Wednesday, April 25, 2018
Philippians 2:15 …so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation…
No one likes a braggart who makes claims about himself and then fails to live up to them. It doesn’t take long for us to discern the dysfunctional nature of such a person who is attempting to make themselves out to be more than they truly are. We are all tempted to exaggerate at times, but there is something wrong in the thought process of a person who attempts to live an embellished life.
But there is also something equally wrong with a person who fails to claim what is rightfully theirs. It is not boastful to speak and live the truth, even if that truth seems extraordinary.
God’s Word has given us an identity with certain privileges. We have the right to claim it all. (Please see the note below)
As children of God, we claim eternal life and joint kinship with Jesus Christ that results in an equal inheritance with Him in all things in glory. But far too often we overlook the claims that can be made by us in regard to our relationship with Jesus. In today’s Scripture passage we discover the first of four incredible claims that can be made by the person who is living as a child of God.
We can claim blamelessness and purity.
Because the attaining of sinless perfection is not possible so long as we are living in imperfect bodies in this sinful world, some Christians have decided to accept their current level of worldliness as normal. But the Christian life is to be a process of gradual transformation into the likeness of Jesus Christ.
In 2 Corinthians 3:18, Paul says, “And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” Day by day we are to be reflecting more and more of the glory of Jesus, thus becoming more and more blameless and pure until one day we are fully glorified in His presence in heaven.
The Apostle Peter saw that final day of glory coming and used it to motivate us when he said, “So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him.” (2 Peter 3:14)
But becoming blameless is not our work, but rather the promised work of God in our lives to transform our wills and our actions according to His good purpose. Because it is God’s work in us, we can claim the outcome based on God’s character and promises. In 1 Corinthians 1:8–9 Paul says, “He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God, who has called you into fellowship with his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful.”
God has called us into fellowship with His Son, Jesus, who gave himself up for us to make us holy, cleansing us by the washing with water through the word, so that He might present us to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless (see Eph. 5:25-27) It is God’s will for us and Christ’s work in us to make us blameless. He is faithful to finish that work. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:23 – 24)
Go ahead – claim what God has promised and what Jesus is seeking to accomplish in your life: be blameless and pure as you live your life in a crooked and depraved world. We have been made to be the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus – let’s live like it!
NOTE: I am not advocating a “Name It and Claim It” theology. I do not believe that we can name what we want and claim it simply because we say we have enough faith to make it happen. I do believe, however, that the fear of such distorted theology has driven us to not claim what has been promised. When God clearly states a promise that is confirmed by the whole counsel of God’s Word, then we not only have the right to claim it, but we must claim it as ours and live by it if we are to be found blameless before Him.