Romans Lesson 44

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Absolute Security

Romans 8:31—39

Paul has been encouraging believers in the Body of Christ by emphasizing our position in Christ. We have every spiritual blessing (Ephesians 1:3) and the tools necessary to help us get through the suffering of this life. Ephesians and Romans are parallel doctrinal books. Ephesians builds upon what we learn in Romans. Without understanding Romans, we will be ill equipped to get a firm grasp on the concepts contained in the book of Ephesians. Ephesians chapter one contains a summary of much of what we have been learning about in the book of Romans. The spiritual blessings mentioned in Ephesians include being chosen to be holy and blameless (Ephesians 1:4), predestined to adoption (Ephesians 1:5), redeemed and forgiven (Ephesians 1:7) and sealed by the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13).

Note that biblical adoption is about being of age in order to receive a full inheritance. It is not about being saved and coming into the “family” of God. Those who embrace Calvinism misunderstand the idea of being predestined unto adoption. They interpret it according to their doctrine to mean that believers have been previously chosen by God to be saved. It is the Body of Christ that is predestined to be adopted, and all who believe (not all those who have been elect) become members of the Body of Christ. As members, we are absolutely entitled to receive our full inheritance because we have been adopted (Ephesians 1:11). This is why we are said to be heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ (Romans 8:17). By misunderstanding what the Bible’s definition of adoption is, and forcing salvation into the idea of predestination, Covenant theologians have stripped this passage of its true meaning and taken away the blessings promised to the Body of Christ.

A succinct summary

How amazing to know that God is for us, that He is on our side. Paul has just demonstrated this by showing us how He had planned for our redemption, had sent His Son to die, had justified us and sanctified us, and has sealed us by the Holy Spirit. He did everything to make it possible for us to be saved, and for us to be secure in our salvation. Just as Paul was overwhelmed by God’s grace in saving him, we should also stand amazed that God took these steps for us. As verse 32 states, this came at a great price. The Second Person of the Trinity became man then died, bearing our sins. If He would go this far to offer a plan of salvation to mankind, is there anything that He would not do for us? The answer is that He freely gives us all things.

Since God had done this for believers, and no one is able to stand against us, then how is it possible for anyone to even bring a charge against us? We are unaccusable. We have been declared righteous in Christ so that there is now no one who is able to even level any charge against us. We have been exonerated of any wrong doing because Christ took our sins upon Himself. No one can even accuse us of doing anything wrong because of Christ’s work on the cross. This speaks of God’s justice. He justifies sinners through the work of Jesus Christ. Since He is just, He cannot claim a sinner to be free of sin if he is not in Christ. On the other hand, He cannot claim a believer to be guilty of any sin because that sin has already been dealt with by Jesus Christ. While Satan is able to bring charges against Jewish believers (Revelation 12:10; Zechariah 3:1) we are blameless and therefore unaccusable (1 Corinthians 1:8).

The middle part of verse 34 shows that God not only declares the sinner to be righteous, but He also has the power to do so. He’s not just talking about it, He demonstrated that He was fully capable of doing it through the raising up His Son from the dead. Christ could not be held by the power of death because God was stronger (Acts 2:24). Coming back to life was a declaration that He is the Son of God (Acts 13:33) and that He has power over sin and death (Romans 1:4; Philippians 3:10). This power is at the center of the gospel (Romans 1:17; 1 Corinthians 1:18), and has been directed toward all believers to save us and keep us saved (Ephesians 1:19) right up to the end of our life (1 Corinthians 6:14).

Christ intercedes

Christ has been given a very special position being seated on the right hand of the Father (Luke 22:69; Ephesians 1:20; Colossians 3:1). He was raised in power and made head over the Church, the Body of Christ. Jesus Christ will also be the judge of all mankind (John 5:22). As the Father’s “right-hand man” He is there to serve and accomplish His will. The Father has delegated dealing with the human race to the Son, which is why Christ will be ruling as King in the Millennial Kingdom and why He is our head. His position next to the Father is a place of authority, and being the head of the human race and the head of the church gives Him the position of intercessor. He was raised in power by the Father and He serves the Father as the contact point for the Body of Christ. He is acting in the Father’s stead and everything He does is done by the will of the Father. This automatically puts Him in the position of the go-between between believers and the Father. When Christ deals with the Church, he does so by the authority given to Him by the Father. What He does is therefore what the Father would want done. He is not running back and forth defending each believer to the Father, but is acting toward believers with the full authority of the Father. We are as secure with the Father as Jesus Christ is because we are in Christ.

The wrap-up

Paul concludes his summary by emphasizing the extent and result of God’s love toward the believer. Even a quick read should assure any believer today that there is absolutely nothing capable of separating the believer from God. It is as possible for us to be separated from God as it is for Christ to be separated from the Father. It’s not going to happen.

This make us more than conquers. The Greek word is composted of two words, hyper, meaning above or beyond as in hypertension, and nekao, meaning to conquer or overcome. In other words, Paul is saying we are above overcomers. You might remember that those within Israel were called overcomers if they didn’t yield to Satan in the Tribulation (Revelation 2:11; 3:5, 21). Satan is called an overcomer in Revelation 6:2 because he is going out to conquer. This is what those believers will need to overcome.

But now Paul calls us hyper-overcomers because we are more than conquers in Christ. The fight has already been fought and we are already in a place of victory. We don’t need to go through the Tribulation and endure the testing of Satan and the Antichrist. We are already seated in the heavenly places and nothing can shake us from our position. We do not need to endure until the end, as Israel must do (Matthew 24:13; Revelation 15:2).

There is a silly notion that I am the only thing able to separate myself from God. In other words, I can lose my salvation if I don’t continue to abide in Him. This concept is misconstrued from the John 15 passage on the Vine and branches. This passage is actually about Israel and not about believers. Those in Israel who did not abide in Christ would be cut off. Today, the Church, the Body of Christ, is completely secure by being in Christ. Romans 8 makes that abundantly clear. However, those who do not rightly divide Scripture confuse two different concepts and then live in a state of confusion about their eternal security. This confusion leads to spiritual immaturity because they are continually trying to maintain their salvation when it has already been done by them. This applies to true believers who believed fully in the Person and work of Jesus Christ, but later base how they feel or perform to their position in Christ.