SOAP Study - July 8, 2020

    07.08.20 | by Nicolet Bell


     Romans 8:12-17

    12 Therefore, dear brothers and sisters,[a] you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do. 13 For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature,[b] you will live. 14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children[c] of God.

    15 So you have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves. Instead, you received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children.[d] Now we call him, “Abba, Father.”[e] 16 For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children. 17 And since we are his children, we are his heirs. In fact, together with Christ we are heirs of God’s glory. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering.


    • What verse stood out to you while you were reading?
    • What did you discover about God, yourself, and others?
    • How should this information impact your life?
    • What needs to be different about the way you are currently living?
    • Take some time to talk to God about the things you just learned and how you want your life to look different. Give God thanks for revealing these things to you, ask Him for wisdom and courage to move forward so that you can apply these things to your life.

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    The theme of “children” stands out to me in today’s passage. We see Paul describe that when we put to death our sinful nature, through the power of the Spirit, we will live as children of God (verses 13 & 14). He goes on to explain what type of children we are: “You received God’s Spirit when he adopted you as his own children” (verse 15). We get to call him, Abba Father or “Daddy” in English. Almighty God, King of the whole universe chose us to be his children. Not His subjects, not His slaves (verse 15) but His Children. Paul tells us what this status means for us- “And since we are his children, we are His heirs… together with Christ, we are heirs of God’s glory” (verse 17). So we inherit glory as children of God, but we unfortunately inherit one other thing. Verse 18 tells us that “if we are to share in His glory, we must also share in His suffering.” This is a theme we see throughout the Bible - Suffering, then glory. It’s as if we can’t have one without the other. Or maybe, in our humanness, we can’t appreciate or understand the glory without the suffering. When looking at this verse we need to look back at verse 15 and remember that we don’t have to be fearful or afraid.


    Often, it is easy for us to think that because we are Jesus followers that our lives are going to be trouble free and happy. The Bible really tells us the opposite. We are assured that we will have trouble while we live on this fallen earth (John 16:33) and that to inherit glory we must also endure suffering just like Jesus did (Romans 8: 17). In my life, I find it easy to be disappointed when I find myself in a place of suffering, hurt or disappointment. It’s hard to remember in seasons of suffering that glory is coming. Reminding ourselves of our identity is one of the simplest ways to help us keep our heads up in times of struggle. When we remember that we are God’s children, and coheirs with Jesus, we can be encouraged even when times are hard. Verse 13 gives us a key to living out this practice, “But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live.” When we seek to walk in the Spirit and put to death or sinful desires we are promised that, “all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.”


    Father, thank you for calling me your child. Thank you that my identity isn’t dependent upon my circumstances, my job, my marriage, my friends, nor anything else. My identity is secure- I am your daughter/son. Help me to have courage when I experience suffering that one day, I will experience glory that will far outweigh it. Help me this day to put to death my sinful nature and to be led by your Spirit.