(# 289) Romans 8 - In The Face of These Things, Freedom, Focus, and Faith

ROM-201-160612 - length: 54:50 - taught on Jun, 12 2016

Class Outline:

Welcome To


a Christian Church

Rory Clark



Good Morning!


Welcome to Barah Ministries…a Christian Church based in Mesa, AZ…my name is Pastor Rory Clark.  At Barah Ministries we are “pursuing the truth through the study of the Word of God.”  Because of the gracious provision of the internet, from our omnipotent God, the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Barah Ministries has a worldwide reach and an intimate impact on lives.  Thank you Lord for providing a way for anyone, anywhere to be reached with Your Word.



In The Face of These Things, Freedom, Focus, and Faith


We continue our study of Romans, Chapter 8, Verse 35…


Romans 8:35

WHO will separate us from the unconditional love of Christ? (Or WHAT will separate us?)  Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword separate us from Christ’s unconditional love?


In the face of all these things, we can enjoy our FREEDOM, we can FOCUS our attention on the Lord, and we can intensify our FAITH. 


To be sure I want the desires of my heart…although as I get older they just seem to become less important…I’m not sure if that is maturity or resignation sometimes.


Do you have a Mentor, a trusted advisor who gives you advice on how to look at things that are going on in your life?  Someone who is down the road a bit and knows exactly what you’re going through?  I sat down with my Mentor this week and asked him a simple question.  What do you want from me?  And he quoted Ephesians, Chapter 4, Verse 1…


Ephesians 4:1

Therefore I (Paul), the prisoner of the Lord, IMPLORE you as a believer in Christ, to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called…


So I asked Him what a manner worthy is like.  He quoted Colossians, Chapter 3, Verses 1 to 11…


Colossians 3:1

Therefore if you believers in Christ have been raised up with Christ, and you have been, keep on seeking the things above, where Christ is, the Christ who is seated at the right hand of God the Father.


Colossians 3:2

Set your mind on the things above, and not on the things that are on earth.


Colossians 3:3

For you believers in Christ have died and your resurrection life (the new self life…the ZOE life…eternal life…the resurrection life) is hidden with Christ in God the Father.


Colossians 3:4

When Christ, who IS our resurrection life, is revealed (to the world in all His glory), then you believers in Christ also will be revealed with Him in (all your) glory.


Colossians 3:5

Therefore consider the members of your earthly body as dead to immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and greed, which all amount to idolatry.


Colossians 3:6

For it is because of (all) these things (the lifestyle of sin…the lifestyle “in Adam”) that the wrath of God (the Lake of Fire) will come upon the sons of disobedience (all unbelievers)…


Colossians 3:7

…and in (all) these things you believers in Christ also once walked (as a

 lifestyle), when you were living in them (this is the literal definition of

“living in sin” … the lifestyle of unbelievers who are “in Adam”).

Colossians 3:8

But now you believers in Christ also, put them all aside (like you would if you were taking off old clothing and throwing it out): put aside anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth.


Colossians 3:9

Do not lie to one another, since you also laid aside the old man with its evil practices…


Colossians 3:10

…and since you have put on the new self life who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him—


Colossians 3:11

…a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew (national distinctions), circumcised and uncircumcised (religious distinction), barbarian (petty prejudices), Scythian (criminal distinction), slave and freeman (social class distinctions), but Christ is all (He is everything), and Christ is indwelling all (believers in Christ).


So I asked Him how I could do this since I am so imperfect…and His answer is contained in this lesson.



Be Occupied with the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ

Enjoy the Singing of His Praises



Mercy Me


The opening song for this lesson is FLAWLESS by Mercy Me.



Let us pray...


We’re grateful, Heavenly Father, for the privilege of studying Your absolute truth...the Word of God…


Father, we require Your love when we are in misery…we require Your mercy when we encounter the turmoil that You lay before us for our edification…when our eyes are tried from crying and our being is tired from grief…when our troubles are using up our strength…thank you for always being there with the enabling power that sees us through the storm…


Father, we pray for all those who are going through the very things that we are studying, especially those who are encountering distresses and persecution…remind them and remind us of your peace…which surpasses all comprehension…and calm our souls as you strengthen them…


We ask this through the power of God the Holy Spirit…in Christ’s name...



A few announcements….





Next Deacon’s Meeting

June 18



Finalize the website to get it ready for launch in July, preferably the first.



No Face-to-Face Teaching

July 3, 2016


No lesson will be posted…it’s just a day off.



In The Face of These Things, Freedom, Focus, and Faith


God has assembled quite a list of things that he allows for our growth.  And we have to know that the life the Lord has given us…a life of freedom and focus and faith, is greater than all of these.  We continue our study of Romans, Chapter 8, Verse 35…


Romans 8:35

WHO will separate us from the unconditional love of Christ? (Or WHAT

will separate us?)  Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine,

or nakedness, or peril, or sword separate us from Christ’s unconditional love?


Will TRIBULATION separate us from God’s unconditional love?


Definitely not!  What is tribulation?



The direct troubles that we experience in our lives…from suffering…from pain…from misery…from grief…from calamity…the things that God invites us to endure


What are the tribulations in your life? 


In First Peter, Chapter 1, Verses 6 and 7…he tells us that whatever the tribulations are, we must rejoice as we negotiate through the tribulations…


First Peter 1:6

In this (your protection by the power of God) you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials…


First Peter 1:7

…so that the proof of your faith (when it is shown to be genuine), being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ…


Your faith purchases for you an eternal set of rewards, which show up now on earth and in the future in eternity.  As new creatures, in union with Christ, we can demonstrate our faith by choosing to see our tribulations as not at all unusual…instead we can see them as something the Lord Jesus Christ, who loves us unconditionally, has prepared in a custom made fashion for our edification.  And when we encounter tribulations, we can remember that God always gives us the way out from them…First Corinthians, Chapter 10, Verse 13…

First Corinthians 10:13

No temptation (or tribulation) has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.


We have the freedom to rejoice in the face of trials.


Will DISTRESS separate us from God’s unconditional love? 


Definitely not!  What is distress?



Absolute anguish…more intense than the pain of tribulation…it literally means to be jammed into a very narrow and cramped space…a space too small for you to fit into…and in that space you experience a pain that is almost unendurable…a pain that you have no answer for…a pain that only God has the power to handle.


What are the distresses in your life? 


The apostles had quite a few.  Acts, Chapter 5, Verses 40 to 43…


Acts 5:40

They (the Council of Israel) took Gamaliel’s advice; and after calling the apostles in, they flogged them and ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and then released them.


Acts 5:41

So the apostles went on their way from the presence of the Council, rejoicing that they had been considered worthy to suffer shame for Jesus’ name.


Acts 5:42

And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they kept right on teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ (the Messiah).


As a Christian, you know you have God’s power, divine omnipotence, at your disposal at all times…do you use divine omnipotence when you face distress?  Often, it’s your only choice in the midst of the acute pressure of distress.  Acts, Chapter 14, Verse 22…


ACT 14:22

(After Paul was stoned, he and the disciples of the Lord preached the gospel) strengthening the souls of the new disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying, “Through many distresses we must enter the kingdom of God.”


When the suffering is so severe that there appears to be no way out of it, let the Lord lead you out of it.  Focus your attention on Him.

Will PERSECUTION separate us from God’s unconditional love? 


Definitely not!  What is persecution?



A campaign designed to exterminate, to drive away, or to subjugate people based on their membership in a group that is considered undesirable by the persecutor…to run after someone and to catch them for the purpose of hurting them.


John, Chapter 15, Verse 20…the first part…


John 15:20a

“Remember the word that I (the Lord Jesus Christ) said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, and they did, they will also persecute you (believers in Christ)…”


Second Timothy, Chapter 3, Verse 12…


Second Timothy 3:12

Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life, in union with Christ Jesus, will be persecuted.


But Timothy joyfully proclaims in Second Timothy, Chapter 3, Verse 11…


Second Timothy 3:11

…and out of all the persecutions the Lord rescued me!

Remember also, Deuteronomy, Chapter 31, Verse 8…


Deuteronomy 31:8

“The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you. He will not fail you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”


In the face of persecution, do you see the Lord ahead of you?  Rejection is necessary to strengthen our faith.  When you think of it, when you are persecuted, you only have two choices…you can go toward God or you can go away from God.  What’s your choice?  What do your actions say you are doing?  Do your actions indicate that you are obeying God’s Word?


Let’s take a short music break…




Babbie Mason



In The Face of These Things, Freedom, Focus, and Faith


Welcome back!

Will FAMINE separate us from God’s unconditional love? 


Definitely not!  What is famine?



Extreme lack and general scarcity of food in a country or in a large geographical area.


We are called to help our brethren when they experience lack…Acts, Chapter 11, Verse 29…


Acts 11:29

And in the proportion that any of the disciples had means, each of them determined to send a contribution for the relief of the brethren living in Judea.


Do you actively look for people to help who are going through difficult situations to let them know that their situation is survivable?


Will NAKEDNESS separate us from God’s unconditional love? 


Definitely not!  What is nakedness?



It can be literal, but more often, in the spiritual realm, it is figurative…we are completely exposed as aliens in Satan’s kingdom…we are put in a position to be completely humiliated, as if we are standing before the world with no clothes on.


All of the Lord’s apostles suffered this humiliation…and in the way we handle these humiliations, we are teaching the angels in the Supreme Court of Heaven the power of the Christian Way of Living…First Corinthians, Chapter 4, Verse 9…


First Corinthians 4:9

For, I (Paul) think, God has exhibited us apostles last of all (letting us be seen as lowly men), as though we are men condemned to death; because we have become a spectacle (a theatron…a public amusement) to the whole world, both to angels and to men.


What are the situations in your life that leave you feeling naked…that leave you feeling exposed…that leave you feeling like a complete imbecile?  Who do you count on, and what do you count on, when you are going through this type of humiliation?  First Peter, Chapter 4, Verse 12…


First Peter 4:12

Beloved (divinely loved ones), do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you…


God is in control of your tribulation, distresses, and persecutions…nothing happens to you without His permission…and His unconditional love for you never wavers.


Will PERIL separate us from God’s unconditional love? 

Definitely not!  What is peril?



Exposure to injury…to loss…or to destruction…the encounter of risk…to be in jeopardy…to be in grave danger


What are the perils in your life? 


Second Corinthians, Chapter 11, Verse 26…


Second Corinthians 11:26

I (Paul) have been on frequent journeys, in dangers (peril) from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren…


What are the things that make you scared?  They usually come at the worst possible time.  The truth is that fear is such a large part of the souls of many believers in Christ that they are almost unable to distinguish between their distorted perception of situations and reality.  One of the things that always surprises me when I am outside of Arizona is the concern that people have that we are going to run out of water.  I don’t know about you, but this does not make my concerns list.  First century Christians faced REAL perils… In First Corinthians, Chapter 15, Verses 30 and 31, Paul asks…


First Corinthians 15:30

Why are we also in danger every hour?


When we are in perilous situations, it is almost impossible for us to see or to think of the deliverance the Lord will provide…and then Paul asserts…


First Corinthians 15:31

I affirm, brethren, by the boasting in you which I have, in union with Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.


Paul was in peril all the days of his Christian ministry, as he presented the gospel message to the Gentiles throughout the world.  There was the peril of Jewish hatred toward him…the peril of Roman jealousy of him…the peril of an unbeliever’s blindness to the truth of his message…and the peril of false brethren…phonies who pretended to be on his side, yet who were dead set against him and his teaching…like in Acts, Chapter 15, Verse 1…


Acts 15:1

Some men came down from Judea and began teaching the brethren, “Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.”


Sometimes I wonder just how much has been accomplished…how much has been sacrificed…to get us these biblical truths we study, especially in light of an enemy who wants to see the truth banished from his kingdom (for now)…planet earth.  False teachers, teaching believable lies that people have locked into their souls, hinder our gospel message of truth.   But they can’t stop it.


What are the perils in the world today?  Child Kidnapping…Sex Trafficking…Human Trafficking…Warfare…Murder…Robbery… Domestic Violence…Financial Ruin…Religion.  There is more to the things we see around us than meets the eye.  We are surrounded, indeed we are buffeted on all sides, by perils.  We see a car bombing on the news and we immediately want to stay away from this kind of peril.  Sometimes the peril we encounter most is at the hands of those within our own walls…like with the story of Cain and Abel…Genesis, Chapter 4, Verse 8…


Genesis 4:8

And it came about when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him…


Anything the depravity of man can imagine within the sick confines of his mind, he is willing to do…Jeremiah, Chapter 17, Verse 9…


Jeremiah 17:9

“The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; who can understand it (how deep the deceit and depravity run)?”


Often we are not willing to admit the depth of our depravity…but the Lord always knows how deep our weakness goes.  And it’s important to remember that there are people on guard so we don’t have to be afraid of perils and human depravity.  God is always protecting us.


God has given us the FREEDOM to rejoice in all these things…Galatians, Chapter 5, Verse 1…


Galatians 5:1

It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.


During tough times we are free to FOCUS on Him…Hebrews, Chapter 12, Verse 2…


Hebrews 12:2

…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.


For all these things strengthen our faith…First John, Chapter 5, Verse 4…


First John 5:4

For whatever is born again of God (all believers in Christ) overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.


We have the freedom to focus on the Lord and to exercise our faith.  If we do this…WHO or WHAT can be successful against us?   I think you know the answer…



Make the Most Important Decision of Your Life


Matthew 22:42

“What do you think about the Christ (the Messiah)…?”


Acts 16:31

“Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and everyone in your household who also believes.”


Acts 4:12

“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given to mankind by which we must be saved (except the name of the Lord Jesus Christ).”


Romans 1:16

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God that brings  salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.


Acts 2:21

‘And it shall be that everyone who calls on the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation will be saved.’




June Murphy



Let us pray...


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