Get Perspective

Romans 9
I tell the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit, 2 that I have great sorrow and continual grief in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my [a]countrymen according to the flesh, 4 who are Israelites, to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises; 5 of whom are the fathers and from whom, according to the flesh, Christ came, who is over all, the eternally blessed God. Amen.

I read this in my bible commentary this morning. I feel all of it is fitting.

Paul says he himself is willing to be separated from Jesus if that could somehow accomplish the salvation of Israel.

i. We should not think that Paul merely uses a dramatic metaphor here. The solemn assurances he gave in Romans 9:1 remind us he is being completely truthful.

ii. This great passion for souls gave Paul perspective. Lesser things did not trouble him because he was troubled by a great thing – the souls of men. “Get love for the souls of men – then you will not be whining about a dead dog, or a sick cat, or about the crotchets of a family, and the little disturbances that John and Mary may make by their idle talk. You will be delivered from petty worries (I need not further describe them) if you are concerned about the souls of men… Get your soul full of a great grief, and your little griefs will be driven out.” (Spurgeon)

For Your Sake We are Killed.

Romans 8
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written:

“For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.

Sometimes you read the bible and you feel like loved children of God. Other times you read it and feel like an empowered warrior, and sometimes you sit and scratch your head and wonder what Paul was trying to say.

The middle portion Paul quotes here is Psalm 44:22.
This psalm presents a complaint to the Lord. The writer is complaining that God has not been favorable toward His people as He had been toward their fathers. The psalmist emphasizes that despite the persecutions of the faithful, they had not turned aside from the worship of God, that the trials they were suffering were due to their love and faithfulness to the Lord.

Some searching this morning also dug this up:
Paul has movingly written that nothing which can happen to us could separate us from Christ’s love for us. Struggles in this life are not a sign that God has abandoned us; they are hardships He works to see us through.

Even when we feel the Lord has abandoned us, He is still there and He loves us. It is also important to know we are under a different covenant. We can ask things of the Lord. He has told us to. Let us not dwell on the persecution, but we should rejoice in our relationship with our Father.

What shall we say ?

Just because God knows who will choose and who will not, does not change our ability to make good decisions. Make a choice.

Romans 8
31 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 delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.

God is for us!
Jesus will justify us. He will make us righteous in God’s eyes. Continue to serve. Do not let biblical controversy cloud your mind and bring anxiety. We serve a God who loves. We are predestined for GREATNESS. The Lord knows the plans for you, plans to prosper you, not to harm you!

God Knows, and I Know

Romans 8
29 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren. 30 Moreover whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified.

Predestined in this context can create a controversy for the ages.
I read this:

Predestination does not refer here to the choice of who will be saved. It refers to the destiny appointed for those who are chosen. First, God chooses, that is, he unconditionally sets his favor on whom he will, THEN, he destines them for their glorious role in eternity.

From my bible commentary:
Of course I believe in predestination, since it’s plainly taught in the Scriptures. The doctrine could be assumed, even if the word was never explicitly used. It’s a thrilling truth that doesn’t upset me at all. The fact that He chose me and began a good work in me proves that He’ll continue to perform it. He wouldn’t bring me this far and then dump me.” (Smith)

Here’s another thought:

I believe that predestination does not refer to God’s choice of which people get to go to heaven, but refers instead to God’s determination to bring into glory all those who receive eternal life by faith in Jesus. In other words, predestination teaches us about who gets glorified, not who gets justified.

God’s predetermined (this is a synonym for predestination) plan was that He would bring into glory everyone who believed in Jesus for eternal life, that is, for justification. All who are justified will be glorified. As such, there is absolutely nothing in predestination about God’s choice of which people will get justified and which people will not. Predestination has nothing to do with that, and it is a categorical mistake to think it does.

I think for me, I know that God KNOWS who will be saved and who will fall short. He knows the end. I also KNOW that I have a free choice to serve Him on the Earth right now. I KNOW that if I call on Him, He LOVES me and He WILL SAVE ME. With that all said, I must be one of the ones predestined to find the truth. I will walk in that hope.

We don’t know what to pray for?

Romans 8
26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession [g]for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

Two keys from my bible commentary:
1. When we are weak, and do not know exactly how we should pray, God Himself (through the Holy Spirit) helps by making intercession for us.

2. This, of course, is the purpose of the gift of tongues – to enable us to communicate with God in a manner that is not limited to our own knowledge or ability to articulate our heart before God. The purpose of tongues is not to prove that we are “filled with the Spirit” or to prove that we are especially spiritual.

This is not a blanket statement that we as Christians do NOT know what we should pray for in general. Paul is explaining that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us in our deepest trouble when we feel confused and uncertain how to pray. That is when we can speak in tongues and allow the Spirit to guide our words to the Father.

The Grind

Romans 8:24
For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.

We are adopted, however, according to Paul it is like it hasn’t happened until the end.
“even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.”

In this we must maintain hope. We must maintain faith and persevere towards the goal, ministering to those around us in need.
The true daily grind is patience. We hope for things that are unseen. Prayer starts with faith in the unseen.
Mark 11:24
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.


Sufferings of the Present

Romans 8
18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. 19 For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God.

I was studying this scripture in my bible commentary and stumbled upon this:
“Without a heavenly hope, Paul considered the Christian life foolish and tragic (1 Corinthians 15:19). Yet in light of eternity it is the wisest and best choice anyone can make.”

I am unsure that I would agree with this. A life without Christ here on earth would be so hopeless and unsatisfying. It is not just the thought of the afterlife, it is the promise to take care of His children here and now. It is the love we feel when we are taken care of because the Lord is an amazing Father.

There are sufferings now we will endure, but there are also victories here and now. Bringing someone to the saving knowledge of Christ is an amazing experience. Showing love to someone in desperate need of a friend is an amazing joyful experience. Sharing with someone knowing they will be blessed truly brings joy.

Enjoy the life that Christ has called us to walk as we are slaves to righteousness.

No Longer Slaves

So after a long week in Vegas, I am back trying to grind out the word of God.

Being away from my normal routine always makes the time pass slowly. I am glad to be currently at my desk. Let’s dive in to today’s word.

Romans 8
15 For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba,[e] Father.” 16 The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him, that we may also be glorified together.

We have been adopted into the family of God. We are no longer slaves to fear. We have a hope in Christ. We have peace in Christ.

We are no longer slaves to fear. We do not have to worry about anything. We pray, we ask for wisdom, and we make Godly decisions as it pertains to our life. What if we lose our job? The Lord will provide another. What about our health? The Lord will protect me to continue doing the work He has for me! What about raising my children? The Lord will give me wisdom and my children will be blessed by the Spirit. What about fighting with my wife? The Lord will create reconciliation.

A child of God has no place being a slave to fear. We must rely and trust in our Abba Father who has purpose and a plan for us, not to harm us, but to prosper us!

Seek First the Kingdom

Romans 8
12 Therefore, brothers and sisters we have an obligation – but not in the flesh, to live according to it. 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.”

New King James:
12 Therefore, brethren, we are debtors—not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 13 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.
This seems like a black and white statement. It is almost like you kill the desires of the flesh to seek after anything spiritual in connection with the Lord. However, the Lord in return will give you the desires of your heart.
It reminds me of Matthew 6. It says anything the Gentiles seek after (worldly stuff) the Lord knows you need. HE wants to be the one to give it to you !
Matthew 6
32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

Spiritual Minds, Create Physical Benefits

Romans 8
10 And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. 11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies [d]through His Spirit who dwells in you.

When the Spirit lives in us, it gives life to our mortal bodies.
Other people translate it to say “quickens” our mortal bodies.

To me it implies that we will prosper in our mortal body so we can complete the work He has given to us. The Spirit in us, will reflect on our mortal body on the exterior.

Continue to eat and drink the Word of God and you shall see the results in the physical.