We should never limit the truth that God is for us to spiritual warfare. It’s the manifestation of His great love in our lives, a love that raises us from sinner to saint and from saint to son in Christ. In His love, nothing can be against us and nothing can separate us. Our place is secured through the cross and the supernatural power of eternal life.
What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31)
Today’s verse is often used within the context of spiritual warfare, which isn’t necessarily incorrect. But this is a very limited view that almost completely excludes the beautiful and powerful context of the whole of this chapter. God is certainly for us when we are under attack or facing the innumerable obstacles or trials of life. We have His promise on this and it’s good and an act of faith to remind ourselves of this truth at these times. But we serve a God who is vast and infinite and immeasurable, the great I AM. To limit this wonderful truth to only one aspect of our lives is to deny ourselves the full measure of God. It’s significant that Paul doesn’t specifically mention spiritual warfare in this chapter. That doesn’t mean it’s excluded, merely that it isn’t the real significance of the promise contained here.
God is for us against sin.
Paul has a very effective way of formulating his teaching and the eighth chapter of Romans is no different. He gets quickly to the heart of the matter without beating about the bush. Here, he focuses on the number one priority of every believer – the issue of our sinfulness. It was this which separated us from God and which will continue to do so without His intervention. We often gloss over sins, especially relying on ‘no condemnation’ and similar assurances to reassure us. But the hard truth is that sin is our greatest enemy. It is rebellion against God and His sovereignty. Unless we face it head on and deal with it, it will continually drive a wedge between us and Him. But God is for us and has already provided the means whereby we can overcome sin and truly live in no condemnation.
That way, of course, is Christ and the cross. This is the first dramatic and powerful way that God is for us. He accomplished Himself what we could not. His life was given so we could live. He gives His own righteousness to us through His Son. Every detail of the law has been completely fulfilled and satisfied in Jesus so sin no longer has the power of death over us. This is total liberty from self and sin. If we don’t walk in it, the fault lies with us, not God. He has even provided His Holy Spirit dwelling in us to empower and strengthen us to deal with self and sin. There is absolutely nothing that we have to try to accomplish in and of ourselves. God is for us, and not even ourselves and our sins can be against us if we hold fast to this truth.
As sons, we know God is for us.
It’s challenging enough to understand the full magnitude that Christ, the glorious Son of God, gave His life for us. We have to concede that there is nothing in us to either deserve or earn this incredible gift of grace. Sinners all, we have no right or claim to the precious sacrifice of Calvary. Yet is was given freely and has restored us to relationship with our God. But He goes one step further. He not only raises us up from the grave but lifts us to sonship in Christ. The Bible says it so we can be 100% sure that it’s the truth. But I confess, when I look at the runaround I’ve given Him in my life, it blows my mind. I’m neither saint nor son material. Yet He has done it. God is for us in raising us up far beyond what we could imagine.
But there’s a special kind of wonderful to this particular truth. Raising us up to sonship in Christ means that God is for us as His sons, not simply as His people. Even earthly parents know the difference between their children and those who are not their children. We don’t ill-treat or ignore others, but we have a special relationship with our kids. We are for them in every way, caring for them, anticipating their needs, protecting them, and teaching and guiding them. They hold a special place in our hearts and we do all we can to make their way easier. Every believer now has the assurance that He is for us as our God but also in an intensely intimate way as Abba Father. Once again, He has given us His Spirit to secure us within this awesome truth and the inheritance in Jesus it brings.
God is for us eternally.
It’s almost unthinkable that the I AM would give His life for sinners and raise them up as sons. But the truth of our place in eternity is breath-taking. The God who will not share His glory with another has ordained that all His children in Christ will share in His eternal glory. Once again, this is not in and of ourselves. It is always and only in Jesus. But the fact remains that God is for us to the extent that He would accomplish everything required to enable us to share Christ’s inheritance of glory with the Father. We don’t become born again so we can share the glory, however. It’s because we’re sinners and have no hope of anything beyond eternal death without Him. But Jesus give us His life – the life of a son – which means that the glory will be our ultimate place in Him.
This is because God wants us with Him. That cannot happen and exclude His glory which is a part of who He is. Moreover, we are His glory in that we are the living evidence of His victory, the manifestation of His sovereignty and power to save. We share in His glory by being His glory through eternal worship in His presence. God is for us so completely that He has literally given all so that we can be with Him through eternity. His desire to share all with us is so complete that despite our humanity, frailty, weakness, and rebellion, He has already made a place for us beside Him. The cost of this is beyond measure and the truth of it beyond understanding. But we must remember that when God is for us, it’s a total, complete, perfect commitment. It’s all, everything, and eternal.
The power of God is with us.
Today’s verse ushers in the incredible love of God – eternal, faithful, and immeasurable. God is for us to the degree that nothing can separate us from His love. He guards us and keeps us and in Jesus, has made provision for everything necessary for us to enter the sanctuary of His love. Nothing can stand against us because we are in Christ. We cannot be defeated because Christ is in us. Our weaknesses and frail humanity take refuge in blood of Jesus and our unrighteousness is washed away. Miraculous, supernatural provision has already been made to bring us into the great love of God and to keep us there. We can stand firm in the faith that He has already done it. His love is perfectly perfect and completely complete. In His Son, we are assured that our place is forever close to His heart.
We rejoice, Father, in the knowledge of Your love. Help us to remember that You are for us in all things, far beyond the limits of our human expectations. Forgive us if we’ve taken this for granted or ignored it in some areas of our lives. Help us, Lord, to live for Your glory now so that we can live in Your glory in Christ for eternity. Thank You, Lord, for loving us so much more than we could ever deserve.