‘To the people of the church of Thessalonica, who belong to God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.’ 2 Thessalonians 1.1 (Good News Translation)
There is something special about belonging, and this verse captures so beautifully the truth that we belong to the Father and to Jesus.
This ‘belonging’ came about when Jesus died for us. The Bible speaks about it in terms of Jesus ‘purchasing’ us (Revelation 5.9). In other words, this is something that has already happened and was entirely initiated by God. The part we play in the process is to enter into this sense of belonging, and to choose to believe that it is true for us in a personal way; so that we are able to say with growing confidence, “I belong to the Father and to Jesus.” If you are wondering where the Holy Spirit is in all of this, Ephesians 1.13 tells us that it is because we belong to the Father and to Jesus that we have been given the Holy Spirit.
To belong to God means that you are his. At times we get very concerned about our failings and wonder if this means we belong at all, when all along it is probably the whisper of the Holy Spirit that is calling us back to the ways of God. To belong to God also means that he will not leave us abandoned in our needs. As it says in Romans 8.32, if God gave us Jesus, then surely there is nothing he would hold back from us?
Let your mind catch the wonder of these words: “I belong to God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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