This week, Pastor Chris continued in our Romans sermon series with a message about rejoicing in the hope of Jesus. When we lift our head and set our eyes on Jesus, we experience a living hope that carries us is a world marked by hardship and tragedy. In God’s sovereignty, he not only gives us hope in our suffering and hardship but also purpose, using it grow and strengthen us.

Rejoice in Confident Expectation of Good

Romans 5:1 (ESV)
1 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Colossians 1:21–22 (ESV)
21 And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, 22 he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,

“Since God now has justified us by faith, and not by works, we have peace with him both in heart and conscience, though not with man and with the flesh, nor with the world and the devil. Believers have all the more trials.” Martin Luther

Romans 5:2 (ESV)
2 Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

Hebrews 4:16 (ESV)
16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Rejoice in Suffering

Romans 5:3 (ESV)
3 Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance,

Acts 14:22 (ESV)
…saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.

2 Corinthians 11:23–30 (ESV)
with far greater labors, far more imprisonments, with countless beatings, and often near death. 24 Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; 26 on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; 27 in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. 28 And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches. 29 Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to fall, and I am not indignant? 30 If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness.

1 Peter 5:10 (ESV)
10 And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.

When God wants us to grow, He will make us uncomfortable.

Romans 5:5 (ESV)
…suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope,

Hope includes a future worth rejoicing over and a present that will not disappoint.

“There are no hopeless situations; there are only people who have grown hopeless about them.”
Clare Boothe Luce.

Romans 5:5 (ESV)
5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

2 Corinthians 1:21–22 (ESV)
21 And it is God who establishes us with you in Christ, and has anointed us, 22 and who has also put his seal on us and given us his Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.

John 14:15–17, 26 (ESV)
15 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, 17 even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

Paraclete ~ advocate, encourager, comforter, assistant, enlightener, counselor.

Rejoice in God

Romans 5:6–11 (ESV)
6 For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— 8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

Discussion Questions:

  1. We have peace with God through Jesus (Rom. 5:1); how does this effect your life and relationships?
  2. How does the reality that we have been given direct access to God (Romans 5:2) affect your day-to-day life? Is it easy or difficult for you to come to God boldly and confidently (Heb. 4:16)?
  3. Many of us can identify with the crushing or pressing description of suffering Pastor Chris used. Think of a time when you’ve experienced suffering; what would it look like to endure well in suffering?
  4. Reread Romans 5:3-4. How does God’s view and purpose for trials in our lives differ from your view? How would viewing it God’s way change how you walk through difficulty?

Application Questions:

  1. Pastor Chris talked about having a sovereign mindset, believing God has your best interest at heart and is working all things out for your good. Ask God to search your heart and show you if you are living in a sovereign mindset or if there is doubt in your heart.
  2. Spend some time evaluating any difficulties you are currently walking through. Ask the Lord how you can practically walk through this trial with joyful expectation of good, resting in His love and sovereignty.

Join us for an in-person service at City Central Church in Tacoma, WA
Sundays at 9am + 11am