• Counting Sin in Adam Devotional

    Romans 5:13-14

    Imputation of sin reveals the principle of federalism, which we will discuss more over the next few days. Today we note that we do not come into the world in a state of moral neutrality. We are not born innocent, but we are already deserving of death. Since the fall, the naturally-conceived-and-born sons and daughters of Adam are legally guilty of sin and subject to its consequences. If this were not so—if we were legally neutral before God—we would not need a Savior. View Resource

  • Sin Enters the World Devotional

    Romans 5:12

    The fact that death entered the world at a point in history shows that death is not part of the natural order of things as God originally made them. We were not created to die; rather, death is an invader. One of the reasons that death causes so much grief is because we know it is not supposed to be this way. As we preach the gospel, we can connect with people’s awareness that things have gone wrong (as proven by death) and point them to the One who makes things right—Christ. View Resource

  • The Nature of Man Devotional

    Genesis 1:26–28

    Our understanding of the fall has inevitable consequences for our view of what human beings are, how wonderful God made us originally, how important it is that we preach the gospel so that sinners can recover the high dignity that has been marred, and so on. But to have a right understanding of sin and the fall, we must have a deep understanding of God’s holiness. Only in contrast to His holiness can we see the depth of sin and thus how glorious the Lord made us to be. View Resource

  • The Mouths of Sinners Devotional

    Romans 3:12–14

    The degradation of a culture is clearly seen in the kind of language it tolerates about other people and even about God Himself. We are living in a society that is increasingly vulgar and whose corruption threatens even those who have been called out of darkness into the Lord’s marvelous light. If we follow Christ, we must be careful with our speech. If we show no desire to edify others and honor God with our lips, we may still be in Adam and not in Christ. View Resource

  • What Jews and Gentiles Share Devotional

    Romans 3:9

    To be under sin is to have sin as one’s master and to suffer under the verdict of guilt before the bar of God’s justice. Christians have Christ as their master and have been pronounced righteous in Him, so we are not “under sin” in the same way that a non-Christian is. However, sin’s influence does remain until we see the Lord face-to-face, and we should never underestimate it. Through daily repentance we can mortify this sin by the Holy Spirit and become more like our Savior. View Resource

  • That Good May Come Devotional

    Romans 3:8

    Telling people that they have not done and cannot do enough to merit the kingdom of God provokes all sorts of hostile reactions. Some question the Lord’s justice. Others accuse the preacher of telling people they should sin with abandon. We cannot prevent people from misunderstanding the gospel. We can strive for gospel clarity to help mitigate this, but what we can never do is change the gospel and remove its offense. View Resource

  • Blaspheming God’s Name Devotional

    Romans 2:24

    The Bible is clear that until we are glorified, we will always fail at some level to practice what we preach. Non-Christians will take advantage of this and always use our failures as cause to blaspheme the Lord, and there is not much we can do about it. However, if we are open about our failures and are careful to never promise sinlessness in this life, we can render their criticisms wholly illegitimate. Christians are not free of hypocrisy, but we should be free of impenitent hypocrisy. View Resource

  • Presuming upon God’s Kindness Devotional

    Romans 2:3–5

    Martin Luther comments on today’s passage that “so great is the blindness of the sinner that he abuses to his own harm the things that have been given to him for his own benefit.” Though Paul has the Jews in mind primarily in Romans 2:3–5, we are all, without a doubt, inclined to misinterpret divine patience as laxity in regard to sin. We must not think that God will give us forever to trust in His promises. There comes a day for us all when we will meet our Maker. Are you ready? View Resource

  • Without Excuse Devotional

    Romans 2:1–2

    Regardless of whether we are Jews by birth, we can all recognize the truth of Paul’s words from our own experience. If we are honest, we see how often we judge others for the very same sins that we practice ourselves. The solution is not to stop judging altogether, but to see that our own judgment means that we cannot be excused for our sin before God. Thus, we must run to the gospel and be careful to apply to ourselves the same standards by which we judge others. View Resource

  • The Primal Sin of Humanity Devotional

    Romans 1:19–21

    Douglas J. Moo writes in his commentary on Romans, “At the very center of every person, where the knowledge of God, if it is to have any positive effects, must be embraced, there has settled a darkness—a darkness that only the light of the gospel can penetrate.” The most compelling case for Christ cannot penetrate a darkened mind unless the Holy Spirit impresses the gospel on the heart. Let us ask Him to do that for all our unbelieving friends and family members. View Resource

  • Purging Iniquity Devotional

    Zechariah 5

    Ultimately, the impenitent are confirmed in sin forever—they continue to experience its degrading and destructive effects in hell and feel the fury of God’s wrath. We should not think that the sinners in hell want to be anywhere else. They love their sin and continue to sin in that place, and given the choice between wrath and life in the presence of the Lord’s holiness, they make the perverse choice to experience God’s wrath rather than His love, so deep is their hatred of Him. View Resource

  • Grace for God’s Adulterous Bride Devotional

    Ezekiel 16:15–63

    Many people think that God’s answer to sin is to keep people from committing it. On the contrary, His answer is often to give people over to it. When Israel wanted to commit spiritual adultery with other gods, God gave them over to those gods, as today’s passage indicates. His purpose, however, was restorative. He handed them over to their sin that they might learn the error of their ways. The Lord may do the same for us, but would it not be better to avoid such pain by obeying Him? View Resource

  • God Charges Edom Devotional

    Obadiah 10–14

    God’s law covers every aspect of life, telling us that we sin both in breaking God’s commands willfully and in showing apathy when we see that there is something good and holy to be done. In ourselves, we cannot hope to meet this high standard of serving the Lord unwaveringly—and so we trust in Christ and His righteousness alone for our justification. But having trusted Christ, He empowers us by His Spirit to do His will. What good must you do this day in order to obey our Creator? View Resource

  • Adam and Israel Devotional

    Hosea 6:6–7

    John Calvin comments on today’s passage: “God desires to be worshipped otherwise than sensual men [people who serve the flesh, not the Spirit] dream; they only display their rites, and neglect the spiritual worship of God, which stands in faith and love.” It is easy for us to criticize the false worship of other religions but much harder for us to recognize where our praise has degenerated into mere formalism. Let us regularly examine our worship to make sure it is in spirit and truth. View Resource

  • Anger, Sin, and the Devil Devotional

    Ephesians 4:26-27

    If sinful anger can give the Devil a foothold in our churches and in our relationships with friends and family, then defusing anger is an essential part of spiritual warfare. Insofar as it depends on us, we must strive to make peace with those who are angry with us. We must also be discerning about our anger — to make sure it is justified and not sinful. As we do these things, we strike back against the wiles of Satan. View Resource