(8:28) Assurance—Call—Man, Struggles—Salvation: God works all things out for those who love Him. This is the
first assurance of deliverance. What a comforting declaration! Scripture actually declares that “all things work together
for good” for the believer. Think about it: nothing could assure the believer any more than God’s working all things out for
his good. Note four things.
1. The words “all things” go well beyond the great events of the world. God does control the events of the world, but
He controls much more. He rules over “all things”—all the events and happenings that occur in the life of the believer. He
works “all things” out for good in behalf of His dear child.
2. The words “work together” (sunergei) mean to create and eliminate, place and replace, connect and group, interre-
late and intermingle, shape and forge, press and stretch, move and operate, control and guide, arrange and influence. The
words “work together” are also present action which means that all things are continually working together for good. God is
in control of the believer’s life. Daily, moment by moment, God is arranging and rearranging all things for the believer’s
3. The word “good” (agathon) means for the ultimate good. We cannot see the future; we cannot take a single event
and see all the lines and ramifications that run from it. We cannot see all the things that result from one single event, much
less see the results of every event. But God does; therefore, God takes all the events of our lives and works them out for our
4. There is, however, a limitation on this glorious promise, a limitation that desperately needs to be noted. God works
all things out for good only for those who love God and are called according to His purpose.
a. This fact is graphically seen in the Greek. The clause “to those who love God” is placed first in the sentence:
“But we know that to those who love God all things work together for good.” Scripture makes sure the point
is not missed. God only looks after the affairs of the person who loves Him.
Thought 1. Think about it for a moment, for it is the only reasonable conclusion. If a man does not love God—
does not place his life into the hands of God—how can God take care of Him? If the man turns his back and
walks away from God, how can God look after him? God is not going to force His care upon any of us. He is
not going to make mechanical robots out of us, forcing us to live at His beck and call. Such is not love; it is only
mechanical behavior. What God wants is love that flows from a heart that chooses to love Him. The choice is
ours: we either turn our lives over to Him in love, or we continue to take our lives into our own hands.
b. Note the words, “called according to his purpose.” The believer’s deliverance is purposed by God. God calls
him for the glorious purpose of being saved from the struggle and sufferings of this life.
Note a significant fact. The believer’s position and behavior are both involved in the call of God.
⇒ Positionally, God chooses the believer by setting him apart through the Holy Spirit and through belief
of the truth.
“God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the
Spirit and belief of the truth: whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of
the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Th.2:13-14).
⇒ In behavior, God calls the believer to a life of purity and holiness.
“For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness” (1 Th.4:7).
The point is this: God delivers the person who is positioned in Christ and who lives a pure and holy life.
The person who truly loves God and is living a godly life is the person who experiences all things being
worked out for his good. It is the godly person who loves God that will be delivered from the struggling and
suffering of this corrupt world.
“There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful,
who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation al-
so make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it” (1 Cor.10:13).
“Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all”
“Fear thou not; For I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen
thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness”
“When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they
shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; nei-
ther shall the flame kindle upon thee” (Is.43:2).
Thought 1. Contrast the carnal attitude of Jacob and the spiritual attitude of Paul.
⇒ Jacob said, “All these things are against me” (Gen.42:36).
⇒ Paul said, “All things work together for good to them that love God” (Ro.8:28).
(8:29) Assurance—Foreknowledge—Predestination—Conformed—Image—Salvation: God has determined to fulfill
His purpose for the believer. This is the second assurance of deliverance. Note three significant points.
1. This passage is often abused and misused. It is not dealing so much with theology or philosophy, but more with the
spiritual experience of the Christian believer. If the pure logic of philosophy and theology are applied, then the passage says
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