Summary: God does not want the enemy to advance on us but rather for us to advance on the enemy with Christ leading the way.
Strength to Move Forward
Griffith Baptist Church – 8/17/08
Text: Romans 8:31-34
Key verse: Romans 8:31 - What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
The Confederate General, Longstreet, during the battle of Gettysburg had one of his generals come up to him and report that he was unable to bring up his men again so as to charge the enemy. "Very well," said the general, just let them remain where they are. The enemy’s going to advance and will spare you the trouble. --W. Baxendale
In this life we are confronted by obstacles:
o Enemies that try to destroy us
o Faith killers
o Joy killers
o Walls of doubt and despair
o Mountains of worry and insecurity
But Christ gives us a hopeful outlook in this passage and a preliminary glimpse into our eternal security.
He does not want the enemy to advance on us but rather for us to advance on the enemy with Christ leading the way.
He wants us to move forward to strengthen and mature and accomplish His will.
So in this passage, He gives us a boost, an encouraging lift by telling us four wonderful truths that we can believe and embrace whenever those little dark clouds arise.
Transition Statement: He first tells us that we can be encouraged because we have victory with our God beside us.
1. We Have Victory Because of Our God – 31
A. Lyle Arakaki of Honolulu, Hawaii tells the following story about himself. "In Hawaii, because of the time difference with the continental U.S., the National Football League Monday night football game is played in mid-afternoon; so the local TV station delays its telecast till 6:30 in the evening. When my favorite team plays, I’m too excited to wait for television, so I’ll listen to the game on the radio, which broadcasts it live. Then, because they are my favorite team, I’ll watch the game on television too. If I know my team has won the game, it influences how I watch it on television. If my team fumbles the ball or throws an interception, it’s not a problem. I just think, “That’s bad, but it’s okay. In the end, we’ll win." (That is the way we should view our life in Christ, the victory is already won. You will lose a few battles but the war is already over and we are on the winning side)
B. Key Question One: If God be for us, who can be against us?
C. When we truly stand for God, there will be people against us ( John 15:20 - . . .If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; . . . and 2 Timothy 3:12 - Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.)
D. We will be attacked by Satan – 1 Peter 5:8 - Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: (see also Eph. 6:11-13)
E. There is no reason to live so defeated all the time
i. Defeated by our worries
ii. Defeated by our circumstances
iii. Defeated by our enemies
F. God gives ultimate victory because:
i. He is constantly there for us – Psalms 56:11 – In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me. (Ps. 56:9; 118:6)