23 Feb How the Gospel First Changed Me
“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” – Romans 5:1
Growing up in a Christian home with a Pastor as a Father, I was acquainted with Christianity, the Scriptures, and what I thought was the Gospel. I lived my life nominally believing that Christ’s work had any real impact on my life—until my fall semester of my junior year of high school. I was taking an independent English study course and wound up finishing a majority of my work halfway through the semester. In search of something to get me occupied, I brought my Bible to school.
Now, throughout all of my years, I had never read the Bible on my own; it was preached to me, it was read to me, it was sung to me, but never had I read it. I began to read the four Gospels over the course of the week and gradually worked my way through the New Testament as the semester progressed. What I gained from that endeavor was not merely new information but revelation about the work of Christ on my behalf. For the first time, I was able, through the Spirit, to taste and see the goodness of the Gospel.
The book of Romans brought a lot of comfort to my soul as I sought to navigate my new life in Christ. Returning again to Romans 5, I found my heart refreshed in the truth of the Gospel, that through faith in Christ, I have actually been justified in his sight. Every time I opened that sacred book, I was led again to the cross of Calvary, whereby my Savior was pierced for me and resurrected for me. I was led to proclaim with the hymnist:
“Nothing can for sin atone:
nothing but the blood of Jesus.
Naught of good that I have done:
nothing but the blood of Jesus.”
Brothers and sisters, would you join me in gazing at the finished work of Christ, to see God’s love and care for you in the Gospel? Would you passionately and fervently run after the Scriptures to see what your Savior has done for you? Would you with all exuberance and joy, sing aloud with Charles Wesley:
“Long my imprisoned spirit lay
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quick’ning ray,
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free;
I rose, went forth and followed Thee.
No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him is mine!
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.”