Bible passage: Romans 8:18–25 (ESVUK)
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
Thinking about the new creation and prayer
We looked at Romans 8 on day 2, but today we will consider a different angle in the passage to help us consider something else about the new creation. Paul says that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed in us. The new creation and the glory that will be revealed is incomparable to the bad things we thought about on day 1 (v18) and is far greater than the best things we are looking forward to after lockdown ends that we thought about on day 2. The new creation is not just this creation with sin and suffering removed. It is far better and more glorious (v18).
In what ways has what you’ve seen the last 8 days made you believe that more? What most excites you about the new creation?
Verses 21 and 22 speak of creation groaning, longing to be set free from the curse of the fall, to obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God, when the new creation comes.
- Think: consider what it means for creation to groan, and a time you’ve seen creation “groan”. This may be the creaking of a tree, the cry of a hurt animal or a natural disaster.
- Pray: Romans 8:28 says “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Pray God would complete this work in you so you can be ready for the new creation.
As you go for a walk or run, imagine how good the new creation will be if all this creation is groaning for it. Remember on day 2 how we thought about how you think and feel as you wait for that good thing at the end of lockdown. Can you imagine how creation feels as it groans and waits? What does that tell you about how good the new creation will be?
Every time you see a natural disaster or an example of creation groaning on the news, you could pray that God would bring in his new creation so that this creation will be set free from its bondage to corruption.
How did you get on with memorising the verse from this passage on day 2? Can you still recite it from memory?