Letter to Christians in Rome: Chapter 16 (pt 11 of 15)

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If you are filled with the secret, the indwelling Christ, it does not make any difference if you are a Jew or a Gentile. I say that because YHWH only “sees” two groups of people: His people and all the rest. YHWH had separated Israel away from all other peoples of the world in order to be a nation of High Priests to Him, to be a faithful people to Him. All the other peoples of the world—everyone other than Israelites—were given a title: goyim. Gentiles.  When the Church was created, we were grafted into the vine of Israel—and when the Holy Spirit had done that, all of the divisions of class and sex and national origin were eliminated by that “secret.”

It doesn’t matter whether you are rich or poor, slave or free, we have all become one in Christ Jesus—by that mystery. Whenever a Christian lives on that basis, truly trusting the fact that God is in him through Jesus Christ to be his wisdom, his power, his strength; when he attempts things only on the basis of expecting God to fulfill that promise, and moves out to do things by his grace, he finds himself established. If you want a place of security, it is not going to come by your reckoning on what you can do for God. That will never work. It is going to depend on how much you believe God is ready to do something through you. That is the radical promise. Paul says two additional things about this:

First, though the results of this lifestyle were experienced by men and women of God in the Old Testament, no explanation was ever given of how this was to happen. When you read the Old Testament, you find men and women confused as to how their God was going to put together all of those great promises and themes. There is the promise of the restoration of Israel. There is the promise of the forgiveness of an individual’s sins. There is the mighty promise of the healing of the nations and the cessation of war. But when Jesus arrived, it began to unfold. He was the secret. He would be the one who would fulfill all of the tremendous promises and themes of the Old Testament. What I am saying is that it required the appearance of Jesus to put this victorious lifestyle in such a vivid light that it could be preached and demonstrated to the nations of the world. That is what Paul means when he wrote that the mystery was “hidden for long ages past, but now revealed.”

If interested, you can download the entire study of The Letter to Christians at Rome


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