The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"Accepted Or Alienated"
Human beings exist in terms of being "accepted in the Beloved," or "alienated from the life of God" (Ephesians 1:6; 4:18). The matter, of course, involves the Lord Jesus Christ. God sees born again believers as "in Christ," spiritually enrobed in the Savior's righteousness (I Corinthians 1:30). Thereby, He can accept us without compromising His integrity: "just and the justifier of him which believeth on Jesus" (Romans 3:26). Our Heavenly Father imputes the merits of Christ to all who believe, accepting us as a free gift of grace provided "in the Beloved." Our Lord's atoning death on the cross of Calvary and resurrection as a living Savior makes possible such redemption and favor with God. "For through Him we have access to God by one Spirit" (Ephesians 2:18).
Unbelievers, conversely, remain in the natural state of Adam's fallen race in alienation and condemnation. "If ye believe not that I am He, ye shall die in your sins" declared the Lord Jesus (John 8:24). Those who will not receive the Savior by faith have no valid basis for acceptance with a God whose "way is perfect" (II Samuel 22:31). His standard of righteousness looms as a mount whose summit cannot be reached by human works and devices. Christ fulfilled the standard by His sinless life, His atoning death, and His glorious resurrection. As a free gift, God imparts to the believing heart complete standing and relationship with Himself through Christ. "By one offering He hath perfected forever them that are sanctified… Ye are complete in Him" (Hebrews 10:14; Colossians 2:10). The unbeliever, however, possesses no basis for such acceptance, and much for condemnation. "Your iniquities have separated between you and your God" (Isaiah 59:2).
God's grace alone in Christ makes it possible for the alienated to become the accepted. Only thereby, can the separated become the saved and the sanctified. Those who will not receive the gift remain in alienation from God because they reject the way of acceptance He made at the highest cost to Himself and His Son. Believers abide forever in Christ, realizing our favor with God came to us by way of the Lord Jesus' experiencing rejection by God on the cross of Calvary. "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" (Matthew 27:46). We do not take for granted such a gift, purchased by such a cost. Being "accepted in Beloved" elicits in our hearts love for the Beloved, and the earnest desire to live in a manner worthy of the One whose robe of righteousness was freely received, and is gratefully worn by all who join the hymnwriter in his affirmation of grace, "Nothing in my hand I bring. Only to Thy cross I cling!"
"Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God."
Weekly Memory Verse
Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort, who comforteth us in all our tribulation.
(II Corinthians 1:3-4).