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BUILT UP BY THE WORD OF GOD’S GRACE

Date: 
Saturday, February 27, 2021
Bible Meditation: 
Acts 20: 17-38

So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the WORD of HIS GRACE, which is able to BUILD you UPActs 20:32a

Believers in Christ are not only recreated and renewed, we are BUILT UP BY THE WORD of GOD’S GRACE: So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the WORD of HIS GRACE, which is able to BUILD you UP and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified(Acts 20:32). Paul commended the elders at Ephesus to the Word of Grace, which builds the Christ nature into the believer. God is building Himself into us, making Himself a part of us as His Word exercises dominion in and through our spirits. No one can be built up spiritually on philosophies, history of the Word, or theories about the Word. We can only maximize our spirituality by living in the Word and the Word living in us.

Paul charged the elders to feed the sheep and protect the flock from the twisted teachings of wolves in sheep’s clothing: Take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God which he obtained with the blood of his own Son” (Acts 20:29-30). As he prepared to leave the flock until he sees them again in heaven, he committed them to the care of the elders, reminding them solemnly that the Holy Spirit had appointed them to be shepherds. The question was: What about the elders themselves? If the elders cared for the flock, who cares for the elders? If Paul commits the church into the care of the elders, into whose care does he commit the elders themselves?

Paul answered the question: “I commend you to God and to the word of His grace.” He entrusted them to Who and What could build them up and guarantee them eternal inheritance (v.32). God cares for His shepherds by the Word of His Grace. No Bishop, denomination, committee or congregation can do so. God is the Shepherd of shepherds! His Word is our green pasture and still waters. Of course, all the flock have God as Shepherd and all the flock feed on the Word of His Grace – not just the elders. But the difference is: to the flock, God gives the added resource of shepherds who teach the whole counsel of God, and to the shepherds God has given the added responsibility of searching out and teaching the His whole counsel.

So the committal of the elders to this Word of Grace was not to a private, privileged access, but to a special responsibility. The sheep must have the Word in order to live by it; so God gives shepherds to feed His flock. The shepherds too must have the Word in order to live by it. So, God assigns to them the special task of feeding themselves in a more direct manner both for their own soul and for the sake of the sheep. The flock has the added benefit of going to the shepherds for feeding. The shepherds have the added responsibility and privilege of preparing the food first hand from the Word of God's grace.

God’s Word builds us up. It is active and powerful. His Word is a Builder. It builds a valuable structure out of a life of ruins. It builds design out of a life of confusion. It builds security out of fear and anxiety. It builds strength out of weakness. It builds permanence and stability out of uncertainty. It builds beauty out of ashes and ugliness. The Word of His Grace is a master builder. And it's called the Word of grace because it turns lousy raw materials into living edifices.

The Word secures our inheritance: salvation, eternal life, everlasting Joy, and the “riches of the Glory of God” (Lk.18:18, 25-26; Rom.8:17; Eph.1:18). His Word of Grace sanctifies the naturally unqualified. The Heirs of God’s Kingdom are not perfect people, but sanctified people. Now, the Lord’s Prayer makes sense: “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your WORD is truth” (Jh.17:17).

Adetokunbo O. Ilesanmi (Meditations)

Prayer: 
Lord, cause us to be BUILT UP by the WORD of YOUR GRACE, blessed and sanctified for an eternal inheritance, in Jesus name.
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