What Does the Bible say about Romans 8:28?

I often hear people quote Romans 8:28 and want to ask them, do you really know what it means?

It’s not just a flippant verse to throw at somebody and say “God says all things work together for good”.

You know, if things don’t go the way you’ve planned or you just lost your job, or maybe loved ones that have died of cancer, as in my life, we sometimes hear these words, “All things work together for good ”.

The bible doesn’t say that at all.

What does the bible say?

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

There are a few things we can learn about this verse.

  1. We can’t divorce verse 28 from the following verses. Romans 8:29-31.
  2. All things work together for good to those who love God.
  3. To those who are called according to His purpose.

Who’s the “We”?

In Romans 8:28, it says “and we know”.

We who?

What do we know?

Look at Romans 8:29-30.

Romans 8-28-30For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified. Romans 8:29-30

The “for those “ are the “We”.

It says in Romans 8:29-30, for those…

  • He foreknew,
  • He predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son,
  • He also called; and these whom He called,
  • He also justified; and these whom He justified,
  • He also glorified

What do we know?

5 things for sure!

  1. We know that He foreknew us before the foundation of the world. Ephesians 1:4
  2. We know that He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ. Ephesians 1:5
  3. We know that He has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity, 2 Timothy 1:9
  4. We know having now been justified by His blood; we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. Romans 5:9
  5. We know this very thing that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus and we will be made into the image of Christ. Philippians 1:6, Philippians 3:21

PredestinationAfter knowing what we know now, we can now say with confidence and clarity that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. The “those” who love God are the ones Foreknown, Predestined, Called, Justified and Glorified.

Because we’re chosen by grace through faith in Christ and redeemed by His blood, we now walk by faith in the One who saved us. So while we are passing through this world, experiencing the “All Things”, knowing they are working together by God’s Sovereignty and His holy providence for the good of those who love and belong to Him.

I know one thing, He never promises us a rose garden in this world, but He will help us tip toe through the tulips. Even though we will suffer hardships,  He promises that He will never leave us nor forsake us. 2 Timothy 2:3. Hebrews 13:5.

When we are going through some pain in our lives, some trial or heartache, know that our Father the sovereign God of the universe is in control of all things, causing it to work for our good.

You see? All things are done according to His purpose, “All Things”.

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? Romans 8:31

After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.1 Peter 5:10.

Right now we experience pain, suffering, persecution, troubles and trials, but soon, God ultimately and certainly brings us to glory, where all our tears will be wiped away, there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain. Revelation 21:4

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria


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God said “come let Us”

They said “Come, let us”

God said “come let Us

I have never put that all together until I read it this last time in Genesis 11:1-9 while starting my reading through the bible this year.

sinIt’s just after the flood and God has wiped out the entire world with a massive deluge of water except for 8 people because of sin. Then God said after the flood in Genesis 8:21 “I will never again curse the ground on account of man, for the intent of man’s heart is evil from his youth; and I will never again destroy every living thing, as I have done. So we learn something here, that The intent of man’s heart is evil from his youth even after the flood and God knowing how sinful mankind would be, he would never flood the world again. 2 Peter 3:3-10 tells of a future destruction.

In Genesis 9:1 God said “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth. and again in Genesis 9:7 “As for you, be fruitful and multiply; Populate the earth abundantly and multiply in it.” God calls them to scatter and populate the earth abundantly and multiply in it.

Simple, obey God, make babies and fill the earth again. No, remember for the intent of man’s heart is evil from his youth?

They had other things in mind, look at Genesis 11:1-9

Now the whole earth used the same language and the same words. 2 It came about as they journeyed east, that they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. 3 They said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks and burn them thoroughly.” And they used brick for stone, and they used tar for mortar. 4 They said, “Come, let us build for ourselves a city, and a tower whose top will reach into heaven, and let us make for ourselves a name, otherwise we will be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth.”

They, with their leader Nimrod Genesis 10:8-14 whose name means rebel wanted to build a name for themselves. Instead of obeying God, instead of glorifying God in all they do. They wanted to build a temple as close to heaven as possible by humans effort so a deity could come down, like our God needs help ( James Boice has a fascinating section on this in his commentary on Genesis 1-11).

PrideThe Lord doesn’t need a temple to come down Genesis 11:5. This is human pride, the incubator of all sin. This is what caused Satan to fall Isaiah 14:12-14 and our core sin, pride. They said let us make for ourselves a name. This is the world talking, you can be all you can, just do it! They wanted fame, they wanted to rise to the top. It could be even the church who wants the world and Jesus too! Isn’t all this human effort and building a name for ourselves exactly what we were doing before we were saved by God?

Just like cattle, God had to corral them in.

5 The Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. 6 The Lord said, “Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them. 7 Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.” 8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of the whole earth; and they stopped building the city. 9 Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of the whole earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of the whole earth.

The Lord came down and said, “Behold, they are one people, and they all have the same language. And this is what they began to do, and now nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them.  This needed more looking into, what does this really mean that nothing which they purpose to do will be impossible for them. This is really a negative statement by God, not that they can do anything and nothing would be impossible for them. Literally what it means is if left untouched by God, they would be as sinful as they were before the flood. God needs to corral them in, and He does just that.

dirty-hands-holding-the-worldLook at verse 7 Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.” First of all something should pop out right away as in let Us, who? Us, that’s a capital “U” just like in Genesis 1:26 the first sign of the blessed Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Then He confuses their language, so that they will not understand one another’s speech. Like babbling idiots. Bottom line, they can’t work together anymore, they couldn’t understand each other. Then God did what He wanted them to do in the first place He scattered them verse 8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of the whole earth; and they stopped building the city. God not only divided them by language, but also throughout the whole face of the earth. They wanted to make a name for themselves and ended up not being able to say anyones name.

So what do we learn and how does it relate to us?

  1. It explains to us the different languages and races of the world.
  2. When people rebel and do things and try to supply their own needs without God, it show their sinfulness.
  3. It show us the urgency to share the gospel of Jesus Christ to the unbeliever.
  4. That God opposes the proud, and gives grace to the humble.
  5. God is sovereign in all things and nobody can come in the way of His plans.

1 Thus says the Lord,
“Heaven is My throne and the earth is My footstool.
Where then is a house you could build for Me?
And where is a place that I may rest?
2 “For My hand made all these things,
Thus all these things came into being,” declares the Lord.
“But to this one I will look,
To him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word. Isaiah 66:1-2

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria


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Happy New Year 2015

Happy New Year 2015,

I‘m frequently asked from some of my church family and others where I have been, and if I’m going to start posting again on The Bible Christian? I was away for what I thought was going to be just 3 months but ended up being the rest of 2014, my last post was on May 20th 2014. The reason I took a break back in May was to read, and I did just that. I read through John Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion (Battles Translation, 2 Volumes) with my dear friend and brother in Christ, Matt. We would read a section at a time and talk about what we just read. Calvin was very skillful at times and just blew us away with his exegesis of the scriptures. I’ll have my brief thoughts on the institutes from Calvin later this week.

I read through the bible again in 2014, but took the Chronological approach this year which takes into account the order in which the events in the bible actually occurred, which was an awesome experience. In between reading the Institutes and the Bible I read a bunch of other smaller books that I wanted to read and what a blessing they were. I also continued to teach the book of Romans in Sunday School as we are in our 3rd year and in Chapter 14. As you can see I just couldn’t find time to post, I’m not that good or smart enough to handled all the reading, teaching and posting at the same time. Something had to go.

So on to the New Year!

FIREinThe New Year for me brings a new mind-set. This past year I think I have been a little less aggressive with my stance on TRUTH, the truth that is found only in God’s word. The apostle Paul said to Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. 1 Corinthians 16:13. There were times this year that I failed to do just that for the sake of unity, and that stops today. Paul said to Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15 I want to go back to being An Unashamed Workman, no matter the consequences I face.

I want to go back to having FIRE IN MY BONES!

But if I say, “I will not remember Him
Or speak anymore in His name,”
Then in my heart it becomes like a burning fire
Shut up in my bones;
And I am weary of holding it in,
And I cannot endure it. Jeremiah 20:9

Today starts my truth walk, I want to be on the alert, standing firm in my faith, acting like a man of God He calls me to be, standing strong for truth. I want to share the gospel of Jesus Christ with anyone who will listen, I want to walk worthy of that gospel and I want to do it with humility and grace but with TRUTH. Speaking the truth with love, all on His strength and by His grace.

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria



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A Worldly Christianity?

Octavious_Winslow“Do not be conformed to this world.” Romans 12:2

Professor of the gospel! guard against the world; it
is your undoing! Watch against conformity to it . . .

in your dress,
in your mode of living,
in the education of your children,
in the principles, motives, and policy that govern you.

Do not grieve the Holy Spirit by . . .
any known inconsistency of conduct,
any sinful conformity to the world,
any inordinate pursuit of . . .
its wealth,
its honors,
its pleasures,
its friendships, and
its great things.

Pray against the sin of covetousness, that canker worm that feeds at the root of so many souls!

Pray against the love of dress, that sin that diverts the mind of so many professors from the simplicity of Christ, and takes the eye off from the true adornment!

Pray against a thirst for light and trifling reading, that strange and sinful inconsistency of so many, the certain tendency of which is to starve the life of God in the soul, to engender a distaste for spiritual nourishment, for the Word of God, for holy meditation, and for Divine communion and fellowship. Yes, pray against the spirit of worldly, sinful conformity in everything!

worldwebReader! are you a professing Christian? Then guard against a worldly Christianity—a Christianity that wears a fair exterior, so far as it is composed of church attendance, but which excludes from it the cross of the meek and lowly Lamb of God—a Christianity which loves the world and the things of the world, “makes a fair show in the flesh,” speaks well of Christ, and yet betrays Him with a kiss. Oh, awful state! oh, fearful deception! oh, fatal delusion!

The world is the sworn enemy of your Savior; let it not be your friend. No; come out of it, and be separate.

(Octavius Winslow, “Morning Thoughts”) HT: Grace Gems

Bible-WhiteBackground.jpegYou adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. James 4:4

Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:1-2

but be transformed by the renewing of your mind

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria

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Digital Discernment


I recently had a discussion with a friend about Facebook and why I’m not on it. Before I go any further I must admit that I sometimes will go on my wifes page to see what all the fuss is about. I think Facebook and all the other social media can be a great way to connect with relatives out-of-town to catch up with each other or any organization trying to unite people, but still I can’t bring myself to the self-promotion, self-pity and look at what I’m doing today way of life.

I believe if you are a Christian you are doing one of two thing on social media.

  1. Glorifying SELF!
  2. Glorifying God and Jesus Christ as Lord!

The following is from Pulpit Post and John MacArthur

Dr. John MacArthurIf there is one word that perhaps best describes social media it is this: self-promotion… When so much about social media panders to pride and shameless self-exaltation, believers need to think about their motives before they jump on the bandwagon. If the goal is simply popularity or personal promotion, it’s time to do a heart check. Our celebrity-driven culture craves for notoriety. But Christians are called to be different. We have died to ourselves. Thus, our concern should not be, “How many people can I get to follow me?” but rather, “How can I bear witness to the wonder of following Christ?”

[With all its benefits] social networking can also be abused. When it consists of nothing more than random babblings and personal monologues, it can become self-centered, unrestrained and narcissistic. When it consumes our lives, it can be addictive and controlling. Used unwisely, it is filled with potential pitfalls and temptations. For those who follow Christ, we are called to submit every area of our lives to His lordship – including how we use social media.

As believers, the command of Ephesians 5:15-16 is just as binding upon our modern lives as it was in the non-technological world of the first century. “Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.” Paul’s exhortation has massive implications for how we interact with social media. One day we will stand before Christ to give an account for how we used His resources (including our time and energy). With that in mind, how much of this life can be justifiably devoted to Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and the like? Just a few hours each day, over the course of a lifetime, adds up to years of wasted opportunity.

Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31

“Thus, our concern should not be,
How many people can I get to follow or friend me?”


 “How can I bear witness to
the wonder of following Christ?”

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria


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Mary’s Deep Humility

And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He has been mindful of the humble state of His servant.”
Luke 1:46-48

babyinthearmsMark Mary’s deep humility. She who was chosen of God to the high honor of being Messiah’s mother, speaks of her own “humble state,” and acknowledges her need of a “Savior.”

She does not let fall a word to show that she regarded herself as a sinless, “immaculate” person. On the contrary, she uses the language of one who has been taught by the grace of God to feel her own sins, and so far from being able to save others, requires a Savior for her own soul. We may safely affirm that none would be more forward to reprove the honor paid by the Romish Church to the Virgin Mary, than the Virgin Mary herself.

Let us copy this holy humility of our Lord’s mother, while we steadfastly refuse to regard her as a mediator, or to pray to her. Like her, let us be lowly in our own eyes, and think little of ourselves.

Humility is the highest grace that can adorn the Christian character. It is a true saying of an old divine, that “a man has just so much Christianity as he has humility.”

200604_120_art_ryleHumility is the grace, which of all is most suited to human nature.

Above all, humility is the grace which is within the reach of every converted person.

All are not rich.

All are not learned.

All are not highly gifted.

All are not preachers.

But all children of God may be clothed with humility.

(J. C. Ryle, “The Gospel of Luke” 1858)

Humility is the highest grace that
can adorn the Christian character

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria

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The Love of the World

“These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips; but their heart is far from Me.” Matthew 15:8

How many, O how many of those who sit  in our chapels amid the people of God are  perishing in their sins with . . .

  • the Bible and hymn-book before their eyes,

  • the sound of the gospel in their ears,

  • the doctrines of grace on their lips,

Earth Heart


  • but the love of the world in their hearts!

“Don’t love the world, neither the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, the Father’s love isn’t in him.” 1 John 2:15

(Philpot, “Contemplations & Reflections”) HT: Grace Gems

Draw near to God with all your hearts!

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria

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What The Church Needs

“The most critical need of the Church at this moment is men, bold men, free men. The church must seek, in prayer and much humility, the coming again of men made of the stuff of which prophets and martyrs are made.” A. W. Tozer


Yet, surely, there must be some who will fling aside the (cowardly) love of peace, and speak out for our Lord, and for His truth. A craven spirit is upon man, and their tongues are paralyzed. Oh, for an outburst of true faith and holy zeal. C.H. Spurgeon

In·trep·id adjective \in-ˈtre-pəd\
: feeling no fear : very bold or brave
Who stands up for Truth!

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria

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Happy is the family that Worships

John NewtonHappy is that family where the worship of God is constantly and conscientiously maintained. Such houses are temples in which the Lord dwells, and castles garrisoned by a Divine power. I do not say, that, by honoring God in your house, you will wholly escape a share in the trials incident to the present uncertain state of things. A measure of such trials will be necessary for the exercise and manifestation of your graces; to give you a more convincing proof of the truth and sweetness of the promises made to a time of affliction; to mortify the body of sin; and to wean you more effectually from the world.

But this I will confidently say, that the Lord will both honor and comfort those who thus honor Him. Seasons will occur in which you shall know, and probably your neighbors shall be constrained to take notice, that He has not bid you seek Him in vain. If you meet with troubles, they shall be accompanied by supports, and followed by deliverance; and you shall upon many occasions experience, that God is your protector, preserving you and yours from the evils by which you will see others suffering around you. (John Newton John Newton’s Letters, Family Worship.)

Happy is the family that Worships

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria

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Are visits to Heaven for real?

One of the best quotes I have heard about Heaven is for real was from a blogger who said  “Heaven is for real…Well Duh”.

I have read so many reviews and articles from godly men and women who have a big problem with this book and movie.

I couldn’t pass this up, what a great article in Answers Magazine from Answers in Genesis. 

Are visits to Heaven for real?

Heaven_Is_for_Real_(Burpo_book)_coverA pastor’s book recounting his son’s visit to heaven rose to the top of the bestseller list and became a major motion picture. Christians were quick to spread the word, but could such visits be for real?

Colton’s descriptions of heaven are full of fanciful features and peculiar details that bear all the earmarks of a child’s vivid imagination. There’s nothing transcendent or even particularly enlightening about Colton’s heaven. It is completely devoid of the breathtaking glory featured in every biblical description of the heavenly realm.

Stories like Colton’s are as dangerous as they are seductive. Readers not only get a twisted, unbiblical picture of heaven; they also imbibe a subjective, superstitious, shallow brand of spirituality. Studying mystical accounts of supposed journeys into the afterlife yields nothing but confusion, contradiction, false hope, bad doctrine, and a host of similar evils.

Read the rest of the article HERE

Listen folks Proverbs 30:4 says

Who has ascended into heaven and descended?
Who has gathered the wind in His fists?
Who has wrapped the waters in His garment?
Who has established all the ends of the earth?
What is His name or His son’s name?
Surely you know!

John 3:13 answers “No one has ascended into heaven, but He who descended from heaven: the Son of Man.

Heaven is for real… Well Duh!

and that’s a beautiful thing!
Soli Deo Gloria


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