18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
After introducing the subject of suffering, the Holy Spirit through Paul now turned to put the subject into perspective. The next section of Romans eight expands the subject of suffering to a series of consolatory themes and explanations of how believers can address adversity in their lives (8:18-30):
o The believer’s future glory based on God’s promises (8:18-25)
o Intercession of the Holy Spirit on our behalf (8:26-27)
o God’s sovereignty and shielding the believer for eternity (8:28-30)
Verse 18 concludes the argument of the previous thesis (8:15-17), especially the subject of suffering in verse 17. Paul’s argument in the previous verse was that suffering precedes glorification. This verse also sets up the notion that demonstrates the relationship of believers to all of creation (8:19-21).
I consider [calculate, compute, reckon]
The word “consider” means to calculate. This is not a word of doubt but, on the contrary, a process of reasoning that arrives at a firm conclusion or conviction by careful deduction. Paul made a deliberate calculation about the suffering of Christians. This is a definite statement of conviction and considered judgment of assurance.
Christians need to make proper calculations about suffering under divine viewpoint.
Paul viewed his sufferings of many persecutions for Christ’s sake as worth the trouble. There is no comparison between the glory of heaven and the intensity of suffering. That is why Christians should endure suffering with a sense of hope. We see in this passage what the old hymn said: “Oh what a foretaste of glory divine!”
Christians should come to the same conviction as the apostle Paul about suffering. We do this by hanging in balance a scale with on one side the suffering in time and on the other side the glory God will reveal in us. The first is temporal and the second is qualitatively eternal. There is no question about the weight of one over against the other. No matter how severe our present sufferings, they will fade into insignificance at our future glory. God has reserved for us a weight of glory.