Formations lesson for Feb. 27: Grace Happens More : Friday, Feb. 11, 2005
February 11 2005 by Jeffrey Wisdom

Formations lesson for Feb. 27: Grace Happens More : Friday, Feb. 11, 2005
Friday, Feb. 11, 2005

Formations lesson for Feb. 27: Grace Happens More

By Jeffrey Wisdom
Focal Passage: Romans 5:1-11

Writing about the creation of the International Access Authority to control traffic in and out of Berlin, Henry Kissinger wrote, "Not surprisingly, Adenauer was adamantly opposed to creating an Access Authority especially if East and West Germany would have equal status in it."

Access and equality

Rom. 5:1-2

By its nature, access guarantees equality. It diminishes walls that can exist between individuals. Accordingly scripture says that each of us has access to God through Christ - there is in that relationship an equality that is promised and guaranteed. "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through Jesus Christ: by whom also we have access by faith into His grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God" (Rom. 5:1-2).

It is a relationship, where the walls of separation have been leveled so the Creator and his creation may look at one another face-to-face. "But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us" (Eph. 2:13-14). It is also a relationship free from petty jealousy.

In an article I read years ago, jealousy was not defined as a feeling of want for what someone else has, but a loss of power in a relationship. From Christ's point of view, His relationship with each of us is not one of power or jealousy, but one of fellowship and support. "Who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in the fashion as a man, He humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death on the cross" (Phil. 2:5-8).

Access and risk

Rom. 5:3-5

In writing computer software, access infers a security risk. Therefore, software writers write various gates that prevent hackers and unauthorized personnel from reaching areas of the program that can be compromised.

In the book of Romans, the only "security" that God is concerned with is ours. Through Christ, each of us is allowed into every area of our relationship with God, experiencing His glory, His purpose, His security, His calm in tribulation, His patience, and His willingness never to embarrass us in the relationship (vs. 3-5).

Each person's access to God is not something that begins at one certain time but has its genesis long before anyone recognizes its need. Ryrie puts it like this: "The extent of God's love is shown in the fact that Christ died for men in whom there was nothing that evoked that love."

At that time - at the time where each of us determines that our life is at risk alone in the world - we can enjoy a relationship with God that is at its root one of equality, security and timeliness.

Access granted and received

Rom. 5:10-11

Access, for all its promises and guarantees, is not something granted in isolation; it has to be received. Taking advantage of one's access to God is not a matter of political intrigue or even religious dogma; it is a simple trust in the opportunity and possibilities that Christ offers.

That trust is the conduit through which one enters into the deepest levels of the relationship, and is considered one with God. "For if, then, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life" (v. 10).

In the book of Romans, access equals atonement. "And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement" (at-one-ment) (v. 11).

2/11/2005 12:00:00 AM by Jeffrey Wisdom | with 0 comments

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