Glorying and Groaning

Artwork for Supernatural Living in a Secular World

Once Paul got past the sinfulness of sin (Romans 1-3) and the grace of the Gospel (4-5), he focused our attention on the sanctification of the saint (6-8). That third subject reached its climax in Romans 8, where Paul emphasized the work of the Holy Spirit, especially what Jesus called the abundant life (John 10:10). As we learned in the previous message, life is made possible by His empowering us to live above the drag of the flesh. Such a concept could cause some to think that the Christian life is a “cloud nine” delight, full of nothing but “glorying,” uninterrupted peace, pleasure, and prosperity. To keep things realistic, Paul introduced the other side of life—the “groaning.” And to help us understand it better, he interjected an analogy that is familiar to all of us: God’s creation. From that, Paul turned to all of us: God’s creatures. There are glorying and groaning in both. They are indissolubly linked—welded together and inseparable.