by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam

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In Ephesians 1:6 the Apostle Paul sings a doxology, as it were, “to the praise of the glory of God’s grace, wherein He hath made us accepted in the Beloved”.

In the story of the Prodigal Son it is touching to see the father accept his wayward son back to his bosom — and so generously! He does not merely admit him back into his home; he clothes him with his best robe, puts a ring on his hand, shoes on his feet and kills for him the fatted calf so that they call all to “eat and be merry” in celebration of his return.

But the prodigal was after all the father’s son, whereas Paul bids us “Gentiles in the flesh” to remember that originally we were “without Christ…aliens from the commonwealth of Israel…strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world” (Eph.2:12).

Hence it is even more touching to contemplate God’s gracious acceptance of us who were not sons but “aliens” and “enemies” (Col.1:21).

The word “accepted” in the above passage actually comes from the word “grace” (Gr. karis) with which the verse begins: “…His grace, wherein He hath engraced us in the Beloved One”.

Thus God looks upon us now with delight; He delights to favor and bless the believer because He sees him in Christ, His beloved Son.

This passage reminds us how God once broke through the heavens to declare: “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matt.3:17). And now He is delighted with us and blesses us with “all spiritual blessings in the heavenlies” because we are in Christ, the “Beloved Son”. Not that we have attained to this position, far from it, for “HE hath MADE us accepted” — HE hath engraced us in the Beloved.

To the Reader:

Some of our Two Minutes articles were written many years ago by Pastor C. R. Stam for publication in newspapers. When many of these articles were later compiled in book form, Pastor Stam wrote this word of explanation in the Preface:

"It should be borne in mind that the newspaper column, Two Minutes With the Bible, has now been published for many years, so that local, national and international events are discussed as if they occurred only recently. Rather than rewrite or date such articles, we have left them just as they were when first published. This, we felt, would add to the interest, especially since our readers understand that they first appeared as newspaper articles."

To this we would add that the same is true for the articles written by others that we continue to add, on a regular basis, to the Two Minutes library. We hope that you'll agree that while some of the references in these articles are dated, the spiritual truths taught therein are timeless.

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