Romans 8:18-28 (ESV)
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Paul is talking here about suffering persecution for the faith he expressed in Jesus. Yet because of the glory coming when the Lord brings all things to the ultimate end for which they were created, and the perfection of all things, Paul considers the suffering nothing. As he points out, our very souls groan with utterings too deep for words, as we wait for the glory of God to be revealed. In another place in the Scriptures, we are told that, “...No eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Cor 2:9).
It is amazing when we think of how magnificent the things are that we may imagine, and yet the Scriptures tell us that what God has prepared for us surpasses it such that we cannot even conceive of it.
We are truly blessed that God has revealed His grace and mercy to us. Those who lived during the Old Testament days, had to live and wonder, and die without knowing exactly how God would work it all out. We still do not know the extent of the New Heavens and New Earth promised in Revelation, but we know Who is our salvation. We know that Jesus will do what He has promised. We know that He did not shrink from the pain and suffering that He endured for our sakes. What glorious and wonderful promises He made us. What love and mercy to endure such suffering.
God has given us His Holy Spirit to help us during the times of weakness and suffering that we must endure, so that we will be strengthened, and be able to stand against the evil of this current world. When everything was created, it was perfect, but the sin of man, the pinnacle of God’s creation caused all things to become corrupt. Now we must wait for the redemption of all of creation, which is coming soon. Maybe this week, maybe in ten years, maybe two hundred years, maybe a thousand... We don’t know for certain. Jesus said we could not, would not know the exact time, however, He said to watch for certain things, and we would know the season. So as we see the world changing around us, watch for the man of perdition. Watch for the evil to grow even worse by a lot. Then we will know the time is short.
In the grand scheme of things, the time is already growing short, but it will become more apparent the closer we get.
May the peace of Christ and the Love of God the Father and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with each of you today.
by Virgil Stripes