May 05, 2023

“For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.”

Ephesians 1:4

The work of the gospel in us leads us to a life that is “holy and blameless” before God. 

When we start to talk about being holy and blameless, it can be a very intimidating concept. We conjure images of the super-spiritual people we have met and easily conclude that this is about performance and everything we need to do or stop doing.

Paul is not saying you must live a certain way so you can be accepted by God. He says the only way to be holy and blameless is for God to change you

And He is speaking from experience. Look what Paul said of himself in another letter: 

“The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost. But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.”  1 Timothy 1:15-16

Paul is telling us that grace changed everything in his life. Because of what we have already received through the finished work of Jesus Christ, we desire to live a holy and blameless life. This defies the idea so many people in religious cultures believe that “I believe in Jesus, but I can do my own thing.” 

Friends, this is nowhere to be found in Scripture! 

If you are a follower of Jesus, your life will change. If you have truly experienced the grace of God, you cannot stay the same. This is a gospel call to obedience where the truth of God’s Word is not just an idea or a concept but a reality that changes the way you live. 

Pastor Timothy Keller helps us grasp this: “God as a concept is lighter than you. When you bring God as a concept into your life, you shape it. It fits in around your existing patterns. It doesn’t move you around. If you believe in God and it just hasn’t changed you much because God is just a concept. But God as reality is heavier than you. When the real God comes into your life, things start to give way in your life to His glory. Things that you believe are changed because of His word. God has more glory than your patterns or beliefs. Instead of God being fit into your agenda, God becomes your new agenda.” 

Is God just a concept? Or is God a reality that has changed your life? 

The grace of God initiates change. 

Are you ready to accept His grace?

Are you ready to change your life? 

Taken from a sermon by George Wright, Senior Pastor, Shades Mountain, Birmingham, AL