Romans 4:23
Now the words "it was credited to him" were written not only for Abraham,
A Crucial CaseJ. Oswald Dykes, D. D.Romans 4:1-25
Abraham Justified by Faith AloneR.M. Edgar Romans 4:1-25
Abraham, the Model of FaithR. Newton, D. D.Romans 4:1-25
Abraham's FaithJ. Browne, D. D.Romans 4:1-25
Abraham's FaithH. F. Adeney, M. A.Romans 4:1-25
Abraham's FaithC.h Irwin Romans 4:1-25
Believing GodChristian World PulpitRomans 4:1-25
Difficulties Overcome by FaithRomans 4:1-25
Folly of Self-RighteousnessC. H. Spurgeon.Romans 4:1-25
Lessons from the Case of AbrahamT. Chalmers, D. D.Romans 4:1-25
No Room for GloryingJ. Spencer.Romans 4:1-25
The Bible AloneR. W. Dibdin, M. A.Romans 4:1-25
The Christian OraclesF. Perry, M. A.Romans 4:1-25
The Faith of AbrahamT. Robinson, of Cambridge.Romans 4:1-25
The Faith of AbrahamProf. Jowett.Romans 4:1-25
The Nature of Faith as Illustrated in the Case of AbrahamBp. Lightfoot.Romans 4:1-25
What Saith the ScriptureBp. Williers.Romans 4:1-25
What Saith the ScriptureJ. W. Burn.Romans 4:1-25
The Gospel in GenesisS.r, Aldridge Romans 4:23, 24
Abraham's ExampleJ. Lyth, D. D.Romans 4:23-25
An Epitome of the GospelJ. Lyth, D. D.Romans 4:23-25
Christ Raised for Our JustificationBp. Basil Jones.Romans 4:23-25
Christ Risen Our JustificationE. B. Pusey, D. D.Romans 4:23-25
Christ's Deliverance and ResurrectionRomans 4:23-25
Christ's Imputed RighteousnessG. H. Salter.Romans 4:23-25
Christ's ResurrectionC. H. Spurgeon.Romans 4:23-25
Imputed RighteousnessG. H. Salter.Romans 4:23-25
Jesus Our LordRomans 4:23-25
Lessons of Faith from AbrahamJ. Lyth, D. D.Romans 4:23-25
Our Faith and RighteousnessT.F. Lockyer Romans 4:23-25
The Great SubstitutePreacher's MagazineRomans 4:23-25
The Resurrection the Saviour's RecompenseT. Griffith, A. M.Romans 4:23-25
The Scriptures Used by Every GenerationH. W. Beecher.Romans 4:23-25

Abraham's faith was virtually faith in the saving love of God; the special manifestation of that love to him was the raising up of a holy seed. Our faith is a faith in the ultimate Seed of Abraham which has been raised up as the supreme Manifestation of God's love.

I. OUR FAITH. Our faith and Abraham's are one in this - that they lay hold upon God, and God at work for us.

1. The one supreme Object of our faith. God! Whatever God may say to us, whatever he may do for us, the essential Object of our faith is himself. Yes, himself in all his saving love. And though in successive ages he may have revealed more and more of his purposes as men were able to bear it, yet he himself has been ever the same, the Object of man's trust. And though now his purposes and past actions may be variously conceived by men, and though indeed they may be more or less misconceived, yet if he himself, as the Good One, the saving God, be trusted, all is well. We "believe on him."

2. The special subject-matter of our faith. "That raised Jesus," etc. It was not revealed to Abraham how God would eventually work out salvation for mankind, but such salvation as he could grasp was promised - the raising up of a posterity which should possess the world. To us the full meaning of that promise has been made known.

(1) The "delivering up" of Jesus "for our trespasses." Man's sin the necessitating cause: "that he might be just," etc. (Romans 3:26). God's love the efficient cause: "so loved the world," etc. (John 3:16).

(2) The "raising" of Jesus "for our justification." The death did its work; man was justified (i.e. potentially). But if so, the justification of man through the death of Christ demanded his resurrection, just as the trespasses demanded his death. God raised him; our Lord of life for evermore. And it is this grandly operative love that claims our faith.


1. An objective righteousness, complete now by reason of our faith in the atoning work of Christ. What was potential for all men is actual to us, who have received it with humble hearts - even justification through Christ.

2. A subjective righteousness, pledged by the faith which trusts the living Lord. The faith itself the germ also of future righteousness, and therefore "reckoned" for what it will more and more perfectly bring forth. To us? Oh, simple condition - believe on him! - T.F.L.

Now it was not written for his sake alone.
Do you ever think, as you pass along the chapters of the Bible, that they are now like the king's highways; that more saints than tongue could count have walked along these pages toward heaven; that each verse has been a bosom like a mother's to some child in Christ; that each verse has had in it blessings for multitude of souls; that these passages of hope and joy have made melody for thrice ten million struggling souls; that these Scriptures are a sublime renewal of the miracle of the loaf which increases by using, and which feeds without diminution? These unwasting chapters have supplied armies and multitudes of faint and hungry saints, but there is not a particle gone. There is as much yet for the famishing soul as when first they were set forth. To the end the loaf shall be broken, and shall yield a liberal abundance for every human want; and to the end the undiminished whole shall remain a witness and a miracle of the Divine spiritual bounty.

(H. W. Beecher.)

I. The END of our faith — deliverance from sin.

II. The BASIS of our faith — God's promise — the death and resurrection of Christ.

III. The ENCOURAGEMENT of our faith — Abraham's example.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

As Abraham believed in life from the dead, so also we, because —

1. God gives us a pledge of it in the resurrection of Christ.

2. God promises to raise us from a death of sin to a life of righteousness.

3. Faith realises the resurrection power.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

It shall be imputed.
A man is denominated righteous as a wall may be esteemed red or green. Now that comes to pass two manners of ways — either by the colour inherent and belonging to the wall itself, or by the same colour in some diaphanous, transparent body, as glass, which, by the beam of the sun shining on the wall, doth externally affect the same as if it were its own, and covers that true inherent colour which it hath of itself. In like manner, by the strict covenant of the law, we ought to be righteous from a righteousness inherent in and performed by ourselves; but in the new covenant of grace we are righteous by the righteousness of Christ, which shineth upon us, and presenteth us in His colour unto the sight of His Father. Here, in both covenants, the righteousness from whence the denomination groweth is the same, namely, the satisfying of the demands of the whole law; but the manner of our right and property thereunto is much varied. In the one we have right unto it by law, because we have done it ourselves; in the other we have right unto it only by grace and favour, because another man's doing of it is bestowed upon us and accounted ours.

(G. H. Salter.)

We read in our chronicles that Edmund, surnamed Ironside and Canute, the first Danish king, after many encounters and equal fights, at length embraced a present agreement, which was made by parting England betwixt them two, and confirmed by oath and sacrament, putting on each other's apparel and arms, as a ceremony, to express the atonement of their minds, as if they had made transactions of their persons to each other; Canute became Edmund, and Edmund became Canute. Even such a change of apparel is betwixt Christ and His Church — Christ and every true repentant sinner; He taketh upon Him their sins, and putteth upon them His righteousness; He changeth their rags into robes; He arrays them with the righteousness of the saints; that two-fold righteousness, imputed and imparted; that of justification, and the other of sanctification; that is an undercoat, this is an upper; that clean and fair, this white and fair; and both from Himself, who is made unto them not only "wisdom, but righteousness, sanctification, and redemption."

(G. H. Salter.)

Jesus our Lord
1. It is the part of Faith to accept great contrasts, if laid down in the Word, and to make them a part of her daily speech. This name, "Lord," is a great contrast to incarnation and humiliation. In the manger, in poverty, shame, and death, Jesus was still Lord.

2. These strange conditions for "our Lord" to be found in are no difficulties to that faith which is the fruit of the Spirit. For she sees in the death of Jesus a choice reason for His being our Lord (Philippians 2:7-11). "Wherefore God hath highly exalted Him." She delights in that Lordship as the fruit of resurrection; but there could have been no resurrection without death (Acts 2:32-36). She hears the voice of Jehovah behind all the opposition endured by Jesus proclaiming Him Lord of all (Psalm 2; Psalm 110).

3. It never happens that our faith in Jesus for salvation makes us less reverently behold in Him the Lord of all. He is "Jesus" and also "our Lord." "Born a child, and yet a King." "My Beloved," and yet "My Lord and my God." Our simple trust in Him, our familiar love to Him, our hold approaches to Him in prayer, our near and dear communion with Him, and, most of all, our marriage union with Him, still leave him "our Lord."

I. HIS TENDER CONDESCENSIONS ENDEAR THE TITLE. "Jesus our Lord" is a very sweet name to a believer's heart.

1. We claim to render it to Him specially as man, "who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification" (ver. 25). As Jesus of Nazareth He is Lord.

2. We acknowledge Him as Lord the more fully and unreservedly because He loved us and gave Himself for us.

3. In all the privileges accorded to us in Him He is Lord.(1) In our salvation we have "received Christ Jesus the Lord" (Colossians 2:6).(2) In entering the Church we find Him the Head of the body, to whom all are subject (Ephesians 5:23).(3) In our life work He is Lord. "We live unto the Lord" (Romans 14:8). We glorify God in His name (Ephesians 5:20).(4) In resurrection He is the firstborn from the dead (Colossians 1:18).(5) At the Advent His appearing will be the chief glory (Titus 2:13).(6) In eternal glory He is worshipped forever (Revelation 5:12, 13).

4. In our dearest fellowship at the table He is "Jesus our Lord." It is the Lord's table, the Lord's supper, the cup of the Lord, the body and blood of our Lord; and our object is to show the Lord's death (1 Corinthians 11:20, 26, 27, 29).


1. We yield it to Him only. Moses is a servant, but Jesus alone is Lord. "One is your Master" (Matthew 23:8, 10).

2. To Him most willingly. Ours is delighted homage.

3. To Him unreservedly. We wish our obedience to be perfect.

4. To Him in all matter of law making and truth teaching. He is Master and Lord; His word decides practice and doctrine.

5. To Him in all matters of administration in the Church and in providence. "It is the Lord, let Him do what seemeth Him good" (1 Samuel 3:18).

6. To Him trustfully, feeling that He will act a Lord's part right well. No king can be so wise, good, great as He (Job 1:21).

7. To Him forever. He reigns in the Church without successor. Now, as in the first days, we call Him Master and Lord (Hebrews 7:3).


1. It makes us remember our personal interest in our Lord. Each believer uses this title in the singular, and calls Him from his heart, "My Lord." David wrote, "Jehovah said unto my Lord." Elisabeth spoke of "The mother of my Lord." Magdalene said, "They have taken away my Lord." Thomas said, "My Lord and my God." Paul wrote, "The knowledge of Jesus Christ my Lord," etc.

2. It brings a host of brethren before our minds, for it is in union with them that we say "our Lord," and so it makes us remember each other (Ephesians 3:14, 15).

3. It fosters unity and creates a holy clanship as we all rally around our "one Lord." Saints of all ages are one in this.

4. His example as Lord fosters practical love. Remember the foot washing and His words on that occasion (John 13:14).

5. Our zeal to make Him Lord forbids all self-exaltation. "Be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ. Neither be ye called masters," etc. (Matthew 23:8, 10).

6. His position as Lord reminds us of the confidence of the Church in doing His work. "All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth. Go ye, therefore, and teach," etc. (Matthew 28:18, 19). "The Lord working with them" (Mark 16:20).

7. Our common joy in Jesus as our Lord becomes an evidence of grace, and thus of union with each other (1 Corinthians 12:3). Conclusion:

1. Let us worship Jesus as our Lord and God.

2. Let us imitate Him, copying our Lord's humility and love.

3. Let us serve Him, obeying His every command.

(C. H. Spurgeon.)

Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.
I. CHRIST WAS DELIVERED, etc. — the person — delivered — unto death — for our offences — by the determinate counsel of God.

II. CHRIST WAS RAISED, etc. — the fact — the design — because a demonstration of Divine power and grace, and a guarantee to faith.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

Preacher's Magazine.
During the Reign of Terror in trance, when many persons every day were being executed by the guillotine, a young man was led to the foot of the scaffold among others to die. His father stood by him, and when the son's name was called the father stepped forward, ascended the scaffold, and died in his place. Here Christ is said to have died for us. Let us look at —

I. THE CAUSE of Christ's death.

1. "Offences." Sins. Transgressions. Sin is not a trifle to be forgotten. It is seed that bears terrible fruit. Someone is injured by every sin we commit. Sin harms ourselves and offends God.

2. "Our offences." Christ Himself was without sin, but our sin was laid upon Him (Isaiah 23:6). Our sins are not one, but many. (Romans 5:16).


1. "He was delivered," that is, handed over like a criminal to the executioner. "Between two thieves."

2. It was voluntary.

3. Preceded by great sufferings.

4. Painful beyond expression.

III. THE VIRTUE of it. It was a sufficient atonement. Christ did not fail in redeeming us. He was "raised again for our justification."

IV. THE CLAIMS of it. Such love claims our love and service.

(Preacher's Magazine.)


1. Whom was He delivered by?

(1)God (Acts 2:23).


2. What to?

(1)To shame (Isaiah 53:3).

(2)To pain (Isaiah 53:4-5).

(3)To death (Galatians 3:13).

3. What for? "Our offences."(1) All men are guilty (Psalm 14:3; Galatians 3:22).(2) This guilt cannot be taken away but by satisfying God's justice (Hebrews 9:22).(3) No creature can satisfy it (Psalm 49:7, 8).(4) Hence Christ undertook it (1 Timothy 2:5).(5) Neither could He do it but by suffering (Hebrews 9:22; Matthew 15:28; 1 Timothy 2:6).(6) No suffering would serve the turn but death, and that on the Cross.(7) By His death He hath satisfied for our offences (1 John 2:2; Romans 3:25: Revelation 1:5).(8) Hence our sins came to be pardoned; and so, He being delivered for us, we are delivered from our offences —

(a)As to their guilt (Matthew 1:21).

(b)As to their strength (Acts 3:26).


1. How raised again? From death by God (Acts 2:23, 24; Matthew 28:13-15; Luke 24:4-6).

(1)He was a real man.

(2)He really died (Matthew 27:50).

(3)He really rose again (Luke 24:37-40; John 20:27).

2. What is justification? A forensic term opposed to accusation (chap. Romans 8:33).

(1)Man hath sinned (Romans 3:23).

(2)This he is accused for by —

(a)God's justice.

(b)The law.


(d)Conscience (Romans 2:15; 1 John 3:20).(3) Christ hath borne our punishment (Isaiah 53:6).

(4)He hath also performed obedience for us.

(5)This His righteousness is imputed to us (2 Corinthians 5:21).

(6)By this we are cleared from the charge brought against us.

(7)This is my justification.

3. In what sense did Christ rise for our justification, or what dependence hath our justification on Christ's resurrection?

(1)Christ undertook to satisfy God's justice for us.

(2)This He could not do but by suffering death.

(3)So long as dead, He had not done this (1 Corinthians 15:14).

(4)His rising again argued death conquered, and justice satisfied (Acts 2:24).

4. Therefore being risen He cleanses us from our sins and so justifies us.Conclusion:

1. Was Christ delivered? Then —

(1)Admire the mercy of God in delivering His Son for us.

(2)Be mindful of Him.

2. Is Christ risen? Then —

(1)We shall rise (1 Corinthians 15:12).

(2)Let us mind the things where He is (Colossians 3:1).

3. Did He rise for our justification? Then believe on Him that you may be justified (Romans 5:1).

(1)In the merits of His death.

(2)The truth of His resurrection.

(3)The constancy of His intercession.

(Bp. Beveridge.)

The resurrection of our Lord is but one of that series of acts by which the Son of God is fulfilling the commission which He received from the Father to bring back to Him lost creation. We must never so fix our attention on the details of the work of Christ as to lose sight of its wholeness. It was not the first appearance of the Son of God as man which began that work; it was not His disappearance from mortal sight which completed it. Nor is it any one specific link of Christ's appearance in the flesh on which the salvation of the world exclusively hangs; but on all of them taken together, inserted into, and mutually dependent on each other, as visible parts of that far greater invisible whole. And, accordingly, St. Paul makes mention of the resurrection of Jesus as consequent upon (not in order of time merely, but of relation) the death of Jesus; and this death, again, as consequent upon (in similar order of relation, and of cause and effect) the offences of mankind: "For" means on account of, as the result of, our offences, Christ was delivered by the Father to an expiatory death; and on account of, as the result of, our justification, that expiation having been thereby effected, Christ was raised again to everlasting life. Here, then, we see the resurrection of Jesus, connected not merely in the sequence of time, but in the consequence of cause and effect, with the expiatory death of Jesus. Wherein does the connection consist? I answer, the resurrection was vouchsafed by God to Jesus —

I. AS THE REWARD OF THAT JUSTIFYING DEATH. This is a doctrine which St. Paul exhibits more clearly than by the single particle of our text in Philippians 2:9 (see also Psalm 45:7; Psalm 91:14; Isaiah 53:11, 12; Hebrews 12:21). And here we have an instance of God's general principle of conduct towards His people. He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. Them that honour Him He will honour. "God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love which ye have showed towards His name." "Be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life." And we must not let the thought lie idle in our minds; we must live upon it by an appropriating faith. Faith in the absolute certainty and constant exercise of God's moral and retributive government, gives life and spirit to our energies, and patient perseverance to our struggles.

II. AS THE PUBLIC TESTIMONY FROM GOD OF ITS EFFICACY AND ACCEPTANCE. Jesus had undertaken a mighty work — no less than the taking away the sin of the world; and the assurance of the full sufficiency and complete acceptance of His sacrifice is essential to our faith, and peace, and holiness. As, therefore, God vouchsafed to testify His acceptance of preceding offerings, so, by raising up His Son, did He testify that the justifying act was done and was sufficient, that access to His presence was procured for every penitent, that we may now have boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus. When Abraham offered sacrifice God vouchsafed to give him visible testimony of its acceptance (Genesis 15:17, 18). When Moses and the Israelites offered burnt offerings to the Lord then "they saw the God of Israel — they saw God and did eat and drink." When Elijah had prepared the burnt sacrifice then "the fire of the Lord fell and consumed the burnt sacrifice," etc. And so, too, after the sacrifice of Jesus was offered, then came there the sign from heaven; then was there the public proclamation — now, by facts, of what had been already told in words — "This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased!" "Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee!" Oh, let the anxious penitent, who feels that on his justification through the merits of Christ must ever hang all his peace and hope, look with thankful adoration to the testimony given thereto. "He was raised again for" — for having wrought out and completed — "our justification"; and that raising again is the public manifesto from the court of heaven that the act is registered and recognised before the throne of God. Does anyone urge that his particular justification could not have been accomplished before his repentance and faith? Then observe that our personal faith is not the antecedent to our justification, but simply the recipient of that which has been wrought out for us by Jesus only, on the Cross. It is the benefits of justification to the individual penitent that depends upon his laying hold of that free gift which has been prepared for him. What he needs is simply warrant to return to God; and, therefore, when he is turning, what more is requisite for him to do but to lift the eye of faith, and see that the path is open, that the barriers between him and his God have been long ago removed; that the new and living way has been consecrated through the veil; that is to say, Christ's flesh; and, therefore, that he has only to draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith? Your state of justification, your feelings of acceptance and adoption, depend, indeed, on having in your bosom the scroll of pardon, sealed with Jesus's blood; and your continuance in the enjoyment of that state depends on your frequent looking at it, and your watchful preservation of it: but the act of justification — it has been already achieved; the pardon itself — it has already passed the great seal; the scroll in which it is recorded — it has been already exhibited on the Cross of Jesus; and you cannot write, nor seal, nor countersign it. Look up then upon the record and leap for joy; behold the public testimony of it, and "bless the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who of His abundant mercy hath begotten you again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead."

III. AS THE PLEDGE THAT ALL WHO REALISE IN THEMSELVES THE EFFICACY OF THAT DEATH SHALL BE SIMILARLY REWARDED WITH PARTICIPATION IN THAT RESURRECTION. Jesus died, not as an individual only, but as the substitute and representative of guilty man; and Jesus was raised again, not as an individual only, but as the head and' representative of pardoned men; and consequently as we realise the efficacy of His death, so does the fact which Easter commemorates assure us that we shall realise the glory of His resurrection (Romans 6:5-10).

(T. Griffith, A. M.)

Justification (in the full sense of the word) is the holding righteous, not merely the not holding guilty. The man who is justified is not merely not condemned, he is actually accounted to be righteous. And the apostle, in the text, connects the former with the death, the latter with the resurrection, of Christ. By that, the record of our sins is blotted out from God's book; by this, there is conveyed to us our title to a place in His eternal and glorious kingdom. Why is our justification thus associated with the Resurrection, as our forgiveness is with the Passion? In answer, remember that there are three moments in the act of redemption as manifested in time, and that these are severally embodied in the nativity, the passion, and the resurrection of Christ. Now —

1. Man is alienated from God, and the question is how shall he be set at one with God? The method which God devised was the personal union of Deity and humanity in the Word made flesh. And thus the mystery of the Incarnation marks the first step in this Divine process of restitution.

2. But the union of the human race with God in the unity of the Incarnate Son, is merely inchoate and partial, while there remains the barrier of sin. And therefore, "God sending His own Son in the flesh, and for sin" (i.e., as a sin offering), "condemned sin in the flesh." Christ died for us, and we in Him; and at His death "our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin." And thus the Incarnation and the Atonement are each the necessary complement of the other. The Incarnation was necessary that the Atonement might be effected as it was effected: the Atonement was necessary to carry out the work of the Incarnation.

3. But are we at liberty to stop here? Shall we say that the Consummatum est of Calvary marked the completion and close of our redemption, as it symbolised that of our Redeemer's atoning sacrifice? Not so. By His act of self-immolation Christ threw down the barriers of sin; by it He continually is and will be throwing them down until all things are put under His feet. And therefore He "was delivered for our offences." But the very act by which those barriers were thrown down impaired the personal union of God and man in Christ. For, although neither the soul nor the body of the Saviour during their temporary separation ceased to be in union with the Divine Word, yet, as Pearson says, "As humanity consists in the essential union of the parts of human nature, so far the humanity of Christ upon His death did cease to be, and consequently He ceased to be man." Accordingly, the great sacrifice of the Cross removed the obstacle to carrying out the process of restitution initiated in the Incarnation, at the price of partially reversing the Incarnation itself. The work of redemption had indeed gone a step forward, but it had also gone a step backward. A remedy had been provided for sin, but the remedy had left results which needed a further remedy.

4. And then came the Resurrection, which not only set its seal to the Incarnation and the Atonement, but completed the work of both.(1) Jesus was "declared to be the Son of God with power," and the Incarnation itself began anew when God "raised up Jesus again"; as it is written, "Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee."(2) As the atonement on the Cross, by the condemnation of sin in the flesh, purchased for man the non-imputation of sin, and cleared the way for the imputation to him of righteousness — so, from the Incarnation restored and perfected in our risen Lord, flows forth to His redeemed and believing people, both the imputation and also the reality of positive righteousness. Conclusion: In speaking as I do of the power of His resurrection, I am not merely using the language of technical theology, but that of Holy Scripture itself. We are told that baptized and believing Christians were crucified with Christ, died with Him, were planted together in the likeness of His death, were buried with Him by baptism into death, are dead unto sin — and then, on the Other hand, that God brought us to life with Christ, and raised us up with Him, and seated us together with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that we may now reckon ourselves "to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord." So again, the same apostle who tells us all this, also says, "that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified" — the word is here used in its negative sense — "by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life." And in like manner St. Peter tells us that "Baptism doth now save the resurrection of Jesus Christ," and opens his Epistle with a triumphant burst of thanksgiving (1 Peter 1:3, 4).

(Bp. Basil Jones.)


1. That death paid the ransom for the whole world, but the world lay as yet in darkness and sin. In that awful night, when the first fruits of our redemption, the pardoned malefactor, was by Christ's side in Paradise, and He brought that blessed tidings to the righteous departed who had so long awaited His coming, how lay our earth? Apostles dismayed and perplexed; Peter weeping his fall; the blood of the Redeemer resting on the Jews and their children; the chief priests seeking to secure the past by further sin; the sun gone down at noon, with. drawing itself from witnessing man's extremest sin. The mercy of the Redemption had been accomplished, but the ransomed were not as yet set free. They were "yet in their sins." For this blessed day it was reserved to bring life out of death, to "bring out the prisoners from the prison," and "let the oppressed go free," "to bring in everlasting righteousness." His death atoned for us; His resurrection justifies us.

2. What St. Paul declares here, he teaches elsewhere (1 Corinthians 15:17). He says not merely if Christ be not risen no proof hath been given that His atonement hath been accepted, but "your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins"; the world's sin has been atoned for, but the cleansing blood has not reached to you. The Cross, then, did not at once justify us. Before, all in a manner looked on to it (Revelation 13:8). Since all looks back to it, all flows from it (Revelation 5:12). Yet such was the will of God, that it should not by itself directly convey the mercies it obtained. What He purchased for us by His death He giveth us through His life. It is our living Lord who imparts to us the fruits of His own death (John 10:17; Revelation 1:18). As truly, then, as the death of Christ was the true remission of our sins, though not yet imparted to us, so truly was His resurrection our true justification imparting to us the efficacy of His death, and justifying us, or making us righteous in the sight of God.


1. It was the especial promise of the resurrection that our Lord would thereby come into a closer relation with "His disciples, no longer to be in outward presence with them, but to be in them and be their life" (John 14:17-23).

2. And with this agrees the language in which the blessings of the gospel are, in such a marked and repeated way, afterwards expressed, that we are in Christ Jesus, and that His Spirit dwelleth in us. But we can be "in Christ" only by His taking us into Him by His Spirit (2 Corinthians 13:5). Again, as our Lord declared, "I am the Life," so St. Paul says, having been "crucified with Christ," "it is not I which live, but Christ liveth in me," "your life is hid with Christ in God."

3. These are indeed all one gift, variously spoken of according to our various needs, or deaths. It is life, as opposed to our state of death in sin; righteousness, whereas we were unrighteous; sanctification, since we were unholy; redemption, as Satan's captives; wisdom, as become brutish; truth, as in error; but the one gift in all is our Incarnate Lord, who is Himself "made unto us Wisdom, and Righteousness, and Sanctification, and Redemption"; "the Way, the Truth, and the Life." He doth not merely give these gifts as gifts, precious indeed, yet still outward to and without Himself. He Himself is them, and all to us. These are the gifts which, as man, He received, to shed down abundantly on man, through His risen and glorified humanity.

4. So, further, St. Paul speaks of the knowledge of Christ, and of "the power of His resurrection," as the fruit of being "found in Him," and of "the Spirit of Him who raised up Jesus from the dead dwelling in" us, and of "the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe" being "according" or conformable "to the working of the might of His power which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead"; in all cases bringing our life close to the resurrection, and showing how the same Spirit, whereby His body was raised, is communicated to us, and that, because we are in Him, taken unto Him by His indwelling Spirit, and having the Spirit, because "in Him." This, then, is the sum of what Holy Scripture teaches many ways. All salvation, forgiveness, overcoming of death, restoration to life, oneness with God; all treasures of wisdom, mercy, and righteousness, and holiness lay in His atoning blood; but, that they might be applied to us, He in whom they were must come to us and take Us unto Himself. What in Himself He is, that to us He becometh, by dwelling in us, that we may dwell in Him. And of these gifts His resurrection was the pledge and beginning. It was the earnest that that same Spirit, through which His holy body was raised, should be diffused through that whole body which He purposed to join to Himself, the Head. It was the commencement of that, of which the day of Pentecost was the fulfilment; and thus our weekly festival is at once that of the rising of our Lord, and His coming to us by the Spirit. On the Cross our Lord gave Himself for us; through the resurrection He giveth Himself to us. On the Cross, He was the Lamb which was slain for the sins of the world: in the resurrection, that body which was slain became life giving.

(E. B. Pusey, D. D.)

On the Sacro Monte, at Varallo, is a supposed imitation of the sepulchre of the Lord Jesus. It was a singular thing to stoop down and enter it, of course finding it empty, like the one which it feebly pictured. What a joyful word was that of the angel, "He is not here!" Sweet assurance — millions of the dead are here in the sepulchre, thousands of saints are here in the grave, but He is not here. If He had remained there, then all manhood had been forever imprisoned in the tomb, but He who died for His Church, and was shut up as her hostage, has risen as her representative, surety, and head, and all His saints have risen in Him, and shall eventually rise like Him.

(C. H. Spurgeon.).

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