You were...but God...
You were...but now in Christ...
(Paul, in Ephesians 2; the quotes below in response to my questions are all from Ephesians 2))
Taught this in Sunday School a few months back. INCREDIBLE set of verses! Who knew that Paul knew me so well back in the day? *smile*
So what was I?
"dead in the tresspasses & sins in which we (I) once walked, following the course of this world, following the...spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience, among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
How did all of that change?
"But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us (me), even when we were (I was) dead in our trespasses"
What did He do?
"made us (me) alive together with Christ—by grace you (I) have been saved—and raised us (me) up with him and seated us (me) with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus..."
Why in the round world would He do that for such a worm as I??
"so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us (me) in Christ Jesus. "
Well, so what should I do?
"Therefore remember...that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world."
Well, yeah...I definitely remember...and?
"But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father..."
"So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit."
And there, ladies & gents, is my story & my song.
"I was...but God...so that...therefore, I need to remember that I was...but now in Christ...so then..."
My question for you: which side of "But God...but now in Christ" are you on? Are living in "you were" or in "so then"? The answer is infinitely more important than any other question you'll ever answer.
So very thankful for "But God" & "But now in Christ Jesus"! Which is precisely what Easter is about.