b.c. and a.d.
"Through Him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father." —Ephesians 2:18
Almost all reading this book are Gentiles. "In former times, you had no part in Christ and were excluded from the community of Israel. You were strangers to the covenant and its promise; you were without hope and without God in the world" (Eph 2:12). "Once you were no people, but now you are God's people; once there was no mercy for you, but now you have found mercy" (1 Pt 2:10).
Before Christ, we were excluded, hopeless, godless strangers. "But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near through the blood of Christ" (Eph 2:13). B.C. is B.L. Before Christ is before life. Apart from Jesus we can do nothing (Jn 15:5). As St. Augustine said, every heart is restless until it rests in Him.
How can we thank Him for loving and redeeming us? How shall we "make a return to the Lord for all the good He has done for" us? (Ps 116:12) We should live a life of thanksgiving for having been loved and redeemed by Jesus. We must express our thanks by letting all people know that the One they are seeking and groping for is Jesus (see Acts 17:27). We must fill the world with the name of Jesus (see Acts 5:28) and do all that we do for the sake of the gospel (1 Cor 9:23).
Prayer: Father, thank You for loving us so much that You gave us Jesus (Jn 3:16). I believe in Him and give my life to Him.
Promise: "When He arrives and knocks, you will open for Him without delay." —Lk 12:36
Praise: It was through an encounter with the Holy Spirit that Mary came to know the Father's love in a deeper way.
Reference: (For a related teaching, order our tape on Developing a Deep Personal Relationship with Jesus on audio AV 52-1 or video V-52.)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 1, 2008
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