Summary: An Expository Message On How Suffering Shouldn’t Discourage Us Because One Day The Groaning Will End And The Glory Will Begin.

Romans Series # 38 May 15, 2002




Introduction: Welcome to New Life in Christ. We are currently in Chapter 8 of Romans as we continue with message #38 of our verse-by-verse study of the Book of Romans.

Read Romans 8:18-27

Opening Prayer

I am going to start of tonight by asking you to say a word with me in unison and with passion. The word is spelled A-A-A-R-R-R-G-G-G-H-H-H! On the count of 3 let’s give our best effort in saying this word – 1,2,3 AAARRRGGGHHH! Do you feel better now? Do you feel silly?

Well you are probably wondering if your pastor has lost his mind. You may not think that this act of linguistic aerobics has much to do with tonight scripture passage. But in a way this strange word does have a relationship to the biblical text tonight. Some of you may have recognized this word. It is the word that Charlie Brown, from the comic strip Peanuts, would use when Lucy pulled the football away. He would always land flat on his back and yell “AAARRRGGGHHH!” This was the writer of the comic strips attempt to express with a single word what we would call a groan. A groan is an expression of hurt, frustration and longing for things to be better. Charlie Brown was groaning because he was frustrated at repeated failure and falls and because he was longing for a better day.

In real life it isn’t just Charlie Brown who is groaning. There are a lot of people who feel as if life has let them down and have a longing or groaning for things to be better. In our text, this issue of groaning in addressed. In fact, the text tells us that there are 3 things that are currently groaning. In verse 22, we are told that the creation is groaning with frustration and longing. In verse 23 we are told that Christian’s are groaning in frustration and desire. In verse 26 we are even told that the Holy Spirit is groaning. In this text Paul tells us why there is groaning, when it will end, and how we should respond in the mean time.

The main message that the Bible is communicating through tonight’s passage can be summarized as follows:

I. Suffering shouldn’t discourage us because one day the groaning will end and the glory will begin.

Paul begins to describe that day and it’s implications in verses 18,19. I discussed the first part of verse 18 last week, so I will not go over that again.

Read Verses 18,19

We wait in faith for the day that the full benefits and inheritance of being a child of God to take place. Paul describes this event in the latter part of verse 18.

Paul says in verse 18 that God’s glory will “be revealed in us.” He is referring to our status as children of God being made complete and fully manifest or revealed.

When that final curtain falls, God’s true sons and daughters will be revealed for who they truly are. Right now Jesus Christ’s followers look just like other people do. We get sick, just like other people. We experience heartbreak, failure, broken relationships, anger, frustration, and all the other things that are characteristic of the human condition. But one day the curtain will be pulled away, and who we really are will be revealed: God’s adopted sons and daughters.

Source: Sermon “Back To The Future” by Timothy Peck

As Paul says, we await for “the glory (of being God’s children) to be revealed in us.” As we wait for that day, we still go through what Paul calls “present sufferings.” Presently Christians groan because we are enduing the hurts, pain, corruption, and frustration of living in a fallen world. We shouldn’t be overwhelmed and in despair about this because it is a temporary condition. One day the glory of being God’s children will be fully experienced and manifested to the world.

I. Suffering shouldn’t discourage us because one day the groaning will end and the glory will begin.

The Apostle John refers to this day of God’s glory being revealed in us in 1 John 3:2 which says, “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when He appears, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.”

This event is so important and so glorious that it says in verse 19 that the “creation waits in eager anticipation” of it. Paul wants to express how wonderful and glorious this day will be so he uses the literary device of personifying creation. In this example, the inanimate creation has the same attitude about this day as children have about Christmas day. Children can hardly wait and are filled with “eager anticipation” for Christmas Day to arrive because that day is so great and fantastic. Creation is waiting for the greatest day of all, which is the day Jesus comes, because on that day we will be revealed as the children of God and will receive all that comes with being His child.

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