Graciously Give Us All Things?- Romans 8:32

In our previous post, we looked at a possible explanation of what these “all things” of Romans 8:32 might be. These are things which once held us captive, but need do so no longer. We will now continue our examination of 1Corinthians4 to see how we may live in freedom from their captivity. The primary reason is given in 3:23, we are now “of Christ”. The word of here is a reference to who our source is and who we belong to, we now belong to Christ and have nothing to fear anymore. Paul continues his explanation of this in chapter four by pointing to himself as an example. He is a servant of Christ and a steward of “God’s mysteries”. He then shows us why we belong to Christ and have been given “all things”. In verse 2, he tells us that all believers have been entrusted with a gift and a purpose, and our mission is to faithfully administer the gift we have been given to accomplish God’s purpose for us. God is our judge, not men, and He judges on faithfulness and motive. We, therefore, need not live in fear of others opinions of us, for God is our judge, not other people. Paul served Christ as a steward of God’s mysteries, and those mysteries make no sense to those in the world, who tend to mock and ridicule them and those who present them. Paul was not concerned about the opinions of others, he remained faithful to his purpose, proclaiming those mysteries without fear (verses 4 and 5). He was no longer a servant of other people’s opinions, the world’s way of thinking, the fear of living life as God intended, the fear of death or the fear of the future. He was doing what God created and called him to do, and the captivity to these things gradually went away as he lived out his calling and purpose. He applies all of this to himself as an example for all of us, that we would each find our calling and purpose, and in living it out also be free from the captivity of these “all things”. We see this specified in verses six and seven, where we are told to learn from Paul that our purpose is “written” (pre-determined) for us, and we are responsible only for it (the meaning of “do not go beyond”). God makes each of us different, and we all have different gifts and different purposes for our lives. It is captivity to these “all things” which will keep us from discovering and living out God’s purpose for our lives. It is only in knowing who we are (what our “stewardship” is) and whose we are (we belong to Christ) that we will be free from our bondage to “all things” and live out God’s purpose in our lives, to use our gifts as faithful stewards of whatever task He has entrusted us with.

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