But now, this is what the Lord says— he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
This great affirmation of God’s relationship with his chosen people is gloriously true, not just for God’s chosen people but on a global scale for it is true of all those whom God has redeemed and called to himself through the death of the Jesus.
How often do you stop to reflect and thank God for your status as a Christian? How clearly does your life bear witness to the redeeming work of God? These are two challenging questions which it is good for us to review so that we give God all the glory that is due to him and we show the world that our faith is real by our everyday living.
A brief thought on each of those questions this morning.
We must never lose sight of the fact that our status is all of God. It is he who has redeemed us through the blood of Christ.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God – not by works, so that no-one can boast. Ephesians 2.8-9
This can be a hard truth to accept because we all have a tendency to think we have had a hand in our salvation because we think too highly of ourselves and our righteousness.
These words of Paul to the Ephesian church, God’s choosing of Jacob (see Deuteronomy 7.6-8) and Jesus’ words in John 15.16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you, tell us very clearly that our status is all of God.
It is a status that the world mocks (the world’s idea of status being in wealth, success and popularity) but it is a status that gives us total security, hope and an assured future.
The world’s status tick boxes should be shown for what they are, by our answer to the second question posed above ‘How clearly does our life bear witness to the redeeming work of God?’ namely that our redeemed status should remove fear!
The world is a fearful place without the redeeming God.
Fear of the future, fear of other people, fear of ever increasing prices, one country fearing another and going to war, fear of illness, fear of death and so we could go on.
But God says ‘Fear not’ and it is an injunction which comes often in the pages of Scripture. We are called to obedience and therefore as redeemed people we should demonstrate to the world that we do not fear. Surely there are many situations that can make this hard but our redeeming God is sufficient for all these things.
So reflect constantly on your status as one redeemed by God and live it out as, in him, you face each day unafraid as you rest in your security in Jesus.