First Sunday in Lent

 Sermon Text: Romans 8:31-39

 Other Readings: Genesis 22:1-18 and Mark 1:12-15


  1. What are the “things” which Paul refers to in verse 31? Confer Romans 8:29,30.
  2. What does the answer to number 1 have to do with the comfort of these verses?
  3. The Greek word for love which Paul uses in verse 39 is called agape love. It’s different than philos love, which is more about friendship. It’s different that eros love, which is more about passionate love. Agape love is a special kind of love only God truly has. How would you define God’s agape love based on these verses?
  4. Paul says that we are “more than conquerors” (v. 37) even right now in life. In what way did Abraham “more than conquer” in our First Lesson?


  1. Paul is referring to the way God brings us into salvation. God foreknew each believer in eternity, predestined each believer to come to faith, called them to faith during their life, and then already gave them glory in this life. 
  2. Because we know that God has chosen (elected) us to faith in eternity and made it happen in time, we can be confident of our future and our eternity which is ahead of us. He has our salvation in his hands, from eternity to eternity.
  3.  Agape love is unconditional love which God has for us despite our sinfulness. Eros love is often subject to swings of emotion; agape isn’t. Philos love is based on a sort of two-way street, where friends both get something out of the relationship. God’s agape love is given without our earning it and was so committed that he gave his only Son for us.
  4. Abraham trusted in God’s promises and his love. By holding onto those promises, he overcame and conquered the devil’s temptations.