Today: No longer alone!
Passage: Eph 2, Prov 12
11 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (that done in the body by the hands of men)— 12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ. (Eph 2, NIV 84)-
The separation between Jews and gentiles was so much that a Jew will have nothing to do with a gentile. Even in the temple, gentiles had a very separate place where they could come and stand-circumcised vs. uncircumcised!
The rule for the gentiles, by the Jews was like “trespassers will be executed”!
Now Paul is talking to them. He is telling them that these gentiles can now come to God without any fear of anybody, just as a Jew can!
They were separated from God as well as from people; they were alienated!
Now, they have good news! You are no longer alienated from God. Not only that, you are no longer alienated from Israel. Christ through His sacrifice and the shed blood, has brought them closer to God, as well as the Israelites!(Col 1:27)
That was not a very acceptable thing to many Jewish Christians.(Acts 15)
The temple was like a “war zone” with a wall between Jews and Gentiles. But Jesus, through his war with satan, brought peace and made it a peace zone
The Church can/is no longer a war-zone of any kind!
In God, there is only one group, one custom, one culture
Christ gave His life to break the barriers-between man and God; between man and man. He brought reconciliation. There is no more wall/barrier
When Jesus was crucified, the veil in the temple was torn apart from top to bottom; that is why we don’t see a veil in the Church anymore
The access to God is open; it is no longer blocked!
Through the one baptism for all, the boundary wall between different classes is also broken. We are not only joined to Christ, but also to the family of Christ’s followers worldwide, through that baptism of faith and confession
The following verses explains that
26 You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. (Gal 3:26-29, NIV 84)
Thank God for the saving and unifying work of/through Jesus Christ
Let us live and enjoy fully, our walk with Christ. Amen
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for your sacrifice on the cross. Thank you for removing the barrier between me and you, and between me and others. Help me not to build another barrier, Lord. Amen
Proverbs 12 (verses from NIV 84)
9 Better to be a nobody and yet have a servant than pretend to be somebody and have no food.
10 A righteous man cares for the needs of his animal, but the kindest acts of the wicked are cruel.
11 He who works his land will have abundant food, but he who chases fantasies lacks judgment.
13 An evil man is trapped by his sinful talk, but a righteous man escapes trouble.
14 From the fruit of his lips a man is filled with good things as surely as the work of his hands rewards him.
16 A fool shows his annoyance at once, but a prudent man overlooks an insult.