“What ‘God Is For Us’ Means” (Ro 8:31-32)

My goal is for you to leave here knowing God loves you, is on your side, is FOR (Not against you) no matter what you go through. Whether it’s a 9/11 event (15th anniversary), family problems, health trouble, or anything else you can name… GOD IS FOR YOU!! Ro 8:31-32

If (Since) God is for us, who can be against us? 32 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?

Insert that into your life. Now add Ro 8:28, “God causes ALL THINGS to work together for the good of those who love Him…” ALL things… all YOUR life events… work for good. (Pause)

God causes/allows events to engage us. To draw us closer to Him. To move us from comfort to maturity. To MAKE us more like Jesus. Christians are not people who “Just believe” or “Just have faith,” no… we think, study God’s Word, & seek understanding from God about life SO THAT we glorify Him in every way… ESPECIALLY when the unexpected happens. (Pause) And who is for you?

We are easily lulled into complacency. When a seemingly tragic event is heard of, or happens to us, we wake from our sleep. Those events, for a time, cause us to consider big questions: Why am I here? What is really important? How much time do I have left? And who is for you?

See this quarter? I can’t. It’s in my “blind spot.” You have a physical blind spot like me. Cultures have blind spots. Nations have blind spots. Churches have blind spots. We see them when GOD shows them to us. And it is usually thru life shaking events that He gives us sight. But who is for you??

God spoke to a nation through the Prophet Malachi about their blind spots. Each time God told them about a blind spot, they were incredulous & asked for clarification. Here’s the interaction…

God said, “I have loved you.”[1] They replied, “How?” (Imagine that!) God said, “You pray & cry because I don’t answer you.”[2] They replied, “Why don’t you answer us?” (Mistreat wife by divorcing![3]). God said, “Your words weary me.”[4] They replied, “How?!” God said, “You call evil good” (Morals in USA).

God said, “Return to Me!”[5] They asked, “HOW?” God replied, “You are robbing me.” They asked, “How?” God, “By not giving tithes & offerings.” God said, “Your words toward me are harsh.”[6] They asked, “How have we spoken evil?” God replied, (Paraphrased) “You say it does us no good to serve Me.”

Some heard… repented… & their names were put in God’s book.[7] Even God’s people can wander & drift from Him. But He loves His people so much He will show them where they stray & call them to repent. I pray WE will hear God’s loving call… because some here today are probably blind.

God does not leave our sanctification (Conformity to Christ) to chance. He will NOT allow His children to continue in sin. He will bring about maturity & holiness in us. In fact, there is no possibility of a believer not repenting of their sin so as to be more like Jesus! God loves all who believe too much to let them continue in sin! And who is for you? Again… Romans 8:31-32

If (Since) God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how will He not also w/ Him graciously give us ALL THINGS?

Christians! God has already given us THE most precious thing He has… His Son Jesus, so we’d be saved! If that’s not being “FOR US,” nothing is! There is NOTHING that is good or best for us that God will refuse to give us! Which also means whatever (!) God allows/puts in our life HE has deemed to be good & best REGARDLESS of how we view it. BELIEVE GOD, He is FOR you!

Because God is FOR YOU… on your side… we embrace Ja 1:2-4

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3 for you know the testing of your faith produces steadfastness (Maturity, Spiritual growth). 4 And let (this) have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing (Sanctification, Maturity, Holiness, More like Jesus).

In all life events there is to be joy because God is FOR US (Sometimes sorrowful yet rejoicing[8]). He is glorifying His name… conforming us to Christ… & laying up treasures in heaven. It is wrong (ME!) to forget this & whine when things aren’t happening the way we’d like.

Q: How big is God? What can He do? He spoke the universe into existence… (Including the star UY Scuti that is 5 billion times larger than our sun {See Picture below}!). Let’s cut to the chase, is there anything God cannot do consistent with His nature (Throw out lying!)? Anything?!

Jer 32:17 ‘Ah, Lord God! It is you who has made… heavens &… earth by your great power & by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.

Jer 32:27 Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is anything too hard for me?

Since “God is able to do exceeding & abundantly above all we ask or imagine…” (Eph 3:20), AND He is on your side (FOR YOU!)… is there any reason to EVER worry or be anxious?

Talk to me! Waiting on a job offer? Doctor’s report? Been blind-sided by some tragic event? Is there some kind of uncertainty… a decision to be made… OR have you made a mistake & fear you’ll have great loss? (BIG PAUSE) Who’s for you? On your side? What can God do?

Phil 1:6, “I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.”

The “good work” God/Jesus began in you is your salvation. From then until you get to heaven He is working FOR YOU… for your good… to make you more like Jesus. And when your home w/ Jesus His work will be complete and you will be JUST LIKE HIM.

That means that HE is in the middle of everything that takes place in your life! In all those things He is growing you spiritually. He wills only your good, regardless of how it looks w/ human eyes. There is never a time in your life that God leaves or abandons you… EVER! He’s constantly doing in & for you ONLY what is good… BECAUSE HE LOVES YOU! (Pause) Drive that deep into your heart!!

Now look at Phil 2:13, “It is God who works in you, both to will & work for His good pleasure.” Why does God work in you? “For HIS good pleasure.” Not yours… HIS! And what is His good pleasure?

Conformity to Christ. Holiness. Godliness. Spiritual maturity. God’s “Good pleasure” is ALWAYS the best, most loving thing possible. “God’s good pleasure” is not wealth or health… your best life now… a new car or house or the perfect family, spouse, kids, or in-laws, not a long life either! None of those things can hold a candle to what GOD wills for you!

Conclusion. Since God is for us, why aren’t we happier & more content? I suggest it could be we’re too much like those Malachi spoke God’s word to. We have been lulled into just going thru the motions. Some aren’t seeking God, we’re satisfied with “just enough to get by & to heaven.”

And so our cage gets rattled (By God, not Satan!). He disciplines us SO THAT we will turn from our sin and TO Him! So I will close with another of my favorite passages. Turn to Heb 12:4-11

In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. 5 And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons? “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. 6 For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, & chastises every son whom he receives.”

7 It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? 8 If you are left w/out discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children & not sons. 9 Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us & we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits & live? 10 They disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. 11 For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

So have hope, and be joyful, for God loves you too much to give you anything but what is good and best for you…

[1] Malachi 1:2

[2] Malachi 2:13

[3] Malachi 2:14

[4] Malachi 2:17

[5] Malachi 3:7

[6] Malachi 3:13

[7] Malachi 3:16-17

[8] 2 Corinthians 6:10

(Picture from Skyandtelescope.com)