Sunday Devotional: Romans 8:1-4

“Therefore, no condemnation now exists for those in Christ Jesus, because the Spirit’s law of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. What the law could not do since it was limited by the flesh, God did. He condemned sin in the flesh by sending His own Son in flesh like ours under sin’s domain, and as a sin offering,  in order that the law’s requirement would be accomplished in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” (Romans 8:1-4)

This week in the news brought a reminder to the truth about condemnation.  We all apart from Jesus Christ stand condemned before God.  We are all sinners who fall short of the glory of God.  On our own, we are unable to be considered righteous.  However, this is not thankfully the end of the story.

Paul in his letter to the Romans reminds them that because of Jesus Christ there is hope  Those who are in Jesus, who follow Him, are saved from that condemnation.  He has set us free from sin and death through his life and work on the cross.  The law shows that our righteousness is not good enough.  However Jesus Christ met all of the law’s requirements and through His righteousness we are made whole.

This week, let us share that good news.  That there doesn’t have to be condemnation but through Christ there is salvation and hope.

Sunday Devotional: Romans 15:5-7

“Now may the God who gives endurance and encouragement allow you to live in harmony with one another, according to the command of Christ Jesus, so that you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ with a united mind and voice.

Therefore accept one another, just as the Messiah also accepted you, to the glory of God.” (Romans 15:5-7)

We live in a world with a lot of discord and disharmony.  There is a lot of division.  Sin divides us.  But Jesus brings us together.  Paul wrote to the church in Rome and reminded them of this.  On their own, there is division and strife.  But with God, there is unity.

God gives us the endurance and encouragement.  He gives us the hope to come together united.  This is possible through the work of Jesus Christ.  Jesus, who died on the cross for our sins and rose again, is able to bring together people from all walks of life.

The other big thing in this passage is accepting.  Paul is not saying we are to accept sins but we are to accept sinners because we all are sinners.  But through the grace and glory of God, we have been accepted by the work on Jesus Christ and we can repent and turn to Him.

This week let us encourage one another.  Let us live in harmony and let us show love and acceptance to others and as we do point them to Jesus.

Sunday Devotional: Romans 8:31-39

“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?  He 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?  Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.  Who 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.  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?  As it is written,

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

No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.  For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,  nor 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.”

We have the assurance as followers of Jesus that we can overcome.  We have that assurance because of Jesus himself.  He came to Earth and died for us.  He paid the price for our sins so that we wouldn’t have to.  On top of that, He rose again and He intercedes for us on our behalf.  We have someone who knows what we go through and speaks for us.

Because of this, we are able to overcome.  We are able to endure.  We are able to do this because of Jesus.  Because He is there for us through everything and there is nothing that can separate us from Him if we are His.  This week, as we go through whatever we may encounter, let us give thanks for His love for us and let us continue to strive to serve Him because we know that through Him we are able to overcome.

Sunday Devotional: Romans 8:18-25

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.  For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God.  For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.  For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.  And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.  For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?  But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.” (Romans 8:18-25)

There are times when we struggle.  There are times when we are suffering.  That is a part of life here on Earth.  But those who are followers of Jesus have hope.  We have hope of what is to come.  We know that we will be redeemed.  That creation as a whole will be redeemed.  We know that there will be a new heaven and a new earth.

So the struggles that we go through now will pale in comparison to the beauty that is to come.  So while we struggle through tough times now, we have the assurance that brighter days are coming.  We have the assurance that God is with us now and will be in the future.  And we have the hope of a future where we get to enjoy being in the presence of the Lord forever.

This week, let us rest in that assurance.  Let us remember that hope.  And let us endure in that hope.

Sunday Devotional: Romans 12:9-13

“Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.” (Romans 12:9-13)

Paul, in his letter to the Romans, wanted to encourage them and remind them of who they were as Christians.  They were to be about love, loving one another, loving their enemies.  They were to reflect Christ in that.  They were also to cling to what was good and run fast away from evil.  They could do that through the power of the Holy Spirit living inside of them.  He wanted to remind them to be patient, to rejoice, to be consistent in prayer and to care for one another.

These same exhortations are the same for us today as well.  We need to show and share Christ’s love with those around us.  We need to love one another and love our enemies.  We need to cling to what is good.  We need to be patient, to rejoice, to be constant in prayer and to care for one another.

This week, let us do just that.