Summary: Our suffering does not match the good news that awaits us in eternity. We can be encouraged that one day, we will find our ultimate comfort.
It Will Be Worth It All
Griffith Baptist Church – 6/29/08
Text: Romans 8:18-22
Key verse: Romans 8:18 - For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
There once was an oyster whose story I tell, Who found that sand had got under his shell; Just one little grain, but it gave him much pain, For oysters have feelings although they’re so plain. Now, did he berate the working of Fate Which had led him to such a deplorable state? Did he curse out the Government, call for an election? No; as he lay on the shelf, he said to himself, "If I cannot remove it, I’ll try to improve it." So the years rolled by as the years always do, And he came to his ultimate destiny -- stew. And this small grain of sand which had bothered him so, Was a beautiful pearl, all richly aglow. Now this tale has a moral -- for isn’t it grand What an oyster can do with a morsel of sand; What couldn’t we do if we’d only begin With all of the things that get under our skin.
Many are the pains in life
We could spend a lot of time on listing our sufferings
Here, Paul begins a discussion of suffering in this present life gives us some encouragement to help us out.
Transition Statement: God graciously tells us about our present pain and the why of our suffering.
1. Understanding Of Our Present Pain
A. Suffering is the unavoidable consequence of sin (20)
i. Man is in constant search for what will make him more comfortable - A hospital administrator was once startled to see a patient fleeing down the hall out of the operating room, his loose hospital gown flapping the breeze behind him. He stopped the fleeing patient and said, "Do you mind telling me why you ran away from the operating room?" The patient looked at him with startled eyes and said, "It was because of what the nurse said." The administrator said "Oh, what did she say?" She said, "Be brave! An appendectomy is quite simple." The administrator looked a bit confused and said, "Well, so what? It is quite simple. I would think that would comfort you." The patient said "Are you kidding, the nurse wasn’t talking to me; she was talking to the doctor."
ii. Man looks for what will make him live longer or be stronger
iii. Look at where it began and the judgment that followed - Genesis 3:17-19 – 17And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; 18Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; 19In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.
a. Disobedience brought more than a ruined relationship with God. It brought:
• A cursed earth (17c-18)
• Hard toil (19a)
• Physical death (19b-d)
iv. The result is a constantly perishing creation - Isaiah 24:5-6 – 5The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. 6Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left.
B. Decay is the unstoppable outcome of sin (21)
i. Decay – 2 Corinthians 4:16 - For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.
ii. This body is subject to all the physiological corruption that sin can bring:
d. Advancement of age issues
e. Damage from external attack (cuts, bruises, accidents, etc.)
f. Pain (temporary and ongoing)
iii. This body is subject to mental and emotional stresses:
b. Mental fatigue
iv. Our present body is not indestructible - Job 19:26 – And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:
C. Pain is the universal result of sin (22)
i. The earth is in pain:
c. Severe weather
d. Volcanic activity
f. It is falling apart at the seams
g. Read Matthew 24:4-12
ii. The body is in pain: