October 21 – The Promise Chain of Salvation

“For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.” – Romans 8:29-30 (NASB)

Some commentators and theologians call this the “The Salvation Chain” but we call it “The Promise Chain.” Promises every faith believer can trust and cling to. These days we might have a difficult time knowing just what to believe. The dishonest media, the nefarious social justice erroneously labeled “woke” invades our lives without warning. It has conceited confidence that it is correct and right.  It isn’t. Being unsettled, worried, anxious about our future need not overwhelm our lives with fear of the future. We may not believe we will ever see the world the way we want it to be. But we can know our glorification, our justification, our calling by God to become his children is certain and permanent. God planned us to be conformed to the image of his Son, Jesus the Anointed. He is the preeminent one, the only rightful heir of God who has adopted us and made us co-heirs with Christ.  God our Father knew before the foundation of the earth that He would choose, us to be conformed to the image of His Son; so He marked out, appointed, and determined beforehand that we be justified now and eventually glorified.    

196

October 17 – Suffering With Christ Produces Glory

“The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.” – Romans 8:16-17 (NASB)

Our verses today are packed with promises. First is the  promise that God’s Spirit testifies with our spirit that we are children of God. In Roman culture at the time Paul wrote this letter, for an adoption to be legally binding, seven reputable witnesses had to be present, attesting to its validity. God’s Holy Spirit confirms the validity of our adoption.[1] As children, we are heirs of God. We are promised that we will inherit eternal salvation (Titus 3:7), God Himself (Revelation 21:3), glory (Romans 5:2), and everything in the universe (Hebrews 1:2).[2] Proof of ultimate glory of faith believers is that we will suffer—whether it comes as mockery, ridicule, or physical persecution—because of our Lord and savior Jesus.  Because He suffered, we suffer. Because He’s glorified, we’re glorified. It’s a long way from the peace-and -prosperity doctrine. Christianity is not escapism.[3] In verse 18 that follows our passage, Paul considers “that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”


198


[1] John F. MacArthur Jr., The MacArthur Study Bible: New American Standard Bible., (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 2006), Ro 8:16.

[2] Ibid, Ro 8:17.

[3] Ibid, Ro 8:17.

June 1 – We’re In the Will


“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.” – Romans 8:16-17 (ESV)


Every person who by faith believes in Jesus Christ is fully justified and formally adopted by God, our Father in heaven. That is a promise given to all true Christians. At first we knew nothing of these promises and now they are ours forever. We once did not believe this but now we do believe and God’s Spirit is our witness that we are children in the Family of God. Our new birth in Christ came at a tremendous cost; but we did not have to pay it. Jesus Christ paid the cost for us by sacrificing Himself to die on the cross. Our sin caused the death of God’s only begotten Son. Now, we are adopted sons and adopted daughters and heirs with full rights in the Family. In fact we’re fellow heirs with God’s only begotten Son, Christ Jesus. It’s good news for us because by the faith given to us, we are not on the outs; we are in God’s will in more ways than we know. He included us so, we have an inheritance as heirs – that’s a forever promise. Let’s live our lives today with respect to what God has given to us.

198