Ski Trip Sermonette
We’re in the middle of a war. Our foes are attacking us and there are casualties. The weapons of the enemy are both complex and sneaky. And yet, we know that our side is stronger because we have one more powerful than the enemy standing with us.
You may have guessed, but I’m not talking about the wars that are going on in Iraq and Afghanistan. No, the war that you and I are in the middle of is a spiritual war. The devil is using anything that he can to attack us and is desperately trying to separate us from God.
In our lesson this morning, Paul was writing to Christians who were beginning to face persecution by some in the Roman world. That persecution may have raised questions in the minds of the Roman Christians: Is faith worth the trouble and the pain? Is it worth the worry? Why does it seem that being loyal to God means we get nothing good in this life? Why does it seem that God allows the wicked world to have the upper hand?
Listen to how Paul answers those questions: What then shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?
Paul’s answer both to those Roman Christians generations ago and to you this evening is simple. It may seem that there are times that God is not for you, but make no mistake about it – God is definitely for you. I’m sure that if you all took the time to think about your lives, you could think of at least a dozen times that it seemed that God wasn’t on your side. Maybe you get made fun of at school for doing the God-pleasing thing. Maybe your life isn’t as easy as you hoped it would be. Perhaps you see your Christian friends having an easier life than you, and you wonder why your life isn’t that easy.
All these questions boil down to one big question: Is God really on my side? Listen again to what Paul says: If God is for us, who can be against us? Paul answers our question with a question of his own. But, there, in that question is this unmistakable truth: God IS on our side. And with God on our side, even at times that everyone and everything seems to be fighting against us, nothing can truly defeat us.
And here is the reason: he…did not spare his own Son. You see, God loves you so much that he was willing to send his own Son to his death. God loves you so much that he would send his own Son in order that we would not die, but live. At times when your teenage hormones and emotions are running wild and you may not be sure who really loves you or who really is your friend, take comfort in this – God loves you and has given you the best blessing he could ever give.
And that very Son that he handed over, well, listen to his fate in Paul’s words. Christ Jesus, who died – more than that, who was raised to life! – is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. That very Son whom God the Father handed over for you and me is now sitting at God’s right hand and bringing our needs to God. What a wonderful blessing! The Almighty Son knows everything we need and makes sure that we receive those needs.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 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.
None of us have to be afraid of what we may run into in this life. Not one single problem, not one single foreign power is strong enough to tear us away from the love of Christ. His love, his power, is stronger than anything else. In the spiritual war we fight, Christ wins out every single time! So he will continue to hold onto us. He will continue to keep us in his love.
Continue to remember that fact as you deal with any problems or spiritual attacks during this life. God has shown you his grace through his Son. Nothing can separate you from His love. At times it may seem like we are losing the battle, but through Christ the war has already been won! So try as he might, the devil will never separate you from Christ’s love. Through that road to Calvary, the devil has been defeated. Let us shout with Paul: God is for us – Who could possibly be against us?!