August 17, 2022

Thank God, We Are No Longer Alienated

Key Verse to Read and Treasure

And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death. In order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him. (Colossians 1:21-22, ESV)

For Insight

I was watching a news story highlighting several people imprisoned in another country. My thoughts were not on their guilt or innocence but how difficult it must be for them to be alienated from family and friends. I feel a great deal of sympathy for them being where they are, cut off from those they care about and love.    

We don’t have to be imprisoned or living in a far-a-way place to know how emotionally and mentally disheartening being alienated from others might be. We might not be able to remember a time we were alienated from God—the days before we were where we are today: thirsting for more of God, loving God’s presence, seeking His kingdom and His righteousness. But Paul reminds us we have all experienced this kind of alienation. He says in our ignorance we once gave ourselves up to greed, sensuality, hostile to God, practicing all kind of impurity and darkness (Eph. 5:19). No one knows our own sin-journey better than we do.  

What a relief our ignorance is no longer a part of us, and we are no longer hostile to God nor alienated from Him. We are no longer His enemies but His friends and we will not have to spend eternity apart or alienated from Him. We could be tempted to pat ourselves on the back or rejoice over the sins we no longer participate in or struggle with, but all the credit goes to the Holy Spirit who has worked faith in our heart. Just like Abraham did not come to faith on his own but by the grace of God.

We will never be completely done with sin. Unfortunately, our sinful nature will always be part of us until the day we die. Yet there is much to rejoice about: by the blood of Jesus we are redeemed, our baptism has brought us into the family of God, we are under the ministry of the Holy Spirit who sanctifies and transforms us, and God has brought us near. By His grace He accepts and forgives us. This makes all the difference.

Praying Colossians 1:21-22

Thank You, Jesus for all You have done to assure we are no longer alienated from God. We have all participated in evil, been hostile towards God, but thankfully we are in fellowship with God the Father, with You and the Holy Spirit. May we always enjoy this special place being next to God’s heart and having access to His throne. Amen      

Payer Challenge

Is there anything keeping you from being close to God? Pray nothing is more important to you than being in good standing with God.  

Digging Deeper

Read Ephesians 4:17-24

Read Colossians 1:21-23

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