May 11, 2020 – Monday
Romans 8:35 NIV
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
It is interesting that when we left Paul last Thursday he was in prison in Rome, but his epistle to the Romans was written prior to his time under arrest there. It is believed he wrote it while in Corinth dated sometime in the 50’s, most likely in the mid 50’s according to most scholars. And we know he was eventually arrested and executed in Rome in 66 or 67 AD. But here he is in Romans asking two truly pertinent questions:
Who shall separate us from the of Christ?
Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
The first question is Who, the second question is how. Paul knew he would face all of these: trouble, hardship, persecution, famine (hunger), nakedness, danger, and he eventually died by the sword when he was beheaded. It is easy to wonder how much of this actually applied to Paul, I know I did. Still when I looked I found Paul describing what he had been through in his second letter to the Corinthians in chapter eleven where he wrote: 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked.
So we also have a message from Paul showing that a great many troubles and hardships might be endured without separating us from Christ. And that message continues to this day and this video provides more evidence as well.
Still, let’s return to Romans 8 to read what Paul had to say about this: 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
So we have our answer. If we hold onto our faith in Jesus we can be conquerors of Jesus’ love for us and nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Nothing! No wonder Paul was able to hold onto his faith, knowing the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord and the same holds true for Christians today who stand firm in their faith in Jesus the Christ.
It all begins with understanding just how much Almighty God loves us. So much He sent His Son to die for our sins so that we might join them in heaven for all of eternity. We cannot overestimate God’s love. All this lets us know just how much we are loved no matter what we are experiencing in the form of persecution.
It is a wondrous thing to know Jesus as our Lord and Savior, knowing He paid the price for our sins, knowing all of our sins are forgiven. Knowing all of this what is expected of us? Nothing more than showing the fruit of our repentance. What that fruit will be is up to each of us individually.
Riley D. Driver-Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton