The apostle says here that God pronounced the curse on the creation "in hope" of "the revealing of the sons of God," which would release it "from the bondage of corruption." God designed the curse on Adam to enhance man's chance to enter His Family! God would rather have done it another way—through His guidance in the Garden of Eden—but since Adam and Eve chose rebellion, He designed Adam's curse to reach the same end by a different means: hard toil, struggle, and eventual death!
Richard T. Ritenbaugh
The First Prophecy (Part Three)
God knew that man's continuous struggle against corruption would mature and perfect the character needed to be in God's Family. Because we possess the capacity to sin, when it is coupled with the determination to resist temptation to sin, the resultant effort becomes a spiritual exercise. Like a man training with dumbbells, the repeated resistance builds strength over time.
Dr. Viktor Frankl, psychologist and survivor of Auschwitz, cautions that it is a dangerous misconception to believe that man needs a continuous equilibrium or a tensionless state. He insists, "What man actually needs is not a tensionless state, but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him." The stress of attaining to a high standard or achieving a seemingly impossible quest betters a person. The bland, satisfied life means little, accomplishes little, and is remembered little.
David F. Maas
Fasting: Building Spiritual Muscle
God's whole creation is enslaved in grievous bondage! This slavery, called by Paul "the bondage of corruption," is subjection to decay, devastation, disease, destruction, and degradation because of sin—mankind's sin. The earth and all its creatures are expectantly waiting for the time when God's sinless children will take over the rule of this world and deliver creation from the curse of sin! And like a human birth, the worst pains—in this case, the worst ecological devastation—will occur just before and at the delivery of the new life. This explains the earth's groaning and laboring as the end nears.
Richard T. Ritenbaugh
The Bible and the Environment
Notice how he lays the foundation by turning our attention to our hope. He reminds us that God purposefully made life subject to futility. Futility is a frustrating quality that wears away at one's confidence. It can produce a sense of hopelessness that leads us to think that nothing will work out. Sometimes our pilgrimage seems so long and arduous that we take our eyes from our Savior, and hopelessness builds. However, Paul reminds us that God does everything in love and wisdom and for our good. Futility is an obstacle that we must overcome through faith in God. Yet, He has willed that futility be present, intending that we use it as a prod to use our faith in cooperation with Him despite its presence.
John W. Ritenbaugh
Power Belongs to God (Part Two)
Other Forerunner Commentary entries containing Romans 8:20: