Part 11 Romans 8

March 21, 2024 By Rhonda

Part 11: Romans 8 Life in the Spirit Bible Engagement

Romans 8:33-35

33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth. 34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

33. Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth.

33 Who will bring any charge against God’s elect (His chosen ones)? It is God who justifies us [declaring us blameless and putting us in a right relationship with Himself]. AMP

33 Who can accuse the people God has chosen? No one, because God is the One who makes them right. NCV

33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. ESV

  • Justify-to show or prove to be right; declare or make righteous in the sight of God.

The preceding verses show that we are:

  • Predestined by God
  • Called by God
  • Justified by God
  • Glorified by God

The Power of a Question

With all this in mind, in verse 31 Paul begins to ask questions (what, who, how). Jesus often asked questions instead of simply stating the correct answer or reason. Jesus taught the disciples and helped them get a deeper level of understanding. Jesus, sometimes, answered questions with a question.  Asking questions is a good strategy to help us engage in active learning.

If you are in a setting where you are only required to casually listen, your brain works differently than it does if you know that at any moment you may be asked to respond, or asked questions. Or actively participate. I want to look at passive and active listening or learning.  Here Paul is using both active and passive listening/teaching/learning in his letter to the Christians in Rome and Believers everywhere.

Writing is different than if he were speaking in person. In person we communicate with our body language as well. If we were having this Bible engagement in person, your body language may be saying to me, “Okay, what’s your point”. Then I may notice your non-verbal cues and respond. Since we are communicating through writing, I can still address the questions that I anticipate you asking. So, In answer to “What’s your point”?, I’m really not sure yet.

Below I will share excerpts from an article titled, Active Learning Vs. Passive Learning-An In-Depth Guide

Passive learning is what most people are more familiar with. Passive learning involves more one way type of communication. For example, the teacher is giving information to the students. The student has to pay attention and listen. Active learning is more challenging. Active learning gets the learner involved in various ways. Active learning helps stimulate the student’s ability to understand the concept of the topic by pulling on their comprehension.

Active learning gets the student involved in doing something; active participating in the learning process. Active learning puts the learner/student in the driver’s seat rather than participating only as an observer. Active learning leads to better outcomes and to long-term retention of the information.  

Passive learning has shown to be less effective at long-term retention than active learning. Rote memorization doesn’t always translate to retention. Or retaining the information. Passive learning relies on one-way communication where the learner attempts to absorb the information. The trouble with the passive style is that comprehension and understanding are more difficult to gauge.

Active learning encourages learners to participate in learning the concept. Active learning orients around the learner. It draws on the student’s involvement to help drive the right points home. It’s a two-way relationship between the learner and the instructor/material. Learners have much more control over the process with active education.

They receive encouragement to seek out sources of information to find new solutions, ideas, or possibilities. They may bring in their own materials (or life experiences) to broaden the discussion or make comparisons. Students develop more metacognitive skills through active learning than they might through passive learning.

Passive learning can show good results immediately following the teaching. However, as time goes on, this information isn’t as likely to stick. Anything learned passively requires memorization rather than deeper learning. Learners deeply involved in digesting new concepts, especially through the active learning strategy of repetition, are more likely to retain information long-term.

In active learning, the teacher or instructor is more of a facilitator. Their job is to create the right environment for students to participate in activities and gain new knowledge. In passive education, students are encouraged to think convergently (tending to come together or merging). Everyone arrives at the same answer to the same question.

Active learning promotes lateral thinking. This mode of thinking helps students connect concepts to external applications in the real world. It also encourages divergent thinking, generating creativity and variation in the answers, insights, and understanding. (This is where Holy Spirt meets us all on our individual levels, and meets our individual needs, according to His purpose within the moment; God meets us right where we are).

Active learning is more effective than passive learning for many reasons. Some of the benefits that help it stand out include:

  • Improves short term information acquisition
  • Improves long term knowledge retention
  • Creates room for frequent feedback to the instructor from learners
  • Allows more information to be presented from multiple sources
  • Stimulates learners’ attention
  • Requires participation which leads to more long-term retention
  • Encourages learners to develop critical thinking skills
  • Helps learners apply lessons to real-life/the field
  • (

Also, active learning stimulates the brain in a different way than does passive learning. Asking open-ended questions, like Jesus and Paul, produces a different level of thinking. “When you ask a question instead of giving the answer, the entire brain gets active as it reflects, releasing serotonin (allowing it to relax). This encourages gathering intelligence from all areas of the brain, allowing for more insight than would happen if you provided solutions to others. New neuronal connections begin to be made as the brain moves closer to finding solutions.” (

In verse 33 Paul continues his line of questioning with ‘Who’. Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It’s not really a close ended question but a conversational statement in the form of a question. In this letter Paul has established many things from 8:1 through 8:30. When Paul gets to verse 31 he began to add a series of questions.  I think it’s interesting that Paul asked a question in vs. 24: For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for?

Five teachers can teach a course all from the same curriculum and yet teach it differently. As I am typing, I noticed the shift to ‘Apostle Paul’. Paul’s letter and style of writing will not be the same as Peter’s but the same Spirit (Holy Spirit) directed them both. We cannot separate Paul’s letter to the Church in Rome from Paul’s life. The two go hand in hand. This is how it is with Life in the Spirit. When we live our life in the Spirit it is no longer about us, but the Greater One in us. Our life points to Christ. Life in the Spirit means every path of our life is pointing to Christ. It’s like, “All roads lead to Jesus”. Holy Spirit is our navigator.

Paul states the question, Who can accuse the people that God has chosen? No one! God is the One who makes them right. Rom. 8:33 ICB

  • Paul gives the answer to the question (Who can accuse the people that God has chosen?), but the question still serves a vital purpose even though he immediately gives the answer (No one!). He also gives the why.
  • Anyone can accuse you (God’s chosen people) of just about anything.
  • Satan is the accuser of the brethren: Revelation 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. 10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. 11 And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death. 12 Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

Who can accuse the people that God has chosen? No one! God is the One who makes them right. Rom. 8:33 ICB

Revelation 12: 7-12

7 Then there was a war in heaven. Michael and his angels fought against the dragon. The dragon and his angels fought back. 8 But the dragon was not strong enough. He and his angels lost their place in heaven. 9 He was thrown down out of heaven. (The giant dragon is that old snake called the devil or Satan. He leads the whole world the wrong way.) The dragon with his angels was thrown down to the earth.

10 Then I heard a loud voice in heaven say:

“The salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God

    and the authority of his Christ have now come.

They have come because the accuser of our brothers has been thrown out.

    He accused our brothers day and night before our God.

11 And our brothers defeated him

    by the blood of the Lamb’s death

    and by the truth they preached.

They did not love their lives so much

    that they were afraid of death.

12 So be happy, you heavens

    and all who live there!

But it will be terrible for the earth and the sea,

    because the devil has come down to you!

He is filled with anger.

    He knows that he does not have much time.” ICB

Who can accuse the people that God has chosen? No one! God is the One who makes them right. Rom. 8:33 ICB. Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies and declares us righteous. How? Justification is an act of God whereby He pronounces a sinner to be righteous because of that sinner’s faith in Christ. According to one theologian, “the root idea in justification is the declaration of God, the righteous judge, that the man who believes in Christ, sinful though he may be, is righteous—is viewed as being righteous, because in Christ he has come into a righteous relationship with God” (Ladd, G. E., A Theology of the New Testament, Eerdmans, 1974, p. 437).

All roads lead to Jesus. As Paul posed the question/statement, Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? —–

  • Picture in your mind a huge Arrow pointing to the right—pointing to the Cross—The Cross of Christ—pointing to Jesus on the Cross—-The sufferings and atonement of Jesus Christ—Pointing to His crucifixion—pointing to the shedding of His precious Blood as He hung on the Cross—

Pray Pray Pray—–Prayer of Thanksgiving unto God………………………………We thank you Lord……Thank you….Thank you Lord Jesus. Hallelujah Hallelujah Hallelujah—Father we thank you and we praise you and we do it in the name of Jesus!

Reflect—Let’s pause and think about it:

  • Religious leaders plot to kill Jesus
  • Judas agrees to betray Jesus
  • Disciples prepare for the Passover
  • Jesus and the disciples have the Last Supper
  • Jesus predicts Peter’s denial
  • Jesus agonizes in the of Gethsemane
  • Jesus is betrayed and arrested
  • Peter denies knowing Jesus
  • The council of religious leaders condemns Jesus
  • Jesus stands trial before Pilate
  • Jesus stands trial before Herod
  • Pilate hands Jesus over to be crucified
  • Jesus is led away to be crucified
  • Jesus is placed (Hung) on the cross
  • Jesus dies on the cross
  • Jesus is laid in the tomb
  • Jesus rises from the dead
  • Jesus appears to two believers traveling on the road
  • Jesus appears to the disciples behind locked doors
  • Jesus appears to the disciples in Jerusalem
  • Jesus ascends into heaven

I can only imagine Paul reflecting as he writes this letter ‘Romans’. Imagine him thinking, while writing, If you only knew my story. This thing is personal; it’s very personal to us as it was to Paul. My God. My God. Imagine Paul reflecting on his personal Encounter with the risen Jesus. Paul remembering how one day he was hell bent and on a mission. But on the way to Damascus—he heard a Voice……….. a voice a voice a voice.  When Jesus shines His spotlight on you……..Acts 9: 1-24; we are engaging

And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest, And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.  And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?

And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do. And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man. And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus. And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.

And there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and to him said the Lord in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I am here, Lord. And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and enquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth, And hath seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight. Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem:

And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name. But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake. And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.

And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized. And when he had received meat, he was strengthened. Then was Saul certain days with the disciples which were at Damascus. And straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God. But all that heard him were amazed, and said; Is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound unto the chief priests? But Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus, proving that this is very Christ. And after that many days were fulfilled, the Jews took counsel to kill him: But their laying await was known of Saul. And they watched the gates day and night to kill him (Acts 9).

FYI: Saul’s name was also Paul. The custom of dual names was common in those days. Acts 13:9 describes the apostle as “Saul, who was also called Paul.” From that verse on, Saul is always referred to in Scripture as “Paul.” Paul was a Jew, born in the Roman city of Tarsus. He was proud of his Jewish heritage, as he describes in Philippians 3:5: “Circumcised on the eighth day, of the race of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrew parentage, in observance of the law a Pharisee.” So zealous and devout was he that persecuting Christians was the natural way for him to show his devotion. He chose to use his Hebrew name, Saul, until sometime after he began to believe in and preach Christ. After that time, as “the apostle to the Gentiles” (Romans 11:13), he used his Roman name, Paul. It would make sense for Paul to use his Roman name as he traveled farther and farther into the Gentile world.

34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.

Notes verse 34:

  • Paul says that Jesus is interceding for us in heaven.
  • God has acquitted us and removed our sin and guilt, so it is Satan, not God, who accuses us.
  • When he does, Jesus, the advocate for our defense, stands at God’s right hand to present our case.

Reference Scriptures:

Psalm 110:1-The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool.

1 John 2:1-My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

I’m reminded of something both my mother and grandmother would say to me from a little girl up through teenage and young adult years. I believe they were trying to help me understand spiritual things in a way that I could understand. It was not for me to be suspicious, or doubtful but a suggestion to help me think beyond the surface. They would say, “Always ask yourself, Why? I have used this throughout my life and it has been a tremendous blessing; it has proved beneficial in both my personal and professional life.

Who is he that condemns? You need to know where you stand and what or who you are working with. If someone is condemning you, to your face or behind your back, you need to know it. I would like to look at this from a different angle. We already addressed that Satan is the accuser of the brethren (the family of God-Christians-Believers-Followers of Christ). To look at this question from a different angle then, we have to consider whoever is condemning us is presenting as an enemy. An enemy is someone or something that opposes God’s will and plans for us.

The devil is not your friend. He is a thief and he comes to steal, kill, and destroy you. As I’m thinking about ‘Who is he that condemns? I being reminded of the, ‘Always ask yourself Why’. Why is Paul asking, who? Is Holy Spirit using this also to provoke us to understand that we need to know who our enemy is. We know it is the devil but do we know who he is working through?  Is it important to know who the devil is using in your life?

Jesus was intentional about his inner circle. He loved all his disciples, but Judas was not in his inner circle. We also have to be intentional and led by Holy Spirit—should this person be in my inner circle, Lord? Yes, you’re going to still love your enemies and pray for them. But you will not share everything with your enemies because you will not make their job easier. You must know—so that you can implement certain barriers of protection. What’s important is that you know. It’s not necessary to let them (enemy) know, that you know. Just like our Heavenly Father uses us to help each other; God uses man (people) to help  man (people). The enemy imitates God, and also uses people to destroy and derail people.

Who is he that condemns? Why? What are you asking—Who?

Why? Because Proverbs 27:6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend [who corrects out of love and concern], But the kisses of an enemy are deceitful [because they serve his hidden agenda]. AMP

……………It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.

  • All roads pointing to Jesus-no matter the angle, vantage point or perspective
  • Christ died not only that
  • Christ is risen again not only that
  • Christ is at the right hand of God not only that but
  • He also makes intercession of us Glory to God it is finished
  • Settled!!!

Who then will condemn us? No one — for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Reference Scriptures Vs. 35

  • 1 Corinthians 4:11-Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwelling place;
  • 2 Corinthians 11:26-27- 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; 27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

Notes Verse 35, 36

•These words were written to a church that would soon undergo terrible persecution. In just a few years, Paul’s hypothetical situations would turn into painful realities.

•This passage confirms God’s profound love for his people. No matter what happens to us or where we are, we can never be lost to his love.

•When suffering comes, it should not drive us away from God, but help us to identify with him further and allow his love to reach us and heal us.

Who shall ever separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? Rom. 8:35 AMP

Can anything separate us from the love Christ has for us? Can troubles or problems or sufferings? If we have no food or clothes, if we are in danger, or even if death comes—can any of these things separate us from Christ’s love? ICB

Can anything separate us from the love Christ has for us? Can troubles or problems or sufferings or hunger or nakedness or danger or violent death? NCV

Tribulation (affliction, hardship, distress, adversity)

  • Grievous trouble; severe trial or suffering
  • Suffering or trouble resulting from oppression

Distress—from within; being pressured by circumstance

  • extreme anxiety, sorrow, or pain (
  • a feeling of extreme worry, sadness or pain

Persecution-hostile persecution by an enemy.

  • Hostility and ill-treatment; abusive treatment toward
  • Being pursued by someone who has intent to harm
  • Unfair or cruel treatment over a long period of time
  • A program or campaign to exterminate, drive away, or subjugate people based on their membership in a particular group
  • To harass or punish in a manner designed to injure, grieve, or afflict      

Famine-extreme scarcity of food; want of food

  • Scarcity, lack, shortage of
  • The most severe kind of hunger crisis
  • “The days are coming,” declares the Sovereign LORD, “when I will send a famine through the land— not a famine of food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the LORD Amos 8:11-12
  • “Oh yes, Judgment Day is coming!” These are the words of my Master GOD. “I’ll send a famine through the whole country. It won’t be food or water that’s lacking, but my Word. People will drift from one end of the country to the other, roam to the north, wander to the east. They’ll go anywhere, listen to anyone, hoping to hear GOD’s Word—but they won’t hear it. MSG


  • Without proper clothing
  • Depending on context-vulnerability, helplessness, humiliation, shame, guilt, or judgment
  • Being discovered or made manifest
  • Not covered, bare


  • Exposure to the risk of being injured, destroyed or lost
  • Danger, fire-something very dangerous
  • destruction


  • a sharp weapon used in war, combat, slaughter, violence
  • a weapon with a long, sharp, metal blade

It’s like Paul is saying, you can name anything—bring it, whatever it is…it cannot separate us from Christ love.

The Love of Christ:

  • No matter what it is, who it is or how much it is. If you combine all of the mentioned calamities, compound exponentially to the tenth degree; to infinity…..NOTHING can separate us from the Love of Christ.

His love is permanent.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

A Letter To Lost Souls! Get Saved Jesus Loves You