“What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31)
Two thoughts come to mind when pondering this first question. After laying out the marvelous truths of justification, sanctification and glorification in chapters 1-8 of Romans, the first thing is that there’s really nothing to say. Have you ever received a totally undeserved gift and you couldn’t even find words to express how grateful you were? In light of all that God has done, what really can we say?
The second answer to the question, “What shall we say?” is the word “Everything.” I should be filled with praise and should never stop thanking God for all that He has done. We should also give him everything that we have, including our very lives. Some time ago we had a creative planning meeting to put some ideas together for a sermon series we called “Worship Matters.” We started by putting the word “worship” on a piece of paper and then we wrote down whatever came to mind. As we were sharing our thoughts we all stopped when my friend Dean said this, “Worship is all that I have for all He is.” I must give everything to the One who gave His all for me.
The next question Paul asks is this: “If God is for us, who can be against us?” The meaning is not so much “if” but is rather “since” or “because.” It literally reads this way: “Because God for us, who against us?” Since God is for us, what difference does it make who is against us? Others may intimidate us, but we have the Almighty on our side. I was pretty small in elementary school and would get picked on by some of the bigger boys. I learned quickly that if I hung out with a guy named Dave Theider, the rest of the guys would leave me alone. Why was that? Because Dave was the BMOC (big man on campus).
Friend, with God on your side, there is nothing that anyone else can do to you. Psalm 118:6: “The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?” Paul is not suggesting that we have no opposition because we all have adversaries. The point he is making is that every opponent is puny compared with how big God is. Many of us judge whether God is for us by how events or circumstances turn out. If something goes bad, some of us immediately think that God is against us and when things go well, we think He’s for us. If you’re a born again believer, God is always for you, no matter what happens.
In order to make this promise more personal, insert your name into this verse right now: “God is for ___________ .” When you feel like someone or something is against you, remember that God is for you. God is your proponent and He is bigger than any opponent you may be facing.