All Things Work Together for Good
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28) Read that verse carefully as it states clearly that not only loving God is important, being “the called according to His purpose” is just as vital!
Too many believe “loving God” is all it takes to please Him, and then complain when things don’t go as they desire. They misapply this passage, declaring their love for God, but declining to be His “called.” What does that mean? Examine a few passages:
Romans 1:5-6 By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name: Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ: To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 4:4-6 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
1 Thessalonians 2:11 -12 As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children, That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory.
2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: Whereunto He called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Timothy 6:12 Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.
2 Timothy 1:9-10 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.
Hebrews 9:15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.
1 Peter 2:9-10 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
There are other passages, but these are enough to prove “the called” are those who have heard AND OBEYED the gospel of Christ! Thus, it isn’t enough to merely “say” you love God; you must OBEY it, “answer the call with obedience” if you will. Now let’s return to Romans 8:28.
The phrase “all things work together for good” does NOT say, “everything in the life of a Christian will be tranquil, with ease, enjoyable! If it did, then Paul’s statement to Timothy would be in contradiction (2 Timothy 3:12). Instead, Paul’s statement to the Romans means that the OUTCOME will be good. One needs to read the entire chapter, not extract one verse from the text. Paul’s discussion has to do with the necessity of belonging to Christ and continuing in His law instead of the law of Moses. (verses 1 – 11) Being led by the Spirit (verses 12 – 17) we anticipate the joys of eternity with God (verses 18 – 25), albeit this anticipation is not without suffering (ibid.) Still, the Spirit helps us, even in our praying (verses 26-27). Therefore, by placing our faith and trust in Christ Jesus, we know that all things work to the conclusion of good! (verse 28). With that understanding, we further realize nothing can separate us from the love of Christ (verses 35 – 39), provided we continue in His love and faithfully serve Him.
Therefore, it isn’t a promise that everything in your life will be without challenge or turmoil. Instead, compare it with Paul’s statement in verses 38 and 39: “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” THIS is why “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.”
Are you among these happy souls? If not, why not? Might explain the unhappiness in your life; the fact you can’t seem to find a resolution for the concerns of your life? Don’t neglect to obey the gospel any longer! Happiness in your life is as close as obeying Him!