There is a simple thought that is woven throughout Paul’s letter to the Romans. That idea is that no amount of works is going to save you, only faith in God can do that. This remains true even in this chapter.
Paul seems to recall Jesus’ teaching about being the vine (John 15:1-7). “But some of these branches from Abraham’s tree — some of the people of Israel — have been broken off. And you Gentiles, who were branches from a wild olive tree, have been grafted in.” (11:17 NLT). Paul goes on to remind the people that they are only allowed in because people had left. These people that had left, were the Jews that did not accept Jesus for who he was. Paul states “Many of the people of Israel are now enemies of the Good News” (11:28 NLT), but goes on to say that God still loves them, despite what they’ve done.
I love the way Paul ends this chapter, “For everything comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory. All glory to him forever! Amen.” (11:36 NLT). This is where the works come in. There is nothing that we can give to God, that He doesn’t already have. No amount of sacrifices, or bargains, or deals are to God’s advantage. He owns the whole of Creation and everything in it. The car you drive, the house you live in, and all the money in your bank account are on loan from the Almighty God. So our call is to use these things for His glory, not ours.
When I joined my church I pledged to faithfully participate in its ministries by my prayers, presence, gifts, service, and witness. I know that this is a pledge to a church, but honestly isn’t this what we pledge to God when we become His? I don’t know about you, but all I do is pray, be present, offer my gifts, serve, and bear witness. I don’t have time for anything else, do you know why? Because all we do is to be done to the glory of God. If God cannot be glorified, than there is probably something we shouldn’t be doing.
So there it is my friends. Let’s give God all the glory today. He woke us up, He’s the reason we’re here, He’s given us all we have, so why would we glorify anything else? We should be glorifying God at all times, if for no other reason than the face He saved you and me. We were dead, our sin made us that way. But God came to earth, and He gave us new life through His death. Now because of God I live! So all glory to Him, Amen!