Devotion column: Erasmus Makarimayi
HUMAN nature generally gravitates towards contributing something in order to be acknowledged, accepted and honoured. Reciprocity is believed to be the quantum of receipt.
As we become members of the Christian faith, this nature filters through and oftentimes we want to relate with God based on having brought something to the table.
Without a seed, we’re told, there’s no harvest. However, biblical revelation points to Jesus Christ as the ultimate seed.
Moreover the salvation of the Lord is God’s contribution alone, without human works or efforts. It’s always Jesus plus nothing.
This is to the effect that all glory redounds to Him. All we have to do is believe.
They once asked Jesus and He responded as recorded in John 6:28-29, “ Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?  Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.”
We believe in the works of Jesus and these works are imputed to us as righteousness by grace through faith.
All we have to do is walk in the accomplished or finished work and enjoy what already is.
Let us innumerate some of these graces already granted by our identification with Christ.
By becoming born again believers, we’re set apart, consecrated or legitimised regardless of how sinful we were before salvation.
Hebrews 2:11 speaks: “For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren,” We didn’t cleanse ourselves, but the blood of Jesus did.
Jesus Christ made us holy in Him and He, therefore, associates with us on that level and God the Father relates with us on that basis.
1 Corinthians 6:11 buttresses: “And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.”
It’s a past tense reality that now obtains in us. In Christ, we’re not filthy before God. We’re only filthy if we approach God outside Christ, on merit and not grace.
Isaiah 64:6a, New English Translation points: “We are all like one who is unclean, all our so-called righteous acts are like a menstrual rag in your sight.”
We, therefore, choose the Christ way, that is, the Grace way.
One other thing that has happened is that we’re justified. Because of the sacrificial and substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we’re deemed sinless before God.
Romans 5:1 reads: “Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:” It’s not our doing, but it’s the faith of Christ.
Romans 3:28 weighs in: “Therefore, we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.”
Additionally, we’re blessed for being in Christ. Believers blessedness is a gift and not a works issue. We’re a blessing because we’re blessed. We don’t bless to be blessed.
Ephesians 1:3 makes it clear: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:” You will remember that we’re seated in heavenly places where our blessedness originates.
This is established in Ephesians 2:6: “And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:” You’re blessed not cursing. Christianity is a knowing not a doing.
Please, also consider Romans 3:20: “Therefore, by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”
We’re perfected in Christ. This means in Him, we’re faultless. Hebrews 10:14 settles: “For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.”
This perfect state is forever in Christ. Our redemption, therefore, isn’t temporary.
We read in 1 Peter 1:18-19: “ Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;  But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:” We’re bold and confident in declaring so.
Psalm 107:2a admonishes: “Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,” We’re stamped with the seal of the Holy Spirit because of the Gospel/Grace we received.
Ephesians 1:13 notes: “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,” Enjoy your salvation without guilt and condemnation.
Grace and peace be multiplied to you through knowledge.