“To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.” -Ephesians 1:6 (KJV).
Every generation seemed to have some sort of silly, often madcap fads that identified their generation. In the 1930s you had goldfish swallowing. The craze began in March 1939, when a Harvard University freshman took a bet that he would not swallow a live goldfish. He gathered a crowd to watch, swallowed the fish, and collected $10 from his classmate. Soon the word spread to other colleges. Phone booth packing was a 1950s fad where a bunch of people crammed themselves into a telephone booth. Why would anyone do this? Well, to college kids in the 1950s, it was all the rage, even getting to a competitive level with college against college. People participated because they wanted to be accepted by their peers.
We’ve all done some pretty crazy and daring things to try to gain the acceptance of our friends. Maybe what we did was so outlandish, maybe even cool that we did gain the acceptance of our friends, at least for a while. Human acceptance is often conditional and temporary even if you were once a legend amongst your friends.
The acceptance of God is completely different. It is neither conditional nor temporary. We learn in Ephesians 1:6 that God “accepted” us because we are placed “in the beloved” the moment we believe in Him: “For you are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus. And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes” (Galatians 3:26-27). And because Christ has received us and He is fully accepted by God the Father, we are fully accepted by God as well. In other words, when God looks at us it is as if He is looking at His Son.
When I believe in Christ alone for everlasting life, I am accepted by God. No matter what I have done or not done, I am accepted. Too many people are afraid that God accepted everyone but them. They think that God associates acceptance with performance.
When you accepted Christ, He accepted you. God’s acceptance is not based on your performance. In fact, it’s not based on anything you do. It’s based on who He is and what Jesus did. In a sense, God says to you: “You are acceptable because I created you, love you, and sent my Son to die for you.” Titus 3:7 says, “Jesus treated us much better than we deserve. He made us acceptable to God and gave us the hope of eternal life” (CEV). You are accepted by God, admired by Him, and have His full and unconditional love.
When you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior you are accepted by God. That is your reality. No exceptions. When you accepted Christ, He accepted you.
- How does the drive to be accepted by others affect you?