Be reconciled to God!

By Daniel Hug: September 28, 2016

Friends,
I plead with you to be reconciled to God (2 Cor 5:20). His Word says to “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith” (2 Cor 13:5). Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar (1 John 2:4). We cannot have fellowship with Jesus while walking in darkness (1 John 1:6). Even though you call Jesus “Lord”, and pray, “in Jesus’ name”, you may be one of the many to whom He will say, “I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness” (Mat 7:21-23).

If we are truly His, our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. One who has died with Him has been set free from sin (Rom 6:6-7). Jesus made it clear that everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin, not a child of God, but that “if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (John 8:34-36).

The scriptures say, “Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” (2 Cor 13:5). If Jesus Christ is in you, you will not be continuing in sin (1 John 3:9). God says of his Son Jesus: “You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness” (Heb 1:9)! If we are found to be sinners in our endeavor to be justified in Christ, we must know that Jesus will never be a servant of sin (Gal 2:17). Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor 6:9-10).

Jesus commands you to deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow Him. He said, “whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matt 16:24-26), “and anyone who does not take up his cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me” (Matt 10:38). There are false teachers who secretly bring in destructive heresies and pervert the grace of our God into sensuality (2 Peter 2:1-2, Jude 1:4). They will not tell you to repent, claiming that would be preaching a false gospel (salvation by works of the law: Gal 3:10). However, consider this statement that the apostle Paul made by the Spirit of God:

I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose.

Galatians 2:20-21

Notice, he upholds the fact that those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires (Gal 5:24), while making clear that he does not nullify the grace of God (Gal 2:21). You see, because of our sinful nature, the law can justify no one. But, by sending his own Son, who took our sin upon himself, God has both condemned sin in the flesh, and He fulfills the righteous requirement of the law in us, who walk in the Spirit rather than the flesh (Romans 8:3-4).

The grace of God trains us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age (Titus 2:11-14). However, when one of God’s children sins, he will discipline us as a father will do for the son he loves (Heb 12:1-11). Not only that, Jesus makes peace through His blood as our advocate before the father (1 John 2:1-2). Thus, in Christ, we are set free from the condemnation of the law (Rom 8:1). He was delivered over for our transgressions, and was raised for our justification. (Rom 4:25).

The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross is the only way any of us will be saved from the wrath of God (Rom 5:7-9) that abides on the rebellious (John 3:36). But if you continue deliberately in sin you are still an enemy of God awaiting his judgment with a fury of fire (Heb 10:26-27). Repent of your rebellion! Be buried with Christ Jesus by immersion into His death (baptism: Rom 6:1-5). You will then receive forgiveness of your sins; and the gift of the Holy Spirit. This promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself (Acts 2:38-39).