Paul presented the gift of God in Christ and the benefits we receive so clearly that we cannot help but ask ourselves, “Do our lives reflect that reality as they should?”
14-15 The Messiah has made things up between us so that we’re now together on this, both non-Jewish outsiders and Jewish insiders. He tore down the wall we used to keep each other at a distance. He repealed the law code that had become so clogged with fine print and footnotes that it hindered more than it helped. Then he started over. Instead of continuing with two groups of people separated by centuries of animosity and suspicion, he created a new kind of human being, a fresh start for everybody. 16-18 Christ brought us together through his death on the cross. The Cross got us to embrace, and that was the end of the hostility. Christ came and preached peace to you outsiders and peace to us insiders. He treated us as equals, and so made us equals. Through him we both share the same Spirit and have equal access to the Father. (Ephesians 2:14-17)
|HOW DID CHRIST’S DEATH ON THE CROSS BRING PEACE TO US?|
|Jesus took the hostility that separates us from each other, and it died with him on the cross (14)|
|At his sacrifice, the system of laws ended, the separation was over (15)|
|All people became one in Christ Jesus (15)|
|Christ reconciled us to God and with each other. We can now live together in peace through Him (16)|
|Everyone from far and near know the Gospel message that brings us together (17)|
(INFORMATION & RELATION) + HOLY SPIRIT ACTIVATION = TRANSFORMATION
I am asking the Holy Spirit to overrule my tendency to judge people with earthly measuring sticks, and replace it with, “God loves this person; help me express that in my words in actions.”
Pray with me. Thank you, Lord, for preparing me and encouraging me to keep persevering in prayer. Help me to live this day in the fullness of you, being true to you in my thoughts, words, and actions. With your help and prompting, may I give myself away to others in kindness and love, proclaiming God in everything I do and way. Amen.
One song flowed through my head as I read through this. The church is the bride of Christ. We are to be unified: one hand, one heart. It’s from the original motion picture West Side Story.