Summary: God causes all Thingsto work together for GOOD to those who love Him and are called, according to His Purpose: This is part 4 in a series on Romans 8:28.
Things Working Together According to His Purpose
Some things get accomplished in a shorter time than others. We have been working on Romans 8 for a few weeks, but God has been working on me a lot longer! As a matter of fact, He started far before I did! I found a book this week containing the EDITED sermon transcripts on the 16 chapters of Romans and it was 520 pages long, so we are really getting the abridged version in our study.
Remember Romans 8:1-2: “Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. 2 For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.” We have seen how God’s Spirit is alive and working in the hearts of believers and we have been focusing on Romans 8:28 : “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are CALLED according to His purpose.”
God CALLS people through the Gospel message, the Good News of Jesus Christ: Everyone ever born is a sinner because of Adam’s sin in the beginning. Sin means death. Jesus, God in the flesh, came to shed His blood as payment for sin. Anyone who truly believes in Him will be saved.
The EVIDENCE of true faith in you is that you LOVE God. Loving God means loving what he loves. Loving what God loves. And what does he love? He loves his people. He loves his word. He loves righteousness. Me. He loves fellowshipping with those who love Him. I do, too. He loves goodness. He loves kindness. He loves helping those who DON’T love Him The Evidence that God’s Spirit has come to dwell in you and that His GOSPEL call has had an EXTREME EFFECT on you and on your life, is that YOU LOVE God. You have been called BY God to LOVE God, and this is “according to His PURPOSE.”
2 Tim. 1:9 uses the same word: “(Jesus), who has saved us and called us to a holy life--not because of anything we have done but because of his own PURPOSE and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time.”
What is God’s “Purpose”? If YOU set out to do something, you begin with an INTENTION. You establish your intention before time: For example, when I set out for church this morning, my purpose was to worship the Almighty Sovereign Gracious God, the Maker of Heaven and Earth, who is also my Savior from my sin and sinful self through the Lord Jesus, and to worship in the company of others who profess the same. My Sunday intention actually coincides with my EVERYDAY purpose: To bring Glory and worship to God. The fact is, I do neither perfectly: every day, including Sunday morning, I fail at my “intentions”, and I KNOW THAT I FAIL. PRAISE God that I am not saved by my good intentions, because I would still be dead to myself and dead to God. But I am SAVED BY GRACE, not by my intentions.
God’s Purpose is a part of God’s CHARACTER as well as His intentions, but His “intentions” also include HOW he executes His decision. He does so PERFECTLY. In our lives, “Intentions” seldom turn out well, but God’s intentions are ALWAYS ACCOMPLISHED.
When God plans something, IT IS guaranteed to be completed perfectly. For us, “PERFECTLY” is just a word in our vocabulary, but in God’s realm, “PERFECTLY” IS HIS REALITY; His Perfect Purpose is why He is uniquely God. God never plans, promises or proclaims anything which does not materialize. His PURPOSE and intentions include determining the outcome, and doing that PERFECTLY.
He never proclaims anything that He can’t produce or bring to pass because His ATTRIBUTE OF PURPOSE is entirely Holy, good, wise, truthful, righteous, Omnipotent and Sovereign. That’s why nothing will prevail against HIM!
Ephesians 1:11 puts it this way: “We have obtained an inheritance, (We didn’t die for the inheritance, but Jesus did.) having been predestined according to HIS PURPOSE who works all things after (or according to) the counsel of His WILL.” God’s Will is part of His Divine Purpose (prothesis).
Acts 2:23 proclaims Christ in these terms: “This Man, delivered over by the predetermined (Horizo- we get the word “horizon”; God put HIS plan on the horizon.) plan (the counsel of God’s Will) and foreknowledge (the Greek word means PRE-ARRANGED event) of God, (it was not an accident that Jesus was handed over to be crucified- it was the will of God ) you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. 24 "But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.”