God is working

by John H. Essex

We are all familiar with the words of Paul in Romans 8:28, "Now we are aware that God is working all together for the good of those who are loving God, who are called according to the purpose that, whom He foreknew, He designates beforehand also to be conformed to the image of His Son, for Him to be Firstborn among many brethren. Now whom he designates beforehand, these He calls also, and whom He calls, these He justifies also; now whom he justifies, these He glorifies also. What, then, shall we say to these things? If GOD is for us, who is against us?"

Notice how, in these verses, all the emphasis is upon God. "Now we are aware that God is working . . ." The Authorised Version omits the word "God," but it most assuredly is in the Greek, and the Concordant Version therefore includes it. Things do not work together by chance to achieve God's purpose; there is no element of luck in the matter. No, it is God Himself Who is working all together for the good of those who are loving Him. It is God Who foreknew. It is God Who designates beforehand those who are to be conformed to the image of His Son. It is God Who calls, and Who justifies and Who glorifies. Truly, all is of God ! There is no room here for self- calling or self-justification or self-glorification.

For what say have we had in our calling? None whatever. Who has brought us into a knowledge of the truth of the scriptures? It is God, not us. Who is operating all according to the counsel of His will ? God, and God alone!

What, then, shall we declare to these things ?

That God, having chosen us, will ever let us go? Shall we say this ?

Or that God, having chosen us, will allow anything to come between Him and us –to separate us from His love in Christ Jesus, our Lord ? `

The answer to both these questions is an emphatic, "No."

Nothing in this whole universe can step between us and our ultimate glorification, not even our own stupidity. For there are saints who say really stupid things, like "I really don't see what use I can be to God," or, "I am too ignorant, or too unworthy, or too fond of other things, to be one of His chosen ones." The answer to such doubts lies in the fact that it is chiefly those of no account (humanly speaking) who are the very ones whom God has chosen for His ecclesia, so that glory may be His (1 Cor.1:26-31).

Not one of us can boast in himself — in his own achievements. If we wish to boast at all, let it be in the Lord, "for His achievement are we, being created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God makes ready beforehand, that we should be walking in them" (Eph. 2:10). Let us remember that "it is God Who is operating in us to will as well as to work for the sake of His delight" (Phil.2:13).

Let us have confidence that the God "Who undertakes a good work among us, will be performing it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Phil:1:6). Like Paul, let us "rely on the living God, Who is the Saviour of all mankind, especially of believers" (1Tim.4:9).

"May the God of expectation be filling you with all joy and peace in believing" (Rom.15:13)

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