Romans 8:28 May Be Often-Quoted and Even Misused, But May We Never Grow Tired of Its Precious Truth

Is it possible to overuse a verse of Scripture? Certainly it is easy to misuse a verse, and in the process be robbed of its true riches.

Romans 8:28 is one of the best known verses in the whole Bible: “All things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Did I say this was one of the “best known” verses of Scripture? Let me revise that statement. It is one of the most often quoted verses of Scripture. Unfortunately, it is all too easy to quote a verse without really knowing it.

Read the rest:

Love Is Not God: A.W. Tozer on How Equating Love With God Is a Major Mistake

Scripture Gives Us Many Reasons to Be Happy


When someone says, as many have, “Happiness isn’t in the Bible,” it’s not even slightly true. Even in versions that don’t frequently use the words happy and happiness, the concept is conspicuously present, not only in its many synonyms (see here and here), but in words such as contentmentpeacedelight, and dozens of others in every translation.

Consider this verse: “Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over transgression for the remnant of his inheritance? He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in steadfast love” (Micah 7:18). Such a passage may not seem to be about happiness, yet if we understand its meaning, won’t we be flooded with happiness?

“Oh sing to the Lord a new song, for he has done marvelous things! His right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him. The Lord has made known his salvation” (Psalm 98:1-2). There are no joy-related words in this verse, yet doesn’t it make you joyful?

Consider the lame man who leaped and praised God (see Acts 3:1-10).His story won’t appear in a study of words related to happiness, but he was obviously overwhelmed with happiness.

“We have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John 2:1). No word for happiness is mentioned here, but how does it make you feel to know that Jesus is your advocate, your defense attorney? Can you imagine Jesus standing between you and your accuser, Satan (see Revelation 12:10)? The thought makes me smile, rejoice, and praise God.

Every passage that mentions our redemption; our new nature in Christ; and God’s love, grace, and mercy also makes a profound statement about our grounds for happiness.

Poor Interpretation Lets Us “Believe” the Bible While Denying What It Actually Says

The Early Christians Experienced Happiness in Christ Despite Suffering; So Can We

Recently Nanci and I saw the movie Paul, Apostle of Christ. We were both surprised at how dark it was, focusing almost exclusively on Rome’s brutal violence done against Christians and their children. Paul is suffering in prison nearly all the movie, and even the flashbacks are either him suffering or inflicting suffering on others.

Of course, historically there was plenty of such violence, and we don’t want it whitewashed! That’s not my concern. But Paul’s life contained many events that were beautiful—including strong relationships, miracles, healings, demons cast out, and radical conversions with infusions of happiness. We wished for a few happy flashbacks of the joy he experienced knowing and serving Jesus, as seen throughout the book of Acts. (Given the good reviews I read, no doubt God is using the movie in some people’s lives. And if you’re among them, that’s great!)

It also seemed odd to show the community of faith’s suffering endlessly without depicting their joy. In the movie, the believers in hiding are portrayed as divided and squabbling and nearly always distraught. I’m all for realistic portrayals of suffering and hardship (I’ve written three books on the problem of evil and suffering), and certainly first-century Christians experienced much heartbreak and persecution. But they also experienced happiness, celebration, and the abundant life in the midst of difficulty. Their lives were punctuated by feasting and singing and laughing and rejoicing. (It almost feels like there’s an underlying assumption in this movie that God has called His people to


Will We Have Our Own Homes in Heaven?

Perhaps you’re familiar with Christ’s promise in John 14: “In my Father’s house are many mansions. . . . I go to prepare a place for you” (v. 2, KJV). The Vulgate, the Latin Bible, used the word mansiones in that verse, and the King James Version followed by using mansions. Unfortunately, that rendering is misleading if it makes us envision having massive lodgings on separate estates. The intended meaning seems to be that we’ll have separate dwelling places on a single estate or even separate rooms within the same house.

New Testament scholar D. A. Carson says, “Since heaven is here pictured as the Father’s house, it is more natural to think of ‘dwelling-places’ within a house as rooms or suites. . . . The simplest explanation is best: my Father’s house refers to heaven, and in heaven are many rooms, many dwelling-places. The point is not the lavishness of each apartment, but the fact that such ample provision has been made that there is more than enough space for every one of Jesus’ disciples to join him in his Father’s home.” [1]

The New International Version rendering of John 14:2 is this: “In my Father’s house are many rooms. . . . I am going there to prepare a place for you.” Placeis singular, but rooms is plural. This suggests Jesus has in mind for each of us an individual dwelling that’s a smaller part of the larger place. This place will be home to us in the most unique sense.

There is more at:

Answering Claims That the Bible Contains Errors, and Why It Matters That It Doesn’t