Who Shall Separate Us From
The Love Of Christ?
The greatest lesson a Christian can learn is that nothing nor
anyone can ever separate him from the love of Christ.
I have a missionary friend who had been in prison frequently.
He was flogged severely, exposed to death again and again for the cause of Christ.
He had been unmercifully beaten with a whip five times. Three times he had been
beaten with rods, stoned once, shipwrecked three times and spent a night and day in the
open sea before getting to shore. He had been is danger of swollen rivers, bandits
along roads, in danger of both Jewish and non-Jewish government leaders, and traveled in
dangerous areas in foreign countries. One day he said, I have labored and
toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often
gone without food. I have been cold and naked (2 Cor. 11:23-29).
That amazing Christian also wrote, Who shall separated us from
the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecutions, or famine, or
nakedness, or peril, or sword? (Romans 8: 35) In effect he says, None of the
above or all of them together can separate us from the love of Christ.
The apostle Paul also quotes Psalm 44:22, Just as it is
written, for Thy sake we are being put to death all day long; we are considered as sheep
to be slaughtered (Romans 8:36).
Will anything or anyone ever make Christ cease to love us? Not
in Pauls imagination or experiences.
The Christian walks through life secured by the strong cable of
Gods gracious unchanging love. Nothing or anyone will ever be
able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
The term the love of Christ may be taken either as our
love to Christ, or His love to us, but in this context it is best to take it as
Christs love for us.
Tribulation refers to the afflictions, trials, sorrows,
troubles, pressures, and hard circumstances pressing down on us in everyday life. The word thilipsis has to do with pressure.
The Latin word from which we get tribulation is the
threshing sledge that was covered on the bottom with strips of metal and was
used to separate the heads of grain from the husks of chaff. The pressure of life presses
down on us and forcefully threshes us like stalks of grain. But the Apostle says no
tribulations, no matter how severe, will separate us from Christs love (Jn. 16:33).
Distress (stenochoria) is the narrowness and
distress of being confined in a tight and oppressive space. We feel like we are
being squeezed in, and there is nowhere to go. Nothing can squeeze us out of the
love of God. The world disasters draw us closer to Him (Ps. 4:1).
Persecution is the word for being hunted down like a wild
animal put to flight and driven away with hostile force. It is to pursue with hostile
intent because of your love for Jesus Christ.
Christians will always be persecuted to the extent that they are
faithful witnesses to Christ in a hostile world (John 16:33). But persecution, no matter
how severe or intense, will never sever the love of Christ from us (Matt. 5:10-12).
Famine (limos) is hunger, doing without food
because of being driven from their homes by persecution. Persecuted Christians have
been driven from their homes and jobs to wander amid strangers in desolate places.
Nakedness (gumnotes) is the lack of sufficient
clothing because of being reduced to poverty by their enemies. The poverty is so
severe to Christians that they are unable to purchase clothing (Heb. 11:38).
Peril (kindunos) is the danger of any kind,
natural or legal to which Christians are exposed because they are believers. The
idea is to be at risk, or face a danger.
Sword (machaira) is used figuratively here for a
violent death. Christians are executed and murdered because of their faith in
Christ. This century is the most violent against Christians in the history of the
The man, who asked the unanswerable question, Who shall
separate us from the love of Christ? was murdered because of his love for Christ.
For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be
slaughtered (Romans 8: 36; Psalm 44:12).
Paul is emphatic in his statement that nothing in
life or death can separate us from Christ. To live is Christ and to die
is better yet. We have Christ in life, and in death we have in Him an
even better relationship. Death is only an open door into a deeper and
more wonderful experience with Him.
The love of Christ is eternal and unchanging. It
meets us right where we are and takes us out of our darkness into light,
from death to life.
God loves us with an intimate love in which
nothing, nothing, nothing can ever separate us.
Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006
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