Sunday, August 29, 2010

Finding Acceptance : Romans 15:7

God Loves You
To be accepted is one of mankind’s deepest desires. Christians should champion this but often we fail. The church should be a place of ultimate acceptance, yet even in ancient times, the church struggled with acceptance.

"Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you in order to bring praise to God." Romans 15:7. NIV

AN HONEST NEED
We know acceptance is important and we all want acceptance; we grow up longing for it, and our adult lives still have this need. To be accepted is to be free of criticism and judgment, to be embraced as you are without any requirement.

JESUS' EXAMPLE
We think of acceptance as tolerance glorified. Biblical acceptance not just tolerating someone without criticism, but it is to be the same way that Christ accepted us- completely. God accepts us even with all the trashy stuff we bring along. We don’t need to become saints to be accepted by God; instead, it is because we are accepted by God that we are saints and sons. We don’t need to give up eating meat, or pray for an hour a day, do penance, change our hair, or perform miracles, but when we come to God through Jesus we are accepted on the basis of Jesus righteousness not our own. Biblical acceptance is adoption where we are welcomed with all rights and privileges to a family.

GOD'S VIEW
When God sees us He does not see the garbage of our lives; when God sees us He sees the credited righteousness of Jesus put over us. So our reaction to another who is different, should not be to see them as problems, or lowlifes, but ones for whom Jesus died. God accepts us only on the basis of our accepting the gospel; as debtors to Him, we should look with the same attitude of grace to others.

OUR PRACTICE
When we see someone in our community who is different we should not make that mental inventory of the differences between us and them; we should only see one thing- Jesus in that person. Forget accent, custom, tradition or clothing, taste, or lifestyle- if God accepts that person the way they are how can we not? Are we better than God? Is it somehow possible our standards are higher than His? If God sees that person as beautiful and worthy of the death of his Son so should we. and if God accepts that person as His child I insult His choice when I fail to treat that person like my own brother.

God accepts you only because of Jesus, and you are free to give this liberty others who call on the Name of the same Lord. It is possibly one of the most Christ-like things you can do.

To learn more about how to be accepted by God follow THIS LINK

(c) Adron 8/29/10
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