In the first part of today’s reading Paul gives us a summary of the Gospel, as he understands it. The ministry of Jesus, more particularly His life, death and resurrection, has unleashed a power on the world that works for our salvation. This power we will later see works directly against the powers of sin and death. This power for salvation is final proof of God’s love for us and we are able to access it by faith alone. There is no doubt about this in Paul’s mind. It is not a matter of what we can do to earn or deserve salvation, but what God freely makes available to us through the life, death and resurrection of His Son. Furthermore, Paul assures us that he is in no way ashamed to present this as the truth to all people who desire salvation.

Paul then begins to speak of the wrath of God being revealed to us. I do not think that Paul is speaking about the anger of God in so much as we would say, “Person “X” got angry AT person “Y”.” What Paul means by this phrase is that God has decided to do away with the powers of sin once and for all. If anything God’s anger in Paul’s mind is directed toward the powers of in at work in our lives and the world. Jesus Christ is His definitive answer to them. Jesus defeats them once and for all through His death on the cross.

It is as though Paul is announcing to the whole world, and in particular to the powers of sin and death, that their reign in the hearts of men and women has come to an end. God has made available for us all victory over the malevolent powers at work in our lives. This for Paul is the basis of the Good News. Death and sin have been defeated in Jesus and new life is now available to us all.

Once and for all, in the person of Jesus His Son, God demonstrates that it is He who is ultimately in control. We are now faced with the choice to align our lives with God or the powers of evil. What we do is up to us, but we need to remember that there is now no excuse for sin to reign in our lives. It is only by our choice that this happens. The remedy, the antidote to sin, the salvation that Jesus Christ offers to us, is now available to both Jew and Gentile.

Am I aware of the power that is available to me through the death and resurrection of Jesus? Do I take hold of it daily in my battle against the temptations of sin? How well do I live in the victory that Jesus offers me?

Lord, grant me the grace to take hold of the gift of salvation and live it to the full. Help me to experience victory over sin in my life so that I can be drawn ever deeper into the life of grace you created me for in the first place.