If God Be For Us Who Can Be Against Us?, by Pastor Samuel Obafaiye
Text: Romans 8:31:- What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
The world we live is a place where conscious and unconscious or deliberate and non-deliberate competition does take place. From creation, God spoke and things were made. Over time though, certain creatures began to show dominant power over other creatures, (whether it’s plants or animals, it’s the same); so that we hear about certain concepts like survival of the fittest; extinction of species, genocide; ethnic cleansing; etc.
So that whether we know it or not, whether we accept it or not, we are all in a world where several elements were already waiting to contend with us even before we were born; and as we gain entry into the world, those factors sadly increases. Two options are open to us therefore: either to accept defeat or to put up a fight for life, there is no middle ground.
For those that are prepared to accept defeat, they will sadly fall into the category of species that will become extinct. They will just fade away. That will not be your portion in Jesus name.
For those that are determined to put up a fight. It is a good place to start, however some battles are easier to fight while some are harder. Physical battles are somehow the easiest types to engage in, while spiritual battles are by far more difficult. The enemy one knows and sees is easier to deal with than the one that is unknown.
The City of Rome at the time of Paul the Apostle was a difficult place to live for believers because Christianity was a new movement there at the time. Rome obviously was the capital of the Roman Empire which was controlling the major parts of Europe. Like most cosmopolitan city, life will be challenging. Apart from this, the churches were faced with physical enemies who were persons and established institutions, especially Emperor Nero himself; they were also faced with spiritual enemies who were demonic powers. All these were trying to curb the spread of Christianity and also terminate the disciple’s destiny.
Even though, Paul as at this time had not been to Rome before, reports reaching him were such that he had to write a letter to the small groups of churches in Rome so that they will not abandon the faith.
So in Chapter 8 of Romans, Paul enumerated certain challenges that the Roman believers were to face:
the war between the flesh and the spirit;
the earthly sufferings that a believer might be subjected to;
Different infirmities a believer might go through which are somehow hard to explain.
In this Chapter, Paul arrived at a crucial conclusion which he wanted the Roman church to ponder upon and give an answer to by themselves. The question is “if God be for us, who can be against us?”
We are in the world today as believers in this generation and time, thank God we are not been fed to lions, neither are we dipped in boiling oil like the Christians in Rome at the time of Paul, but we are yet faced with physical and spiritual enemies as well. The battles we face will and do differ, but we are all at war. We are at war with persons (many of them highly placed in society) and we are also at war with established institutions; obviously we are at war against demonic power in all their hierarchies.
In the battles you fight, I pray that you will not become extinct. You will not be overpowered in Jesus name.
Your human entity will not be faced out.
Your linage will not be exterminated.
I like us to look closely at Paul statement with deep thought and great reflection.
“If God is for us…” The understanding here is that God can be for someone as well as not for. So Paul is only considering the premise when God is for us.
The next thought of mine is if God is for us, I should think the next sentence of Paul should be in the affirmative i.e. “…No one can be against us”. Paul however employed the powerful tool of soul searching, inward conviction or personal persuasion on the Roman Christian. So that the end of that sentence was a question.
So today, I put the question to each and every one of us again, “If God is for us, who can be against us?”
Talking about who can be against us, I will like us to consider the factor Paul called “who”.
The “who” that Paul refers to here relates to person or persons who were threats to the Roman church. These can either be physical beings or spiritual beings. As Christians, we know that our principal enemy is the Devil, Satan or Lucifer. Helping Satan to fight against God’s children are hosts of demonic forces operating everywhere on the planet.
Sadly, further helping him are some human beings who have also willed their lives to Satan to be used as enemies of God’s children either in physical form or semi-spiritual form. The question that Paul asked which I am bringing up again today for us is, “if God be for us, can these entire group actually prevailed against us”?
One can take a look at some characters in the bible that God was with which can give us the indication whether enemies can prevail against a believer or a believer is the one that prevails against his or her enemies.
King Saul was against David’s life for about 13 years. In all those long years, Saul chased David from cave to cave; from stronghold to stronghold; from city to city and from house to house. Saul even employed the help of his own daughter who was David’s wife and equally Jonathan his son who was David’s friend to pin him down.
At another time, Saul gave David an impossible task against the Philistines so that David would be killed, but because the Spirit of God was upon David’s life, he escaped all these attacks. David eventually became the King of Israel which Saul never wanted him to be.
May be someone or some people are against what could be your coronation; they have failed in Jesus name.
You may have been chased and hunted by a powerful being or beings; their chasing game is over in Jesus name.
At the death of Saul, David was directed to Hebron by God where he was made the King of Judah. However, Abner the commander of Saul’s army was aggrieved with David as he became more popular and famous than him who was the commander of the armed forces after David killed Goliath of Gath. Abner therefore went and made a pact with Ishibosheth (Saul’s son) and enthroned Ishibosheth as King of Israel.
Abner did not stop there, but he declared war against the house of David. Abner was a general and he had the command of several thousands of soldiers, while David was leading fewer thousands. However God systematically weakened the Army of Ishibosheth over time and David side became stronger.
After about 7 years, David eventually ascends the throne of Israel.
It may be that people are aggrieved with you because of your previous achievements. Never mind, their plot shall fail in Jesus name.
Who shall lay charge on Christ elect? It is God that justifies. That God will grant you justification in Jesus name.
While David was on the throne of Israel, his son Absalom rose up against his father. One would have thought that Absalom should have known that God was with his dad, yet he wanted to take a chance at the throne. Influential people under David connived with Absalom to oust his father, again they all failed and people like Ahitophel and Absalom paid with their lives.
Every gang up against you will be diffused by Jehovah.
The counsel of your enemies shall not stand in Jesus name.
Joab, the commander of David’s army was for a long time a thorn in David’s side and a terror to him. This is because Joab knew David’s secrets and was therefore afraid of him (e.g. the killing of Uriah the husband of Bathsheba, the sin of David by counting the people of Israel); coupled with the fact that Joab was very popular with the troops because of his military prowess made him a threat to King David.
So that many a times Joab would flaunt King David’s orders: like killing of Absalom; killing of Abner after David had signed a peace treaty with him; and planning coup with Adonijah. David could not do anything to Joab as he feared been toppled and this his soldiers knew.
David was able to manage the relationship with Joab till his death. On his death bed, he asked Solomon to make sure he sorts Joab out. Joab was killed right inside the temple at the orders of the gentle Solomon.
Is anyone using your life secret or your background information as blackmail against you. God will silence them in Jesus name.
Let hands join hands against you; you shall still prevail against them in Jesus name.
There is someone listening to me, certain people have set snares for you. It is sad because you have been caught in that snare. God however asked me to tell you that He will have mercy on you.
Satan knew that God really loved David, so Satan looked for how David will get God angry so that he can be dealt with by God or himself. Satan did not bother to send a demon to tempt David, but he went himself.
1 Chronicles 21:1
And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.
God was truly angry, but still showed David His unusual kindness. He was asked to choose one punishment out of three options. David later gave burnt offerings and peace offerings to God and God put an end to the punishment.
David first offered his life in exchange for that of the people; he also offered animals as burnt offering and offered grain as peace offering.
To someone here, I hear that your sufferings are over.
To another person, the predicament you are in is because God was not pleased with you because of a particular incidence which you know of. As you give your own version of burnt offering and peace offering, God will show you special kindness. God requires your life as a burnt offering and your resources as a peace offering. I pray that you will receive the grace to obey God in Jesus name.
In Ephesians 6:12, Apostle Paul made us to understand that as Christians, we are in warfare with spiritual entities who he called powers, principalities, rulers of darkness and spiritual wickedness in high places.
For lucky believers, they might be fighting these group one at a time. For some of us who are not that lucky, we do fight a combination of them together at the same time, plus other challenges of personal life, family life and leadership life as well.
The reassuring thing is, regardless of which group or how many groups are involved, they can’t prevail against us if God is for us.
Are you presently fighting against powers? The Almighty God will fight for you.
Are you fighting against principalities? Jesus that had made an open show of shame of them will make them a reproach before you.
Are you fighting against rulers of darkness? The King of kings and the Lord of lords will expose them and grant you victory.
Are you fighting against spiritual wickedness? May the God of all spirits arrest them and bring their devices to no effect in Jesus name.
In considering who can be against us, Apostle Paul must have considered certain things that can unleash war and battles against us even though they are not persons. Yet they have the capacity to demonstrate that they are against us and fight. Paul mentioned some of such things in the concluding verses of Romans chapter 8:
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
None of the above mentioned are human or spirit, yet they can fight and have fought with believers. One of the things that fight against God’s children again is sickness. Most of the times, sickness is an errand boy of Satan, and to an extent, sometimes it could be due to our negligence. But whether it’s by error or as the plan of the enemy, sickness cannot prevail against us.
Job was terribly sick, yet God did not allow him to die in the hand of his enemy.
Lazarus was sick till he had to die, yet Jesus raised him from the dead as a healthy man.
– Is any sickness troubling you? Your life is not in the hand of sickness. You shall be preserved in Jesus name.
Poverty and lack can fight against a child of God. Most of Jesus apostles were from poor background. He Himself was born into a poor home. This is mainly because as Christians we will be tried by one form of lack or the other; and also because we cannot acquire wealth in the ways of sin.
– As a church, Everlasting Father’s Assembly started with huge lack of money. When we started we could only pay our first month rent. But because God was for us, that lack did not prevail.
Our church account was opened with £10. By the grace of God, that £10 had grown into tens of thousands by the end of our first year.
Are you born into poverty and lack? The cycle is broken over your life in Jesus name.
Lack is not monetary alone. If you are fighting against any other form of lack, may God make you an overcomer against that particular lack in Jesus name.
In biblical times, some people had to fight against real fire, lions, sea obstruction, etc. Whatever might be contending against you or your life shall be subdued before you in Jesus name.
Paul the apostle as a believer had to fight against many things in life. He was born into an educated, famous and influential family. He had dual citizenship (Jewish & Roman), so that there was no restriction to his movement. He was a professional lawyer which would have conferred on him some form of comfort. He was a Pharisee, which would have accorded him some form of honour. Yet, because of the gospel, he had to encounter certain personal battles and struggles:
2 Corinthians 11:24-29
Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.
Thank God for Apostle Paul’s life, at the end of his life battles, he could confidently say that he won.
2 Timothy 4:7
I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
I pray for you at the finality of your lives on earth, you shall be winners in Jesus name.
Every issue contending with you shall dry out in Jesus name.
Hell shall not overpower you in Jesus name.
You will not succumb to grave’s power before your Divine timing.
The sting of death shall not maltreat you.
Any gang up against you in the air shall be diffuse by God.
Whatever gang up against you on the land shall be scattered never to regroup again.
Any gang up against you in the sea and the deep shall be drown in the blood of Jesus.
Any gang up against you underneath the earth and in the grave shall be suffocated by the fire of the Holy Spirit.
Any gang up against you in the rock or in the tree, the lightning and thunder from God shall strike them in Jesus name.
Whatever happens to you in life, your final testimony shall be I triumph still.
Please meditate on these words until you are sure you have an answer by yourself for yourself. If God be for you, who can be against you?
Almighty Father, demonstrate to me again and to the world that you are for me.
Almighty Father, show everyone and everything that is against me that you are superior to them.
The sermon, If God Be For Us Who Can Be Against Us?, by Pastor Samuel Obafaiye, was delivered on July 24, 2016.