Romans 8

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Why Suffering?

May 12, 2019 | Romans 8:18-39 | suffering

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For most who pose the question of why God allows suffering, it is neither a philosophical, nor a theological one. For most, it is a personal question. What’s your story today? How are you dealing with the problem of suffering and evil in our world?

God inspired the apostle Paul to consider the problem of suffering and to write to encourage the believers in Rome. He revealed that there’s definitely more to the story! In Paul’s letter to the Romans, he explained why there is suffering in God’s creation, encouraging them to compare it against the weight of God’s glory that awaits those who believe. We can understand why there is suffering in God’s creation, knowing that a greater glory awaits those of us who believe.

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them” (Romans 8:28 NLT).

July 24, 2018

Are you facing a time of difficulty and wondering where God is today? Have you gone through a time of suffering and questioning how God can possibly allow it, much less, use it? Yet, God is sovereign. God is at work. He is making you like Jesus. That is His purpose for those who love Him and are called by Him. You can face any trial or trouble knowing that God will cause it ultimately to come together for His purpose, which is that you should “become like his Son” (Rom. 8:29).

So, don’t waste the pain. Don’t lean away, but lean into Jesus all the more. Trust God’s good purpose for your life.

‘So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”’ (Romans 8:15 NLT).

July 23, 2018

The former life before receiving Christ is one of slavery to sin. The actions of the slave are motivated by fear. So, the one enslaved to sin leads a life motivated and marked by fear. Among these fears are the fear of man, the fear of bad consequence and the fear of death. In addition, the former life is marked by the slave’s mentality. The slave is in bondage to sin, so that even when he wishes to do good, he does the opposite, even the thing he hates (See Rom. 7).

However, the one who has received Christ is set free from slavery to sin. For to receive Christ is to receive the Spirit of Adoption, so that the believer is adopted into God’s family, no longer a slave, but a son. Not only children of God, but sons of God, for sons receive an inheritance. And all who believe, whether male or female, will receive the inheritance of sonship, becoming co-heirs with Christ, the Son of God. The one who has trusted Christ is no longer motivated by fear, but is free to please the Father by God’s Spirit living within. It is the Spirit that gives the believer the urge and right to call God, “Abba” which is Aramaic for “Daddy.”

As believers in Christ, we are no longer slaves of fear, but sons of God, set free by His Spirit and adopted into His family.

“God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins. He did this so that the just requirement of the law would be fully satisfied for us, who no longer follow our sinful nature but instead follow the Spirit” (Romans 8:3-4 NLT).

July 22, 2018

What is the “just requirement of the law?” It is that those who cannot keep it must die. For the wages of sin is death (Rom. 3:23). God sent His Son to “fully satisfy” the law by dying in our place, taking the penalty of death that we deserved. Jesus alone has kept the law, yet He gave Himself as a sacrifice for our sins. So now, we that believe in Jesus, are set free from death and the power of the sin nature. Having been set free from sin, we are empowered to follow the Spirit. Jesus took upon Himself our sin, separation, and death. And He offers in exchange His righteousness, Sonship and eternal life.

Jesus has fully satisfied both God’s love and law, for both are intermingled at the cross of Christ.

Spiritual Life

May 7, 2017 | Romans 8:1-8 | resurrection

There’s a lot of interest in spiritual things these days. The 20th century’s emphasis on science and technology and the related philosophy of materialism– that accepts only the natural and denies the supernatural– resulted in a generation that is starving for the spiritual. People today, especially young people, are looking for something more. They are looking for a spiritual life. And the numbers are growing…

However, this new search for meaning in spirituality and religion doesn’t necessarily mean that people will discover true spiritual life. Nor will they find the benefits for which they are longing. They only way to find this true spiritual life for which our souls desire, is to place our faith in the resurrected Christ! In the book of Romans, the apostle Paul encouraged believers to understand the benefits of their new spiritual life in Christ. We can be encouraged by the benefits of our new spiritual life in Christ.

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?” (Romans 8:35 ESV)

July 24, 2016

There is nothing that can separate those who have believed from the love of Christ. There is no charge nor condemnation that can come against God’s elect. There is no one nor any circumstance that can separate them from God’s love. The One whose love spanned sin’s chasm between humanity and a holy God, has overcome every hindrance of separation through His death and resurrection. Receiving this love, He makes us overcomers too.

“And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.” (Romans 8:23 ESV)

July 23, 2016

Both we and creation experience an inner groaning, as in the pains of childbirth, awaiting the fulfillment of our redemption. In these last days, as sin and suffering in this world increase, so does our longing for that which the Spirit within us promises. There is coming a Day when all suffering and pain will end. We will receive resurrection bodies like Jesus and we will dwell with Him forevermore. So, may the groaning of your body remind you of this hope.

“Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” (Romans 8:8 ESV)

July 22, 2016

Those governed by the sin nature (“the flesh”), no matter the ceremonial precepts they affirm or the outward religious acts they perform, cannot please God. They are still guided and motivated by a carnal mind. It is their unrenewed state that makes their offerings unacceptable. God cares more for the heart than the offering. It is faith in Christ that pleases God. Those who are in the flesh must place their faith in Christ, so that they are born again spiritually. Those governed by the Spirit will live by the Spirit. It is this new Spirit-filled life that pleases God.