We will now read the concluding verses of that glorious eighth of Romans.
Our ignorance shows itself in prayer, and is our great infirmity, we cannot tell what blessing we most require. What a mercy it is that the Holy Spirit knows all things, and moves us to ask for what is best. Before we pray we should wait upon the Spirit for his guidance, and then we shall go in unto the King with an acceptable petition.
So that he inclines our hearts to request the very blessings which the Father has determined to give, and hence our prayers are but the transcripts of the divine decrees.
Like links in a golden chain, each one of the blessings of grace draws on another. The central links are within our view, and if we know them to be ours, we may be sure that the others which belong to the past and the future are securely fastened to them. He who is called is most assuredly predestinated, and shall, beyond all question, be in due time glorified.
Romans 8:31, 32
This is the master argument in prayer. If we understand its force we shall not be afraid of asking too much.
Romans 8:35, 36
shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? All these have been tried.
Romans 8:35, 36
But did they divide the suffering ones from Jesus?
So far from being divided from the love of Jesus, the saints were in persecuting times driven closer to their Lord, so that they enjoyed yet sweeter communion with him. No earthly trial can make Jesus forget the souls for whom he died; he changes not in the purpose of his mind or the affection of his heart.
Romans 8:38, 39
The apostle began with No condemnation and he ends with No separation, filling up the space between with priceless covenant blessings. No chapter in the Bible is more crowded with sublime and consoling teaching. Lord, grant us to know and enjoy all the inestimable privileges which it reveals.
He lives, he lives, and sits above,
For ever interceding there;
Who shall divide us from his love?
Or what shall tempt us to despair?
Shall persecution, or distress,
Famine, or sword, or nakedness?
He that hath loved us bears us through,
And makes us more than conquerors too.
Faith hath an overcoming power,
It triumphs in the dying hour:
Christ is our life, our joy, our hope;
Nor can we sink with such a prop.