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Saturday, September 23rd, 2023
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
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Romans 8

Hawker's Poor Man's CommentaryPoor Man's Commentary

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Verse 1


The Apostle, having in the foregoing Chapters, fully established the Doctrine of Justification by Faith: here enters upon describing the Blessedness of it. He shews the Privileges of the Faithful, from the first Stage of Freedom from Condemnation, to the final Entrance into Glory.

Verses 1-5

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (2) For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. (3) For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: (4) That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. (5) For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.

This is a most blessed Chapter, and cannot fail to make the soul of that man blessed, in whose heart God the Holy Ghost bears witness, the gracious contents of it are written. It begins, with stating the happy condition of the believer in Jesus, that there is no condemnation to them that are in union with him: and it ends, in declaring that there can be no separation from him, in grace here and glory hereafter. It opens with shewing the blessedness of a oneness with Christ, which secures from all the condemning power of the law; and it prosecutes the sweet subject through all the paths of it, from such an union with Christ, and interest in Christ, as preserves the believer from all the remains of in-dwelling corruption, the sorrows of life, and all that may arise, both within and without, to afflict the child of God in going home to his father's house. And it closeth, with challenging all created power to keep from God in Christ!

Perhaps the Reader will enter into the better apprehension of the Chapter, if he were to divide it into the several parts, in which the Holy Ghost hath been pleased to direct the Apostle to treat the several subjects here brought forward. From the first to the end of the fourth verse, the blessedness of a freedom from the condemning power of sin is stated: and the believer justified in Christ, is shewn to be in union with Christ, and walking with Christ.

From the fifth to the seventeenth verse, the blessedness of the believer is shewn, in being led by the Spirit of God, manifesting thereby his Sonship. So that, as the remains of in-dwelling sin hinder not the in-dwelling of God the Holy Ghost; neither shall it hinder the resurrection of the body at the last day, nor the everlasting happiness both of soul and body, to all eternity.

The eighteenth verse opens with shewing the unceasing comfort and support the child of God ought to derive, from the assurance of this state of things, under all the afflictions and sorrows of life. From this verse to the close of the thirtieth, the believer is taught how much a justified and sanctified life in Christ is, or ought to be, lifted up above the pressure of the necessary exercises of a life of grace, leading to a sure life of glory in Christ. And, very blessedly is it proved in this part of the Chapter, that as in all the appointments of the Lord, the Church of Christ in every individual of his mystical body, is chosen to be conformed to the image of Christ in all things, that he might be the first born among many brethren; so all things must, and can do no other, but work together for good to them that love God, and are the called according to his purpose.

Everything being now said that can be refreshing and consolatory, to shew the believer his high privileges in Christ, where neither condemnation can affect, nor affliction cast down, his justified state in Christ before God; the Chapter closeth from the opening of the thirty-first verse to the end, to challenge all created power to cause a separation between Christ and his people. And very blessed is that soul taught of God the Spirit, which, from the same cause as the Apostle enjoyed, can adopt the same triumphant language. Reader! let you and I, as we enter upon this precious Chapter, look up to God the Holy Ghost for this unspeakable blessing, that we may make it our own through his divine teaching; and sweetly, through his grace enabling us, rejoice in the transporting assurance, that being justified freely in Christ, nothing can separate us from Christ, and from the love of God which is in Christ through Jesus Christ our Lord.

I pray the Reader as he begins the Chapter, to remark with me, how blessedly the Apostle hath worded it. There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, Strictly and properly speaking, there never was; for they were chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world, and chosen to be holy and without blame before God in love, Ephesians 1:4 . But the sense is, that now, by the regenerating power of God the Holy Ghost, they are brought forth to the knowledge and enjoyment of it, from the Adam - state of their fallen nature, and they who were enemies to God by wicked works, are now reconciled in the body of Christ's flesh through death, to present them holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight, Colossians 1:2 . And I beg the Reader not to overlook the Apostle's words in the opening of this Chapter, on another account: He saith, that there is now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus. Neither is there. For in him, as their glorious Head, Husband, and Surety; they are fully justified. But the Apostle doth not say, that there is nothing in them to condemn. For they know, and confess, that from the remains of in-dwelling sin in them, there is much to condemn; yea, they condemn themselves, 1 John 1:8-9 . But Christ hath taken away the condemning power of sin, in having answered all the demands of the law. And, the believer in Christ Jesus is in a state of complete justification before God in Christ and his righteousness. God the Father justifies, Romans 8:33 . God the Son justifieth, Romans 4:25 . God the Holy Ghost justifieth, 1 Timothy 3:16 .

And, I beg the Reader yet further to notice the Apostle's words, concerning those in whom there is no condemnation. They are said to walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Paul cannot be supposed to mean, that a child of God freed from condemnation, is freed from a body of flesh and sin; for he himself, in a few verses before in the preceding Chapter, lamented with a bitter cry under a body of sin, and a body of flesh of his own, in which he said dwelt no good thing. But I apprehend, the walk of life here spoken of as distinguished from flesh and guided by the spirit, means, a life of faith in Christ; living under an abiding sense of being wholly justified by Him, and having no confidence in the flesh. No Pharisaical righteousness mingled in this walk. Not being puffed up with a fleshly mind. Paul elsewhere expresseth it: To win Christ and be found in him. I pray the Reader to turn to these scriptures, Philippians 3:4-11 ; Colossians 2:18-19 . And doth not such views throw a light upon what follows. The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus making the believer free from the law of sin and death; All holiness only in Christ. Christ himself the law, the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth. All fulfilled by Christ. All made ours from Christ. So that this Spirit of life in Christ Jesus, communicates the whole efficacy of it as from the head to its members, and they are free from the law of sin and death; and as one with Christ and in Christ, they are freely, fully, compleatly justified, and accepted as righteous in Christ before God.

Verses 6-17

For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. (7) Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. (8) So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. (9) But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. (10) And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness. (11) But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. (12) Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. (13) For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. (14) For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. (15) For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. (16) The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: (17) And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

The Apostle, in order to shew the blessedness of being led by the Holy Ghost, first begins to state the awfulness of a contrary condition, in being wholly under the influence of a carnal, unawakened, unregenerated mind. And what an alarming account he hath given of it? Reader! if the Lord hath brought you and me out of it, still let us look back, (and we may well look back with trembling,) and behold the precipice over which we both ran all the days of our unregeneracy, sinning with an high hand, ignorant of God, and ignorant of our own corruptions, before God. They are here said, to mind the things of the flesh, to be in a state of enmity against God, to be in a total incapacity of pleasing God, and to be carnally minded, which is death. All their pursuits are to make provision for the flesh to fulfil the lusts thereof! Their enmity against God is universal. They hate his holiness, his precepts, his perfections; his justice, his decrees, his sovereignty. They are at enmity with his providences, his dispensations, his appointments. They abominate his doctrines, his word, his gospel, and especially the choice of his Church in Christ. And living and dying in this state, the Apostle states the impossibility of salvation; for, saith he, they that are in the flesh cannot please God!

Reader! pause over the awful account, for it is awful, yea, tremendously awful. And, while you and I ponder well the solemn state of the carnal mind, which is enmity against God; is it possible for either of us to forget the long state of our unregeneracy, when we were in this very condition. Oh! how suited do I at this moment feel the words of the Apostle: And such (saith he) were some of you! But ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified, in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God, 1 Corinthians 6:11 .

To this alarming account of an unrenewed state, the Apostle gives the outlines of the contrary, in a state of grace. But ye, (saith lie,) are not in the flesh but in the spirit, if so be the Spirit of God dwelleth in you. By which we are not to apprehend, that a state of grace is wholly unconnected with that which is of a state of nature. Not so: For Paul, in the account he gives of himself, plainly shews, that he felt but too sensibly the workings of corrupt nature still in him. But, by the expression of being not in the flesh but in the spirit; the Apostle meant to say, that God's people were not, as in the days of their unregeneracy, wholly carnal, but were made sensible of their renewed state by the sweet influences of the Spirit, which marked them as children of God; and that the very opposition the remains of in-dwelling sin daily made to the life of God in the soul, became additional testimony to their adoption-character; in the flesh Justing against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh: so that they could not do the things which they would, Galatians 5:17 .

The Apostle hath marked down a few of the love-tokens of God the Holy Ghost in these verses, and very sweet they are in testimony of the regenerate state of the Lord's people, distinguished from the unrenewed; and as distinguished also from themselves, in what they were before that the Lord called them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and brake their bands asunder.

As, first. Though the child of God still groans under a body of sin and death, which he carries about with him, and will carry about with him as long as he continues in the present time-state of the Church; yet the Holy Ghost daily gives him to see his adoption-character in renewing, comforting, refreshing grace and favor. The Person, work, glory, blood-shedding, and righteousness of the Lord Jesus is dear to him. He feels his heart at times directed unto the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ, All which testify, that he differs, not only from the unawakened and ungodly world; but from what he himself once was, in the days of his unregeneracy. He was once darkness, but now light in the Lord, And, although all his enjoyments in Christ falls far short of what his soul longs for; yet the sweet seasons (for very sweet they are) the Lord gives him, blessedly testify the change wrought by grace in the heart; and that he who was once afar off, is brought nigh by the blood of Christ.

Secondly. By the in-dwelling residence of the Spirit, the child of God is led to discover, that the body is dead because of sin, but the spirit is life because of righteousness. These are blessed discoveries, when under divine teachings we arrive to the apprehension of them. For, when this knowledge is attained, the soul no longer looks to the body, and the deeds of the flesh in part for justification before God. It is dead because of sin. It is virtually all sin. The body is never renewed, until at the resurrection. And therefore to look to that which is dead, to bring forth anything of life, cannot be the effect of divine teaching. The child of God no longer expects fruit of righteousness from that stock. It is his consolation, under all that he daily feels, and with which he groans, in the workings of sin in the flesh, that the old man, though not dead, is yet crucified; and though not wholly destroyed, is dying daily. Sin shall not have dominion, though it too often appears. It shall not condemn, though it accuseth. Jesus hath taken away the guilt, and destroyed the power by his blood. And, in the mean time, though the body be thus dead because of sin; the spirit is life because of righteousness. Though, saith Paul, our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day, 2 Corinthians 4:16 ,

Thirdly. Amidst all the workings of this sinful body, which distress and afflict the soul, by their daily opposition to a life of grace; it is the blessedness and privilege of the child of God, when renewed by the Spirit, that they are no longer debtors to the flesh to live after the flesh. Christ hath freed them from all the debts of sin. And God the Holy Ghost preserves them by his sanctifying grace from the baleful influences of it. By the Lord the Spirit, they are enabled to mortify the deeds of the body. Not in their own strength, for they have none. Neither by their own exertions, for all would be found weakness in the day of temptation. But, it is God the Holy Ghost which by his grace bears up the child of God, and carries him through all the paths of trial. Without him, the heart would be wholly laid open to the incursions of sin and Satan, as the ungodly, and unregenerate are. But with them who are under the influences of grace, when at any time the enemy cometh in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord lifteth up a standard against him, Isaiah 59:19 .

And fourthly, to mention no more. The leadings of the Spirit, and the witnessings of the Spirit, all manifest in their daily tokens of grace, the sonship and privileges of the regenerate in Christ. It is they, and they only, which have freeness of access to the throne, and to the pardon-office of Christ; and can, and do say, Abba, Father! No servants, no bonds-men, no unregenerate; none but of the family of God in Christ, who are heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; can so approach, or claim such a relationship. An union with Christ is the only foundation for enjoying communion with the heirship of Christ. It is because ye are sons, (saith the Apostle elsewhere,) God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father, Galatians 4:6 .

Reader! pause, and contemplate the blessedness of such a state! By virtue of their adoption-character, they are brought into the present enjoyment by faith, of their vast inheritance; and have a full right in Christ to the sanctified use of all temporal blessings, the privilege of all spiritual blessings, and ere long to the complete enjoyment of all eternal blessings; for they are heirs of God and joint-heirs with Christ. And I beg the Reader to observe with me, how the Apostle hath drawn the line of distinction in these grand concerns between the Lord's people, and the ungodly world: the regenerate, and the carnal! Yea, let the Reader not fail to notice, the difference between what the child of God once was in the darkness of his mind, when in a state of unawakened nature: and what he now is when called by sovereign grace. And I request him also, not to overlook what the Apostle hath said, from his own experience, in relation to the body of death still with the believer. It is a grand point never to be lost sight of by the child of God, that the carnal mind is still enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. All that is carnal in the child of God, is still of the same carnal nature as ever, and will remain so until it drops into the grave, and is changed at the resurrection, Philippians 3:21 . David, ages before Paul, taught the same truth, being taught it himself of God; and confessed it to the Lord and to the Church. The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart that there is no fear of God before his eyes, Psalms 36:1 . David did not read this solemn truth in another man's heart, but in his own: yea, from his heart it spake it, and without reserve. Reader! have you a heartfelt acquaintance with these things? Do you know, that a child of God, though when regenerate in his spirit, he is made a partaker of the divine nature, 2 Peter 1:4 . and consequently in this renewed part, can never be holier even in heaven, than he is upon earth, being holy in Christ, and of the mystical body of Christ: yet, in his flesh, he is still the same body of sin unrenewed? Doth the Reader know these things? It will be to his comfort, to get more and more acquainted with them, that through grace, he may learn to walk more and more humbly with God. Depend upon it, nothing will tend to endear to Christ with equal affection to the heart, as when made sensible, from the workings of the body of sin in our nature we daily need him. Nothing will tend more effectually to hide pride from our eyes as when convinced, that in us, that is, in our flesh, dwelleth no good thing. And, nothing will tend under God the Spirit to keep open a constant source of true godly sorrow and repentance, equal to the conviction, that the body is dead because of sin, though the spirit is life because of righteousness in Christ. Reader! do not dismiss the subject before that you have consulted the following Scriptures: Genesis 6:5 ; Job 42:5-6 ; Isaiah 6:5 ; Daniel 10:8 ; Romans 7:14 , (to the end); Ezekiel 46:24 .

Verses 18-30

For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. (19) For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. (20) For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, (21) Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. (22) For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. (23) And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. (24) For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? (25) But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it. (26) Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. (27) And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. (28) And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. (29) For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. (30) Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.

Under this part of the Chapter, we have a vast fulness of subject, which, if prosecuted through all its different bearings, would of itself form a volume. I must study shortness for the Poor Man's Commentary, while omitting nothing that is important to dwell upon.

The Apostle begins this passage with stating his views of the disproportioned estimate, between the sufferings of the present life to the Church and to all the members of it, how great or numerous soever they might be, and the glory which is to follow. And this is so plain and obvious as to require no enlargement. For, as the present time-state of the Church, compared to eternity is no more than a grain of sand to the earth: So, the sorrows of such a state can bear no greater proportion than a drop of rain to the ocean. There is a vast beauty in the expression, the glory which shall be revealed in us: meaning Christ. The Son of God in our nature glorified in his saints. In him, and through him, the in-dwelling of God in his threefold character of Persons, Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, will be the glory revealed. Our utmost conceptions can go but a very little way in this subject. The Lord Jesus hath graciously opened to us the blessed contemplation, in what he said to his Father. And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them, that they may be one even as we are one, John 17:22 . And what a glory the Lord hath indeed already given his regenerate? What a glory is it to contemplate the union of Christ and his Church, from one eternity to another! Reader! have you ever studied the glory of the Church, what it was before all worlds in Christ? What it was during the time-state of Jesus appearing on earth in the Church's union with Christ? What it is now in heaven, in being represented there by Christ? And what heart shall conceive, what it will be, in the glory, as Paul here speaks, which shall be revealed in us from Christ; in his dwelling in his Church, and his Church in him to all eternity! I in them (said the Lord) and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them as thou hast loved me, John 17:23 .

Concerning the creature here spoken of, waiting for the manifestation of the sons of God, being made subject to vanity, under the bondage of corruption, and groaning and travailing together in pain until now; various have been the opinions of various persons, but all entangled with difficulty in the apprehension. Some have referred it to angels, some to the brute creation, some to the world of intelligent creatures partaking in the common event of the fall. But the Holy Ghost hath not been pleased to throw a light upon it sufficient to determine with any certainty. But it is a sweet consolation, be it what it may, the promise that follows, that this creature shall ultimately be delivered, from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. So the Holy Ghost hath said by the Apostle in another scripture. All things shall be finally gathered in Christ, Ephesians 1:10 .

But I pass by many other considerations, to call the Reader's attention to what is said in those verses, concerning the love, and grace, and mercy of God the Holy Ghost. The Apostle saith, that the Spirit helpeth our infirmities, for we are ignorant how to pray; but He maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered: and that He who searcheth the hearts, knoweth the mind of the Spirit, and maketh intercession for the saints, according to the will of God. Here is a vast depth of Scripture here, as it relates to the Person, Godhead, and Ministry, of the Holy Ghost. But I must not indulge myself in entering into the whole particularly. A few observations only shall I offer.

And first, Here are the infirmities of God's children considered, which rendereth the help of the Holy Ghost so truly blessed. They know not the extent of their own fallen nature. They are ignorant of the power of Satan. When they would pray, they are too often faint, and unable. And, though a throne of grace is open before them; yet they want words, and they want faith to come as they ought, to the mercy-seat, to seek mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Secondly. Here is the Holy Ghost very blessedly set forth in his sweet office-character, namely, the helper of our infirmities in prayer. Thus the Lord the Spirit was promised, Zechariah 12:10 , And thus he is found to his people, John 15:26-27 .

But thirdly. It is very blessed to have a right apprehension how God the Holy Ghost helpeth the Lord's people in prayer; that when they are ignorant what to pray for, how to plead, and with what words to come before the Lord; God the Spirit puts the cry into their heart, and a spirit of wrestling in their souls, that they may plead like wrestling Jacob, and come off like prevailing Israel. This scripture shews. When we know not what we should pray for as we ought, (which we never can know but by his teaching,) the Spirit maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Not that the Holy Ghost groans, but he gives a fervency of prayer in the souls of his people, which can only express itself in groans, not in words. Not that the Holy Ghost makes intercession for them, (for this is the sole office of Jesus the High Priest,) but with them. The Spirit pleads with them, and not with God. He indites their prayers. He teacheth how to pray, and what to pray for. And what He teacheth them to ask upon earth, is in exact correspondence to what Jesus their Great High Priest is interceding for them in Heaven. The prayer taught by God the Holy Ghost in their hearts, is like an echo to the intercession of Jesus before the throne. And this receiveth another blessed testimony, because it is not only in perfect unison to the intercession of Christ and the inditing of the Holy Spirit; but it is in exact uniformity to the will of God, He who searcheth the heart of the poor petitioner knoweth the mind and will of God. So that all is harmonious, the Father, Son, and Spirit, in the precious work and grace; and all concur in those blessed purposes of salvation.

In the verse which speaks of the highly privileged lovers of God, who are the called according to God's purpose; we can only stay to notice, that it comprehends all the blessings of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. All things work together for good. God himself in his threefold character of Persons, and in all his Covenant offices, and relations: the Father in his everlasting love and purpose: the Son in his fullness, suitableness, and all-sufficiency: and the Holy Ghost in his operations, graces, and influences: all minister to this end, in every department of nature, providence, grace, and glory. And, the call implies the freedom of it, the fullness of it, the unmerited, unexpected, unlooked for, mercifulness of it: and all referred into the divine purpose, not human deservings; not man's merit, but God's mercy.

Neither doth the cause of those distinguishing blessings which is related in the verses which follow, strike the mind with less conviction of God's sovereignty and favor; namely, Jehovah's foreknowledge, fore-appointment, and eternal design of the Church to those mercies; that the glorious Head, and his highly favored members, might have a conformity. everything is here shewn to have been arranged and ordained in one continued train of order, that all should be to Christ, and from Christ, and for Christ; and all leading from the original and eternal design, through all the gradations of being predestinated to the being called, and from being called to the being justified, and from the being justified to the being glorified. Reader! ponder well these precious things, and call to mind the Apostle's advice, 2 Peter 1:10-11 .

Verses 31-39

What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us? (32) He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? (33) Who shall lay anything to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. (34) Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. (35) Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? (36) As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. (37) Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. (38) For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, (39) Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

The Apostle, in summing up the several contents of this very blessed Chapter, seems to be at a loss while contemplating the vast subjects contained in it; and, unable to express his wonder at the divine love, and the distinguishing mercy shewn the Church, cries out: What shall we then say to these things? On the part of God, he hath given everything that is blessed. Yea, such astonishing love he hath shewn as passeth all understanding: he hath given us his own Son. He hath justified, Christ hath died, the Holy Spirit hath witnessed. And therefore, Paul challengeth the whole creation to separate from Christ. And he goeth on to enumerate everything which might seem in the first view to militate against the present and everlasting safety of the Church, and bids defiance to the whole to keep from Christ. Reader! think, if you are able, the everlasting safety of the Church; and look up to God under the impression of the immense mercy with suited thanksgiving and praise. Oh! for an heart to believe the record which God hath given of his dear Son; and in every exercise, and trial of life, to keep in remembrance those sweet words of encouragement to hear up under all, which like an inscription speaks to the child of God as from the cross: He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all; how shall he not with him freely give us all things?

Verse 39


Reader! can you, can I, find strength of faith, under the assurance of being justified in the blood and righteousness of Jesus Christ, to rest in him for everlasting life; then may we take part in the precious truth of the Apostle's words, for there is no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the spirit. And, blessed be God for all the high privileges of a justified state before God. Led by the Spirit of God, we are the sons of God. And Christ being in us, though the body be dead because of sin, yet is the spirit life because of righteousness. No spirit of bondage anymore to fear. No debtors to the law anymore to dread. But, living in the Spirit, and walking in the Spirit, we through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, and we shall live.

Grant, Almighty Lord and Father, grace to call thee abba, Father! Lord! by the Spirit of adoption we have received, give us to be conformed to the image of thy dear Son. And being called, and justified, and made heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ, we may at length be glorified in Christ forever. And nothing, in life or death, in time, or in eternity, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Bibliographical Information
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Romans 8". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/pmc/romans-8.html. 1828.
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