Have you ever met a man who says he believes in God, and yet views Him as a relatively insignificant part of life? The world is full of such men (and women). He may go to church every so often, he may or may not read the Bible, he usually tries to do good. He may give a little money here or there. But God or at least the idea of God does not interrupt his world. God is small, and the man himself is big, or his family is big, or his friends, or his appearance or his career or his money. God does not enter his thoughts very often, and God certainly doesn’t have a significant impact on the way the man lives his life.
The man may even view His Creator as a bit of a hobby, somewhat like working out or collecting stamps or keeping baseball statistics. But of course, if he had to give up the hobby, well, it wouldn’t be the end of the world. Whenever you meet such a person, you can be assured of one thing: there is a significant chance he is not a Christian, and if in fact he is a Christian, he has definitely not been fully impacted by the gospel.
You see, when we come to the end of the first 11 chapters of Romans, we also come to the end of the most comprehensive description of the gospel in all the Bible. Not surprisingly, therefore, at the end of Romans chapter 11, we encounter a majestic view of God that is the only rational perspective of a man or woman who has been impacted by the gospel. This kind of person can no longer view God as a side note to life. God is not his hobby, not compartmentalized as a take-it-or-leave-it part of life.
No, no. When someone truly comes to know God and what He has done for them, not to mention the immense wisdom and love with which He has done it, that same person begins to view God as absolutely all-encompassing. Engrossing, beautiful, powerful…wonderful. And He says something like this…
“For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” “Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen. Romans 11:34-36 (ESV)
Aside from all the other wonderful things that the gospel does for us, it also gives us new lenses with which we see God. The Apostle Paul could only see Him one way – as absolutely glorious. FOR FROM HIM AND THROUGH HIM AND TO HIM ARE ALL THINGS. In Paul’s eyes, God was simply EVERYTHING.
This is the power of the Gospel of God.
On Monday, April 6th: Romans 12