SDA Sabbath School Lessons
Wednesday September 18, 1996

What did Christ's death and resurrection accomplish?
(Rom. 5:17)

Just as we were not in Adam when he sinned, so we were not in Christ when He died. Christ died for us. His death was on our behalf. We did not die when Christ died; we die to sin when we accept His suffering and death as the punishment for our sins.

What results of the cross are available to every human being?

It is when, in response to the conviction of the Holy Spirit, we return "to the Shepherd and Guardian" of our souls (1 Peter 2:25, RSV) that we "die to sin and live to righteousness" (verse 24, RSV). The cross is absolutely central to our salvation, but we must accept Christ now to experience the salvation made possible then. Romans 5:18 must be considered in relation to verse 17. Christ's death makes "acquittal and life" available for all (verse 18, RSV). But only "those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness" will "reign in life through one man Jesus Christ" (verse 17, RSV).

"It is peace that you need--Heaven's forgiveness and peace and love in the soul. ... It is yours if you will but reach out your hand and grasp it. ...

"In like manner you are a sinner. You cannot atone for your past sins, you cannot change your heart, and make yourself holy. But God promises to do all this for you through Christ. You believe that promise. You confess your sins, and give yourself to God. You will to serve Him. Just as surely as you do this, God will fulfill His word to you. If you believe the promise--believe that you are forgiven and cleansed--God supplies the fact; you are made whole, just as Christ gave the paralytic power to walk when the man believed that he was healed. It is so if you believe it."--Steps to Christ, pp. 49-51. "If through faith man becomes one with Christ, he can win life everlasting."--Selected Messages, book 1, p. 300.

When does Christ bestow everlasting life? John 3:36; 5:24; 1 John 5:11-13. When does He bestow immortality? 1 Cor. 15:51- 54.

What does acceptance of the gift of eternal life do for your sense of security?