No Separation from the Love of God
For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
As we conclude this eighth chapter of Romans, we now come to two of my personal favorite verses. Let me break it down:
“For I am convinced” means that Paul knows this to be true.
“Death” cannot separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus. Acts 7:55-56 describes some of the events leading up to the death of Stephen, the Church’s first martyr: “Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. ‘Look,’ he said, ‘I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.’” This is the only record of Jesus standing in heaven. The response of many who are threatened with death for the Name of Jesus is to say to their tormentors: “Great, you will be sending me home!” You cannot defeat people with that kind of faith.
“Life” is sometimes more difficult than death. In fact, living joyfully after tragedy strikes, can be challenging at best. Yet we know nothing life throws at us — whether temptation, tribulation, trial, disease, or hunger — can separate us from Him who loves us.
“Neither angels nor demons” I believe refers to fallen angels and others within the spiritual realm who serve Satan. Ephesians 6:12: “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” The believer is not to fear dark forces (Luke 10:19-20): “I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
“Neither the present nor the future” means that whatever is going on presently or potentially (in the future) — whether global, national or personal — will separate us from the love of God.
“Powers” I believe relates to forces within the world. This would include satanic influences upon government, the judicial and legal systems, banking, and overall political structure.
“Nor height nor depth nor anything else in creation” means we need never fear the unknown. Rather, exploration of the oceans and heavens will continue to reveal the inadequacies of scientific explanations without acknowledgement of the Creator.
The Bible is a love story. It is the account of a loving God in pursuit of a love relationship with His creation. It’s not about law, logic or reason. It’s about love. We entered this chapter with no condemnation; and we have concluded with no separation. In between we’ve discovered “that in all things God works for the good of those who love him.” What a glorious message Paul has presented!
Spencer said, “If Holy Scripture were a ring and the epistle to the Romans its precious stone, chapter eight would be the sparkling point of the jewel.” I think his statement pretty well sums up my opinion of chapter eight. It is simply amazing! I sincerely hope it has been as much a blessing to you in reading, as it has been to me in researching and writing the commentary. Now onward to chapter nine!
to chapter nine!