Wednesday, March 6, 2019

"Receive Him As Myself" (Philemon 1:17)

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…

"Receive Him As Myself"

(Philemon 1:17)

    Another beautiful analogy of the Gospel found in the Apostle Paul's plea to Philemon regarding the escaped slave Onesimus involves the request by Paul: "Receive him as myself" (Philemon 1:17).  Paul had led Philemon to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, establishing a bond of brotherly love that transcends human relations.  Doubtless Philemon viewed the Apostle in terms of utmost gratitude, affection, and devotion.  Upon this basis, Paul makes his petition for Onesimus, again, "Receive him as myself."

   Few more vivid illustrations of our access to God exist in the pages of Scripture.  

   "He hath made us accepted in the Beloved" (Ephesians 1:6).

   God the Father receives born again believers in accordance with who Christ is, as opposed to who we are.  His Person, merits, and works provide the basis for our eternal access to God.  We are received as Himself, so to speak.  "Through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father" (Ephesians 2:12).  No other way exists - "I am the way" (John 14:6).  No other way is required.  "We have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand and rejoice in hope of the glory of God" (Romans 5:2).  Indeed, on our best and most faithful days, our reception by God remains the intercession of Christ: "Receive him as Myself."  On our worst and most failing days, our access remains, "Receive him as Myself."  Remembrance of such grace maintains proper humility in times of faithfulness, and encouraging hope in times of failure.

   We know from the pages of Scripture that Philemon received Onesimus as "a brother beloved" rather than a fugitive slave (Philemon 1:16).   Liberated Onesimus became a ministry companion and fellow laborer with Paul (Colossians 4:7-9).  How could this not have been the case?  Paul meant too much to Philemon for his request to have been denied.  Far more importantly, how can the mediation of the Lord Jesus who "ever liveth to make intercession for us"  be denied by the Father to whom He means so much? (Hebrews 7:25).  Impossible!  God imputed the perfect righteousness of His Son to our account when we believed.  Our access is thereby secured, so long as we come by the affirmation of Christ's merits on our behalf that eternally provide our access to the rightly titled "Throne of grace."

A trail of Blood graces the path
leading to the Throne,
where God receives the trusting heart
approaching by His Son.

Without the cross there could not be
this access freely known,
without such sorrow, pain, and loss
we'd have nowhere to go.

Yes, every prayer flows to the Throne
on flood tides of Christ's blood,
we come with grateful, trusting hope
in wonder of such love.

A trail of Blood graces the path leading 
to the Throne

"Let us therefore come boldly to the Throne of grace, to obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need."
(Hebrews 4:16)

Weekly Memory Verse
   "The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord."
(Psalm 33:5)

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