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Ephesians 2:15

One New Man

15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;

Christ is our peace, and Paul is not finished with the subject, because it is important that we fully understand. As we said earlier, there was a great division between the people of the ancient world. There were Jews and Gentiles and the two could never be joined together.

The thing that distinguished the two groups was the ceremonial law given to Moses during the exodus of Israel from Egypt. (This is not to be confused with the moral law, which is still valid.) This law mandated that God's people be spiritually clean. It required many ritualistic washings, animal sacrifices, and special dietary restrictions. An Israelite was not allowed to touch anything that was unclean or anything that was touched by an unclean person or thing.

By the time of Jesus' ministry, the Pharisees had made rules that exaggerated the demands of the law, making it even more restrictive. A Jew could not even enter the home of a Gentile, because he was considered to be unclean. The ceremonial law, however, was a shadow of the things to come, because there was no amount of washing or sacrifice that could ever make a person perfectly clean in a spiritual sense.

"And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth." (John 1:14) The Word was, of course, the Son of God, Jesus Christ. John the Baptists, seeing Jesus approaching, once said, "Behold the Lamb of God!" (John 1:36)

When the perfectly innocent Jesus was sacrificed upon the cross for the sins of mankind, His flesh was so holy that His death fulfilled all of the ceremonial law for anyone who would believe in Him and receive Him as their Lord and Savior.

Now, the obligations of the law have been fulfilled for all men. John Calvin wrote that, "When an obligation is discharged, the handwriting is destroyed..." and that is what happened when Christ died on the cross. "And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;" {Colossians 2:13-14) The law has not been abolished, the covenant has not been forgotten, but all of the requirements of it have been fulfilled, making it of no more use.

There is no more distinction between Jew and Gentile, because Christ has abolished the differences by the sacrifice of His own flesh. Now, there is only the believer and the unbeliever.

"For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature." (Galatians 6:15) "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." (2 Corinthians 5:17)

So, Christ took the Jew and the Gentile and made one new man out of them, one body of Christ. They are all clean and live in peace in Him. We can recognize them by their love for one another.

Before The Throne:

Pray for your brothers and sisters in Christ. They live in South Africa, Kenya, Egypt, India, Europe, Russia, China and every other corner of the globe. Some of them are being persecuted for their faith, tortured, or even killed. They are part of the same body to which you belong. When the hand is damaged the rest of the body suffers. Ask God to help you set aside your prejudices and to join you together with Christians of all nationalities and cultures to accomplish His work. Thank Him for sacrificing His Son so that you can be perfectly clean of all sin.

For Further Study:

** in his: Col 1:22; Heb 10:19-22; ** the law: Gal 3:10; Col 2:14, 20; Heb 7:16; 8:13; 9:9-10, 23; 10:1-10; ** one: Eph 4:16; 2Co 5:17; Gal 6:15; Col 3:10;


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