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Rom 8,1-4

(41b) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Jesus is without sin >> He fulfilled the law

(41g) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> God’s righteousness is His doing 

(118l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Spirit delivers you from the desire to sin

(119l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Curse of God is broken >> Curse of the law is broken -- Had God given the law to perfect beings, it would have had no relevance; instead He gave it to His fallen, imperfect people and it condemned them, so either way the law has no power to help mankind. It was never meant to help, but to merely point out our flaws. In these verses Paul calls the Ten Commandments the law of sin and death; that title should not invoke hope in anyone who tries to follow it, or seek to be justified by it. Instead, God has given us a new and better law, written not on tablets of stone, but on human hearts with the blood of Christ. The law of sin and death states that if we live in a body of sinful flesh, we must sin, and if we sin, we must die, but the law of the Spirit states that if we believe in the one who justifies the ungodly, then we will live by the Spirit of His Son who cannot sin, the perfect one who has imparted His perfection in us through faith. 

(205j) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the law of righteousness

(227g) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> Depending on Jesus to have compassion >> Depending on Jesus to deliver us -- These verses go with verses 35-39

(231e) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> Revelation of Jesus is the mystery of the kingdom >> Jesus is the mystery of the kingdom

Rom 8,1-3

(39g) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Jesus’ victory was through His flesh -- It is absolutely essential to understand that Jesus defeated Satan and the law of sin and death in the flesh, that is, in His own body that was no different than ours. There were many divine attributes about Jesus, but His flesh was not one of them. His soul was the Spirit of God, which made Him the Son of God, but His flesh was common to us all. This fact draws out an incomprehensible irony and a wonderful truth: the irony is in the simultaneous possibility and impossibility of Jesus giving in to sin because of His combined deity and fallibility, and the wonder of it all was His victory, His absolute perfection.

(39k) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Jesus defeated the law of sin – Jesus had to become like us in order to deliver us from the power of sin and from the sentence of eternal damnation (see Heb 2,14-18). God had to do more than just wave a magic wand over the problem. He personally had to do something so radical that it even took the devil by surprise. Satan was not expecting God to do this; God has been playing chess with Lucifer ever since he fell into sin. Satan moves, and then God moves, and we are pawns on the game board. He is playing for our souls, and the one who wins the game gets mankind. Jesus dealt Satan a fatal blow (checkmate) when he allowed Himself to be crucified, whipped almost to death and then nailed to a cross to die. Satan thought His move would win the game, not considering that the Father intended to raise His Son from the dead. Satan failed to realize that though Jesus was encased in sinful flesh He had never committed a sin (Heb 7,24-28). God’s creation resides in the material realm; He maintains His laws and principles; He has a reality of His own and considers it to be the truth, and does not violate that reality. Moreover, He considers the material realm just as important as the spiritual realm, and He will not violate the material realm for the sake of the spiritual realm, but sent His Son in a body of sin just like our own. He used that body to conquer sin by being innocent of it. God could not have bought the redemption of man any other way; He had to condemn sin in the flesh, and He had to do it through His Son. He defeated sin in the flesh when He died without sin, breaking the law of sin and death, since it was unlawful for death to exist apart from sin. See also: Spiritual warfare; Rom 8-3; 37c / God is at war with the devil and man is in the middle; Col 1-16,17; 212b 

(117e) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Let Jesus do the work >> Let Him work on you -- These verses go with verses 9-11. Now that we know we cannot save ourselves through the law, it is safe to say that this is not a do-it-yourself salvation, but God has a personal roll in it. He has promised to live in our heart through the Spirit; how personal is that? The Holy Spirit building His home in our heart initiates a cascade of other promises and implications that the Old Testament law could not afford. We have an active roll in our own salvation, and so does God; therefore, we would be much further ahead if we just let Jesus do what He wants in our lives, rather than striving to do something for Him, since most of our efforts resemble slavery to dead works.

Rom 8-1,2

(43g) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Perfect (mature) >> Flawless – For there to be no condemnation in those who belong to Christ means no sin. When God looks at His children, He sees us through the finished work of the cross, completely forgiven. There must be this work of grace to forgive us, for we could not have accomplished this on our own. We could not be good enough to merit God’s favor. There has been a replacement of the law of sin and death (the law of Moses) with "the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus." What makes the promise of the Spirit better than the law of Moses is that while it works to regulate our behavior, it also forgives us. What seems less understood is that this law of the Spirit was given for the purpose of fulfilling his Ten Commandments (v4). The new covenant Spirit holds better promise in leading His people to accomplish both objectives of forgiveness and freedom from the bondage of sin. The greatest advantage of the new covenant over the old is that the Holy Spirit knows God’s calling in our lives and can lead us to fulfill it, which the law certainly could not do.

(44e) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Transformed >> Completed by God

Rom 8-1

(139k) Temple >> Temple made without hands >> Hiding place >> Abiding in Jesus -- The term Temple made without hands refers to the idea of God working His grace in our lives within the purlieu of building unity within the body of Christ, with each brick of the temple representing a member of the Church. Once the temple is built, it becomes a dwelling place for the Holy Spirit. For His people to blend into one Spirit is to join spirits with Him, as 1Cor 6-17 says, "But the one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him."

(161h) Condemnation (Key verse)

(161j) Works of the devil >> Carried Away >> Condemnation without basis of sin

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Rom 8-2

(25k) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Dead in sin >> The human condition without Christ

(118j) Law Of The Spirit (Key verse)

(254g) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is the life of the Spirit >> Jesus is the substance of God’s life >> Jesus conquered death because He is life -- The trinity is a perfectly balanced interplay between Father, Son and Holy Spirit. When Jesus came in the flesh, He was dependent on the Holy Spirit to direct Him, who served as the link between Father and Son. Jesus was the exact image of the Spirit, so that the righteousness He maintained in the flesh directly translated to the life of the Spirit as a reflection of the Father, who is the source of all life. Jesus attributed His abilities of healing and wisdom to the Father, but the actual working member was the Holy Spirit, whom the Father controlled to direct Christ into every situation. We can follow the chain of command starting with the Holy Spirit who is the servant of all, to the Son who is the embodiment of God's mercy, and ending with the Father who is above all.

Rom 8,3-10

(16c) Sin >> Man’s nature is instinctively evil >> Man has a body of sin – In chapter six Paul says we must force our bodies to obey the Lord, because it literally has a mind of its own, but we can program our minds to obey the Lord, though sometimes we must get out and push. Paul spoke this way, calling it “the flesh.” The body will die one day and we will continue living, proving that our body is not our essence. We don’t understand ourselves completely. Our body has certain desires that seem separate from our will; we can force our mind to think a certain way, but our body will always think the way it wants, and we will have to place our flesh under constraint. We will never be able to trust our flesh, simply because it is not programmable. At some point, we will have to force our body to do our will. See also: Spiritual warfare (Contrast of two natures); 1Cor 6-9,10; 16e

Rom 8-3,4

(90j) Thy kingdom come >> Keeping the law >> We do not nullify the law through faith; we fulfill it -- Jesus spiritually delivered us from sin in hope that we would manifest that deliverance. Gal 3-13 says, "Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: "Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree." He made a way for us to overcome sin, so we don't have to live in bondage to it. We now have a choice to live free from greed, lust, pride, hate, bitterness, envy, revenge, and all the other evil behaviors that curse our lives, and we do this by walking in the Spirit. What does it mean to walk in the Spirit? The word "walking" points to our works, thus the definition of walking in the Spirit is to obey the Holy Spirit, and of course the Holy Spirit will lead us in ways that fulfill the law.

Rom 8-3

(37b) Jesus’ Humanity (Key verse)

(37c) Judgment >> Jesus’ humanity >> He had human flesh -- Jesus “condemned sin in the flesh.” This statement alone contains the gospel in a nutshell and fully describes what Jesus accomplished on the cross: He defeated sin in the weakness of human flesh. He didn't defeat sin by His omnipotent power, but by His infinite wisdom, through blunt determination. The Father tested His Son to see if He would remain free from Sin after giving Him every availability to sin, and by testing His Son He tested Himself. The fact that Jesus was born in the flesh made the Son of God vulnerable to sin, seemingly putting the Godhead at risk of upsetting the balance of unity between them that prevailed through the single-mindedness of the Spirit, God giving Satan a clear shot at His throne if he could just make Jesus commit one sin, but he couldn't. This test stood as proof of God's zeal for righteousness and His love and commitment to the Truth, which became the essence of His triumph over evil, and it proved Satan wrong about sin in everything He thinks and believes about himself. See also: Spiritual warfare; Rom 8,1-3; 39k

(37i) Judgment >> Blood of Jesus >> He emptied Himself >> From equality with God to human frailty

(194e) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Turn from sin to God >> Hate evil >> Condemning sin >> Hate evil by being innocent of it

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Rom 8,4-13

(56h) Paradox >> Opposites >> He must increase, but I must decrease

(187h) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Die to the flesh >> Spirit versus the flesh >> Deny the flesh to walk in the Spirit >> More the flesh dies, more the spirit lives – For those who have the life of the Spirit, there is also death about them, a discernable trait lacking in pseudo-Christians. We should remember that Paul started this conversation using Abraham as our model believer, and he said that when Abraham was called, he went. There were two ingredients in his calling: hearing God's voice and doing what he said, one representing life and the other representing death. Life occurs the moment of salvation the moment we dedicate our lives to the cause and purpose of Christ, and then death follows in the lifelong process of fulfilling His calling, which takes sacrifice and dedication, and the result is the privilege of carrying the torch of His life into a dead world, using a body that perpetually endures the throes of death.

(192b) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Result of putting off the old man >> Gain by losing >> Life for life >> Losing your life to gain God’s purpose – Our bodies will not inherit the promises of God; it is destined for the grave; when God resurrects His people, He will give us new bodies made of a substance that exists nowhere else in this present universe. The spirit of the believer is alive as a result of the Holy Spirit who has inextricably woven Himself into our spirit, so that we are one with Him, and our flesh is ignored in the process. God has commanded us to use our bodies to serve Him; our flesh is reluctant to do this because it has no promise of reward. Instead, the reward goes to our spirit who will live forever and we will be rewarded in heaven for coercing our flesh to serve Him. The only reward the flesh receives in this life is a lack of consequences; we will avoid many pitfalls of the world. If it were up to our flesh, it would prefer to fall into a pit for the slightest temporal reward, leading us from one addiction to another with consequences following in hot pursuit.

Rom 8,4-8

(79a) Thy kingdom come >> Putting your heart on display >> Faith and disobedience are in the balance – Paul said that those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit, but we can’t live according to the Spirit without first setting our mind on Jesus, for we emulate whatever we set in our mind. The object of our attention will determine our direction, as James said about the tongue acting like a rudder, “Look at the ships also, though they are so great and are driven by strong winds, are still directed by a very small rudder wherever the inclination of the pilot desires.” The very first body part that is affected by the mind is the tongue, possibly because it is closest to the brain, and all our other appendages follow suit. We believe and live how we speak. If we want to improve our lives, we must first program the mind, which curtails our speech, leading us down our path of choice.

(166h) Carnality (Key verse)

(167d) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Carnality/Secularism (mindset of the world) >> The carnal mind is set on the flesh >> Bound to the earth -- These verses go with verses 12&13. This topic describes the vast majority of all people on the earth. Their minds are set on the things of this world, and they don't know anything else, and they don't have an alternate view. When so many people collectively think and feel alike, what they believe becomes reality for them, but we who allow God to paint His reality in our hearts, we must struggle with the inherent deception of the world. 

(175a) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Form of godliness >> Trying to bend kingdom principles -- These verses go with verses 12&13. There are many people within the Church who walk in the flesh and think they are in the spirit. This is something to avoid like the plague. Is God's gift so subtle and impotent that it is hard to tell whether we have it? If we're not renewing our mind in the Scriptures or have a prayer life, then we should just admit it; we shouldn't say we're walking in the Spirit when we're not; that is witchcraft.

(197a) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Spiritual laziness >> Rebelling Against what God wants you to do >> Refusing to renew your mind – How do we set our mind on the flesh? We don’t have to do anything; the flesh is the default mental state, and it is hostile toward God. However, there is something we must do to set our mind on the Spirit. Unless the Holy Spirit comes to dwell in us, our mind will remain set on the flesh, “set” meaning resolute. Persecution against the saints is the result of hostility of the mind. The world hates us by a knee-jerk reaction without having to think about it. Anybody who has been persecuted knows what it is to look into their faces and see that they are not the ones making the decisions, that these things are happening to them; they are not coming to any conclusions in a process of reasonable thought. Like sex, God didn’t have to instruct Adam and Eve how to be fruitful and multiply; they instinctively knew how to do it. The same is true about the world; they instinctively hate God. See also: Persecution (The world hates God by default); 1The 2,14-16; 21k

(199c) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Frustrating the grace of God >> Frustrating Jesus >> Frustrating the Holy Spirit -- These verses go with verses 12&13

Rom 8,4-6

(6d) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Jesus’ yoke of death -- These verses go with verses 12,13

(105j) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Led by the Spirit >> To the truth >> Led into the mind of Christ

Rom 8-4

(11d) Servant >> The law is our standard of conduct Since the law was given prior to the Spirit, and the Spirit is the only means we have to fulfill the law, we can say that the law was never given to follow, only to expose our sin. The idea is to follow the Spirit and let Him lead us to fulfill the law. The law is like a set of milestones and the Spirit is like a trail through the woods that leads to those milestones. Following the law is like trying to walk through the Alps Mountains, looking across a vast gorge, seeing the next mountain and trying to walk to it, and invariably getting lost. Contrary to that, walking in the Spirit leads us by a mental state that is comprehensible to the fleshly mind, so that we can traverse mountaintops according to the ways of God.

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Rom 8,5-8

(16g) Sin >> Man’s willingness to be evil >> Instinctively acting against righteousness – By instinct those in flesh hate God along with those who belong to Him; even if they wanted to serve Christ they couldn’t, because the flesh cannot please God. They cannot pretend for long to be righteous when they disallow Him His rightful seat in their lives. Some feel the need to be religious but don't want their lives to change to accommodate His will, and their unwilling heart to serve Him will soon be revealed, because their flesh cannot imitate righteousness for long. 

(21e) Sin >> Disobedience >> Unfruitful

(97g) Thy kingdom come >> Attention >> Facing the direction of God’s will >> Focusing your attention on finishing the course – Heb 10,32-36 warns us not to backslide as a protection against falling away from the faith, and this passage describes the process of falling away in detail. Paul in no way is writing to unbelievers; he never did; why would he? Unbelievers are not the audience of Paul’s writings or of the Bible in general. Paul was writing to Christians, and he said pointblank that some of us set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who do this will not be Christians for long, because no Christian can do this without damaging their faith, and if they continue down this road, eventually their faith will erode to nothing. A Christian who sets his mind on the things of the flesh, has already backslidden and on his way to falling away from the faith.

Rom 8,6-8

(162g) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> Addicted to sin >> Being a slave to the sinful nature -- This verse goes with verses 12&13

Rom 8-6

(227c) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Rewards of heaven >> God rewards us for obeying Him >> Fruit of the Spirit is its own reward

Rom 8-7,8

(181a) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Rebelling against God >> Rebelling against the authority of God

Rom 8-7

(52b) Judgment >> Judging Church with world >> Law judges sin >> Law is hostile against us -- There is enmity between man and God, man hates God and God finds fault with him, both because of sin. We in our flesh are hostile against Him, having the fleshly nature that is instinctively rebellious, and His law is just as hostile against us (Col 2,13-15).

Rom 8,9-17

(132b) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Holy Spirit is in God’s people >> Spirit of God in the spirit of man >> Spirit of Jesus -- These verses go with verses 35-39.

Rom 8,9-11

(35g) Gift of God >> God gives Himself to us >> Jesus sends the Holy Spirit

(117e) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Let Jesus do the work >> Let Him work on you -- These verses go with verses 26-34

(227k) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> Dependence on Jesus >> Depending on Jesus to instill His life in us

(254j) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is equal with the Holy Spirit >> Salvation of Jesus’ Spirit -- This passage exonerates the trinity. In verse 9 Paul first refers to the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of God, and the same verse calls Him the Spirit of Christ; then the very next verse uses the phrase "Spirit of Christ". If Paul said that the Spirit of God and the Spirit of Christ are the same Spirit, meaning that God and Christ are the same, to know the truth we only need to agree with him, no interpretation necessary. These verses are clear about the Father and the Son melding together into one Spirit. Now look at verse 11 and see that Paul is not done making the connection by further separating the Father and Son to show that even from a distance they are one and the Same, for the Spirit of God has raised Jesus from the dead, showing Christ in a passive state in the grave being resurrected by the Father. It is the Spirit of God who raised Jesus from the dead, who was addressed as the Spirit of Christ just two verses earlier well within the same context. God in the flesh came down from heaven and gave us the life of His flesh so we could inherit the life of His Spirit through faith in His cross. 

Rom 8-9,10

(68g) Authority >> We have been given authority to be the children of God

(156f) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of salvation >> You will know them by their repentance – Many people claim to have the Holy Spirit dwelling in them, yet they don’t act any different from the world; their conversation is not seasoned with grace (Col 4-6), nor do they speak to edify or are useful in spiritual fellowship. They hold to a kind of righteousness that denies the power of God, and Paul says to avoid such people (2Tim 3,1-5). Does the Holy Spirit really dwell in them? The Church doesn’t have to assume that the Holy Spirit dwells in those who don’t produce the fruit of the kingdom; rather, if anybody does not fill his hands with good works, God has given us authority to assume the Holy Spirit does not dwell in him. There are those who have learned the nomenclature of Christianity, but what they cannot speak are words of faith. There is a difference between the gibberish of religiosity that does not edify and the oracle of God that speaks by a revelation of the Spirit. However, we should keep in mind there are those who struggle in their Christian walk yet are holding tightly to the indwelling Holy Spirit; it happens to us all. Give them time and they will correct their way, but if they don’t, we should not consider them true brethren.

(238g) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Transferring the kingdom >> The kingdom is transferred to the Church >> Jesus will never leave us -- These verses go with verses 35-39

Rom 8-9

(132d) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Holy Spirit is in God’s people >> God gives his spirit as a pledge >> His Spirit is a seal -- This verse goes with verses 16,17. This tells how God in judgment will separate the sheep from the goats (Mat 25-40), and note that He will base His judgment on our deeds, yet he does not need to assess our deeds to determine whether we are sheep or goats; He only needs to see if His Spirit dwells in us, defining us as His sons and daughters and automatically placing us in the category of sheep, and those who do not have the Spirit of God are automatically placed in the category of goats. What this means is that sheep cared for the sick and homeless and imprisoned, etc. because of the Spirit of God who dwells in them, while the goats who did not possess the Spirit of God did not care for them. Therefore, if anyone possesses the Spirit of God, he will produce the fruit of the kingdom.

(217k) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> I never knew you >> Because you never received anything from Him

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Rom 8,10-13

(119i) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Curse of sin is broken >> Curse of death is broken -- These verses go with verses 19-23. Paul depicted the Christian life as though we lived in a cadaver, though we are able to move and function like zombies. Our bodies are part of this creation that is cursed, but our soul is not part of the curse, and for that reason God is able to infuse His spirit into ours through the redemption of Christ, so we can be redeemed, as it were adopted from Satan into God’s household. Therefore, He commands us to die to this creation and live for Him. He has bought rights to us from Satan to adopt us from this world and from this creation that He might give us new bodies some day that we will no longer have to live under a curse.

(134g) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Body of sin >> Our bodies are home to the sinful nature – Our bodies will inherit the promises of God at the First Resurrection, but for now it is destined for the grave. God will give us new bodies made of a substance that exists nowhere in this present universe. The spirit of the believer is alive from the Holy Spirit who is inextricably woven into our spirit, so that we have become one with Him, and our flesh is ignored in the process. God has commanded us to use our bodies to serve Him and do his will. The reason our flesh is reluctant to do His will is that there are no rewards for it in this life, but our bodies will be rewarded in the life to come, which will live forever as our spirit lives. That is, we will be rewarded in heaven for coercing our flesh to serve God. The only reward the flesh receives is in this life is a lack of consequences, for if it were up to our flesh, it would lead us from one addiction to another with consequences following in hot pursuit.

Rom 8-11

(38i) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Resurrection of the righteous -- This verse goes with verse 23. What exactly is raised from the dead? Some say we will be raised with the same body we had in this life and even with the same molecules, but by the time the resurrection occurs our flesh will have deteriorated into the ground. They may be emphasizing the wrong point: it is not our body that will be raised in the same condition in which we died but our soul. We, our soul, will be in the same condition in which we died, so if we died in faith, we will be raised in faith at the First Resurrection, but those who died in sin we will be raised in sin at the second resurrection. Jesus rose from the dead with the same body He had before He died. He was able to cloak His appearance any way He wanted; He could make Himself appear as a perfect stranger or allow His disciples to recognize Him, but before He died He walked on water and performed other miraculous feats in His flesh, so what's the difference? The soul of man never dies; it is the body that dies, so it is no wonder when He raises the dead that we return the same people, and our body will follow suite. We will recognize one another in the resurrection regardless of our appearance. Although we will have physical bodies, they will be spiritual in its quintessential nature. Therefore, our bodies will be equally spiritual as physical.

(59h) Paradox >> Two implied meanings >> Life of the resurrection / Life of the anointing -- The Spirit of God who is responsible for all life lives inside us, whom we believe with all faith and hope that He will give eternal life to our mortal bodies after it expires. How could this arrangement not encourage us now to live above the elementary principles of this world and anoint us to complete God's calling regardless of how impossible it may seem? 

(255e) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> God’s word is Spirit >> God is Spirit -- The Holy Spirit raised Jesus from the dead and prophesied in the Old Testament from ages past; therefore, the word of God and the Holy Spirit did not contradict each another. When we consider how many times the Bible says that God raised Jesus from the dead, then in this verse it says the Holy Spirit raised Him, it divulges the fact that the Father and the Holy Spirit are also one. Therefore, we can conclude that the word of God, whom the Bible claims is Jesus, the Father, and the Holy Spirit are all one. They are all God, though each person holds His individual position within the trinity. 

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Rom 8-12,13

(4i) Responsibility >> The choices you make >> Accountable for your sinful nature – We put to death the deeds of the body through the Holy Spirit. That is, we don’t use the flesh to kill the flesh; instead, we use the Holy Spirit to put to death the deeds of the body. It is like a computer that cannot restore itself by the same operating system that is running; we must introduce a second operating system using files on a different partition to fix the machine. For this reason God has given us His Spirit to kill the sinful passions and desires of the flesh. The Spirit of God is completely opposed to the works of the flesh and seeks to dominate our sinful nature, though He is not by that an enemy of the body but desires to heal us, for the body itself is not sinful, since we can use it also for good.

(6d) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Jesus’ yoke of death -- These verses go with verses 23,24

(25l) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> You’re walking in death if you’re not walking in Jesus Paul said that if we don’t obey Christ, then the only alternative is to live according to the flesh, and in that case we must die. It is not a possibility or a probability; it is an absolute guarantee that we will die. It is a law, that if a person jumps off the top of a building, he must fall to his death. If we live according to the flesh, our relationship with God will die; our hope of eternal life will die, and we will stand before God at the White Throne Judgment and be condemned to eternal damnation in hell where we will die forever. He didn’t say this might happen; he said it must happen. Death means separation from Christ. Sin will separate us from our faith and ultimately salvation, and when the body dies, it will lead to separation from heaven itself, for hell is a place of the dead.

(115b) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Working God’s grace through Christ >> We receive the anointing through Christ -- These verses go with verses 31,32. In the book of Romans, Paul stressed faith as the active ingredient of our salvation, but here he says that we are under obligation to put to death the deeds of the body through the Spirit. This passage is a fine specimen of working with the grace of God. There are two components of our salvation: God’s mercy and His grace. His mercy comprises the works that God does, forgiving our sin without any assistance through the blood of Christ. His grace, though, is the spiritual unction known as the anointing that we use to work with God to overcome our temptations and promote His kingdom in the world. He works His mercy alone, but His grace He works with us and we work with Him. The Spirit that He has given us is the gift of salvation that He planted on our heart as a seed in hope that it would grow. The seed represents God’s mercy, and the plant that results represents His grace. It breaks the soil into the open air and into the sunlight for the world to see.

(118l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Spirit delivers you from the desire to sin

(162g) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> Addicted to sin >> Being a slave to the sinful nature -- This verse goes with verses 20-23.The Bible makes no provision for practicing sin; the only advice it gives is to repent and be free or die. This concept of dying refers to evicting the Holy Spirit from our hearts one step at a time in a process of spiritual death. The Holy Spirit dwells in us through faith, but if faith dies, the Holy Spirit can no longer dwell in us, and our salvation is no longer valid. Christians have a choice between life and death, and this spiritual death can be interpreted in various ways, though it would behoove us to realize that multiple interpretations are really only various perspectives on the same concept. When we a sin, we can confess, repent and are restored, but if we don’t repent, the Holy Spirit takes a step back. If we allow ourselves to become enslaved to sin, the Holy Spirit takes another step back. We must fight for our freedom and struggle to retain it and force the word of God into our lives. If we do this, the Holy Spirit will extract sin from us and put His anointing in its place to become stronger Christians, but if we do nothing and let sin continue to dominate us, we will die in cascading stages of separation from God, starting as symptomatic numbness, progressing to blindness and hardness of heart and of hearing. If repentance still doesn’t occur, further separation from God will ensue, eroding our relationship with God until our faith becomes a distant memory and we become a hollowed-out version of Christianity.

(167d) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Carnality/Secularism (mindset of the world) >> The carnal mind is set on the flesh >> Bound to the earth -- These verses go with verses 4-8

(175a) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Form of godliness >> Trying to bend kingdom principles -- These verses go with verses 4-8

(187h) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Die to the flesh >> Spirit versus the flesh >> Deny the flesh to walk in the Spirit >> More the flesh dies, more the spirit lives -- These verses go with verses 4-8

(190dc) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Masochism (Self-made martyr) >> Figurative suicide >> Die to self for Jesus' sake

(199c) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Frustrating the grace of God >> Frustrating Jesus >> Frustrating the Holy Spirit -- These verses go with verses 4-8. Paul taught a faith-based gospel, while James taught a works-based gospel, and ironically they didn’t contradict each other. Teaching like Paul, Jesus spoke about believing in Him, but in terms of obedience. “He who believes in Me…,” Jesus started many promises with those words, implying that we believe in Him with our body and with our mind. This concept of frustrating the grace of God, some people might think in terms of making God mad or disappointing Him, but it is more than that. Our disobedience can certainly do that, but there is a point of frustration that can eventually lead to spiritual death. We need to understand that the indwelling Holy Spirit and the faith He produces in us are the same, so when a person’s faith dies, it is tantamount to the Holy Spirit no longer dwelling is us.

(230i) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> Mystery of the trinity >> Anointing is the mystery of godliness -- Paul says that we put to death the deeds of the body by the Spirit, not by self abasement, which is all that stems from human effort to traverse our evil nature. When Paul speaks of the Spirit in this context, he is referring to the anointing, which is the term used sparingly in the Bible, mostly appearing in the three epistles of John. Actually, it is used far more in the Old Testament than in the New. We cannot overstate the anointing's relevance, for it is the top subject of the New Testament, though the word itself is rarely used, which indicates that it is often implied. Therefore, we should read with the anointing in mind in order to properly interpret the Scriptures. We could define the anointing as God's response to living the way we will in heaven. That is, it is the result of obedience, given for obedience as students of the word and disciples of prayer, leading to faithfulness and a clear conscience. 

(236g) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Invest in the kingdom >> Invest your treasures into the kingdom >> Invest your flesh

Rom 8,13-18 

(117a) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Rest in His yoke by dying to self >> Working the rest of God – We are under obligation to work with the grace of God to put to death the evil passions and desires of the flesh. This is not a choice, and he said that the reward is that we will live. When he said that, he meant we would have eternal life in heaven, and also we would spiritually live and experience the life of God in this life. If the Holy Spirit dwells in us, He will produce the fruit of the Kingdom, and by that fruit we will experience the life of God. Paul said, “If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit” (Gal 5-25). These are not suggestions; this is not Paul giving us advice; he is saying that as Christians we are obligated to work with the grace of God to kill the deeds of the flesh by the Spirit. 

Rom 8-13

(254c) Trinity >> Holy Spirit’s relationship between Father and Son >> Jesus is the life of the Spirit >> We live because He is life >> We live because we died with Him -- Jesus died and rose again on our behalf so we would die to the sins of the flesh for the purpose of living in the Spirit. This living and walking in the Spirit refers to having an anointing from God, which acts as a pledge for the type of blessing we will enjoy in heaven, only on a grander scale. Refusing to walk in the sins of the flesh is how Jesus lived, which led Him to be crucified. God will not ask us to hang on a cross for Him, but He will ask you to live like His Son, which takes much sacrifice and promises to radically change your lives, and the world won't like us.

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Rom 8,14-17 

(33c) Gift of God >> God is our Father >> Believers are children of promise

(35f) Gift of God >> God gives Himself to us >> Father sends the Holy Spirit – How many people are actually being led by the Spirit? We should be able to tell by their conversation, because they would be talking about it. The process of being led by the Spirit is developing the hearing ear and doing what He says, but this process is not happening in many people these days. We should listen to Peter who said, “Brethren, be all the more diligent to make certain about His calling and choosing you; for as long as you practice these things, you will never stumble” (2Pet 1-10). We need to examine ourselves as Paul said in 2Cor 13-5, “Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith…! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you-unless indeed you fail the test?” We look to each other for our standard of faith, and decide that the smallest amount is all we need, and so we feel good about having the faith of a mustard seed and feel we're on the road to heaven, having heard that this is all the faith we need to get to heaven, which takes up one small corner of our heart devoted to Christ, the rest we dedicate to this world. This is Christianity today, better known as apostasy. Jesus expected the mustard seed to grow into a respectable plant. See also: Apostasy (Caring more about the world than our faith); Rom 14-7,8; 192b

(105k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Led by the Spirit to the truth >> Spirit will lead you to Christ

(156g) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of salvation >> Manifesting the Holy Spirit is evidence of salvation

Rom 8-15

(24a) Sin >> Poverty (Oppression) >> Fear of hardship (punishment) – We have good reason to put Jesus at the center of our hearts and allow Him to take over every aspect of our lives. This is what He wants in each of us, and if He doesn’t get it, whatever remains of us reduces to varying levels of idolatry. Probably the most common fallacy that the Church believes is that God has given us this life to enjoy, of course within the framework of faith. This is not at all what the Bible teaches. When we look to Moses and the Israelites, how God delivered them with a mighty hand from their 300-year slavery to the Egyptians, once He delivered them, God claimed ownership of them. He commanded them to obey Him; there were no legitimate life-decisions the Israelites made for themselves. They could decide where to plopped their tent on one side of a bramble or the other, but when it came time to leave and which way they should go, this was not their choice. God was adamant about having absolute control over them, so if He didn’t get it, He would make them wander in the wilderness until that generation died who rebelled against Him. He then worked with the next generation and led them into the promise land. We serve the same God, and He will do the same to us if we refuse to serve Him. The Church is currently wandering in the wilderness without any direction, and in our wanderings we may develop a wonderful career and have all kinds of money and live in a beautiful house and drive nice cars and raise healthy children and see our grandchildren, but our spirit will be lost in a wilderness of indifference. See also: Church's last days' wilderness will mirror Jesus' wilderness; Mat 19-1,2; 143g

(36l) Gift of God >> Adopted >> We are adopted by the Spirit -- This verse goes with verse 23. Adoption is perhaps the greatest possible expression of compassion; it always attempts to help people in regard to their basic needs: food, clothing and shelter. Compassion takes on a lifelong project, adults adopting children who have no hope of a future and those children are recognized by the state as legally belonging to them as though they were born to them. God has adopted us; He purchased us with His own blood and adopted us from the devil, and we belong to Him.

(163e) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> Being slaves of men >> Being a slave to fear

(208k) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Personal relationship >> Being married to God >> Emotional relationship – This is the experience of every Christian; we cry to Him, especially on those days when we feel badgered, persecuted, maligned and tormented by the world all around us. We cry, Abba Father! We suffer with Christ after He placed His Spirit in our heart, guaranteeing suffering in this world. Sometimes the faith of unbelievers is more caustic than their unbelief, riddled with deception and insincerity, the things they use to defend themselves against the God that loves them. Our cry to God is the greatest evidence that we are His children. It may not be proof to anyone else, but it is to us. We want so much to be with Him, to be in heaven and to live with Him. We do His will, biding our time trying to please Him every way we can, but we are counting the seconds, every day we know we are closer to the day we will finally meet Him face to face, ushered into His presence by angels. We spend our whole lives waiting for these words, “Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master” (Mat 25-21).

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Rom 8,16-25

(98h) Thy kingdom come >> Endurance (Thorn in the flesh) >> (Faith à Suffering à Glory) -- The Bible says that the new creation, beginning with Christ and then the Church, comes through suffering, likening it to the birthing process. The Bible uses this analogy in many instances, because it well depicts the idea of suffering with a reward. It also implies a miraculous event over which the woman (analogous of the Church) is not in control. Knowing that the last days precedes the new creation, we are more likely living in the last days than any other generation before us. Therefore, the reference to suffering may well be talking about us and perhaps some of our own experiences in the near future, so buckle up and keep your eyes trained on Jesus, who is our reward. See also: New creation; Rom 8-18; 226f

Rom 8,16-23

(38g) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Resurrection of freedom

(188h) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Sorrow >> Grieving over your own loss >> Grieving over your sinful nature – There are many people who suffer, but not all their suffering is for Christ's sake. There are some who suffer from birth defects, injuries, being born into an environment of drug addiction and prostitution, and the list continues indefinitely. God will reward none of this suffering; rather, the sufferings of Christ that God intends to reward are those who suffer for His sake. If one is born into a household of crack heads and prostitution and there discover Christ, God will reward him for suffering that environment for Jesus’ sake, but if he is not a child of God, then all his suffering is in vain. The suffering of Christ is all about enduring the assault against the Spirit of God who dwells in us. We won’t be reward for the sins we commit that cause us to suffer, but we will be rewarded for the sins of others that negatively impact us and we patiently endure them. Our suffering is on a spiritual level. The world can persecute our flesh, but underneath it all is a spiritual endurance that carries a far greater reward. This spiritual suffering is something that happens to us every day. This mental and spiritual anguish carries the greatest reward in the Kingdom of Heaven, for God will be pleased with us that we sought to preserve our relationship with Him.

Rom 8-16,17

(36f) Inheritance (Key verse)

(36k) Gift of God >> Inheritance >> Jesus is our inheritance – We are the children of God and inheritors of all that belongs to Jesus, and what does He own? He owns the entire creation from His Father and every creation that will be created! Since Jesus is part of the trinity, being co-owner of the creation, and since we are His brothers and sisters, we are fellow heirs of all things through Him. We are the children of God, according to the analogy of Sarah and Hagar, Sarah's maid, recorded in Gal 4,21-31. Abraham and Sarah grew weary of waiting for God and sought to produce a son through Hagar, but the promise was to come through Sarah and not Hagar. Ishmael then was born to Hagar according to the flesh, blood relative with Isaac through Abraham, but Isaac was blood relative to Sarah, and so we see that the promise was spoken to Abraham, but fulfilled through Sarah, for she is our spiritual mother. Ishmael fathered slaves, while Isaac fathered Israel, the nation whom God created by His word. They are children of promise, and we have inherited their position through faith in God's word. In this life we are stewards of the things of God, but in the next life we will be co-owners of all things with Christ. See also: Abraham (We have inherited God's promise to him); Tit 3,4-6; 103d

(132d) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Holy Spirit is in God’s people >> God gives his spirit as a pledge >> His Spirit is a seal  -- These verses go with verse 9. We bring the gospel to our neighborhoods and talk to people about having faith in Jesus, and we often hear this comment: ‘I think I’m going to heaven.’ Most evangelists at this point open the Bible to 1Jn 5-13 that says, “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.” If a person were truly born of God, he would know he was going to heaven. A person could perform signs, wonders and miracles and encourage many people to believe in Jesus for their eternal salvation, yet none of this would personally afford him confidence in his own salvation like the testimony of the indwelling Holy Spirit. We know we belong to Him, not because we read the Bible and not because we do great acts of altruism, but because we have the witness of the Holy Spirit dwelling in us. Isn’t this what Paul was saying in the love chapter? “If I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing” (1Cor 13-3). If we don’t have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, all our acts of kindness are for nothing. We cannot use them to increase our confidence in going to heaven. The indwelling Holy Spirit proves it to the believer better than anything, but only to himself; it is not proof to anyone else. This proof Paul called a seal (2Cor 1-22).

(155g) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Witness of the believer >> Holy Spirit bears witness of the believer – Paul was talking about the witness of the Holy Spirit as the Christian’s greatest personal testimony. His good works and his words of faith testify to the brethren that he is a bona fide Christian, but the witness of the Spirit testifies to the believer that he belongs to Christ. That is, the witness of the indwelling Holy Spirit means more to the believer than the testimony of his life. A Christian can struggle in fleshly bondage to various sins, yet his confidence is not shaken and his faith not swayed, because he has the witness in himself that he is a child of God, and by this he will overcome.

(207ca) Salvation >> God makes promises on His terms >> Eternal security? >> God will accept you into heaven if you overcome – Being born of God is not an experience but a spiritual state in which we have become heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, “IF” we suffer with Him. “If” is one of the biggest words in the Bible; we don’t want this word to bite us. If we are unwilling to suffer with Him, then neither will we be glorified with Him, for if we are unwilling to endure the sufferings of Christ, it is evidence that we do not belong to Him. We are not talking about a person having a lapse in his faith; people are consistently inconsistent, thus we are talking about a person unwillingness to suffer for His name. There is no greater showing of faith. A person can get involved in ministry, stand in front of a crowd and preach from the pulpit or be a member of the choir or be part of the maintenance crew. These are all signs of faith, but a greater sign of faith is willingness to suffer shame for Christ.

Rom 8-17,18

(190b) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Masochism (Self-made martyr) >> Taking your sinful nature by force -- These verses go with verses 22&23

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Rom 8,18-23

(225j) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Parables >> Parables about nurturing the people of God >> Parables about a woman in labor giving birth to a child

(238e) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Transferring the kingdom >> The kingdom is transferred to the Church >> New creation >> The new creation is our spiritual identity -- When God created the heavens and the earth, He saw that it was good. However, what we see is death and destruction, the degeneration and decay of all things. I don't think God would have called that good. When Satan rebelled, God cursed him and everything he owned, which is the entire universe, and when Adam and Eve fell into sin, they were removed from the Garden of Eden and their failing bodies assumed the patterned of the dying creation. When God makes all things new, He will include us in the making of it, since we are the first fruits of the new creation, Jesus being the first fruit of the first fruits. According to what we read in Scripture and see with our eyes, the creation constitutes the substance of our bodies, so will the new creation. Paul said we are the "first fruits of the Spirit;" did you hear the word Spirit? Yes, the next creation will be made of a spiritual substance; God will create our spiritual bodies first, and then pattern the rest of the universe (our inheritance) after us, which can no longer get old or degenerate or ever die. One day the stars will be within our grasp. See also: New creation; Rom 8-18; 226f

Rom 8,18-21

(109d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Revelations of the Holy Spirit >> Revelation of the true children of God -- When God sets up His new heavenly kingdom, He will be the center of it, and we will be right beside Him in all that happens throughout eternity. Paul spelled it out clearly when he said that the creation is waiting for us to be revealed. That means it is contingent on us, like the conductor of an orchestra. In this silly life we do what we can to scratch out some kind of meaning to our existence, but we're fighting against entropy, futility and an innate meaninglessness, which is part of the curse that was sown into the fabric of this creation that is dying with us. This is in stark contrast to the next life and the next creation that will support life eternal. Nevertheless, our purpose in heaven will continue to be what it is here, to serve the Lord and to love Him with all our heart and to love our fellow created beings; if we do that we will discover a purposeful existence in this life.

Rom 8-18

(94c) Thy kingdom come >> Perspective on this life >> This life is temporary

(226f) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Rewards of the Kingdom of Heaven >> Reserved in heaven >> Eternal rewards – Paul said this as encouragement to continue enduring our hardships and difficulties and not to waver in our faith but to stand strong, because there is tremendous hope and promise in the life to come for those who love Christ. It hasn’t been fully revealed what we will inherit; He didn’t explain it all to us because it wouldn’t have helped. We only need to look in the sky and see the stars, or better, use a telescope to see whole galaxies and realize that He is infinite. Therefore, we should understand that to serve God certainly has a reward, one that goes far beyond anything we could imagine. He told us what is coming through certain parables, saying, “Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your master” (Mat 25,14-23); and in Lk 19,12-26 each one was given a mina and later reported how many minas more he made. Each mina represents a city that we will receive in payment for our faithful service to Him. What we accomplish for the Lord has a bearing on our inheritance, but our ability to comprehend what is coming has not been given because it is infinite. See also: New creation; 233k / New heavens and a new earth (Our inheritance is infinite and eternal); Rom 11,33-36; 214a  

(233k) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the glory of God >> Seek His glory without wavering >> Seek His glory through hardship – One aspect of the glory that is to be revealed to us is the simple fact that we will be in heaven, referring to the parable Jesus spoke about the crew laboring under the hot sun, each person getting a denarius, regardless how long they worked (Mat 20,1-16). In addition to the glory of heaven will be the rewards we have amassed on earth. See also: New creation; Rom 8,18-23; 238e

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Rom 8,19-25 

(121c) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Hope >> Expectation >> Hope is the expectation to receive >> Expectation based on hope – Paul mostly used the word “faith” throughout the book of Romans, but now he uses the word hope (v24), making a distinction between the two. Hope is the expectation to receive, being a manifestation of faith. Through hope we can do many things; conversely, from a lack of hope there are many things we cannot do; i.e., without hope we cannot wait. When we think of people who are really struggling in their faith, such as in wartime, in many cases everything is taken from them until all that is left is hope, and it is the one thing they use to get through each day; they hope that the war will end. Maybe they have a little chocolate stashed and it gives them a little hope, a reprieve from their difficulties. Some people hope for many things; they’re young, so they hope one day to get married and have a family and find a descent career that pays the bills and gives them a reasonable standard of living somewhere above the poverty line. So they hope for these things, and the things they hope are realistic; a person might hope to win a million dollars or to marry a billionaire, but the likelihood of it is remote, so their hope is unrealistic. Other people hope for things that have no value; a drug addict hopes to get high again. Things that are of little value or are unlikely to come true are generally not considered hopeful, in that a genuine hope bases its expectations around things that are realistic and meaningful. The Christian hope is that we will inherit eternal life in paradise and receive a resurrected body that cannot die. This sounds like a fairy tale to many, but to those who believe in God, it is very realistic. Our hope is based primarily on the creation itself that it requires a creator; therefore God exists. Our hope is also based on Israel’s religious past; they exist, therefore what the Bible says happened. What the prophets have written have come to pass, and they also have written things we hope for the future. Paul said in this same chapter, “The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God” (v16). We instinctively know that God loves us, and we read in the Bible that it is true, and the Spirit whom He has given confirms it. How could God have created the universe without love, since love and wisdom are sisters, and we see knowledge and wisdom indelibly stamped into its substance? All these things are just as realistic as the young person who hopes to get married and raise a family. We know that God exists, and the things that are written in the Bible are things that He has done, and there is no other written testimony about God that better explains Him and His works.

(126k) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Patience >> Have patience for the return of Christ >> The physical return of Christ

(224c) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Description of heaven >> Describing the kingdom after he makes all things new >> Description of the new creation

Rom 8,19-23

(24e) Sin >> Poverty (Forms of fear) >> Waiting creates anxiety – Paul used a little anthropomorphism, saying that the creation itself was anxious for the unveiling of God's kingdom, treating the earth and the entire universe as though it were a living organism. The creation is anxiously waiting for God to deliver it from the curse, longing for the freedom of Christ, which has come first to His children. We watch nature shows and see lions attacking wildebeests, cheetahs killing gazelles and hyenas stealing their meals. We could look at the insect world that is exponentially more violent, and then we could look even closer in a microscope to see the world of bacteria and viruses and the war they wage against the medical field. We could look still closer at atoms warring with other atoms for electrons, stripping them from their valence shells to form ionic and covalent bonds. The creation is at war with itself on every imaginable level with the least being least and the greatest being greatest, but in the creation to come and God's Kingdom, the least is greatest and the greatest is least. This makes all the difference, setting the groundwork for a perfect world where everything is balanced, and where all suffering and anxiety will finally dissolve into peace. See also: Curse; 119i / Creation is evidence of God; 2Cor 5,18-20; 5e

(33d) Gift of God >> God is our Father >> Kingdom belongs to the children of God – Figuratively speaking, the creation knows that its creator is God, but it looks to us, knowing that we are a sign of its imminent redemption. In eternity we will not treat the new creation like man treated the earth throughout the millennia, but will care for it and nurture it. When God commanded Adam to subdue the earth, He didn’t mean to put it under his thumb as a tyrant, but to subdue the curse. In the new creation there won’t be a curse and thus no need to subdue anything. Instead, man will be gardeners and the creation itself will be good soil prepared for the seed, and mankind will plant his seed in the fertile soil of the new creation, and it will bring forth fruit and life forever. See also: New creation; Rom 8,19-22; 33l

(44d) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Complete >> Finish the course

(119i) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Curse of sin is broken >> Curse of death is broken -- These verses go with verses 10-13. For the creation to anticipate its freedom from corruption, suggests that it knows it is cursed, and at one time the creation was not cursed. We look at other planets and realize that what has happened to them has happened to the entire universe, and we quickly learn to appreciate our planet that at least supports life, making it unique that way. For God to do this, it would seem a massive sacrifice to essentially destroy His own creation. When God created Adam and Eve, He gave them the earth, but that was his only inheritance; He did not give them the entire creation. Rather, the curse that has afflicted the creation was God’s response to Lucifer’s rebellion, since the entire universe was his inheritance. See also: Curse; 24e

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Rom 8,19-22

(33l) Gift of God >> Believers are special to God >> He has given us all things – The hope of creation is that we will take on immortality and finally be rid of the curse; therefore, how much more will it look to us after we inherit the new heavens and the new earth? God will subject the universe to us, and we will take care of it as God commanded Adam and Eve to garden this planet, though he miserably failed because of sin. After He removes the curse and makes all things new, He will give the new creation as our inheritance, and we will garden it to Christ’s specifications throughout eternity. Figuratively, the entire creation looks forward to the resurrection of the saints. We will be the first of God’s creation to be rescued from the curse in which we find its current state (when Paul speaks of the creation, He is talking about the entire universe). The saints are first to be clothed with this new substance that is devoid of corruption; our new bodies will never die, and we will no longer be in want or need or fear of anything. God will create the new heavens and the new earth at the end of the Millennium, but the First Resurrection will occur before the Millennium. It says that the creation itself rejoices with anticipation of the First Resurrection, knowing it is next in line to receive new heavenly bodies, devoid of the curse. Stars and galaxies that cannot die will remain forever positioned wherever God places them. See also: New creation; Rom 8,16-25; 98h

(34d) Gift of God >> Believer owns everything >> New creation belongs to us

(70jb) Authority >> Believer’s authority >> We have been given authority over all creation >> We have authority over the elements -- In this passage it is clear that we will certainly be caretakers of the next creation, even as we were called to be caretakers of this planet, though we have mostly abandoned that position by evidence of the way we abuse the earth and our fellow man. With authority comes great responsibility. Obviously, in the next creation sin will be capped, so it will not get in our way again, ensuring the fulfillment of our calling and the success of our endeavors. God will set up everything for a utopian society and we through His will and assistance will create that society, as He leads us full-circle back to the garden of Eden, where we will be magistrates of those who live there, and their garden will infinitely expand throughout eternity, and we will reign over His people.

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Rom 8,20-23

(162g) Works of the devil >> Being a slave to the devil (Addictions) >> Bondage >> Addicted to sin >> Being a slave to the sinful nature -- This verse goes with verses 6-8. We Christians can't wait to take off this mortality and put on immortality. We are not alone in this death, for the whole creation longs to be set free from its slavery to corruption and longs for God to integrate His life into all creation. From animate to inanimate, all things will rejoice with the life of God. When we get to heaven, we will then truly realize just how hard a life we had in a dead world with the miracle of physical life clinging to organic matter. This sounds like Pantheism, which is the notion that God in everything. The only thing wrong with Pantheism is that those who adhere to its precepts tend to worship the creation instead of God, believing that God already inhabits all things when this is obviously not the case. The true meaning of Pantheism defines the physical state of heaven, but we are not there yet. God may be in everything in the sense that He holds all things together (Col 1-16,17), but He has withheld His essence from the creation. We know a little about heaven by the Spirit that He has given us, but our bodies have yet to be infused with the life of God in the same way that our spirit is alive. See also: New heavens and a new earth (Pantheism is a reality of the new creation); Heb 12,27-29; 243g

(250h) Priorities >> God’s prerequisites >> Sequence of priorities >> The first is a precondition for what comes after it (Cause and effect) -- These verses go with verses 28-30

Rom 8-22,23

(190b) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Masochism (Self-made martyr) >> Taking your sinful nature by force -- These verses go with verses 17&18. The part of Christianity that is uninviting to those who do not share our faith is that after we have cultivated faith to believe in God, we find that our bodies are not included in this salvation. It must wait for the First Resurrection before it will be redeemed, and being expected to wait is blasphemy in the ears of sinful flesh. Our body still wants to behave contrary to the will of God; it does not rejoice in our salvation. It does not believe after all the work we've done in renewing our mind in the Scriptures and interacting with God in prayer. There is only one solution: we must take our sinful nature by force and make our bodies do what we want, like a strong-willed child fighting his mother all the way to the barber shop. We long for the day we can shed this cocoon and live in compliance to the will of God without our flesh nagging us to sin. 

Rom 8-23,24

(6d) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Jesus’ yoke of death -- These verses go with verses 4-6

Rom 8-23

(36l) Gift of God >> Adopted >> We are adopted by the Spirit -- This verse goes with verse 15

(38i) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Resurrection of the righteous -- This verse goes with verse 11

Rom 8-24,25

(99n) Thy kingdom come >> Perseverance (Working to keep in motion) >> Persevere in faith

(107c) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Hearing from God >> Word of God creates faith

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Rom 8,26-34

(117e) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Let Jesus do the work >> Let Him work on you -- These verses go with verses 1-3. God searches the hearts and minds of His people, and He knows what the mind of the Spirit is thinking, because it is His own mind, and just as we have a Spirit, so God has a Spirit. Our Spirit is our own, and we can share ourselves with others, but we cannot share the spirit or ourselves, whereas God can and does share His Spirit with all His people. The Spirit of God represents His essence, and just as we know our own mind, so God knows His, and He wants us to assume the mind of Christ. God doesn’t think the same about everybody; He deals with each person individually, and His goal is to unite the individuals to make them one people, the Church. When God searches our heart, He compares our mind with His, and where we differ He seeks to conform us to His image, so we think the thoughts of God and agree with Him. See also: Jesus Christ (We reflect His deity); Col 2-9,10; 61b

Rom 8,26-28

(248b) Priorities >> God’s priorities >> The will of God >> God exercises His will

Rom 8-26,27

(9g) Responsibility >> Strengthen us by the sword of His Spirit >> Through prayer – These verses comprise the most straight-forward passage in the Bible pertaining to a specific kind of prayer, speaking in tongues. Now that we are on the subject, here’s a quick overview of the topic. Basically, there are three kinds of speaking in tongues: there is one we do by ourselves in our own prayer closet, (that one pertains to this verse), and there is one we do in public, such as in church, which requires interpretation. There is a third kind that is much like the second, except that it requires no interpretation in that we are actually speaking another language that a foreigner in our hearing can understand. In any and all cases the goal is edification. To research this, begin looking in 1Corinthians chapter 14. Going back to the type of speaking in tongues that pertains to this verse (the one we do in our prayer closet), this is the type most commonly abused in Pentecostal and Charismatic churches, the prayer language that God intended to be used for personal edification only. They are wrong to use their prayer language in a public setting, because it has no power to edify the hearers. If they feel spiritual, then they need an interpreter or else speak in a language that someone can understand. 

(29h) Gift of God >> God is on our side >> He fights our battles for us – We live in a body of sinful flesh, causing the indwelling Holy Spirit and our sinful nature to be at constant war with each other. The flesh understands the wisdom of the world, and when we are spiritually struggling, our flesh speaks to us in a language we understand and counsels us against the Lord. To counter that we pray in the spirit, which is a language that we don't understand because it is spiritual, and eventually God breaks through the fog. There is a place for tongues, but the purpose of coming together as a church is to edify one another (1Cor 14-6,26). In Pentecostal circles we often find many people speaking in tongues at the same time; Paul considered a church that did this to be out of order, since there is no edification occurring. Those who practice this kind of service prove that edification is not their primary goal, but it was to Paul.

(35i) Gift >> God gives Himself to us >> Receiving the Holy Spirit as a form of baptism

(83i) Thy kingdom come >> Jesus intercedes for us >> He prepares us to meet the Father – We pray in the Spirit to uncover the sin in our heart and to learn the truth about God, who wants to intercede for us. We cry to Him with groaning too deep for words, though the darkness within us we cannot shed. Prayer is a form of spiritual intercession. We need to pray this way because of our condition as sinners, living in a body that wants to sin. God wants to answer our prayers, so when we pray He intercedes for us, because of our continuous need for repentance, always coming closer to Him, exposing the darkness in us that hides in our heart,

(95a) Speaking In Tongues (Key verse)

(95b) Thy kingdom come >> Positive attitude >> Speaking in tongues >> Groaning too deep for words -- There are many times when we have feelings too great for thoughts, or when we have thoughts for which we have not yet found words. Speaking in our prayer language can place them, finding the thoughts that we felt too deep in our spirit to retrieve other than through prayer. We pray in tongues until God brings the revelation of His mystery that we can finally put into words. 

(229d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Kingdom grows by itself >> God causes the growth >> Kingdom grows according to the will of God

Rom 8-27

(74f) Thy kingdom come >> Heart is man’s central value system >> Where value interprets the man

(212g) Sovereignty >> God is infinite >> God is all knowing >> Nothing hidden >> God knows your heart – This passage is talking about praying in tongues. Paul said we have the mind of Christ (1Cor 2-16), only because we have been seeking Him and have discovered aspects of Him that He has revealed to us. On many occasions we don’t know what He is thinking, and so we pray in tongues so that we may know, and in those moments God reveals certain things about Himself and about us. God knows our thoughts and knows when we spiritually step away from Him, and many times the changes He desires to bring to us come in the form of conviction regarding sin, because He cannot reveal His will to us until we repent. He leads us into repentance and into further depths of Himself while He reveals our sinful nature. Dying to self for some people comes with a hefty side order of stark fear. If there is any aspect of the Christian that makes Him wonder if he really wants to identify with Christ and if the trail he is following will really bring him fulfillment, it is the subject of dying to self.

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Rom 8,28-30

(91f) Thy kingdom come >> The called >> Walking along the narrow way >> Walking in God’s calling is to fulfill His purpose -- We all want to feel that we have purpose in life, but very few of us actually know our calling from God. We who seek purpose should understand that to fulfill our calling is our purpose. Question: how do we come to know our calling from God and to what extent must we go to discover it? It takes a life in the word of God and the same in prayer before we will come to know God, and in knowing Him we will do what He has prepared for us. Knowing God is the basis of everyone's calling.

(250h) Priorities >> God’s prerequisites >> Sequence of priorities >> The first is a precondition for what comes after it (Cause and effect) -- These verses go with verses 20-23. Life consists of a sequence of developments that are in one way or another linked together. For example, when a tornado blows down our house, it causes things to happen, which causes other things to happen in a cause-and-effect chain of events. With the people who love and serve God He takes that chain that is transpiring and directs it toward the good that He has prepared for them for His namesake. Instead of allowing evil to consume His beloved with no countermeasure, and instead of letting their misfortune continue down the road of randomness leading to darkness, despair and poverty, God turns their circumstances in His favor and toward His calling in their lives so they can achieve His goals and accomplish His works that He has prepared for them. Those who love God have testimonies of His faithfulness that they can tell others and encourage the despondent with hope, who are going through similar trials.

Rom 8-28

(29k) Gift of God >> God is our advocate >> He knows how to supply our needs

(228m) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> God causes all things to work together – This is one of the most adored verses in the Bible. Paul is saying that God causes adverse circumstances to work in His favor and to the benefit of those who love Him. For example, He turned the bloody mass of the Son of God, flogged beyond recognition and nailed to a cross to die, into good for those who would believe in Him for eternal life. He does the same to the evil in our lives to spite the harm that comes to us, to spite the robber that has stolen from us, to spite the murderer who has killed our loved one, and to the restoration of those who love Him. He works in the lives of those who are fulfilling His calling. These are the ones He is able to turn the evil that has happened to them into good, but to those who are bitter and judgmental and unforgiving and hateful, lawbreakers, criminals, and those who hold to a form of godliness but deny His power, God cannot turn their evil into good. He operates through faith, and so He turns the evil they do to those who love Him into good for the sake of the beloved. When natural disasters occur, hurricanes, earthquakes, tsunamis, for those who follow Christ, He turns all their suffering and loss into good, but it takes faith and patience to see it.

Rom 8-29,30

(220c) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> Predestined according to His foreknowledge – There are two terms: foreknowledge and predestination together in one verse to show the difference between them. Foreknowledge is just that; God knows the end from the beginning. He knew us before we were conceived in our mother’s womb, even from the beginning of eternity, but predestination is an active term. Foreknowledge is passive; He simply knows the future, whereas predestination means He is doing something to make sure what He knows will come to pass. On a smaller scale, His calling refers to things we do to ensure God’s purpose is fulfilled as a type of predestination. God’s foreknowledge can say how many people love Him, while predestination guarantees that we personally conform to His image. Foreknowledge characterizes God sitting in His chair and thinking about the future, while predestination depicts Him standing from His chair and doing things He knows must happen. That is, everything God does is predestined. There are forces at work in the world that want to obfuscate the purpose of God that are directed against His elect, causing Him to occasionally get off His chair and ensure His will is done. He does things for His people to make sure they give their heart to Jesus and live for Him as the elect.

Rom 8-29

(29i) Gift of God >> God is on our side >> God identifies with us >> Jesus is our brother

(43c) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Conform to the character of Jesus’ image

(238d) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> The kingdom is transferred to the Church >> Jesus is born again from the dead -- Jesus was never born again in the sense that we must be born-again. We started without the Holy Spirit present in our lives and then were introduced to Him the day we commended our spirit to God. With Jesus, though, He was physically born with the Holy Spirit already dwelling in Him as the person of His soul, and according to Rev 1-5 He was first born from the dead at His resurrection. If Jesus is called the first-born, then there must be more to follow Him; that would be the Church. However, if we are to follow in His physical resurrection, then we must first be born of the Spirit. When we are born-again, we enter the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit who continually leads us throughout our lives into God's calling, which will be finalized at the resurrection of the righteous. Anybody who believes in God for the salvation of their souls will someday rise from the dead in a similar manner that Jesus did without the chance of ever dying again.

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Rom 8-30

(120f) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Forgiveness is an act of mercy >> God passes over our sins – According to Scripture we know that we were justified by the simple act of believing in Him, forgiven all the wickedness we did before we got saved. Now that we are Christians, God continues to justify us according to our faith as we continue to live for Him as the elect. We perform the work that God has prepared for us, setting us apart from the world, and God sanctifies us through these things. We come to realize that the sanctifying work of God’s salvation is not about our faith when we first believed but is about our continuing faith in Him, representing the glory of God in each person, until we enter eternity to discover the glory that He has prepared for us that far exceeds anything imaginable in this life. There is a one-to-one correspondence between our obedience in this life and the glory we will enjoy in the life to come.

(234ab) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the glory of God >> God chooses us as we seek His glory >> As we follow Him

Rom 8,31-39

(28b) Gift of God >> God is our advocate >> God protects us through our faith – Paul rhetorically asks us who is against us, and the answer, being self-evident, is that no one is against us, though we may have many enemies. Paul was a man who had more enemies than probably anyone, yet none of them wielded any power over him, for how can we have any real enemies if God is on our side? Paul was speaking more about eternity than he was about this life, because in this life it was true that he did have many enemies, but not in eternity. They will either get saved and be his brethren in heaven, or they will have ultimately rejected Christ and found their place in hell, where Paul will never have to deal with them again. We need to develop the mindset of eternity now and begin to look at our problems and our enemies as we will in heaven, impotent to harm us. Jesus said that many of us will be persecuted for our faith, yet not a hair of our heads will perish (Lk 21,16-19). We need to think in these terms now; “yes I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that have no more that they can do. But I will warn you whom to fear: fear the One who, after He has killed, has authority to cast into hell; yes, I tell you, fear Him” (Lk 12-4,5). The one who commits his faith to Jesus and fears God has nothing else to fear. See also: Persecution; Rom 8,35-39; 238g

(29j) Gift of God >> God is on our side >> God identifies with us >> He is our advocate – If anyone is going to bring a charge against God’s elect, it will be God, but His ministry of intercession toward us is for grace and peace, mercy and goodness, and so no charges will be filed against us from heaven, and the charges that man would file against us are inconsequential compared to the divine charges filed against them for falsely accusing us, unless of course we have sinned. Then we will get what we deserve without partiality, and not even God will defend us. Instead, God’s plan for us is to maintain a blameless reputation to stand in a superior court with God’s justice and a clear conscience. Christ would condemn us except that He went to the cross for our redemption, and we believe in Him. What about our accusers; do they believe in Jesus? He bled and died for our sins; more than that, He was raised for our justification and is now seated at the right hand of the power of God and intercedes for us.

(39e) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Victory >> Jesus overcame the world

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Rom 8-31,32

(34e) Gift of God >> Believer owns everything >> All things belong to us – God will give to those who come to Him literally everything He owns. He will even give us His throne; we will sit next to Jesus, who is sitting at His Father’s right-hand. He will withhold nothing from us because of His great love for us. The depth of God’s love is something we will never understand about Him. When we look at ourselves, we don’t see what He sees. When we think of our own children and the love we have for them, they look at us and they can see the love in our eyes for them, and it flatters them, but they don’t know what we see in them. We love their innocence, remembering ourselves at their age. God sees Himself in us just as we see ourselves in our own children, except God’s love is multiplied to infinity, and this is the part we don’t understand about God.

(35b) Gift of God >> God is willing to Give >> He is generous with the Spirit of His Son – God is not finished giving us His Son, but will continue giving throughout all eternity. The things He wants to give are the things that bring glory to God and make for peace in building up the body of Christ.

(36d) Gift of God >> Gifts from the Holy Spirit >> All good things are gifts from God

(115b) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Working God’s grace through Christ >> We receive the anointing through Christ -- These verses go with verses 12,13

(209k) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Jesus is our sacrifice >> Jesus paid the price for us >> Father sent His son to the cross

(227h) Kingdom of God >> God working in you >> Depending on Jesus to impart His gifts into us >> He gives us what we give to each other

Rom 8-33,34

(18b) Sin >> Unrighteous judgment >> Condemning God’s people – “Who will bring a charge against God’s elect?” Anyone who would condemn us, God will judge. This statement doesn’t mean God thinks His people are free of guilt; rather, it means no one has authority to judge us. The world regularly condemns Christians for sinning, but God does not stand with the world in agreement even when His people are guilty as charged, because a Christian’s righteousness and his sin is between he and God and nobody else. If a Christian commits a crime, then the judicial system will do its job and prosecute him, but the sin remains between he and God. Within this context, God simply does not recognize the world’s judgment against His people. When we sin, this is what God has against us, not that we disobeyed the laws of man, but that we disobeyed the Holy Spirit. Paul said in 1Cor 4-3,4, “But to me it is a very small thing that I may be examined by you, or by any human court; in fact, I do not even examine myself. For I am conscious of nothing against myself, yet I am not by this acquitted; but the one who examines me is the Lord.” People can judge us all they want, but their judgments are in no way related to the way God thinks and feels about us. The moment Paul sinned, he repented of it, putting it in the past and making it irrelevant to God, thus to himself. The only thing that matters is the present; God lives in the present; He calls Himself I AM, so when we live in a state of repentance, the past is irrelevant. He wants us to repent for the sake of our future, so we can embrace His plans for us.

(243f) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Persecuting the kingdom >> Persecuting the Church of God

Rom 8-34

(38d) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death (Satan) >> Resurrection brings about judgment -- So many things took place at the resurrection of Jesus Christ; God judged man's sin on the cross, coalesced with His perfect life, and the resurrection proved His victory over sin and death. It would have been meaningless to achieve victory over sin without showing some kind of proof of it. This makes the resurrection just as vital as His blood sacrifice, being the other side of the same coin. His death and resurrection are a single unit; they are not separate entities. One cannot exist without the other. We cannot pull down a bobber without it floating back to the surface any more than we can kill the source of all life without it coming back to life again. Jesus is alive now as He was before, but some things have changed, like in a game of chess, the same piece can occupy a square that it used a few moves earlier, but being there again means something different to our opponent; it is a different game now! Evil tried to destroy the essence of goodness, and it failed. Now judgment must ensue until evil is completely taken from creation for all time, while God proves that His righteous-based character dominates the power of sin.

(67c) Authority >> Jesus at the right hand of the father (Great High Priest) >> He is interceding for us there

(83e) Thy kingdom come >> Intercession >> Jesus stands in the gap >> He prays for us

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Rom 8,35-39

(39f) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Victory >> He overcame every circumstance – “But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.” This description the Father gave to His Son. Many trials and tribulations came to Jesus and He dealt with each of them, some by the wisdom of God and others by the power of God. We deal with our trials and difficulties too, some by the wisdom of God and others by our own foolishness, and sometimes we rise to the occasion and God emboldens us and empowers us to resolve our problems with His sovereign hand upon us. No matter what happens and no matter how we deal with our problems, this description does not change; so long as we continue striving to glorify God and please Him in all respects. This description of Jesus Christ Paul has given to us. They stripped Him and flogged Him until He was almost dead and then nailed Him to a cross, and there He gave up His life by the predetermined plan of God, that He might invoke His salvation to all who would believe in Him. God raised Him from the dead and caused Him to overwhelmingly conquer through His Father who loved Him, and He will do the same for us. No matter what we are called to endure, the worst thing that can happen to us is death, and we already have God’s promise of immortality as participants of the First Resurrection through faith in Him. We will be raised in glory to be like our Master who bought us with His own blood. All the sins of the world were piled on Jesus to the point that the Father had to turn His face from Him, inciting Jesus to cry, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Mat 27-46). He did this for us, so that nothing “will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” We know how it ended; Jesus went to hell and deposited all that sin where it belongs, and then God raised Him from the dead, and now it is our turn to overcome sin by faith in Him.

(46d) Judgment >> Spiritual warfare >> Subjecting your flesh >> Hindrances to the kingdom

(98j) Thy kingdom come >> Endurance (Thorn in the flesh) >> (Faith à Suffering [Circumstances] à Glory [Victory]) – We remember our less mature selves when we first believed, the way we reacted to adversity and the poor decisions we made; it just brought on more trials and tribulations. We invited problems into our lives, and then blamed God for them, yet Paul asked, “Who will separate us from the love of Christ?” Or, who could separate Christ from the love of His Father? “Tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword” couldn't do it. The same is true with us. Christians live to be just as old as non-Christians; they may be persecuted and endure fiery trials, but usually it doesn’t kill them, and we become better people for it. God allows difficulties in our lives to perfect us. Of course if we fall to the power of our circumstances and allow our difficulties to overwhelm us, our faith suffers; but if we rise to the occasion and deal with them, it will create the character of Christ in us. This does not mean that the more we become like Christ the less trials we will have; to the contrary we may have more trials because of our faith, but we will have more strength of heart to deal with them.

(132b) Temple >> Your body is the temple of God >> Holy Spirit is in God’s people >> Spirit of God in the spirit of man >> Spirit of Jesus -- These verses go with verses 9-17

(227g) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> Depending on Jesus to have compassion >> Depending on Jesus to deliver us -- These verses go with verses 1-4

(238g) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> The kingdom is transferred to the Church >> Jesus will never leave us -- These verses go with verses 9&10. The question mark at the end of this sentence, "Who will separate us from the love of Christ?" is rhetorical. Nothing can keep us from our goal of heaven, not even our persecutors. They can saw us in two; they can contort our bodies until they break; they can starve us to death; they can pick any method of torture they want, but in the end they will fail to keep us from our eternal destiny. Instead, we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. The forces of this world are impotent in curbing our faith; in fact, the beauty of persecution is that it actually bolsters our faith. Sometimes we get so bogged-down that we forget why we believe, yet God is in us and around us, and His word is in our hand. His entire creation is above us, testifying of His greatness and power, and we take courage in Him, knowing that the enemy of our faith did not create the earth and cannot create solar systems or galaxies that Hubble has so visually revealed to us, and we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. See also: Persecution; 250m / Religious institution persecutes the saints; Lk 11-23; 200l

(241f) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Hindering the kingdom >> Obstacles that keep you from Jesus

(242k) Kingdom of God >> Opposition toward the Kingdom of God >> Persecuting the kingdom >> Reacting to persecution >> Enduring persecution >> Hated by the world

(243h) Kingdom of God >> The eternal kingdom >> The indestructible kingdom >> The body of Christ is indestructible >> The new man is indestructible

(250m) Priorities >> God’s prerequisites >> Lists >> Terms of graduating to the next level >> List of physical circumstances – Jesus overcame every circumstance. If He needed to walk on water, He did. If thousands ventured into the wilderness to listen to His sermons, He fed them. Things don’t exactly work that way for us, yet we are His Father’s children and brothers and sisters of Christ. The Bible teaches that God loves us as much as He loves His own Son (Jn 17-23), which is hard to imagine; nevertheless, we go through hard times, yet so did He. The Father threw His Son under the bus to save us; therefore, we should not be surprised if He throws us under the bus to save others. Look what Paul had to endure in order to reach the known world with the gospel, “in far more labors, in far more imprisonments, beaten times without number, often in danger of death. Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned...” (2Cor 11,23-28). We want God to treat us the same way He treated His Son, so no matter what the circumstances, we will overcome, but don't forget about the cross. He waved His hand and suddenly the wind and the waves became calm. We wish we had that kind of power over our circumstances, but to be like Him we must also accept His suffering. See also: Persecution; Rom 8-35,36; 189b

Rom 8-35,36

(189b) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Holy sacrifice >> Holy offering – God has placed Paul on the altar of sacrifice on our account and God has plunged the knife into his body and the blood has flowed in the execution of his ministry of evangelism from the suffering he endured to bring the gospel to the nations, yet who could separate him from the love of Christ? The things Paul listed that cannot separate him from the love of God were things he personally endured throughout his ministry, yet in all these things he overwhelmingly conquered through Him who loves us all. Paul offered his body as a martyr knowing he would receive a new body at the resurrection of the righteous, not the old one, but a spiritual body that cannot die. Nothing is lost in sacrificing our lives for the gospel, for God has not failed to fulfill His promises made to the fathers. We can model our lives after Christ and put our own bodies on the altar for the sake of the gospel that others may hear the word of God and be saved from this perverse generation. At the resurrection of the righteous we too will suffer no loss, only gain grace through hardship in the souls won to Christ through our suffering, and they too will receive a better resurrection from a life of faith. See also: Persecution; Rom 8,31-39; 28b

Rom 8-35

(26e) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Death is separation from Christ – There is only one person Paul did not mention who actually has the power to keep us from heaven, and that is we ourselves. If we quit believing in Jesus, we know that faith is key to accessing the grace of God. The question is whether we can quit believing, and the unpopular answer is yes. God will not stop us from disowning Him if that is what we determine to do, for He refuses to infringe on our freewill. God does not like it when people quit on Him. Some have questioned whether their faith was real and came to the conclusion that it wasn't and then stopped believing in Him, but they know the world is real. Is the world real? That is highly debatable! Sometimes people run back to the world, thinking they will be happier there, but it always ends in disaster, even if they become happier in this life. Everyone knows a backslider who develops a guilty conscience and feels miserable; we may have done it ourselves, but what about the person who falls away altogether and feels nothing? He doesn’t even miss God! Of this group some never did believe, but others did. See also: Reprobate; Rom 8-38,39; 207a / Formation of the reprobate mind; Rom 1,18-32; 166b

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Rom 8-37

(228l) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> God works the victory in your life – We talk about working with the grace of God and running the race that is set before us, being zealous for God, always seeking His will, always wanting to know Him a little better, looking for Him in every situation, ready to do whatever He asks, our ears attentive to His Spirit, but in the end it’s really God working in us. We can’t do anything without Him. We would not even have an interest in doing His will without Him placing His desire in us. All things originate from God, the stars, the planets, the solar system, the galaxies; all things originate from God. Then He sent His Son, who died for our sins; this too originated from God; we had nothing to do with it. God used the disobedience of man to accomplish salvation for those who would obey Him. There is nothing we do for God that we can say originated from us, in that everything we do is the result of Him working in us. None of the glory or honor belongs to us; it’s all His. Jesus said, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him” (Jn 6-44). No one could be saved if it weren’t for God drawing us to Himself. We are fallen creatures, and everything about us opposes Him, so if we want to do His will, it is because God placed the desire in our heart, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight (Heb 13-21). As we work with Him, we fulfill His calling, yet our willingness to do His will also came from Him. We do not take credit for anything we do for God.

Rom 8-38,39

(122c) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Confidence in God to keep the Church

(207a) Salvation >> God makes promises on His terms >> Eternal security? >> Perish By Losing Your Faith >> The apostasy (walking out the same door you came in) – In the list of things that cannot separate us from the love of Christ Paul didn’t mention the believer himself. If someone changes his mind and decides he doesn’t want God anymore, we might find it difficult to imagine anyone reneging on eternal life but people have done it. Some think they can do this and get away with it, that God will still save them because they once believed, though they have abandoned God, but He works with us through our will, and when we choose not to believe in Him anymore and don't want to live with Him in eternity, He will not violate our will to save us or force us to do anything. He doesn’t want anyone to feel trapped in paradise, because then it wouldn’t be paradise for them or for anyone else. God would never violate our will, because that is partly what makes us in His image. The person who chooses to serve God throughout his life, can be sure of heaven, that there is no outside force that can knock him off course or separate him from the love of Christ. If death is our greatest enemy and even it must release its grip on us at the First Resurrection, then nothing has any power over us, except God and He only for good. We are sure of heaven through faith. See also: reprobate; Rom 8-35; 26e

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