Romans 3:23 For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
To fully understand this verse, it’s important to know that there are two types of sin: actual sin and original sin. Actual sin refers to the typical wrongdoings you and I do today, sins we commit ourselves. Original sin, however goes all the way back to the fall of man (Genesis 3). Because of the first act of sin against God in the Garden of Eden, all humans are born into sin. Not one of us is worthy of God’s glory by our own power or strength.
Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Despite all our unworthiness, God chooses to love us. His ultimate demonstration of this is the death of his son Jesus on the cross. These verses refer to the redemption won for us in Christ as he died, conquered sin and the devil, and rose again to reign from heaven.
Romans 10:9-10 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
Once we recognize our sin and desperate need for a savior, the Holy Spirit stirs in us and faith is awakened. With belief established, faith moves us to confess Christ as Lord with our words, attitudes, and actions. As Paul writes in Ephesians, we are saved by grace through faith. Not by works, good vibes, or donating money. Grace alone through faith in God. True faith then leads to these actions done out of love of the Father, not obligation.
Romans 12:1-2 Therefore, I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God – this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing, and perfect will.
In Paul’s words to the Romans, we are urged to let God’s mercy change us through and through, to transform us completely. The world around us is turbulent and ever-changing, but God’s love for us is constant. If we follow what the world dictates, if we conform to the world, we will be lost, confused, and misguided. God calls us to love him fully with our whole hearts, and only this love can transform us like no other and truly satisfy our aching, sinful souls.
THE BRIDGE DIAGRAM