A Pathway to Citizenship

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: John 1:12 KJV

Acceptance is something all of us long to experience. Feeling hopeless because of war, poverty or violence many travel across borders without documents searching for a place to belong. There is plenty of debate today over the subject of illegal immigration but no matter which side of that issue you are on it may help you to picture how Jesus was treated. In the opening chapter of the Gospel of John it is noted that Jesus came into the world, but that the world did not accept Him. In fact just after His birth Herod ordered His soldiers to kill Jesus. During His public ministry His neighbors tried throwing Him over a cliff. (Aren’t you glad you don’t live in that neighborhood!). Later some of the most powerful religious leaders of His day plotted to have Him executed. Their biggest issue was He was a threat to their power and that He wasn’t one of them.

But some welcomed Jesus. They were folks whose identity was also not well received. These were societal outsiders, like a five time divorcee from Samaria, a blind beggar, a demon possessed man who lived in a graveyard and several rough fishermen. They were accustomed to being shunned by polite society and did not hold to popular notions of acceptability. To them, the power of  Jesus’ words and the love they felt in His presence could only be explained one way – He must have come from God. That simple faith granted them a very special right: -the right to be called God’s children and accepted into citizenship in Heaven!

Imported from phone 147

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