What is life all about? At best, life is a puzzle made of events we don’t understand and circumstances we can’t control. Then, sprinkled over it are joys unspeakable and full of glory. Life is full of mystery, misery, and magnificence, but it doesn’t seem to make sense.
In Romans chapter 8, we’ll find God bringing incredible sense to life, and we’ll learn of the magnificent grace of God in and through it all.
A while back, a rabbi wrote a best-selling book, “Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?” Great title, but its premise is wrong: The Bible says there are no inherently “good” people. (See Romans 3:10.) No less than 24 Bible passages say that mankind is born sinful. We’ve all “sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
We should be asking the opposite question: “Why do good things happen to bad people?” When they do, it’s the grace of God. Everything good that’s come to us is purely His grace (See James 1:17.) in spite of our sins.
So why do good things happen to sinners like us? Because of God’s divine plan and His incredible promise.
If You’ve made Jesus Christ your Lord and Savior, there are four wonderful truths about your life.
Truth #1. You are graced by His purpose.
“And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).
Why did God create the Universe? Why did the Lord Jesus step out of Heaven to die on a cross? Why are we here? What is God’s eternal purpose? To make us like His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. (See Romans 8:29.)
He uses life’s circumstances to make us more like Jesus, and “He who has begun a good work in you will be faithful to complete it” (Philippians 1:6). It’s settled in the council halls of eternity: you’re going to become more like Jesus.
Truth #2. You are guided by His providence.
God fulfills His purpose by His providence, seeing ahead of time and making provision for what’s coming. God moves everything toward the goal He has in mind.
There is much evil in our world. Mankind has free will and an evil heart. Don’t think for a moment that God causes all things to happen or that everything that happens is God’s will. God doesn’t cause evil. But even when evil occurs in the lives of the victims, if they know the Lord, God’s providence is still going to overrule and take care of those precious families.
Truth #3. You are guarded by His power.
“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us” (Romans 8:31)?
When Satan comes to accuse, he’s literally coming against God Himself. People who come against you are opposing the One who stands for you. Paul asks, “Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies” (Romans 8:33). “Who is he that condemns” (Romans 8:34)? Answer: no one. “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1). Jesus isn’t going to condemn you. (See Romans 8:27, 34.) Nothing can separate you from God’s love (See Romans 8:35.), for God Himself is guarding you.
Paul doesn’t say bad things won’t happen to us. They happened to him. But they don’t separate you from the love of Christ. They draw you all the closer.
Truth #4. You are gladdened by His presence.
No matter where, the darkest night, the loneliest road, God’s presence is with you.
For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39)
Trouble can’t cripple love, shatter hope, or lessen the power of the resurrection. You stand encircled by His love.
These four wonderful truths are for those who love Him.
We’re graced with His purpose—He’s going to make us like Jesus.
We’re guided by His providence—all things are working together for good to those who love God.
We’re guarded by His power.
We’re gladdened with His presence—for nothing can separate us from His love.
Aren’t you glad good things can happen to bad people like us?