Our Anchorage - The Love of God In Christ Jesus (continued)
Sin need not separate us from the love of God! Do you believe that? Sin need not separate you from the love of God, because of Romans 8: "One died ..."; "it is Christ Who died, yes, rather, that is risen"; and, further, He is"at the right hand of God making intercession." Therefore, sin need not, and , on that ground, cannot separate us from the love of God.
Now, whether we individually experience all the things that are mentioned here, or not, the fact is that there are a great many things that are given a complexion by the forces of evil, with the object of separating us from the love of God. Suffering, anguish, persecution, death, and even live - for life can be a terrible thing for some people - many things that come into our experience, are just played upon by these forces of evil everywhere, to tell us that the love of God is not a reality; that God does not love us - this is proof positive; that is the evidence! In this storm, when the winds blow from every quarter, when all the elements are against us, we need an anchorage; we need something that will hold.
There is no question about Paul's devotion to the Lord; he knew in his own heart that there was no controversy between him and the Lord; he was not aware of being in revolt against the Lord; or being contrary to the known will of God; his whole being was poised and focused upon the pleasure of his Lord, to be well-pleasing unto Him - he knew it. And yet, with that in his heart, he is meeting all these things: his ministry is being discredited; his name is being defamed; he is suspect wherever he goes; he moves all over the world in an atmosphere of suspicion and ostracism, and not only in the world, but among Christians; he is not universally loved even in the churches that had their existence through his ministry. No, this thing has spread, like an awful vapor, everywhere, to somehow destroy this man and his ministry; and there were not a few who would be glad if he were dead. He knew it. And in these many forms of expression he met it almost every day of his life.
(continued with # 19)