Who Can Be Against Us?
This teaching will help your confidence when you are faced with situations that are discouraging and appear to be defeating you.† In a few minutes, I am going to give you the complete Scripture which is part of the title of this teaching.† It is a Scripture that has always helped me when I began to experience some weak points in my walk with God.† We are all human and many times we face mental tribulation that appears to break us down.† However, in time, we realize that God has been working for us.
For it is God which [who] worketh in you both to will and to do of his† good pleasure.† -- Philippians 2: 13
If you are in fellowship with God, which means you are studying and applying His Word, you must understand that God does everything according to His timetable.† I myself,† lose patience with God many times.† God knows everything so how can we think that we know more than Him.† This is an area of your life where you need to be careful.† You canít lose patience with God because you will sin.† When you sin, you are out of fellowship with Him and your prayers will not be answered.† Try to imagine how much patience God Almighty has and then compare it to us as humans.† We want God to do everything quickly and in a hurry.† But God knows better.† He knows when the adversary is at his weak point and thatís when God will make His move. This point needs a lot of thought because this is an area where we make mistakes.† Look at the title and read it again.† If God is working in you to will and to do of His good pleasure, then who can be against us?† How can we fail?† We cannot if we just take a stand and never move away from the revealed Word and Will of God.
He can be defeating your personal adversary and you donít even realize it.† Even in all the 40+ years I have been studying Godís Word, there have been many times when I felt that I had gotten myself into trouble as the adversary seemed to come at me from every which way possible.† At times, God will allow many things to happen that you feel are unfair. †Your feelings come from the five senses which is part of your flesh.† You must always realize that the spiritual realm is much greater than the natural realm.
For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.† -- Romans 8: 5
You have to make up your mind if you are going to live by the things of the flesh or the things of the Spirit.† Things of the Spirit include everything that is contained in the Word of God.† God tells us in many places that we are to have patience and to wait on Him.† Now God tells us why we are to mind the things of the Spirit as compared to the things of the flesh.
For to be carnally minded is† death; but to be spiritually minded is† life and peace.† -- Romans 8: 6
As compared to being spiritually minded which gives you life and peace from God Almighty, you can choose to be carnally minded which is like being dead.† You have no connection with God and everything is limited in your life.† Spiritually minded believers have a special connection with God where they can receive Word of Knowledge and Word of Wisdom.† This refers to what we cannot know by the five senses. †God can give us Revelation above His Word for things that we need to know to live the more than abundant life.† Word of Knowledge is when God tells us things that we could never know by the five senses.† Word of Wisdom is referring to us carrying out what God has told us by Word of Knowledge.† These two terms that I have used should not be new to you if you are studying Godís Word.† They are mentioned in I Corinthians chapter 12 and they are 2 of the 9 manifestations of Holy Spirit.† They are not gifts like some false teachers teach us.† They are referred to as the eyes and ears of the Church of Jesus Christ, of which we are a member.
Because the carnal mind is† enmity [at conflict] against God:† for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.† -- Romans 8: 7
When we become impatient with God, it is because of our five senses which can be referred to as our flesh.† God says clearly that our carnal mind, our five senses, is at conflict with Him.† The five senses cannot work together with the Spirit.† The Spirit is of course part of the spiritual realm and that supersedes the natural realm which includes the five senses.† I have made this as simple as I can for you.† You must humble yourself to God especially when you pray to Him.† He is not answering your prayers because it is not the exact right moment in time that He does.† Father knows best.† Have you heard that before?† I will admit to you that I am human and I am not some spiritual big deal.† I have had no end of difficulty trying to renew my mind to what I am teaching you.† I have learned by experience that I have no choice but to wait upon God to answer my prayers.† I am no better than you.† I may know a lot about the Word of God, but that does not make me better then you.† God loves you as much as He loves me and you have the same potential and power that I have within me.† I have put much of my heart and soul and endless hours of time learning and trying to apply Godís Word.† I find it to be fascinating to delve into the spiritual realm as compared to the natural realm.† It is my strong desire that you also will do the same.
In the long run, God in His great wisdom is allowing certain things to happen to your life so that he can teach you what you need to know concerning various situations.† There are times in our life that seem to be tough and we canít seem to overcome them.† But God is letting this happen because it is the only way that you are going to listen to Him.† When you learn something by experience, in this manner, we rarely forget what we learned.† But picture this, you may read a great principle in Godís Word, but you never really apply it.† Let me give you an example that I had to work out in my own life many times.
The following example is not only for men, but also for women.† We all seem to have a weakness in this area because we simply will not listen to what God has to say in the following Scripture.
Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather† give place unto wrath: †for it is written, Vengeance is† mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.† -- Romans 12: 19
When I learned the true meaning of this verse, it was a great relief to me and my love and wisdom concerning Godís Word became much greater.† I do not see how a Christian who learns and applies Godís Word would want to get into a physical confrontation with a person.† God says in this Scripture that He will get vengeance for you.† We are not to get into fights.† God will make a way out.† This does not mean that you are a coward in any way.† It means that you have greater wisdom then the adversary that you are dealing with.† It was said to me once by a wise man who did get into no end of trouble by getting into fights with other people.† One day his bosses called him into the office of the company in which he worked.† They were not happy to give him this information.† But they said to him, sir, you are great asset to our company.† Your ideas has saved us millions of dollars and we never want to let you go.† But they warned this man that if he were to get into any more physical confrontations with other workers, that they were forced by their upper management to terminate him.† I wanted you to know where I got this advice.† Itís very wise and very realistic.† The beginning is simple to understand and the end of the saying tells you just how tough it is.† Did you know that the renewed mind is one of the most difficult changes that we can ever make in our life?† Let me get to the saying that this man told me.† You see, in my old man, I sometimes was a real hothead, but somehow, I kept it under control.† I can rarely, if ever remember getting into a fist fight with another person.† This older man taught me the following. †I never forgot his advice.
He said to me that ďThe smart man walks away, but itís a tough pill to swallow.Ē† This statement just about covered everything that Romans 12: 19 says to us today.† We men can understand how many times we have wanted to bust somebody right in the face.† But I want you to think about this.† This is what the adversary, the devil, wants you to do.† In this day and age, that is considered assault and battery.† You can be arrested, but worse than that, you can be sued.† This is what Satan wants Ė if you get into a confrontation like this, he wins.† Now I want you to combine everything weíve learned so far and Iím going to make a two word statement that will get you out of a mess like this every time.† Itís what God wants for His children Ė man or woman.† In fact, I learned this great principle from a very strong woman of God who was teaching to an auditorium of people.† She talked about everything weíve just talked about and her answer to it all was:† ďDONíT REACTĒ.† It was another principle that always stayed with me.† Now you need to think about this.† If you donít react to what the devil throws at you, he will eventually move on to another person and will leave you alone.† It wonít happen overnight. †It takes great discipline not to react, but take it from me, itís really not that hard.† The first thing you want to do is not to get into an adversarial position with another person.† This takes wisdom to operate your life in such a manner as to avoid negative situations.† You are always better off to let God take care of your problems.† This does not mean that we just sit back and do nothing.† But I found out that the best way to live the more than abundant life is to keep away from the enemyís people.† And there are many of them.† I simply had to share these two principles with you before getting into the complete Scripture that makes up the title of this teaching.† Letís go there right now.
First, I want you to know that the epistle of Romans is basic doctrine.† We are not to veer away from what is written in this church epistle.† But many believers did this and that is why I and II Corinthians were written.† They are reproof epistles bringing up the fact that many people were getting away from the basic doctrine in Romans.† And just to give you some more education on this important subject, the book of Galatians was finally written as a correction epistle.† Again, because Christians were getting away from the doctrine that was correct in Romans.† You should remember that once you begin studying error and practicing error, you can make it into a doctrine and thatís what was happening in these churches.
What shall we then to these things?† If God be† for us, who can be† against us?† -- Romans 8: 31
Chapter 8 in Romans has great influence and popularity with many Christians.† They even referred to this chapter as the Magna Carta of the New Testament. †You should study it and study it hard.† Itís loaded with diamonds. †
I want to focus on the second half of the above scripture.† I wouldíve like to include it in the title of the teaching, but obviously, as my IT person told me, it was too long.† Now you can see the title that I wouldíve like to use for this teaching and that is:
If God Be For Us, Who Can Be Against Us?
Oftentimes, when we get the Word of God into our minds and renew our minds to the point where we finally apply Godís Word, there is an obvious and difficult conflict with our old man ways.† If you get into the Bible when youíre 40 years old, you have 40 years of thinking the wrong way.† So when you take a Scripture like we went over that says we are not to get into fights with people, it conflicts with everything you learned for 40 years.† This is why the renewed mind is known as to be one of the most difficult changes that we can ever make in our life.† But we can do it.† Iíve done it and itís taken me a long time.† Sometimes a day does not go by that I learn something spiritual that I never understood before.† I got involved in the Bible when I was 24 years old.† I got the ĎLí out of the world and got my head into the Word. †I had a difficult time renewing my mind Ė everyone does.† The enemy hit me with everything he had before I got to know the Word of God.† Can you identify with that?† I was so angry inside to learn that it was the devil who was fighting against me all of my life.† I thought it was people, but in actuality, it was people.† The devil was working inside those people to cause me all the problems that I had when I was younger.† I canít begin to tell you how much I suffered and how much I was defeated in every area of my life.† Now I have everything I could possibly want because I took a stand for God and I did not move and I never will.† Think about your old man.† What is there to go back to?† Thereís nothing there.† If I have to use the analogy -- it is like a dog returning to his own vomit. †If you walk away from the Word of God especially after you have stood for long time, the following is what will happen.
But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is† turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire.† Ė II Peter 2: 22
This can be a sobering Scripture to some of you who may have already done this.† Remember, God always has open arms and He will take you back without a second thought.
When you walk away from Godís Word, you suddenly realize that thereís nothing there.† Thereís nothing to go back to Ė Ė nothing, nothing at all! ††The devil is so deceptive that he will make you think, if he can, that you are missing out on something.† He took Jesus Christ up upon a mountain when he was at a very weak point physically.† This is how sneaky and disgusting the devil is.† At this point he pointed out into the air and showed Jesus Christ, by an image, all the kingdoms of the world and he said to Jesus Christ ďAll of this can be yours if you just bow down and worship me.Ē† Tell him kiss your you know what. †What did Jesus Christ do?† He quoted the devil Scripture because the devil was lying to him.† You see people who are evil and they appear to have so much, but just when they really need all that prosperity, the devil will attack them and take away everything they have.
Let me quote you a basic Scripture that will compare and contrast the ministries of the devil and Jesus Christ.
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy:† I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it† more abundantly,†† -- John 10: 10
The devil steals, kills, and destroys.† He searches for people who have turned their back on the true God and he has open season on these people.† One of the main things he does is to try to make these people do evil.† Most often, he will not torment these people because they are working for him.† But many times, in fact, probably always, he will eventually turn on even the people that are indirectly or directly worshiping him.
Now I want you to pay attention to the second part of the Scripture.† Jesus Christ came so that we can have life and have it more abundantly in every single category according to our believing.† God requires one condition and that is that we will believe His Word.† Now how hard is that?† If you want to test or try God, that is up to you.† But God is not a man that he can lie.† If you walk according to Godís principles, He will be able to always protect you and He will make sure that no one can harm you.† This brings us to the conclusion of this teaching where we will go over our main Scripture that tells us that no one can harm us because God fights for his people.
. . If God be† for us, who can be† against us?† -- Romans 8: 31b
The answer is simply: