God is not keeping you on the outside.

 

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11Don’t forget that you Gentiles used to be outsiders. You were called “uncircumcised heathens” by the Jews, who were proud of their circumcision, even though it affected only their bodies and not their hearts. 12In those days you were living apart from Christ. You were excluded from citizenship among the people of Israel, and you did not know the covenant promises God had made to them. You lived in this world without God and without hope. 13But now you have been united with Christ Jesus. Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to him through the blood of Christ.

14For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us. 15He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups.

We must understand that the Gospel has its roots in the Bible; and by that I mean specifically the Old Testament as the testimony of God’s work with Israel for the blessing of all the nations. God chose to make a people for himself, Israel, from those who were not a people in order to bless all the nations. From the Scriptures we see the great grace of God to choose and to make the way of holiness available to Israel. Jesus, according to these Scriptures, was born, lived, crucified, buried, and raised on the third day in order to open the way of holiness “once and for all” for Israel and for the Gentiles who were “far” from God. Now in Christ we have been included. We who are not Jewish have been “brought near.”

What was the Gentile condition before Christ? We were outsiders. We were people without a family that mattered. We were apart from Christ. We were excluded from citizenship with the people of Israel. We did not know the covenant promises God had made. We lived without God and without hope. But now God has made a new covenant for the forgiveness of sin through the blood of Christ and we have been brought near to God.

The Gospel of Jesus declares that something has changed! You have been brought near to God through the blood of Christ! God is not keeping you on the outside.

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