The Chosen

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Ephesians 2:11–13 (NASB 95)

11 Therefore remember that formerly you, the Gentiles in the flesh, who are called “Uncircumcision” by the so-called “Circumcision,” which is performed in the flesh by human hands— 12 remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

Examine / Explain

The difference between Jew and Gentile is exposed. God’s chosen people from the Old Testament appear to be giving grief to Gentiles in the New. It’s as if they demanded that Gentiles get circumcised as a demonstration of faith in God. A sign of the covenant given to Abraham. A marker that took a people without hope and God and signified their new life as God’s chosen. We, too, were without hope and God. But through Jesus, we have been grafted into the family. We are no longer strangers to the covenants of promise but bought with blood into eternal life. The new maker is filled with the Holy Spirit, who circumcises the heart and not the flesh.

How do I apply this to my life?

Instantly, I think about The Skit Guys and their video “God’s Chisel.” As believers, God will chip away at our hearts and bring us to a heart of flesh rather than one of stone. I don’t want to find out, but I would think that the circumcision of the foreskin is a minor and temporary pain. When done at the proper time in life, it is very un-traumatic in the grand scheme of life. Done later in life as a grown man could seem like the end of the world. Now, I look at the Holy Spirit’s work in our lives. The circumcision of the heart will continue to happen throughout our life as a believer. A repeated pain of having to let go of pride and selfishness. A dying to self each and every time a slice is made. It may feel like it’s the end of the world to us, but the pain is temporary. We should be focused on the eternal aspect of what He is doing in our lives. Every cut, every shave is making us into the image of Christ. But then, those around us see our change and complain. Even some who are in the church. Why wouldn’t they? This passage is about Jewish believers imposing rules and regulations on new converts of Gentile descent. Why would the broken human mind be any different today? The gate is narrow. Not everyone is going to see it the same. But I need to press on. Why does it matter if my salvation or sanctification doesn’t look like everyone else? I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Unique. But also the same. I am human; I am a Gentile, but I am also bought with a price. Blood. My perfect savior sheds blood so that I can be grafted into His chosen people. I do get to receive the covenants of promise. I have hope in eternal life. I have a God in heaven!

What is my response?

Father, I don’t want to squander what You have given me. Deep down; we are all built on a desire to be a part of something bigger than ourselves. We have in us the need to serve. The issue is too often we are serving ourselves. I  thank you for the gifts and abilities that You have given me. I pray that I use them to let others know they can have eternity with You. Let me teach. Let me lead. Which I know has to be from You. I never thought I was a teacher until You showed me my gift. I didn’t know I could lead until You showed me my ability. Now, I have to overcome the past trauma of not feeling like anyone is listening. But you didn’t call me to be heard. You call me to teach and lead. To point to You. And someone may catch the vision as I go, but I must keep going. Regardless of whether I go “alone.” Because I am never alone, you hear me, You see me. I must live that way. Amen.






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