Daily Bible Reading Reflections

From, Through, and To

For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen. (Rom 11:36)

So concludes one of the greatest presentations of the gospel in human history. After scaling the majestic heights of Romans 1 through 11, just listen to the overflow of Paul’s heart:

Oh, the depths of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! (11:33)

How could any human being possibly summarize and conclude such a comprehensive look at the most life-changing, eternity-shaping news imaginable? If “depths” and “unsearchable” and “inscrutable” are the words an inspired apostle much reach for to describe the glorious works and ways of God, where do I even begin on an ordinary Tuesday? How can I possibly wrap my mind around such majesty? And what does he deserve in response? Maybe focusing on three little prepositions will help.

From. Through. To.

Three powerful prepositions.

In the end, the entire message rests on those three words. From. Through. To.

Imagine for a moment that your household has been hit with the flu. It’s been a rough, no good, very bad day. In fact, it’s all you can do just to get out of bed. As day turns to evening, you hear the doorbell. By the time you’re able to make it downstairs, your wife has carried a care package into the kitchen. She has a grateful grin on her face and an appreciative tear in the corner of her eye. A good friend has dropped off comforting chicken noodle soup, more than enough for the entire family.

“Where did all this come from?” you ask in your medicated stupor.

“Kelsey brought it and dropped it off on the front porch,” your wife explains.

“It’s delicious!” you exclaim after your first exhausted bite.

“Well, it’s obviously homemade,” your wife patiently observes.

“Who do I have to thank for this wonderful meal?”

You wouldn’t even ask that question, would you? And if you did, you can easily imagine your wife taking a more concerned look at you to make sure you’re going to be okay. The answer is obvious.

“You should thank Kelsey.”

Why? Because “from” Kelsey and “through” Kelsey came the gift of this meal. At just the right time. “To” Kelsey belongs the “glory.” “To” Kelsey should gratitude be expressed for what you were able to enjoy in your sick, weak, largely helpless state.

With that simple illustration in mind, read Romans 11:36 again, noticing especially our three powerful prepositions.

For from him and through him and to him are all things.

That’s why we have practical passages like 1 Corinthians 10:31…

So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

That’s why we’re called the way we are in Colossians 3:17…

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

…because of those three powerful prepositions. From him are all things. Look around today. Take the time to notice where it’s all come from. Through him are all things. Slow down in deliberate, focused moments throughout the day to appreciate the Source of your blessings. To him are all things. “Who do I have to thank for these wonderful gifts that I don’t deserve?” To him belongs the glory. To him should grateful praise be offered. Forever.

Romans 11:36 is the conclusion of one of the greatest presentations of the gospel in human history. It’s worth tucking in your pocket and mentally chewing on throughout this God-given day. Appreciate the heights. Notice the depths. Find the moments. Focus your affections. Above all, take the time to say, right along with the apostle Paul, “To him be glory forever. Amen.”