Friday, October 12, 2012

Romans 8

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Romans 8:1

We come to another one of those great chapters that make the book of Romans one of the most beloved books in the Holy Bible.

Where the Divine law exposed our sins in Romans 7, we see in Romans 8, that Christ fulfilled the righteous requirement of the law for us and the condemnation that the law placed us under (because it showed us that we are sinners through and through and worthy of God's wrath, all of us) Christ has removed that condemnation by Christ's obedience to every aspect of the law. Romans 8 makes this powerful and amazing claim: every claim against God's people in now invalid. How? Its not because of anything we do or can do, it is because of Christ's obedience.

The point we can not miss in Romans 7 and 8 is what Christ did is for those who walk according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh. We must ask where is our mindset? what are we following? The flesh or the Spirit, whichever you obey that one is your master as Romans 7 told us. What is the pattern of your life? Do you pray? Do you read the Bible? Do you take the Lord's Supper? Do you attend Church? Do you fellowship and love other Christians? These are the means of grace, the way to grow in holiness. If you do not do these regularly are you following the flesh instead. Romans 8 tells us that the mind that is set on the flesh can not submit to God's law, and, in fact, it does not want to it, it could care less. To be in the flesh means you can not please God. All Christians have the Holy Spirit - you can  not be a Christian if you do not have the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit that gives us our spiritual life, He works Christlikeness in us. Only those lead by the Spirit of God are the children of God. We are adopting into the family of God by the Spirit's work in us.

Romans 8:16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God. The Holy Spirit persuades us that we are in God's family, that we are truly saved - this is what all the means of grace mentioned earlier do for us, in and through those things the Spirit convinces our spirit that we are in God's family, that we are saved, and it is by the Spirit's prompting that we cry out Abba, Father, as we see the glory of God in His provision for our salvation. We long for sweet communion with Him, so that we pursue Him in our walk in this life.

That is our hope. God is invisible to us, Christ is seated in heaven, the Holy Spirit lives in us, causing us to groan for our sure hope, to be with God, to be transformed and be able to stand in His presence not as guilty sinners but as loved children. Romans 8 tells us how we are to deal with our remaining sin:
"For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live." Romans 8:13

Romans 8  tells us Jesus and the Holy Spirit are interceding for us (verses 26, 27, and 34). How effective are the prayers of Christ? How effective are the prayers of the Holy Spirit? Of course they are absolute in their effectiveness. Look at the context of what Romans 8 tells us about Christ intercession: 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? Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies.Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died -  more than that, who was raised - who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Romans 8: 32-34
Do you see the amazement of these verses, the power and love of God in them. We are helped so much, we are prayed for with so much power and in accordance with the will of the Father, that verse 33 demands an  answer from the whole universe, everything and everybody in it to God's power and sovereignty established in His salvation - The Father asks "Who shall bring any charges against God's elect? God justifies His people, who can bring a charge against those God has chosen for salvation. The answer is of course: no one can charge God's elect - God has justified them and God is the ultimate Authority, Judge, Power. It is a done deal!! Who can condemn you child of God? Who dares point a finger at you and accuses you in your sin. Christ has paid the price, look to my Father for my pardon, take this matter up with my Father - Oh! what love - nothing can separate the union we have with Christ - this is the love of God. This is the power of God. We see the absoluteness of God's salvation in Romans 8:27-30 which tell us that those who are called according to God's purpose, He foreknew, and He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, He also justified those He called and those He justified He also glorified. The Word of God shows us that the absoluteness of our salvation is that God already considers us as having moved through His process of sanctification, the end result is our glorification - when we are changed forever into His sinless people. This powerful word tells us that if we are saved - God promises to get us to heaven, He promises to get us through the sanctification process. He is the one who promises it, and He dares, challenges anyone to speak otherwise. In the Book of Daniel  we read  For His dominion is an everlasting dominion and His kingdom endures from generation to generation; all the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, and He does according to His will among the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth; and none can stay His hand or say to Him, "What have you done?" Daniel 4:34b - 35 It is according to His will that you be saved and who in the heavens and in the earth can stay His Hand?

All whom God has given faith, trust in Christ for their salvation and God will take them along the sanctification process and bring them to glory to be with Him forever and ever. Stand on His promises and live. What can we do before such absolute power, but bow, bow humbly and worship Him, the One who alone can justify the ungodly and say: "Come now, let us reason together says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. If you are willing and obedient, you shall be eat the good of the land; but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be eaten by the sword; for the mouth of the LORD has spoken. Isaiah 1:18-20

Father, You are absolute in your power and your authority. You are sovereign over the entire universe, that includes every human being, every angel, every demon. You speak from the Majesty of your power, the sureness of events in the future are spoken with the same authority of those events that have already been fulfilled. None can stay your Hand, O Most High LORD! Your people are saved by your will. Thank you Father for saving us and declaring to us in your Word the absolute certainty of our salvation - Help us Holy Spirit to place this truth deep in our heart, causing us to cry out Abba, Father. In Christ Holy name. Amen

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