I Will Have Mercy

I Will Have Mercy

Whether or not we can provide a self-satisfactory explanation for how it can be that a choice to bestow mercy on one twin and not another before either were born has in it no injustice, there is an appropriate rest in registering the unequivocal answer given, “Is there injustice on God’s part?  By no means!”

At each of the state prison chapels where I have fellowship, my brothers and I have been studying the New Testament letter to the Romans since the middle of October.  In recent weeks we have been slowing the pace to take extra time to reflect on the truths and hope detailed in chapter eight.  It’s no wonder that chapter eight is treasured among the men, when we think of such principles conveyed as…

  • there being no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus
  • our having been set free from the law of sin and death
  • God’s accomplishing for us what the law was powerless to do
  • having the requirements of the law fully met in us
  • walking by the Spirit because we are fundamentally of the Spirit and not of the flesh
  • the Spirit of God in us
  • life in us because of the Spirit of life and because of Christ’s righteousness
  • the hope of bodily resurrection
  • belonging as a child of God, being an heir of God and a co-heir with Christ
  • the reality that the glory to come far outweighs the sufferings of the present
  • the hope of the restoration of creation
  • the Holy Spirit’s help in our weakness, when we still groan under the curse
  • the certainty of God’s will and purpose to work in all things for the ultimate good of us who love him and to whom has come his saving call
  • God’s determined will to conform us whom he has known and chosen to the likeness of his Son
  • the unbreakable connection between predestination, calling, justification, and glorification
  • the fact that no accuser can bring legitimate charge against those whom God has chosen to justify
  • Christ’s intercession, as it relates to our justification
  • the fact that nothing and no one can separate us from the love of Christ

I must admit, though, that it was with some trepidation that I anticipated the questions we would face in chapter nine, which we touched on in each group a week and a half ago.   Chapter nine, of course, has in it the quote from Malachi…

Romans 9:13…“Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.” [1]

Concerning God’s dealings with Pharoah of old, there is the statement that the Lord…

Romans 9:18…hardens whomever he wills.

The chapter speaks of…

Romans 9:22 … vessels of wrath prepared for destruction…

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