And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love

romans 838-39

38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Romans 8:38-39

There is nothing that can separate us from the love of God.  The apostle Paul as he writes these words truly communicates that nothing can separate us from God’s love.  Many today have a false perception of the love of God because for most of their lives they have been hurt by people they thought were suppose to love and support them.

Many believe that God’s love is based upon our performance or our behavior.  But God’s love is eternal and unconditional.  He desires to lavish His love upon us and when we rightly understand God’s love we will grow in intimacy with Jesus.  The reason many struggle in their relationship with God is because they have a wrong understanding of God’s love.

Some because of legalism believe that God’s love has to be earned and that somehow God’s love changes based upon our obedience.  But if God’s love changed based upon our behavior it wouldn’t be love.  If our love was based upon our behavior then we would constantly live in fear of God believing that somehow He would take His love from us.

But the truth is that He has chosen to love us.  He understands our every weakness and He still chooses to love us.  He loves us because He is love.  Love is His very nature and when we have a right understanding of His love we will draw near daily, growing in His love.

As we grow in His love, we are filled with His love.  As we are filled with His love we will naturally desire to lavish His love upon others.  The world is filled with broken and lost people and the Lord is simply looking for those who will be vessels of His love.  The only way to be filled with His love is to draw near to Him and spend time alone with Him in His presence.  Day by day we are transformed into His nature and character by the power of the Holy Spirit.

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And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:38-39 NLT

There is nothing that can separate us from the love of God.  The love of God is relentless, it chases us down.  The Lord desires to lavish His love upon us.  He desires for us to walk in deep intimacy with Him and encounter His love in every area of our lives.  He desires that we would become aware of His presence where ever we find ourselves.

The Lord lavishes His love upon us so that we will in turn lavish His love upon others.  Jesus said that we would be known as His disciples because of the love that is at work within us.  The love of God cannot be counterfeited.  The love of God is unconditional and eternal.  The love of God is unchanging.  It is not based upon performance nor behavior.  But as we come to know Christ in greater ways we come to know the depths of His love.  As we come to know and encounter the love of Christ we will be changed for eternity.

Concerning His Son, who was born of a descendant of David according to the flesh

Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, [a]called as an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, which He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy Scriptures, concerning His Son, who was born of a [b]descendant of David according to the flesh, who was declared the Son of God with power [c]by the resurrection from the dead, according to the [d]Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord, through whom we have received grace and apostleship [e]to bring about the obedience of faith among all the Gentiles for His name’s sake, among whom you also are the called of Jesus Christ; to all who are beloved of God in Rome, called as [f]saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  Romans 1:1-7

This is quite the introduction to the book of Romans.  The apostle Paul begins by listing himself and refers to himself as a bond servant.  The apostle Paul more than anyone understood that his salvation was simply a result of the grace of God.  Paul didn’t deserve salvation like all of us, but the Lord chose and set him a part for God’s plans and His purposes.  The apostle Paul was chosen by the Lord to establish the foundation and begin to take the gospel to the uttermost.

Throughout the old testament we are given prophecies that point to the messiah who is to come.  The nation of Israel thought their messiah would be a conquering king like king David and failed to understand that Jesus had to come and give His life so that they could be set free from the slavery of sin.  But when we examine many of the prophecies that speak about the coming Messiah and we look and examine the life of Jesus Christ we see that He fulfilled every prophecy that concerned His first coming and will one day finish the rest when He returns to establish His kingdom.

Through the linage established in Matthew and Luke we see that Jesus was indeed a descendant of King David.  God established a covenant with King David that he would always have a descendant to rule upon the throne and this was fulfilled through Jesus Christ.  For there is coming a day when Jesus shall return and established His kingdom upon the earth.  The linage of Jesus in Matthew follows the line through Joseph, while the linage in Luke follows the linage through Mary.  God so orchestrated all things to fulfill His sovereign will and His purposes.

It was the resurrection that once and for all truly proved that Jesus was indeed the Messiah.  Yes when Jesus walked the earth He did many miracles and John even writes that if everything Jesus did was written down there would be enough books to contain the accounts.  But through the resurrection Jesus demonstrated His Lordship and authority over death and the grave.  Because of the resurrection we know that Jesus lives forevermore and that because of the resurrection that nothing is impossible.  It is the resurrection and Calvary that is foundational and central to the truth of the gospel message.

Paul knew that it was only by grace that he was called to be an apostle.  He didn’t choose to be an apostle and he hadn’t done anything to earn it.  But because of God’s grace and mercy Paul was given the high calling of taking the gospel to the gentiles.  Before Paul every came to know Christ, he was a man driving to destroy Christianity.  But on that day on the Damascus road his life would be changed for an eternity and he would be used to write a majority of the New Testament and establish the foundation of Christianity.

We who are in Christ today and for every believer throughout history who have chosen to follow Jesus Christ are only saved by the grace and mercy of Almighty God.  None of us have done anything to earn our salvation.  No of us have been deserving of salvation.  We are simply saved by the grace of God and when we remember and understand this truth we will always walk in humility throughout our life on this earth.

Those who come to faith in Jesus Christ is the definition of a saint.  Being referred to as a saint is not something earned.  A saint is simply a sinner saved by grace.  Some have distorted this and made it seem the church determines who are saints and that some how it is by merit.  But this is simply a distortion of the truth.  Anyone who comes to Christ and receives Him as Lord and Savior are a saint.  Our righteousness is not established by our works or the way we live our lives, but it is simply found in the perfection of who Jesus is.  As we grow in Christ the nature and character of Christ is established within us and we develop and outward righteousness.

We are more than conquerors through Him who loved us

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.  Romans 8:37

Through Jesus we are conquerors in all situations.  No matter the challenge we face the Lord will lead us to victory.  The more we grow in Christ the greater the challenges we will face in our lives.  Every time we face a challenge and stand strong in the Lord and His mighty power we grow in our relationship with Christ and our capacity to take on greater challenges.

Growth in Christ often times come through challenges and trials.  It is not a life or journey based on comfort.  In our flesh we desire to be comfortable at all times.  But in Christ He has called us to greater heights.  The preparation to get there can be painful at times but the key is abiding in Him.  As we abide in Him through daily bible study and prayer our hearts and minds are fixed upon Jesus Christ.  When our minds are fixed upon Jesus we will be filled with the perfect peace of God that is beyond all human understanding.  We must learn to rest in the Lord and in His strength.  Victory in Christ is not found in fighting in our own strength or power.  It is found in relying fully upon the Lord.

With your heart that you believe and are justified

10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.  Romans 10:10

We are justified by faith alone.  It is not a result of our works.  Our works are a result of authentic faith and an authentic relationship with Jesus Christ.  It is impossible to claim that you follow Jesus Christ yet fail to be transformed into His image.  An easy litmus test to determine if we are truly in Christ is the fruit of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

If we are truly walking with Christ on a daily basis and seeking Him through prayer and His word, we will be supernaturally transformed from the inside out through the power of the Holy Spirit.  When we come to Christ we receive the Holy Spirit and are born again.  It is the work of the Holy Spirit within us that transforms us.  We are not transformed or changed by our own strength or power.  In ourselves we are weak and feeble and if we try to accomplish anything in our own strength we will simply fail.

But the Lord has called us simply to believe.  To place our faith and trust in Him and to abide in Him on a daily basis.  To set aside the deeds of darkness and be transformed into the image of Christ.  The more we spend time with Him and yield our hearts and lives to His will, the more we become like Jesus in every way.

Romans 11:33: The depths of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and decisions and how unfathomable and untraceable are His ways!

Romans 11:33 AMP

God is eternal and therefore there is always a deeper place to grow in our relationship with God.  There are many who simply settle for a very shallow surface relationship with the Lord.  They may make a decision to follow Jesus and make Him Lord and Savior but they allow other things in life to take the place that He deserves.  They become distracted by the busyness of life and therefore their growth in their relationship with God is very minimal.

But what God desires is a people who would seek Him with all their heart.  He desires a people who would hunger after His presence and who He is more than the food they eat and the air they breath.  Many Christians wonder why they struggle in their relationship with God and it simply comes down to the fact that they have allowed things to take the place the Lord deserves in their heart.

Many believe they can put on a nice mask and simply show up to church on Sunday morning.  As long as everyone believes I am growing in my relationship with God than I am fine.  But this is where we become deceived by the enemy.  We allow ourselves to be sold short on all that God has for us because we are pursuing things that have no eternal value.

Priorities in life are everything and we will know what our priorities are by where we spend the most time in our lives.  Where we invest a majority of our time are simply the priorities of our lives.  Some have made the priority of their lives their family and their marriage.  Some have made the priority of their lives their jobs or entertainment.  But if we desire to experience the peace of God in all things and the power of the Holy Spirit then we must seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness.  When we simply seek first His kingdom everything in our lives are supernaturally brought into order.

Romans 14:10-12

10 But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God. 11 For it is written,

As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me,
And every tongue shall [e]give praise to God.”

12 So then each one of us will give an account of himself to God.  Romans 14:10-12

There is no reason as followers of Christ that we should look down on anyone.  Pride and arrogance should have no place in our lives.  The only reason people look down on others is because of pride and there is nothing uglier than a follower of Christ who is either filled with Self-righteousness or some how they believe they are where they are because of their own efforts.

We only come to faith in Christ by the grace and mercy of God.  It is the Holy Spirit who draws us and convicts our hearts.  It is the Holy Spirit who gives us the gifts that we have.  Everything we have in God’s kingdom is a gift from God and if we find ourselves filled with pride or looking down on others we need to check ourselves.

The easiest way for us to stay humble in our walk with the Lord is to simply be in prayer and the study of God’s word daily.  Spending time in God’s presence will always keep us humble because it reminds us about how small and powerless we truly are.  There is nothing more humbling than spending time in the Lord’s presence.  The reason most become filled with pride in their relationship with Christ is they get away from the discipline of spending time with the Lord.

Every knee shall bow before the Lord.  God has given each person the opportunity while they are on the earth to humble themselves before Him.  But sadly many choose to reject God and His ways and would rather seek after the selfish desires of the world.  When we understand that we are not the center of the universe and that we have been created in the image of God, we will begin to discover why God has created us and the plans and purposes He has for us.

Romans 1:20

“For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.”‭‭Romans‬ ‭1:20‬ ‭NASB‬‬

God has left His fingerprints on His creation. The majesty of creation reveals how truly awesome God is. The universe is vast and the galaxies endless. Compared to creation each and everyone of us is nothing but a tiny speck. 

But God in His grace and mercy has chosen to save us. He has chosen to give His life so that we may live. When people look at creation they must make a decision whether it is created or not. No one is without excuse. A person either chooses to believe in God or they do not. 

As they begin to contemplate the existence of God they are drawn by the Holy Spirit and it is the Holy Spirit that brings people into their lives to share the truth. Every person who comes to faith in Jesus Christ is simply the work and power of the Holy Spirit. Let us pray daily for those who are lost that their eyes and hearts would be open to the truth. 

Romans 10:9-10

“that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.”‭‭Romans‬ ‭10:9-10‬ ‭NASB‬‬

It is by faith alone that we are saved. The moment we place our faith and trust in Jesus we are declared righteous. It is not only important that we believe in our heart, but that we confess with our mouths that we are a follower of Jesus Christ. 

We are not called to be closest Christians. God has placed us on this earth as living examples of His love and His grace. We are the body of Christ and we are Jesus hands and feet upon the earth. He sits at the right hand of the Father interceding for us. He makes it possible for us to go to the throne of grace with confidence. He uses us to fulfill and accomplish His will upon the earth. Let us stand strong in the Lord and His mighty power. He is coming soon and He desires to accomplish much in this hour. 

Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another

“Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. For this, “Y OU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, Y OU SHALL NOT MURDER, Y OU SHALL NOT STEAL, Y OU SHALL NOT COVET,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “Y OU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”‭‭Romans‬ ‭13:8-10‬ ‭NASB‬‬

The mark of a true follower of Jesus Christ is the love of Christ at work in their lives. Jesus was asked what the greatest commandment was and He responded by saying that to love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, soul, mind, and strength and to love thy neighbor as thy self. 

The common denominator in both of these is love. The apostle Paul wrote that these three remain faith, hope, and love and the greatest of these is love. 

In the Christian walk love is a verb, it is an action. The only way we are truly able to love as the Lord prescribes is through the power of the Holy Spirit. 

The Holy Spirit has been given to us not only as a helper but to empower us for all things. Relying upon the Lord is the key to walking in true love. No greater love have this than a man lay down his life for his friends. 

For us to truly lay down our lives requires us to be led and empowered by the Holy Spirit. In ourselves we are weak and powerless, in Him all things are possible. May we be filled with His love and grace to overflowing.