The Cross – The Work of Jesus Christ
The Atonement PART 6 – The Results and Benefits of the Atonement
And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those
who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. NASB
The Results and Benefits of the Atonement
The Atonement is the ground of God’s blessing upon us and the very fountain from which flows all of the riches of His grace toward us. Here we are saying that the atonement is the wellspring of all benefit and blessing of God toward mankind. It is because of Christ’s atoning work that God can even look upon the world and mankind, with all of its sin and rebellion against Him, and sustain their life until such time as He puts everything in its proper place and order.
Romans 2:4-6 – 4 Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? 5 But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, 7 who will render to every man according to his deeds: NASB
The atonement is the ground of common grace. Common grace is that grace or favor that God dispenses to unbelieving sinners who do not come to faith in Christ and be saved. In this common grace, God bears patiently with sin until such time that He brings it to justice at the final judgment. In other words, God did not immediately bring judgment upon man when Adam and Eve sinned by destroying them, but instead patiently waited through the ages as He brought about His eternal purpose in Christ. Even now, He is still fulfilling His plan of redemption and bearing patiently with sin and sinners until such time that His purposes are completed. At that time He will bring sin to its final justice and it will be eradicated from His Kingdom and His people forever. Therefore because God is fulfilling His eternal purpose in Christ through the Atonement, He not only patiently bears with sin and sinners, but showers innumerable blessings upon them which they have neither deserved nor are they thankful for them.
Romans 1:20-21 – 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God, or give thanks; but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. NASB
God gives even to the wicked and unbelieving all that they need to sustain their lives, giving them food and shelter, sunshine and rain, even their very life and breath.
Matthew 5:44-45 – 44 "But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you 45 in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. NASB
Not only this but God gives them knowledge of Himself (Rom 1:21), help in restraining evil through conscience (Rom 2:15), and government (Rom 13:6), and also warnings against sin and all of its destruction and death (Rom 6:23). In fact, because God is providentially governing the history of the world, every blessing that the unbeliever receives in this life comes ultimately from an unmerited favor that God gives including life and breath and existence.
Acts 17:24-28 – 24 "The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; 25 neither is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all life and breath and all things; 26 and He made from one, every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times, and the boundaries of their habitation, 27 that they should seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; 28 for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, 'For we also are His offspring.' NASB
In contrast to common grace, the believer in Christ receives eternal blessing from God which is infinite and inexhaustible. In Christ, believers are showered with all of the blessings of God, and He now views them only with favor. In this He has made countless promises for provision and care, love and blessing.
2 Corinthians 1:20 – 20 For as many as may be the promises of God, in Him they are yes; wherefore also by Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us. NASB
The Scripture plainly declares that God will “cause all things to work together,” including every single thing whether good or bad, “for good” to those who love Him.
Romans 8:28 – 28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. NASB
In fact, God will in Christ, spend the endless ages showing believers the “surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward” them.
Ephesians 2:7 – 7 in order that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. NASB
This is because we have been fully reconciled to God in Christ and now rest in His favor and presence to bless. In this favor God is said to “freely give us all things!”
Romans 8:32 – 32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? NASB
The sufficiency of this blessing of God toward believers is complete so that He promises to meet all of our needs in this life.
Philippians 4:19-20 – 19 And my God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus. 20 Now to our God and Father be the glory forever and ever. Amen. NASB
2 Peter 1:2-3 – 2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; 3 seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. NASB
2 Corinthians 9:8 – 8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed; NASB
The believer is rich in every way! We, having been made heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, possess all things so that we could not be richer! We have become very children of God!
2 Corinthians 8:9 – 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sake He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich. NASB
Romans 8:16-17 – 16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him. NASB
1 Corinthians 3:21-23 – 21 So then let no one boast in men. For all things belong to you, 22 whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas or the world or life or death or things present or things to come; all things belong to you, 23 and you belong to Christ; and Christ belongs to God. NASB
This blessing and favor of God is so exceedingly great that Paul prays that God would open the eyes of the believer to see and understand just how marvelous it is!
Ephesians 1:18-19 – 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, 19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might NASB
Not only temporal benefits come to us through Christ, but also all of the heavenly benefits of God’s character and virtue are ours through the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit.
Galatians 5:22-23 – 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. NASB
Of course in all of these blessings of God the greatest is that of God Himself. We now have, because of the Atonement, received God Himself as our “exceeding great reward,” and have fellowship with the Father and the Son.
1 John 1:3 – 3 what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, that you also may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ. NASB
This means that we have come into an intimate knowledge of Christ Himself, so that we can experience all of the blessing of His power and presence through our relation to Him.
Colossians 2:2-3 – that their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God's mystery, that is, Christ Himself, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. NASB
The number of passages in the Bible describing the benefits of coming to know God, are simply staggering. Let us offer to God a heart of thanksgiving and a mouth filled with praise for all of the good things He has done for us in Christ! Let us rejoice in all of His goodness toward us and acknowledge His amazing love with lives that honor and worship Him!
This teaching is a part of a 12 month series called "The Savior, The Cross, and The Gospel" ….
See the Outline here….. http://www.abqhcf.com/handouts/2008/shaanSS/SCG_37-38.pdf
This teaching can be heard on audio here:
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The Lord is the Strength of My Life