Romans 5 Lesson

God's love

There are times when the Bible does not provide a specific answer to a question that we have.   That is why we have the Holy Spirit, our Helper.   The Bible lets us readGod’s word, and the Holy Spirit lets us feel it

The subject for today's lesson is the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit is one of those topics that sometimes feels too big for us to fully understand.  To work through those feelings, we need to break things down into smaller, more manageable pieces:

Point #1 

  • The Bible lets us read God’s word, and the Holy Spirit lets us feel it .  

It is this “feeling” that we will expand upon in our second point.  

Point #2 

  • The Bible says that the love of God, "Has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us." (Romans 5:5).

We are not talking about normal love here!  We are talking about the unequaled love of God the Father!   The scriptures tell us how great God’s love is:  

  • For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life.” – John 3:16.

Can you imagine feeling a love THIS powerful?   Can you imagine the unrivaled joy that someone would feel when God's love gets poured into their hearts?  That would be life-changing!  That IS life-changing for those who experience it!

So how can we experience this type of love for ourselves?     

Our focus verse today is Romans 5:3-5:

  • “We also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” – Romans 5:3-5.

Paul’s teachings show us that the path to feeling God’s love in our own hearts is a progression.   This progression starts with tribulation and is followed by perseverance, then proven character, and finally, the love of God fills our hearts. 

How do we know this?

Because the Bible tells us it is so.  We just read about it in Romans 5:3-5.

We also know that:

  • " All Scripture is inspired by God and beneficial for teaching, for rebuke, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man or woman of God may be fully capable, equipped for every good work." -    2 Timothy 3:16-17.

So if we read it in the Bible, we can know with 100% certainty that it is true.  There is nothing else in life that we can say that about.  Only God's perfect Word! 

Understanding the four steps outlined below puts us on the path to feelingGod’s love in our own hearts.  

THE PROGRESSION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

  1. We exult in our tribulations.
  2. Our tribulations bring about perseverance.
  3. Through perseverance, we develop a proven character.
  4. The love of God is poured out within our hearts.

Nobody likes going through tribulations, so why would we want to exult, or celebrate them? Because God teaches us through adversity.

Tribulations are necessary.  Without the tribulations, we do not get to feel the love.  

As we continue down life’s path, we are all going to suffer.   Our tribulations will either defeat us, or they will complete us.   In the same way that a runner gains strength and stamina through hard work and physical exertion, our tribulations allow us to emerge stronger and more capable.   While not fun in the short term, the benefits that we get from our tribulations are enormous.  

So why should we endure all the pain and suffering?  

Because that is God's will. 

If we must first experience suffering to have God’s love poured into our hearts, it is a small price to pay for something so priceless.  

If you have been blessed to feel God’s love poured into your heart, then you know how joyous and peaceful it feels.   When we experience God’s love, we feel it in our hearts that God’s plan is working.   This gives us the hope that we will need to endure life’s hardships.   As our faith matures, we will begin to see the blessings that hard times can bring.      

We will conclude today’s lesson with the following scripture about God’s plan for each of us:

  • “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord,“plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” – Jeremiah 29:11.  

Comments

John

My name is John.

I have been a Christian for about 25 years, but I have not felt the love of God in my heart in the way that I felt it today. There was an elderly man at my place of business struggling to get into his vehicle. He had gotten upset and yelled at some of our staff so we weren't exactly feeling "Christian love" for this gentlemen.

He had several disabilities and to simply walk to his car was exhausting to watch. From my Bible studies I felt compelled to show compassion and not judgement. My heart went out to this old man.

I heard him say to the person picking him up that he was thirsty and needed some water. I went inside and brought out two cold bottles of water (one for him, and one for the person that picked him up).

As I did this, I thought of Jesus' words from Mathew's Gospel:

"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’"

I thought about how this man was thirsty and I gave him something to drink.

I then got the feeling of chills, in a good way, and felt the Holy Spirit calming me and comforting me. I knew I had pleased God and it was a wonderful feeling. Like today's lesson says, I felt the pouring of God's love into my heart!

It has made me excited to do another kind deed to glorify God, and that is a blessing.

Has anyone else had a similar experience?

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John

My name is John.

I have been a Christian for about 25 years, but I have not felt the love of God in my heart in the way that I felt it today. There was an elderly man at my place of business struggling to get into his vehicle. He had gotten upset and yelled at some of our staff so we weren't exactly feeling "Christian love" for this gentlemen.

He had several disabilities and to simply walk to his car was exhausting to watch. From my Bible studies I felt compelled to show compassion and not judgement. My heart went out to this old man.

I heard him say to the person picking him up that he was thirsty and needed some water. I went inside and brought out two cold bottles of water (one for him, and one for the person that picked him up).

As I did this, I thought of Jesus' words from Mathew's Gospel:

"For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’"

I thought about how this man was thirsty and I gave him something to drink.

I then got the feeling of chills, in a good way, and felt the Holy Spirit calming me and comforting me. I knew I had pleased God and it was a wonderful feeling. Like today's lesson says, I felt the pouring of God's love into my heart!

It has made me excited to do another kind deed to glorify God, and that is a blessing.

Has anyone else had a similar experience?

Reply
Pat
John

Thank you for sharing this incident with us. This is what Jesus meant when he said to “love our neighbor as ourselves.” It is always easy to love and help the people we like. But it is rather difficult to help those whom we do not like. I wonder if your kind gesture helped to turn his day around after being so disgruntled. But even if it didn’t, look how it turned your day around! You felt God’s love inside of you. During this time of the year especially, we have many opportunities to do random acts of kindness and feel that warmth that comes from giving because it IS better to give than receive.

Reply
Betsy
Pat

I’ve only been saved for 8 years. The feeling that I felt inside was strong and surely the Holy Spirit. I felt confident that I was moving in the right direction and that my faith was getting stronger and stronger. And then this pandemic happened. It happened slowly enough for me to not notice right away. That strong feeling of peace and faith inside ( the Holy Spirit) no doubt in my mind, seemed to be fizzling out some. It has been very scary. I know a verse in the Bible talks about once we are saved nothing can pull us from God’s hold but with not being in Church every Sunday and no weekly Bible study or fellowship I felt like I was losing that fire inside. I’ve been doing virtual service on Sunday and praying everyday to get that fire back and then I found this site.
And of all books it started with Romans which contains the verses of the most uplifting, joyful and peaceful message in the whole Bible to me. Romans 8:37-39
“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
‭‭Well anyway, I just want to say that I feel like I can feel the Holy Spirit in me again and I have been trying to do a lot of nice things for people and each time I do I feel a smile creep up on my face and it just stays there along with the warm feeling inside. So thankful to be getting my fire for the Lord back. Thanks for listening.

Reply
Michael
Betsy

Beautiful thoughts Betsy. Thank you for sharing.

Reply
John

This post really made me think.

I’ve been focusing hard on trying to be obedient (works). This forum wakes me up to the knowledge that my belief in Jesus, and in His grace are what save me.

Reply