Catechism Insight – Doctrinal Standard WSC #36 (2 of 3 Weeks)

Doctrinal Standard #36 (2 of 3 weeks)

  • Q. What benefits in this life go with or come from justification, adoption, and sanctification?
  • A. The benefits that in this life go with or come from justification, adoption, and sanctification are: the assurance of God’s love, peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Spirit, and growing and persevering in grace to the end of our lives.

Memory Verses

  • “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” Romans 8:31–32 (ESV).


  • Study Passage: Romans 8:26-39
  • Support Passages: 1 Peter 1:3-9, John 10:27-30, Philippians 1:6, 2 Peter 1:5-11, John 17, Hebrews 9:13-15
  • Bible Story: Genesis 47:13-26, 50:20


  • Wayne Grudem does a good job explaining the joy a believer experiences when they understand their purpose in life (Pg 441-442).
  • “What is our purpose in life? The fact that God created us for his own glory determines the correct answer to the question, ‘ What is our purpose in life?” Our purpose must be to fulfill the reason that God created us: to glorify him. When we are speaking with respect to God himself, that is a good summary of our purpose. But when we think of our own interests, we make the happy discovery that we are to enjoy God and take delight in him and in our relationship to him. Jesus says, ‘I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly’ (John 10:10). David tells God, ‘In your presence there is fullness of joy, in your right hand are pleasures for evermore’ (Ps. 16:11). He longs to dwell in the house of the Lord forever, ‘to behold the beauty of the Lord’ (Ps. 27:4), and Asaph cries out, ‘Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing upon earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever (Ps 73:25-26).

    Fullness of joy is found in knowing God and delighting in the excellence of his character. To be in his presence, to enjoy fellowship with him, is a greater blessing than anything that can be imagined. ‘How lovely is your dwelling place O Lord of hosts! My soul longs, yea, faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living God… For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere (Ps. 84:1-2, 10). Therefore, the normal heart attitude of a Christian is rejoicing in the Lord and in the lessons of the life he gives us (Rom. 5:2-3; Phil. 4:4; 1 Thess. 5:16-18; James 1:2; 1 Peter 1:6, 8)

    As we glorify God and enjoy him, Scripture tells us that he rejoices in us. We read, ‘as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you’ (Isa. 62:5), and Zephaniah prophesies that the Lord ‘will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud signing as on a day of festival’ (Zeph 3:17-18).
    This understanding of the doctrine of the creation of man has very practical results. When we realize that God created us to glorify him, and when we start to act in ways that fulfill that purpose, then we begin to experience an intensity of joy in the Lord that we have never before known. When we add to that the realization that God himself is rejoicing in our fellowship with him, our joy becomes inexpressible and filled with heavenly glory’ (1 Peter 1:8, author’s expanded paraphrase). [1]

Discussion Questions

  • What does it mean to be joyful?
  • Why can we have joy in our lives?
  • How can we glorify God?
  • Why does joy come from glorifying God?
  • Examine your own life. Do you take joy in God? Explain


[1] Grudem, Wayne (1994). Systematic Theology. Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA; Zondervan Publishing House.

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