Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Rejoice that You Have Been Shown God's Mercies

Rom. 15:5-9  
  5 May God, who gives this patience and encouragement, help you live in complete harmony with each other, as is fitting for followers of Christ Jesus. 6 Then all of you can join together with one voice, giving praise and glory to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. 
  7 Therefore, accept each other just as Christ has accepted you so that God will be given glory. 89 He also came so that the Gentiles might give glory to God for his mercies to them. Remember that Christ came as a servant to the Jews to show that God is true to the promises he made to their ancestors.

How is it that we can live harmoniously with each other in our churches, among our churches, and among the body of believers in Jesus Christ around the globe? How is it we might endure the harsh disagreements we so often experience with other believers but yet preserve our mutual unity in Christ's love? Patience is the virtue we seek and God gives it liberally! He attaches encouragement to patience so that you will not become discouraged as you exercise unconditional love while being patient with another brother or sister in Christ.

The Apostle reminded the believers at Rome and us as well that with patient love we can 'join together with one voice' and that voice is our mutually praising God. To the Jews there were just two kinds of folks-- them and everyone else. They viewed themselves as closer to God than anyone. But now that is not the case. All are equally close to God, in that they have access to respond to His call. There is no family name, social strata, or national heritage that God calls any more or less. It is the Whosoever believes" of John 3:16 that most please God. And anyone can be a part of that 'whosoever' group. God listens to the believers and not others, until they take that believer step. And then God begins to remake them over into a new image. God gives the same mercies to all who will believe. God gives those same mercies to you this day too. Why not rejoice in them?

Your Servant in Christ's Love
Dan Elliott

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