We celebrated the glorious Resurrection with shouts of “He is Risen! He is Risen, Indeed!” just a few shorts weeks ago on Easter Sunday. During our journey with Jesus and His disciples to Jerusalem, we read their witness of Jesus’ healing and miracles, but then their betrayals, the crucifixion, three days of fear and the promised Resurrection. All this was the disciples’ reality. We also realize how we as Christ-followers have participated along with the disciples in our own betrayals, lack of faith, walking away from God when we believe He has disappointed us. Even our wondering about why God has forsaken us in our brokenness and in the brokenness in the world.
So where is God? Where is the Savior of the world, when children die of incurable diseases; God’s sons and daughters take their own lives; people starve while others gorge themselves and throw food away; when perpetrators commit hate crimes against persons worshiping God; when perpetrators commit hate crimes just because someone’s skin or political choice is different from their own; when men, women and children are imprisoned or sold into slavery?
The apostle Paul did not believe God caused evil things, but he knew they happened. “Trouble, or distress, or harassment, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword”—he’d faced all these and more (2 Corinthians 11:23-27). Yet his list was not a complaint. He wrote it to say, “In all these things we win a sweeping victory through the one who loved us” (Romans 8:37). No matter what life throws at us, we can march with Paul and a long line of believers in God’s eternal victory parade.
Romans 8: We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us. Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all day long; we are accounted as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Thankful that we are more than conquerors through Christ Jesus,