Strangers No More
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief cornerstone: in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an Holy temple in the Lord: in whom ye also are building together for an habitation of God through the Spirit” – (Eph.2:8, 11-22).
Stranger means (a foreigner, an alien, one
who is not a citizen). These strangers were called Gentiles by the Jews and
uncircumcism. This chapter of (Eph.2) is showing us the method of the
construction of God’s church as the
spiritual temple with all the saved Jews.
In the O.T. temple was the court of the Gentiles way off to the side. Gentile strangers were permitted to come, but they were away afar off. But now – for the Gentiles who are in Christ – all has changed. They were “without” Christ, now they are “in” Christ. The distance and barriers which separated them from God have been removed. They have been made nigh, not by their works or merits, but by the saving blood of Christ.
The Old Testament temple was marked by
partitions and courts separating
Solomon’s temple was built without the sound
of hammer, so the Holy Spirit silently places each saved saint into God’s
living temple through the Baptism of the Holy Spirit. “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be
Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free…” – (I Cor.12:13). No human
standing in a church made by hands can baptize you with water unto salvation.
Only the Lord Jesus Christ can baptize you with His Holy Spirit into the
PTL Jesus, we are strangers and foreigners
and aliens no more, but fellow citizens with the Jewish saints in the
I live in
Circumcision speak of the father’s seed and being born into the family and we who have been born again by the incorruptible seed of our heavenly Father are part of the family of God. “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever” – (I Pet.1:23). PTL Jesus for our inward circumcision into the family of God – PTL Jesus we are “strangers no more” but are spiritual children of Abraham, a father of many nations – “And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise” – (Gal.3:29).
There were also proselytes, Gentile converts
to the Jewish faith, who committed themselves to the teaching of God’s Word and
who were circumcised and worshipped in the Jewish temple and synagogues. By N.T.
times they were a significant part of Judaism. Gentile proselytes, and
strangers were in
God’s temple today is made of people of every
color, every nationality, speaking every language on earth. “…For thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us
to God by thy blood out of every
kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” – (Rev.5:9). We born again saints
belong to the household of God, we are building upon the one foundation, Jesus
Christ. He is the chief cornerstone and in Him all the building – every
believer, Jew and Gentile - is framed together and is continually growing into
We strangers, foreigners and aliens, who were outcasts spiritually are now born again into God’s household,. We belong to the Father’s family and are circumcised in our hearts and are the center of His love. We are the habitation of the Hoy Spirit… He abides and lives in us.
Unsaved people around the world make pilgrimages to holy places and shrines and sacred spots and temples and cathedrals etc., foolishly. God is not there. The most holy place, the spot that is supremely sacred to God, is the place that God Himself has chosen as His habitation, His worshipping temple. I am speaking of the heart of every born again believer. “Yet not I, but Christ liveth in me” – (Gal.2:20). This fact should humble your heart and melt you within. To think that God would inhabit my heart. God help me to keep the temple clean. PTL Jesus - we are strangers no more.
Are you one of Jesus’ flock of sheep? Are you one of the Good Shepherd’s sheep? Do you know His voice and follow Him? Has the blood of God’s Passover’s Lamb that was crucified on the day of Passover washed your sins away and saved you? Are you still a stranger to Christ? Is He a stranger to you? “And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers”– (Jn.10:4,5).
Jesus prophesied also of Jew and Gentile sheep in one fold – “And other sheep I have, which are not of his fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd” – (Jn.10:16). This one flock includes the whole born again family of God made up of believing Jews and Gentiles and comprising His holy temple, the church.
If you are a stranger to Christ, be a stranger no more. Repent of your sins and believe in your heart by faith on the Lord Jesus and you will become a new born again creature in Christ. “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” – (2 Cor.5:17). Jesus said – “That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Sprit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again” – (Jn.3:6,7). Born again describes the new creature you become when you truly believe and have true salvation. Do not be a stranger and unknown to Christ. Be a stranger no more.
P.S. – Thank you Court-ney, my wife’s Spiritual sister in the Lord, for inspiring me with this sermon.
Pastor Mike Storti
5000 N. LaCholla-
Would love to hear from you!