Romans 8:32-35 “He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? . . . Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?”
God wants to give us more than we can ever imagine. He longs to pour out his blessings into our lives. He proved this by sending his own Son to us as a gift, the greatest gift, and he wants to send us “all things,” i.e., everything else good that only God can give. And it’s all “graciously” given, not deserved in the least, totally based on His initiative because of His great love. The question is, do we want what He longs to give us?
The fact is, the vast majority of people who have ever walked on the face of the earth, and most who are alive at this very moment, don’t want Christ in their lives or any of the other supernatural gifts of God. Their view of what is valuable is so flawed that they are like the dog who returns to his vomit (Proverbs 26:11). They would rather have garbage and filth than the pure and perfect gifts of God. So why is this true? What on earth would drive someone in this direction? It’s the simple fact that when one opens their lives to what God would give them, they must turn their backs on the world and its allurements. Light can’t dwell with darkness, nor sin with righteousness, nor life with death. Incredibly, people would rather cling to their sinful lifestyle, filthy habits, and ungodly relationships than receive what is truly good from an all-knowing, all-powerful, and infinitely loving Creator – for you can’t love God and money – or God and anything else that competes for our allegiance (Luke 16:13).
When faced with the choice, people are innately aware that if they were to truly turn to God and receive what He has for them, they must turn their back on what the world and their fleshly desires have craved for their entire lives to that that point in time. The reaction from the world in its darkness to such a choice can be very negative; so much so that “tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword” can enter a life that was going along with the flow until that point. God’s greatest gifts are free, but they are very costly, at least when viewed from the flawed perspective of those who don’t know Him. But it’s only when one is willing to “taste and see that the Lord is good (Psalm 34:8)” that his or her eyes can be opened to the riches God has for them.
The apostle Paul finally saw this, and it was at that point that he could say “But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ.Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead” (Philippians 3:7-11).
What about you? Do you want to receive what God wants to give you, or would you rather cling to that which everyone that has ever turned to God has found to be utterly worthless?
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