Daily Reading: Romans 5:1-21
“The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more…”Romans 5:20
Often when a pastor or teacher is giving a message he raises and lowers his voice for effect. If you’ve ever wondered if a preacher has done that to wake someone up, then let me answer that question – yes. Most often, however, this is not the case. The voice is raised for two reasons. First and foremost, the individual who is walking in the Spirit as they teach the Word will undoubtedly feel the Spirit of God prompting them to drive home a point. This is not to say that in order to drive home a point, an individual must get loud or raise their voice. There are several ways to emphasize points. As we read the book of Romans, you begin to see this same emphasis. As you read the end of verse 20, observe the crescendo in Paul’s voice… “grace abounded all the more”!
An incredible truth to emphasize indeed! Sin increased, not that the volume of sin increased, but the knowledge of sin increased. This, is the purpose of the law; that we might now what is sin. Paul’s point in this passage is the two-fold result of the law alongside that of grace; namely that as we have a knowledge of our sinfulness and recognize the grace of God by sending His Son Jesus. We might think of this another way. Total darkness is the absence of light. Darkness is not known until light is shone into it. Mankind lived in darkness, when the light came, darkness was exposed. Exposing darkness, however, was not the sole purpose of the light. What is greater, the light or the One who created the light that it might shine into the darkness?
Man’s initial response was to become obsessed with the law. This light of righteousness filled the vacuum of lawlessness that permeated culture. This light (the law of God) was so incredible, man attempted to worship the law of God, rather than the One who created it – who indeed is the true Light. What man saw in the law was a reflection of the true light. The true light of course, is Jesus! He is the very source of light. We can choose to look upon the reflected light – the law of God, or we can choose to look at the Light Himself. If you and I look upon that light which is reflected (that is the law of God), your deeds will be exposed, just as a beam of light reflects upon an object.
God never gave the law that man would worship the law, or dwell in sin. Our heavenly Father gave us the law that our deeds would be exposed. Then as we confess that sin, and accept freely the forgiveness of Jesus, we have tremendous reason to rejoice! You and I can exclaim as Paul did the tremendous glory of God’s grace. The crescendo of this chapter is the revealed purpose of the law – that we might glorify God for His infinite grace!