Monday, February 26, 2018

"and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity."  Ephesians 2:16

Who is Paul talking about here? Who needs to be reconciled? The gentiles{those who are not Jews or believers} need to be brought into Christ by the finished work of the cross. If we read from verse 11 we see this letter is assuring the Ephesians that in Christ, we are all the same.

This view made the Apostle hated by the Jews who did not believe in Christ. Those who believed in keeping the Law had no place for gentiles. We do see some exceptions in scripture. Ruth was a Moabite, but she turned to the one true God, and was welcomed into Jewish society. Rahab was a prostitute who believed that the God of the Jews was the one true God. She left her old job to follow in the ways of the Lord, and was saved from death because of her Godly choice.

We read about slaves being circumcised as to obey the Law of Moses. I think those slaves must have hated that one. How can this outward sign, that is being forced on others ever make a difference?
It cannot. A heart that is willing to follow Jesus can be used in ways we never dreamed. Those who are forced may harden their hearts.

The reason God made us with free wills was so we could be free to choose whether or not to serve him. If our hearts are not involved, he knows it. Oh, I don't like this. I think of times when I did the "right" thing, but my heart was somewhere else. I won't linger on this point, but ask for forgiveness, and move on.

It is important that we not park our thoughts on the wrong things we do. God is not glorified by any of us hashing out our issues on a regular basis. He forgives, and we move on. Depression can set in if we sit on the negative for too long. Believe what God says about you.

He says, You are his own. You are blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ, but you know this, because we are working our way through Ephesians. Go back and read Ephesians chapter 1 again, and do it again tomorrow. If you want to, do it everyday for the month of March. I am. Watch the lies and deception fall off of you. God's word will do it.

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