THE CREATURE/creation in Romans 8 is NOT the physical world but God's people
by Tuese Ahkiong
The Scripture speaks of the CREATURE as the physical world, beings, animals, things made but also as the covenant people of God; The Jew and then The Christian who is the new man, the new CREATURE/ new CREATION.
English Standard Version
1. Romans 8:18 For I consider that the sufferings of THIS PRESENT TIME (1st century 57AD) are not worth comparing with THE GLORY THAT IS TO BE REVEALED TO US. 19 For the CREATURE waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the CREATURE was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope 21 that the CREATURE itself will beset free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory ofthe children of God. 22 For WE know that the whole CREATURE has been groaning together in the pains of child birth. 23 And not only the CREATURE, but WE ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as WE wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. (plural) 24 For in this hope WE were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? 25 But if WE hope for what WE do not see, WE wait for it with patience.
Notice how Young’s Literal Translation of the Bible below brings out the power of the Greek “melo” which means “about to.”
18 For I reckon that thesufferings of THE PRESENT TIME[are] not worthy [to be compared] with the glory ABOUT TO BE REVEALED IN US;
19 for the earnest looking out of the CREATURE doth expect the revelation of THE SONS OF GOD;
20 for to vanity was the CREATURE made subject -- not of its will, but because of Him who did subject [it] -- inhope,
21 that also the CREATURE itself shall be set free from the servitude of the corruption to the liberty of the glory of the children of God;
22 for WE have known that all the CREATURE doth groan together, and doth travail in pain together TILL NOW.
23 And not only [so], but also WE ourselves, having the first-fruit of the Spirit, WE also ourselves in ourselves do groan, adoption expecting -- the redemption of our body; (singular)
24 for in hope were saved, and hope beheld is not hope; for what any one doth behold, why also doth he hopefor [it]?
25 and if what WE do not behold WE hope for, through continuance WE expect [it].
The new creation/ creature was the creation of God's new people, new children, the true sons of God; Christians who are made up of Jew and gentile in Christ. "The redemption of our body" is not physical bodies but body as in student body or body of knowledge. Paul is using body in the sense of body of Christ or body of believers which is the new creation.
2. Romans9:23 in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— 24 even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles? 25 As indeed he says in Hosea, “THOSE WHO WERE NOT MY PEOPLE I WILL CALL ‘MY PEOPLE,’ AND HER WHO WAS NOT BELOVED I WILL CALL ‘BELOVED.’
“And in the very place where it was said to them,‘YOU ARE NOT MY PEOPLE,’ THERE THEY WILL BE CALLED ‘SONSOF THE LIVING GOD.’”
3. 2 Corinthians5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is anew CREATURE. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
**The old CREATURE was Israel, the first covenant people of God. The new CREATURE is the new covenant people of God, made up of Jew andGentile in Christ. Nothing physically changes when a person puts faith in Christ but something definitely changes spiritually in that one is regenerated and in the new covenant/ new heaven and earth.
4. Galatians 6:15 For neither circumcision counts for anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new CREATURE.
**The old CREATURE or old MAN was Israel, the first covenant people of God. The new CREATURE or new MAN is the new covenant people of God made up of Jew and Gentile in Christ who are Christians.
5. Ephesians 2:14-16
14 For he himself is our peace,who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility 15 by abolishing the law of commandments expressed inordinances, that HE MIGHT CREATE IN HIMSELF ONE NEW MAN IN PLACE OF THE TWO, SO MAKING PEACE, 16 AND MIGHT RECONCILE US BOTH TO GOD IN ONE BODY THROUGH THE CROSS, THEREBY KILLING THE HOSTILITY.
until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,
6. Ephesians 4:22-24
22 to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires,23 and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, 24 andto PUT ON THE NEW SELF, CREATED AFTER THE LIKENESS OF GOD IN TRUE RIGHTEOUSNESS AND HOLINESS.
7. Colossians 3:9-11
9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you haveput off the old self with its practices 10 and have PUT ON THE NEW SELF, WHICH IS BEING RENEWED IN KNOWLEDGE AFTER THE IMAGE OF ITS CREATOR. 11 HERE THERE IS NOT GREEK AND JEW, CIRCUMCISED AND UNCIRCUMCISED, BARBARIAN, SCYTHIAN, SLAVE, FREE; BUT CHRIST IS ALL, AND IN ALL.
**The new man/ new self is a person in Christ.
Through out the NT, there was a battle between who was the true "Children of God" or "Sons of God" that was waged between Jews and Christians. The NT Scripture teaches that only Christians are The Children of God or Sons of God made up of Jew and gentile in Christ and NOT Jews.
"CHILDREN OF GOD"
But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.
51 He (Caiaphas) did not say this of his own accord, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation, 52 and not for the nation only, but also to gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad.
15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry,“Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, 17 and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.
This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring.
14 Do all things without grumbling or disputing, 15 that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, 16 holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.
1 John 3:1-2
See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; andso we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.
1 John 3:10
By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother.
1 John 5:1-2
Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him.2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments.
"SONS OF GOD"
“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
And Jesus said to them, “The sons of this age (Judaism) marry and are given in marriage, 35 but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, 36 for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection. (Christians)
14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. 15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God.
But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian,26 for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. 27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.