People of God; August 25, 2022

Psalm 47:9 The nobles of the nations assemble
as the people of the God of Abraham,
for the kings of the earth belong to God;
he is greatly exalted.

Passages like this are scattered throughout the Old Testament, but are largely ignored, particularly by Jews. Gentiles might not be physical descendants of Abraham, but they belong to the God of Abraham none the less. This particular passage might seem elitest, implying that it is only Gentile nobles who belong to God, but that’s not the case at all. We all belong to Him by right of creation. That is not only a matter of responsibility and accountability, it is also an incredible privilege. Paul explained this in terms of faith, expounding on it at length throughout Romans and also in other letters. “You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.” (Galatians 3:26) A hymn from 150 years ago beautifully expresses it as, I’m a Child of the King. We lose out on so much when we fail to grasp that! That’s precisely why the devil does all he can to hide this truth from us, because he’s always out to steal, kill, and destroy. (John 10:10) God doesn’t spoil His children; being a child of God doesn’t mean easy street. However, at the very least it guarantees us “an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade–kept in heaven for you.” (1 Peter 1:4) Peter, who wrote that, went through some horrible times and was martyred by being crucified upside down, after being forced to watch his wife being crucified. Such things cannot touch the reality of our position in Christ, as Paul wrote so memorably in Romans 8:37-39. However, that position is received by faith, so we not only need to keep believing ourselves, we need to give those around us every opportunity to repent and believe as well, for their salvation and God’s glory.

This is a reality that has been ingrained in me since childhood. My biggest problem has been in taking it for granted, failing to give God the gratitude and obedience He deserves. I also get distracted by all sorts of things, forgetting my place in Christ in moments of pain, frustration, or disappointment. How foolish of me! Like Peter told his wife to do when she was being crucified, I need to remember Jesus. I certainly have no room to complain! For over 20 years I have been saying that when Japanese Christians wake up to who they are in Christ they will not only transform the nation, they will transform the world. The same could be said of the believers of any nation! I am to keep proclaiming God’s truth in God’s love, so that by the power of God’s Spirit more and more people may have their eyes opened, to walk in all that He intends for them.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for Your overflowing grace toward me. Help me walk in that fully today as Your child, speaking Your words and doing Your will in every interaction, for Your pleasure and glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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