Drinking Deeply

Thursday, February 16, 2006 at 10:57 PM

Romans 8

One of the greatest things I enjoy is the simple reading of God's Word aloud.

Try this passage for size, it's quite possibly my favorite:

Romans 8
31What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? 33Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies. 34Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died--more than that, who was raised--who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. 35Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? 36As it is written,

"For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered."

37No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

I feel like I can almost imagine the passion that drove Paul when he wrote these words, reading it often drives me to tears. Tears of conviction because I often lack the confidence portrayed in these words. Tears of gratitude, that in spite of that, it is Christ Jesus who sits at the right hand of God interceeding on my behalf. Tears of sadness, that trials await and will have to be suffered. Tears of joy, that these trials will never seperate us from the love of God.

Here am I, regarded a sheep to be slaughtered, but made more than a conqueror through Christ. Think about that for a second. We are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered... good for nothing but death. We are being killed all day long. But in all these things, in persecutions, in trials, in tribulations, in distress, in famine, we are more than conquerers. In trial I am more than a conqueror. In famine I am more than a conqueror. In persecution I am more than a conqueror.

Someone once claimed that the source of our "more than conquerors" was the "we." In all honesty, this came as a side note in a talk on unity, and I am all for a Christian unity (let us recall that the greatest mark of the unity of man was the Tower of Babel), but this was a gross misuse of one of the most beautiful passages in Scripture.

No, we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. Do not forget this. If we're trapped on a island surrounded by cannibals while we struggle to share the Gospel, we are still more than conquerors through him who loved us. If we are the only Christian on a trip into pagan city where there is no access to a church, we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. If we are rejected by our family and disowned, we are more than conquerors through him how loved us. Do not forget the power of Christ. It is His love that's called us. His love that saves us. His love that preserves us. His love that acts for His Glory.

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