Paul preached the truth of the gospel: ethnic diversity in the church is God’s idea (verse 13), and it was going to require a radical new way of living. 1 Corinthian 12 tells us that it doesn’t matter who or what we are when we have all be baptized into one body by one Spirit, a Spirit which we all share.
Read Ephesians 2:11-13. If possible, read out loud.
11-13 But don’t take any of this for granted. It was only yesterday that you outsiders to God’s ways had no idea of any of this, didn’t know the first thing about the way God works, hadn’t the faintest idea of Christ. You knew nothing of that rich history of God’s covenants and promises in Israel, hadn’t a clue about what God was doing in the world at large. Now because of Christ—dying that death, shedding that blood—you who were once out of it altogether are in on everything. (Ephesians 2:11-13, MSG)
|Proud to be God’s chosen people, shown physically by circumcision, not necessarily a sign of their hearts (11)||Outsiders, call “uncircumcised heathens” by the Jews (11)|
|Excluded from citizenship & worship (12)||Lived apart from God & didn’t know covenant promises or have hope (12), far away from God (13)|
|NOW UNITED WITH ALL BELIEVERS IN JESUS|
NEAR TO GOD (13)
|CHRIST NO MATTER WHAT RACE, NEAR TO GOD(13|
To put these verses in my life, I am asking God to help me recognize when I am judging others for any way that they are different than I am and to replace it with this thought in my head, “I love you because God loves you.”
Pray with me using the words of Romans 8:13-17.
Our Father in Heaven, thank you for our salvation, for bringing out of slavery to sin to freedom as we are led by your Holy Spirit. We are you children—all of us—and we all call you “Abba, Father.” Thank you that your Spirit fills us and joins us together in your love. Help us to recognize our biases and pride and banish these sinful footholds from our hearts with the power and authority you have given us as your heirs. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.