No Condemnation and No Separation
SEPTEMBER 26, 2023
God is going to hold me through anything and everything that will happen in my life
I truly agree with the sentiment of some scholars that chapter 8 in Romans is very encouraging and delightful. It begins with no condemnation and ends with no separation. Our Heavenly Father will not condemn us and there is nothing we can do to get Him to separate His love from us. WHAT GOOD NEWS! God will not condemn us and nothing we can do will separate us!
Romans 8:1 – “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.”
When you belong to Christ, there is no reason for you to live in condemnation. There is no sin you can commit that God has not already forgiven. Condemnation is defined as “a statement or expression of very strong and definite criticism or disapproval.” The word literally means judgment coming down on someone. There is no judgment coming down on you from God based upon what you have done.
For what reason would a person find himself condemned or living in condemnation? When he commits sin, he is condemned. However, if you have received Jesus Christ as Savior, and He paid for your past, present, and future sins, there is no reason to ever live in condemnation. God has set His approval over you. Jesus himself makes this claim:
John 5:24 (NLT) – “I tell you the truth, those who listen to my message and believe in God who sent me have eternal life. They will NEVER be condemned for their sins, but they have ALREADY passed from death into life.”
Those who believe Jesus died and was resurrected will never be condemned and have already passed from death into life . . . WOW! That is the Good News of the Gospel.
Romans 8:15 – “So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children. Now we call him, ‘Abba, Father.’”
We are not afraid as slaves are afraid of their master. We are joint heirs with Jesus in the family of God.
As a child I was spoiled by my father. He loved me so much he gave me whatever I wanted. He never raised his voice towards me, never hit me, or spanked me. He gave me pure unconditional love and I felt totally safe with him. Depending on your view of a “father,” that point of view will determine how you see God. If your father was very hard on you, more than likely, you will see God as a no-nonsense God. If your father was not in your life, you may have problems putting your trust in God. If your father was never there for you, then, it is hard to believe God will be there for you. On the other hand, you may view your father as I experienced mine. My father was kind, loving, forgiving, and slow to anger. He loved his children unconditionally. I never feared my father a day in my life, even when I was wrong and had messed up.
You do not have to fear God as a slave fears a master because of sin. Rather, you should see Him as a loving father, knowing that whatever you have done He will not cast you away because His love is unconditional.
Romans 8:16 – “For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory (favor). But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.”
We are in the family and we cannot be cast away. How many times have your children done things that were not pleasing? You may have been disappointed in their decisions but you did not throw them away or kick them out of the family. Your Heavenly Father will not put you out of the family, no matter what you do. I heard a pastor say, “Yes, God is forgiving, but if you keep on doing the same thing over and over, He will get tired of putting up with you and will allow His wrath to come upon you.” Really? What did Jesus say about that?
Matthew 18:21-22 (NKJV) – “Then Peter came to him and asked, ‘Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?’ ‘No, not seven times,’ Jesus replied, ‘but seventy times seven!’”
Luke 17:4 – “Even if that person wrongs you seven times a day and each time turns again and asks forgiveness, you must forgive.”
If Jesus is telling Peter to forgive someone who sinned against him seventy times seven in ONE DAY, how many times do you feel He will forgive you? God’s forgiving power is immeasurable. He will forgive us for the same sin a million times a million per day. Think for a moment, take the most devastating horrific sin that you have committed . . . yes, you are forgiven. God has promised never to remember them anymore.
Our Father loves us beyond what we are able to comprehend. No matter what you do, we are children of God and He loves you. We have become joint-heirs with Christ.
Romans 8:35 – “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?”
In church, I was taught—or maybe should I say understood—this verse with the wrong theology. We were told we could separate ourselves from Christ’s love when we sinned. God would reject us if we found ourselves outside of His will. This is absolutely incorrect. In fact, the text is saying the opposite: “Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love?” (NLT). The answer is NO! God loves us so much that He has us in His hands and no matter how hard we fight, we cannot get away from Him.
Romans 8:35(b) – “Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?”
If trouble hits our lives, God has our backs! If we find ourselves in calamities, such as hurricanes, earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, tornadoes, or any disasters it does not take away from the fact God is not punishing you. He is there in the midst of it all. None of these things came because of your sins. If you find yourself being persecuted or hungry, or destitute, you can rest assured God is not mad with you. He loves us unconditionally . . .
There is nothing we can do that will get God to stop loving us. NOTHING! No sin is too great for God to turn His back on us.
Romans 8:36 – “As the Scriptures say, ‘For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.’”
Paul said, “Lord, there are times we feel as though we are like sheep going to the slaughter.” When trouble hits our lives, it feels as if Jesus is not around. When we lose a loved one in a senseless crime or a child to cancer or other illness that God could have stopped, we feel like sheep headed to the slaughter. When we cannot find jobs to feed our families or pay our bills, there cannot help but be a feeling of helpless and hopelessness. There are days when we do not feel as if God loves us because of something we must have done. Then he makes it very clear to us:
Romans 8:37 (KJV) – “Nay, in all these things . . . “
The word “nay” means “not true.” You may feel that way, but it is not true. Do not look at tribulation, depression, persecution, famine, and nakedness as rejection or failure as punishment from God.
Romans 8:37(b) – “. . . we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”
WHAT? We are more than conquerors? YES! None of these things will cause us to lose our “good standing” with God. We may lose everything, even our lives, but we will never lose our salvation in Christ Jesus. WE WIN! God has prepared a place called Heaven, where we will live with Him forever. Paul ends the chapter by the ringing of a crescendo of praise, letting us know we must be persuaded, we must know with everything within us, that God loves us beyond what words can explain. So he began to say:
Romans 8:38-39 (KJV) – “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
YES!!!!! I am persuaded that nothing I do will get God to stop loving me. Nothing I say will get God to stop loving me. He is going to hold me through anything and everything that will happen in my life.
The eighth chapter opens up by saying there is no condemnation. It ends by saying, “And nothing shall separate me from Him.” What Good News God has bestowed upon us! Jesus is awesome, amazing and full of GRACE.
Adapted from Jerry Q. Parries’ book, Grace: The Real Good News of the Gospel.