What does Romans 8:31 mean?Paul continues to offer encouragement to Christians on this side of eternity. It's true that we are suffering, as all of creation is, as we wait to be glorified with God forever. The fact that we suffer, though, does not mean that God is not with us or for us. In the previous verses, Paul has shown that God is working to complete a purpose in us that He set out to do before He even formed the world (Ephesians 1:4). That purpose is to make us like Christ, and God is still using "all things" to finish this process (Romans 8:28).
Again, in this passage, Paul speaks from the perspective of saved Christian believers. References here to "us," or "we" are not inclusive of the entire human race, but only those who have accepted Christ in faith (Romans 3:23–26; John 3:16–18).
In light of the fact that God foreknew us, predestined us, called us, justified us, and will glorify us (Romans 8:30), Paul comes to an undeniable conclusion: God must be for us. God must be for all of us who are in Christ by faith. What an amazing and life-changing thought. The one, true God, the creator of all things, is for us. With Him for us, who could ever possibly be against us?
Of course, anyone at all might be against us, in literal terms; any person or group might try to oppose us or afflict us. Paul's question is who of any consequence could ever be against us? What could anyone against us ever hope to accomplish against us, if God Himself is for us? What chance is there that someone can thwart God's intent to save those justified by faith in His son?
The question is whether we believe God is truly for us. Paul offers a definitive answer to that question in the following verse.