thing, our own way and we let sin continue to have power over us!
So tragic and so unnecessary!! Why is this so unnecessary? Because we've been granted Access!!

All Access to God!!

Let me give you a practical example of Access granted. I went to a Little Richard concert years ago. One of my family members at the time was his drummer. I was given a lanyard with a card stating "All area access!" Backstage, on stage!  I actually got to sit on the stage by the drummer during the concert. Wow! So cool!! I have a friend in another band who fronted Pearl Jam and Motley Crew. Yep, I got the pass. All Access. Talk about some opportunities to share Jesus, It was great. But let me tell you
those things are nothing compared to the all access pass I've been granted through faith in Jesus Christ!!! I have all access to The Creator God of the Universe!! I have access to the Holy of Holies! I have access to the power of God to overcome the power of sin. Why would I want to let sin continue to rule my life? That would be crazy!! Because of the access I have to God's power and grace I can not only be justified but I can also be sanctified. Let me remind you of the definition of sanctified...

"The process of being made holy resulting in a changed life-style for the believer!"

Paul had something to say about this process in Romans chapter 5 and 6 where he compares Adam's sin and Jesus' sacrifice.

16Again, the gift of God is not like the result of the one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification.
17For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man,
how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace
and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.
18Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men,
so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men.
19For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners,
so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.
20The law was added so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more,
21so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
1What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?
2By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer?

3Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?
4We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

It's like this…We are justified and forgiven of our sins by the work Jesus did on the Cross, through the Blood He poured out to cover us! So we don't live our new lives in order be saved from sin, but because we have been saved from sin and it's penalty of death. But we not only want to be saved from the penalty of sin, but from the power of sin. Sin destroys! Sin hurts! Sin devastates! Sin robs us everything God desires to do in our lives. We've been granted access to  a power that is more powerful than sin and Satan and evil!

What is that power?

Access to Grace

1Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
2through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace...

God's Grace is one of the most powerful things in this world. Grace is not earned, or bought, it is accepted through faith! Grace is powerful, because of the one from whom the grace originates.

16From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another.
17For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ! He is our source of grace! He is our source of truth. And this undeserved favor of God has become a source of amazing strength and power which allows us to live a new life. A Godly life.
Paul put it this way to Timothy...

7For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.
8So do not be ashamed to testify about our Lord, or ashamed of me his prisoner.
But join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God,
9who has saved us and called us to a holy life not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time,
10but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus,
who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.

What does all this mean for me in my daily life? When you look through the lens of the Cross you begin to see the Cross not only takes care of our past mistakes the penalty of sin, but it gives us power to say no to sin and it's destructive effect on our lives today!
It says we are not given a spirit of timidity and fear, but of power, of love and self-discipline. Here's a little secret. Self-discipline is rarely successful apart from the power of the Holy Spirit of God! Oh, to be sure, there are some who practice religious disciplines in other religions, but they are few and far between and they spend much of their lives trying to gain power over self. I've got some good news for you today. If you'll accept what Jesus Christ did on the Cross to bring God's grace into your life, you'll find The Holy Spirit of God will give you power over self and you can spend the energy you would have had to use on self-control to serve God and others!!

Don't get me wrong, it's not easy to yield your will to God's will consistently, but as you access God's grace on a daily basis you'll discover the power to stand strong against the devils evil schemes. Let's look at our text again...

1Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
2through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. . .

 Strength to Stand!

Remember the spoiler alert last week? Here's where that Scripture comes to bear...

6Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.
7Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
8Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
9Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.
10And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.
11To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Here's the bottom line…
You don't have to live a defeated life! You don't have to continue living under the control of sin. I'm not saying you'll be perfect, but I am saying this. When God shows you something is wrong and hurtful, He gives you the grace and the power to overcome that sin. Let me reassure you of something. If God were to show you two or three things a day that you needed to correct, and you put those things in God's hands and allowed Him to help you overcome them, I promise you you'll have plenty of other

things to work on! Trust me, we are all so far from being just like Jesus, none of us needs to worry about becoming perfect this side of heaven. Ok brother Larry, I get it! But can you give me some practical help in my desire to begin the process of sanctification.

"The process of being made holy resulting in a changed life-style for the believer!"

Yes I can!! First let me tell you this...
You will face troubles and difficulties in this life, Jesus told us we would. But you don't have to continue dealing with self-inflicted consequences and pain. If you have placed your faith in Jesus Christ and what He did for you on the old rugged Cross, You have access to God, His Grace, His power, His Holy Spirit, and you do have the ability in Christ to Stand!!!!

How do you do access God's Grace so you can stand?

First of all remember you have access to God in….

Prayer!!

When you're tempted to sin, remember, you can talk to God. You have personal access to Him 24/7!!
Listen to …

6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Don't know how to talk to God? Talk to Him just like you would someone you have great respect for and respect their opinion. Don't get hung up with trying to impress God with your prayer, just pour your heart out honestly to Him. That's the kind of prayer God loves.
Ok, but how do I hear back from Him? Well, sometimes He'll speak to your heart by way of the Holy Spirit, but mainly He speaks through His Word and as you get to know His Word better you'll find Him bringing it to your memory!!

Read The Word

Check out this advice from the Psalmist...

9How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your word.

10I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands.
11I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.
12Praise be to you, O LORD; teach me your decrees.
13With my lips I recount all the laws that come from your mouth.
14I rejoice in following your statutes as one rejoices in great riches.
15I meditate on your precepts and consider your ways.
16I delight in your decrees; I will not neglect your word.

Choose Your Mentors Carefully

1Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.

It's not that we don't care for the lost, we do! But if our closest friends, and mentors are pulling us down rather than us pulling them up, there's a huge problem. Sometimes, especially if you're a new believer, we have to pull away until we are strong enough to go back into that world without stumbling! It's not a bad idea, to have people praying for you when you do go back to reach some of your old buddies. And finally, get busy serving the Lord!! You'll be amazed how much meaning and purpose you'll find!!

Get Busy Serving!

It's the old adage, get busy doing the do's and you won't have time to the don'ts.
Paul wrote to another of his dear friends, Titus. Listen to what he told him. It talks about our Salvation, but also, our life!!!

11For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.
12It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,
13while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,
14who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.

Eager to do what is good! Why? Because we are grateful for what was done for us on the Old Rugged Cross!! Listen to our text...

1Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
2through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand.
And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.

Rejoice in the Hope of the Glory of God!!

When you realize you've been justified through the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross and you realize you are being sanctified through Jesus' death on the Cross, you begin to realize you have great reasons to rejoice and your hope is a blessed hope!!

Do we have a reason to rejoice? You better believe we do. And we don't have to wait 'till we get to heaven to start rejoicing!!

5If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection.
6For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin —
7because anyone who has died has been freed from sin.
8Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.
9For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him.
10The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.
11In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
12Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires.
13Do not offer the parts of your body to sin, as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life;
and offer the parts of your body to him as instruments of righteousness.
14For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace.

End of sermon