Saturday, 20 July 2013
For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. Romans 8:22
Again for the forth time in this section the verse is introduced with “for.” This is then being tied back to verse 21 which said that the “creation was subject to futility” and that it “will be delivered from the bondage of corruption.” He now explains, based on this knowledge that “we know…” In other words, what he is stating should be taken as a universal axiom – anyone can simply look around and tell.
“We know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs.” There are earthquakes, there are floods, there are hurricanes, there are famines, and there are plagues. There is unnatural death, stars explode, meteors crash into the earth, etc. All of these things, and so very many more are evidently not something one would think of as “normal” when thinking of an ideal world.
And yet, we have the intuition that there is an ideal that should exist. This is the stuff of dreams, legends, plays, and movies. It is something universally found in the heart and hope of man. This creation shouldn’t act as it does, but it in fact does. And these “groans and labors with birth pangs” continue “together until now.”
This was true at Paul’s time and it continues to be true 2000 years later. The world which is hoped for has not yet arrived. There is a universal fault which will be corrected as he previously stated, “for we know” that things aren’t as they should be.
Life Application: When you see a tsunami kill 200,000 people, you know that it isn’t something that should happen. Something has caused it. Is it a mean and vindictive God? Is it a God who can’t handle crises as they arrive? Or, is it that there is a fault which was caused by our own rebellion? If the last is the case, will God correct it? We know the answer because we have the instruction manual to the problem in our possession. When crises arise, let us use the situation wisely and share the good news of Jesus Christ. No matter what the calamity, small or large, we can use it for His glory.
Precious Lord Jesus, I see the immense devastation of floods, tornados, hurricanes, and the like and I know that you can use me during these times to help those who have been afflicted – both for their temporal and spiritual benefit. Give me the wisdom to use such times sensibly by sharing Your love and Your good news to those who have been brought low by these things. Amen.