Grace Greater Than Our Sin

Bible Book: Romans  5 : 13-21
Subject: Grace; Salvation; Sin, Forgiveness of

As the result of Adam’s sin, the human race suffered a great loss. As the result of Christ’s obedience, man by faith can experience God’s grace. Paul showed the contrast between Adam and Christ in these verses. This difference is as light from darkness. At physical birth, every person has a sinful nature that he received from Adam. When people experience a spiritual birth in Christ, they become “partakers of the diving nature.” (2 Peter 1:4) This is what Jesus meant when He said “ye must be born again.”

I. The Contrast

A. Offense of Adam

1. Resulted in the sinfulness of all

(v. 12) “for all have sinned”

2. Resulted in the condemnation of all.  (v. 16, 18)

3. Resulted in the death of all. (v. 12, 17) “death reigned by one”

B. Obedience of Christ

The obedience of Christ brought showers of blessings upon those who believe in Him. Four blessings are stated in our text.

1. Gift of grace

(Rom. 5:17, 20; 8:32; 2 Cor. 12:9; 1 Tim. 1:14; 2 Pet. 1:3)

The Bible describes God’s grace as: all-abundant, all-abounding, all-sufficient. The Bible declares the riches of God’s grace: “He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32) God in His grace gives the believer “all things that pertain unto life and godliness.” (2 Pet 1:3)

2. Gift of justification. (v. 16, 18)

Justification stems from the grace of God.  The only reason we can be justified is based upon the blood Jesus shed for our sins on the cross. By faith in Jesus, the sinner is acquitted of his sin and is declared righteous by God.

3. Gift of righteousness. (v. 17, 19)

God made Jesus, “who knew no sin, to be sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Cor. 5:21)

“But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.” (1 Cor. 1:30)

Man in his sinful condition is unrighteous. When the sinner trusts Jesus as his Savior, his unrighteousness is exchanged for the righteousness of Christ. God sees the Christian as in Christ. Therefore, He sees the righteousness of His Son.

4. Gift of eternal life. (v. 21)

Eternal life is God’s gift that He gives to those in Christ.

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord.” (Rom. 6:23)

“And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” John 10:28

II. The Conclusion

A. Reason for the Law of God (v. 20)

The law reveals the wickedness of sin. The law gives us the knowledge of sin. The law causes the sinner to feel the guilt of his sin. Paul wrote: “for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.” (Rom. 7:7) The law was given as a means to bring “us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” (Gal. 3:24)

B. Reign of the Grace of God (v. 21)

1. Savior who gives grace. (Rom. 5:15, 21; John 1:16-17)

“And of His fullness have all we received, and grace for grace. For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.”

2. Salvation by grace. (Eph. 2:8-9)

“In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.” Eph. 1:7

3. Supply of grace. (v. 20-21)

God’s grace is greater than our sin. Grace is the only way for us to be saved and stay saved. Sin abounded under the law, but grace abounded much more in Jesus. The phrase “grace did much more abound” means God’s grace “super-abounded.” We would think that sin would cause God’s anger to abound. This is how amazing the love of God is that He would give grace where we would expect His wrath.

God’s grace reigns through righteousness. Grace is not a license to sin nor to have a casual attitude toward God. Grace teaches righteousness. Paul wrote: “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age.” (Titus 2:11-12) Where grace reigns, it will teach and empower godly living.

4. Standing in grace. (v. 2)

“If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O LORD, who shall stand?” (Ps. 130:3)

We have a standing before God because we have been “justified by faith.” The only reason is because we are in Christ. This standing we have is by grace. It is grace through Christ that keeps our standing before God.

“Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God, our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” Jude 24-25

Someone has said: “A standing in grace reassures us: God's present attitude towards the believer in Christ Jesus is one of favor, seeing them in terms of joy, beauty and pleasure. He doesn't just love us; He likes us because we are in Jesus.” 


“Calvary covers it all,

My past with its sin and stain;

My guilt and despair

Jesus took on Him there

And, Calvary covers it all.”


1. Sin brings pain, suffering, and death. We would be without hope if it wasn’t for the grace of God. His grace is greater than our sin.

2. We receive the blessings of God’s grace when we receive Jesus by faith as our Lord and Savior. 

3. Jesus said: “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:9) Five times in this chapter, Paul declared the “much more” that God offers in Christ. (9, 10, 15, 17, 20)

4. Death reigns in Adam. All who are in Adam are condemned and have the sentence of death because “the wages of sin is death.” (Rom. 6:23) In Christ, there is forgiveness of sin and life everlasting. Have you received Him by faith into your life?

Dr. George W. Truett: “I could not trust my hope of heaven on the best second I ever lived!”