Summary: To establish each Christian who truly loves God, who have been called according to His purpose; can be assured, that God will work out all things to their good. This lesson rejects the notions of "election" and "predestination" as some groups advocates.
1. Who can be against us?
2. Who can accuse us?
3. Who can alienate us?
1. In our lesson today we are going to be discussing three important ideas which should give each of us hope and certainty regarding our present lives; and hope of eternity. Our text is encapsulated in some very important promises. First, the chapter begins with: “There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit,” Romans 8:1. Further, we are advised: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father…The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God. And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together,” Romans 8:14-17. Finally, Paul writes: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose,” Romans 8:28. Paul will affirm three things that permit us to know that this statement is true regarding our position in Christ.
2. First, he assures: “that if God be for us, no one can be against us?" Notice: “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” See Romans 8:31-32. If you believe as I, that He is in complete control of all things, then nothing which happens in our lives is by chance; but either ordered, directed, or permitted, and overseen by His watchful eyes. Some see life like Jacob: "All these things are against me," Genesis 42:36. But the saint knows that “if God be for us, nothing can be against us!” Jesus had to remind Pilot: "Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it was given thee from above," John 19:11. We must then conclude, God is still in control; and he shall take care of me, mine, thine and thee.
3. Second, he advises: “if God be for us, no one can accuse us?” Notice: “Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us,” Romans 8:33-34. The evil one can no longer accuse us, nor can anyone else. God is on our side; He has called us into His glory. Paul declares: "He hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of our habitation," Acts 17:26. To His people Israel in Babylon Jehovah said: "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected (hope in your latter) end," Jeremiah 29:11. Jehovah had thoughts to peace and hope for His people after their return from exile. Sin and disobedience lead them into captivity; but God’s love will forgive and return them once again to the city of Jerusalem; the holy city of God.
4. Finally, he affirms: “if God be for us, no one can alienate us?” No one can separate us from the love of Christ. He writes: “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord,” Romans 8:35-38. David admonishes us in the Psalms: “In God have I put my trust: I will not be afraid what man can do unto me,” Psalms 56:11. Nothing is able to separate us from the “love of God, which is in Christ Jesus.” For there abideth, “faith, hope and charity, these three, but the greatest of these is charity,” 1 Corinthians 13:13.
BODY OF LESSON
I WHO CAN BE AGAINST US?
A. God's providence. First Paul asks: "If God be for us, who can be against us?" This statement looks back to the proceeding verses, Romans 8:28-30. Where the text outlines the providence of God: "For we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose," Romans 8:28. Notice:
1. First, the basis of God's providence is our returned love for Him. Out of the abundance of our love; or His knowledge of it, He provides for; and is at work to ensure that every eventuality of life will turn out to our good, in our favor, to our edification, and strengthening.