But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus…There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:25-26, 28 (KJV)
Many have heard the words that the ground is level at the foot of the cross whether written in an old gospel song or the thoughts expressed in the book of James:
Let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted: But the rich, in that he is made low: because as the flower of the grass he shall pass away. Jas 1:9-10 (KJV)
There is no person higher or lower than another person in God’s eyes. Everyone that comes to the cross of Christ is a sinner in need of a Savior. Any good thing one may think to boast of is as filthy rags. The rich man that comes is no better than the staggering drunk. Jesus accepts all that come to salvation in repentance by His grace regardless of race, gender, nationality or past sin; and they are all accepted as children in the family of God. As family, they are freely and abundantly loved by the Father; they no longer have to seek love through fame, material things or performance.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. Eph 2:8-9(KJV)
In the Old Testament, God showed preference for a specific group of people called Israel. Everyone outside the family of Israel was considered as a heathen or dog (Mt 15:26). There was a special love and place set aside only for Israel because of Abraham, the patriarch of Israel who chose to believe God. This special love God bestowed on Abraham’s lineage alone throughout the pages of the Old Testament eventually brought God’s love to everyone through the crucifixion of Jesus Christ recorded in the New Testament.
A world that was engulfed in oppression, bondage and obvious abuse of power toward the vulnerable was the normal way of life in nations before Jesus came. The rich and powerful exploited the poor and vulnerable because no one dared defy their evil power. The powerful had the ability to lift up men to places of authority, regardless of their lack of moral character, and bring humiliation and destruction to whomever they chose. God never approved of abusing the vulnerable but the wages for Adam and Eve’s sin brought a curse upon all men everywhere. Jesus came to break the curse and end oppression.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. Joh 3:16-18 (KJV)
Jesus died to set all men free. He left his disciples a commandment to announce throughout the world that now men could come back to God as His children. Jesus proclaimed for all men that the truth would set them free. It was not a difficult message and today we have the means to get the message to everyone. Yet there are leaders ruling as tyrants in places where the first disciples taught about Jesus; and, in our nation, truth and freedom are often manipulated for the benefit of some one’s power. In America, we are seeing men with ill-gotten power change the rules and moral values of the nation while insisting on their right to do so because they are in charge. Any tyrant or brute can take power from the weak but righteous authority comes from God. Righteousness is God’s standard and no leader has authority to change God’s standard. God’s moral law is backed up by His power and it will stand at long as God stands: for all eternity.
Without real Christian believers revealing the Living Christ of the gospel, words are without power to save. Apostle Paul said:
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Rom 10:13-17 (KJV)
Spirit-filled believers who live and teach the word of God are necessary to persuade all men everywhere that Jesus yet lives. They must do it in the midst of a popular culture with a diluted message of Christ being preached to promote church size and finances. Erroneous teaching may cause people to lose interest or become lukewarm but the gospel truth preached with power can draw souls back to God. The gospel message is simple and effective when delivered properly. The word of God is a transforming message that saves and delivers to set souls free from bondage.
Without faith in Christ our nation would return back to the pagan days of old where corrupt men lord over the people. Jesus is still reaching out to save souls and save our world. One believer can turn his world around for God like Paul did, like Daniel did and like Elijah did and, of course, like Abraham did because he believed. Invested in every spirit filled believer is the same power that raised Jesus up from the grave. Far too many believers underestimate the power Jesus has given them.
While men of influence are today trying to persuade people of their wisdom because of wealth or position, the believer must remember that all of God’s children are a royal priesthood and have within them the ability to move mountains. We will all have to give an account for what we have done with our talents and God will require more of those to whom much has been given. Of the utmost importance is what we do with the message we heard about Christ. That word developed a seed of faith on the inside of us that contains great hope. The enemy of our soul sets up men of power and wickedness who use threats, fear and intimidation to suppress righteousness, faith and hope; but the believer in Christ has a new place and source of power:
But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: Eph 2:4-6 (KJV)
The believer in Christ as a child of the Great King with all its privileges and has become an heir of all that belongs to Christ. This position is available to any person at any level of life who will believe the gospel. We all must come in the same door through simple faith in Christ’s sacrifice. He died on the cross in your place and in my place and for the souls of the whole world of sinners. It should have been us who died on that cross for all of our sins; but Christ who knew no sin, died in our place so we could go free. What a wonderful Savior He is!
What Christ did on the cross leveled the ground for all men to come into equal position as brethren. Christ, as God in the flesh, called disciples His “brethren.” We observe in scripture that Christ came in a lowly estate and walked in humility and meekness while administering help to others. Apostle Paul said: “Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits (Rom 12:16).” Our culture and worldly self always want to be exalted or rewarded for every deed but that is contrary to Christ’s way. It is Christ who examines the life of His disciples and chooses to raise some to higher callings as he did with the first apostles, where they took on additional duties and risks for the kingdom. Christ gives no place for any legitimate Christian leader to be proud, arrogant, abusive or demeaning. Those characteristics and others listed in Galatians 5:19-21 are traits that help us identify Satan’s servants who connive, bully and cause fear, intimidation or evil deeds to enforce their pretense of superior power. The God of love backs up the strength of His people and they have the greater power because of son ship with their Great King. That power is not for self-exaltation over others; but we can, by His power, condescend to men of low estate. The commandment to love our brethren should cause all of us to assist the less fortunate. Jesus taught that those who desire to be first will be last and servant to all (Mk 9:35). Adherence to such Christian principles is what causes people to consider the needs of the poor and vulnerable of our community.
The power men use to rule over others is power that ultimately comes from God and every tyrant in history has ultimately fallen under the power of God. Powerful names such as Alexander, Napoleon, Caesar, Hitler, Stalin and others are only a whisper from our past. We are all like pieces on the chest board that are set up and moved at God’s command. Our very next breath is at the pleasure of God. Psalms 24:1 states: “The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.” Though mankind may be reluctant to acknowledge God’s sovereignty, He, nevertheless, will have the final word; and He will use His authority to pull down all forms of evil. The glory that some men have taken for themselves belongs to God and He has said of Himself that He is jealous over His people and that He will not give His glory to another (2Co. 11:2; Is. 48:11). Knowing that the All-Powerful God demands His glory and is jealous over His people, who would in foolishness dare take upon himself the glory that belongs only to God or harm the vulnerable that is “the apple of God’s eye” that He protects? Fear of God helps one to stay in a place of humility and obedience because God puts down oppressors and lifts up the meek while He judges the earth and defends His word. The wise will hear the word of God and believe in God’s power while the unbelieving may choose to learn the sovereignty of God the hard way through experiencing His anger. The love of God allows everyone the opportunity of choosing to be an equal partaker of His grace.
But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren…Heb 2:9-11 (KJV)
But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. Mat 23:8 (KJV)