Jesus Changes Lives
And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight— (Colossians 1:21-22, NKJV)
In the Greek, the word translated alienated is literally “transferred to another owner.” This transfer of ownership, from God to Satan and self, affected us in both mind and behavior.
As members of the race of Adam, we are born alienated from God. As individuals, we each choose to accept and embrace that alienation with our wicked works. This is the beginning of how Jesus changes lives. Lives like ours.
This means that in Jesus we are no longer alienated. The difference between a believer and a non-believer isn’t merely forgiveness; there is a complete change of status.
God’s answer to the problem of alienation is reconciliation. This is initiated by His work on the cross (reconciled in the body of His flesh through death). In the work of reconciliation, God didn’t meet us halfway. God meets us all the way and invites us to accept it. God met us where we were.
Knowing Jesus Is Life Changing
You may use two different ways of understanding human need and God’s salvation.
- We can see God as the judge, and we are guilty before Him. Therefore, we need forgiveness and justification.
- We can see God as our friend, and we have damaged our relationship with Him. Therefore, we need reconciliation.
The phrase body of His flesh is redundant. But Paul wanted to emphasize that this happened because of something that happened to a real man on a real cross.
This is the result of God’s work of reconciliation. Taken together, these words show that in Jesus we are pure and can not even be justly accused of impurity.
The idea of presenting us holy and blameless before God may recall the terminology used when priests inspected potential sacrifices. We are presented to God as a living sacrifice.
A desire to be saved means a desire to be made holy, and blameless, and above reproach; not merely a desire to escape the fires of hell on our own terms.
Those truly reconciled must truly persevere. Paul’s main focus is continuing in the truth of the gospel (continue in the faith . . . not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard). It is important for Christians to continue in godly conduct, but we are not saved by our godly conduct. So it is even more important for Christians to continue in the truth of the gospel because we are saved by grace through faith.
“If the gospel teaches the final perseverance of the saints, it teaches at the same time that the saints are those who finally persevere – in Christ. Continuance is the test of reality.” – F.F. Bruce
Jesus changes my life and He can change yours too. Jesus changes lives!
Father God, change our lives through the transforming work of Jesus and the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. Empower us to live lives that reflect our Lord and bring glory and honor to You alone. In Jesus name, Amen.
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