For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.) (Rom 5:17)
We are intended to reign in life through [due to; by way of; as a result of] the presence of Jesus Christ in our lives. Where are we to reign? We reign as kings in this life—here and now.
Reign means to rule; to have authority; to be in power. Where do kings reign? They reign in their kingdom, territory, or domain. We have the authority, given to us by Jesus, to have dominion in our own lives. In our own lives, we have God-given power and influence, because our life is our domain!
Notice that Romans 5:17 reminds us that we’ve been given the abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness. Let’s consider these two items.
The abundance of grace: Abundance means plenty; richness; or lavishness. Grace means unearned favor; God’s matchless kindness; or blessing. Now, we understand that God has given each one of us an unending supply of His favor, kindness, and blessings!
The gift of righteousness: A gift is something that has been given freely to another, such as a donation, scholarship, or grant. Righteousness means right-standing; uprightness; or blamelessness. Righteousness is a gift from God because those who have accepted Christ as their Savior have been justified by the work of Jesus Christ: His sinless life; suffering and death; and resurrection from the dead.
So, since we are in right standing with God, there’s nothing that can come between us and Him. And there’s no way to improve our righteousness with the Lord because it’s perfect right now—thanks to Jesus!
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. (Rom 5:8-10)
But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more, 21 so that as sin reigned in death, even so grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. (Rom 5:20b; 21)
The blood of Jesus washed away our sins. (Rev 1:5) We are new creatures. (2 Cor 5:17) We’ve been made the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus (2 Cor. 5:21).
God wants us to reign in life over ourselves, over sin, over death, and over every harmful, destructive thing. Before we can reign together with God over the nations and over the earth, we first need to reign in life today over sin and death (Rom. 5:17, 21). Jesus has promised that He will be with us, and we know that Jesus has already obtained our victory! Hallelujah!