In the preceding verses the apostle writes about the believer's hope of the glory of God (Vs. 2) and the fact that those who have that good hope in Christ will never be ashamed of that relationship, nor will they ever have cause to be ashamed, nor will they be put to shame. The TRUTH of God's love to us in Christ and the REALITY of that love has been put in our hearts by His Spirit. In the next verses he proceeds to give us PROOF and EVIDENCE of God's love for us.
(Vs. 6) "Christ died for the ungodly." This is the sum and substance of our gospel and is the great article of faith. WHO DIED? Christthe only-begotten, well-beloved Son of God in human nature (Rom. 8:34; Matt. 3:16-17). HOW DID HE DIE? A death of shame, under the wrath and judgment of God (Phil. 2:8). WHY DID HE DIE? He died for, in the stead of, and as a substitute for all God's elect in order that God might be just and justifier (Rom. 3:24-26). FOR WHOM DID HE DIE? "For the ungodly," not for righteous men, or religious men, or deserving men, but for those who are ungodly in nature and practice (Eph. 2: 1-5). WHEN DID HE DIE FOR US? When we were without strength to obey Him, to keep His law, and without ability to help ourselves. We were in bondage to law and to sin and unable to change our condition (Jer. 13:23). He died for us "in due time," at the time appointed by the Father (Gal. 4:2-5; I Tim. 2:5-6). This is the greatest single proof of love: to give one's life for the object of that love (I John 4:10; John 15:12-13).
(Vs. 7) There are two types of men mentioned here. (1) A RIGHTEOUS OR JUST MAN: that is, one who is moral, strict, and religious before men in all his ways, yet not necessarily loved. It is not likely that one would die for such a man. (2) Then there is the good and benevolent man who is gracious, kind, and considerate to all. Among men he is beloved and respected. Some would certainly die for such a man!
(Vs. 8) But God manifested His love for us (gave clear proof and evidence of that love, so that there is no room to doubt it) in that, while we were yet in sin, Christ died for us. This is true in respect to all that are saved, from Abel to Paul to you and me (Isa. 53:6). When Christ loved us, died for us, and redeemed us, we were sinners by birth, choice, and practice, with no love for God (Rom. 8:7-8).
(Vs. 9) If God's love to us is so great and so rich that He gave Christ to die for us when we were ungodly sinners, it is MUCH MORE CERTAIN AND SURE that being righteous, justified, and free from sin in Christ, we shall be delivered from God's future wrath and punishment (Rom. 8:31-34).
(Vs. 10) If while we were enemies of God (Eph. 2:3; Col. 1:21; Rom. 8:7) we were reconciled to God through the death of Christ (II Cor. 5:18-21), it is MUCH MORE CERTAIN that, God being reconciled to us and us to God, we shall be daily kept, delivered, and sustained by the resurrected, intercessory life of the Man Christ Jesus. If you can comprehend what God has done for us while we were enemies, try to comprehend the blessings that are ours as His friends and sonsthose who are Joint-heirs with Christ (Rom. 8:16-17).
(Vs. 11) "Not only so," that is, not only do we rejoice in hope of the glory of God (Vs. 2), not only do we glory in tribulations (Vs. 3), not only did Christ die for us while we were sinners (Vs. 8), not only are we saved from wrath through Him (Vs. 9), not only are we reconciled to God by His Son (Vs. 10), but we JOY IN GOD through our Lord Jesus. We rejoice in God HIMSELF as our covenant God, as the God of all grace, peace, and salvation; and we rejoice in His perfections, His providence, and His presence. The means by which we come to this joy and glory is through our Lord Jesus (Col. 2:9-10). It is by, in, and through Christ that we have received the atonement or reconciliation. Full redemption, satisfaction, and expiation is made by His blood for sinners and received by faith.