Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?... No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:35, 37-39
Here we come to one of the most stirring passages of the whole Bible. It accomplishes Paul’s purpose of encouragement in a way that has made it a reference for Christians in times of difficulty throughout the history of the church. We have all discovered to some extent the truth of Paul’s description in Chapter 7 about the inner turmoil that, at times, seems to be the overwhelming experience of life for the believer. We also experience the tension with the whole universe caused by the power of sin in the world. In the midst of these challenges we are facing, the Word of God raises this question; “What, then, shall we say in response to this?” (Romans 8:31). From our text, Paul recited a proclamation designed to awaken the determination of believers to remain faithful in spite of everything. Since our salvation depends on Him and Him alone, nobody else has the right to bring any charge against us—including ourselves. We need not fear. The kind of love that drove the Son of God to die and live for those responsible for His death on the cross is not going to let anybody or anything come between Him and to those He died for. Nothing can separate us from that love. There will be moments that we might choose to live a life contrary to that love, but we can never make Him stop loving us. Some might find it disheartening when we hear news about Christians who are going through tremendous persecutions because of their faith. Yet despite this threat of being slaughtered, we marvel at the confidence with which those believers faced pain and death. None of that is enough to convince these believers that God doesn’t love them. Who or what can ultimately hurt him? “No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love” (Romans 8:37). There are so many things in this world that could strike fear into our hearts, yet we can live in the assurance that the love of God is unconquerable. There is nothing we or anybody else can do to make God stop loving us. In fact, because of that love, we can be assured that all things, even the bad things, are ultimately working together for good; “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them” (Romans 8:28). Thank God!
Noel De Guzman