Friday, February 26, 2016

Salvation is Nearer than When We First Believed

 11 Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. 12 The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and jealousy. 14 But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires. (Romans 13:11-14 (ESV)
“For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed.” Paul here is speaking of the full weight of the glory that waits for us. Of course today is the day of salvation, and the salvation we receive today through faith is real, but we do not know the fullness of it until we see God face to face. Every day that passes us takes us a step closer to the day when we see God face to face, whether it is the day in which Christ comes in the clouds in glory, or the day in which we die and God calls us home to glory.

But it is precisely because this day draws ever nearer that our eagerness for the day, our vigilance in staying awake for it needs to increase. The temptation is to grow tired as the time goes by, but we are admonished to stay awake. So we walk properly as in the day time. In the first century, nights would be given to orgies and drunkenness. For many this is still true. But Paul doesn’t stop with the coarse vices of the heathenistic lifestyle still celebrated at Spring Break, but he continues to dictate the kind of vices that upset a voters meeting full of seasoned Christians, quarreling and jealousy. We are not to make provision for the flesh, to give in to the desires of the Old Adam and gratify its desires, but we put on Jesus Christ and live in the forgiveness of sins. 

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