Bible Reading: Romans 11:11-23
Memory Verse: Jesus said, "I am the vine, you are the branches; apart from Me you can do nothing." (John 15:5).
There is only one Body, one Church, one Kingdom, "one God and Father of all." (Eph 4:4). All true believers are grafted into that Body, of which Jesus Christ is the substance and Head. We, the branches, draw our nourishment, moment by moment, from the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul wrote to believers at Corinth, "For we were all baptized by one Spirit, whether Jews or Greeks, salve or free, and we were all given the one Spirit to drink." (1 Cor 12:13; Eph 1:13).
Christians become part of this one Body by repenting and believing in Jesus Christ (Acts 16:31). They receive a baptism by the Spirit, who comes into their lives and changes them (John 3:5,8). All who have the Spirit of Christ belong to Christ and are members of His Body (Romans 8:9).
Jesus said, "I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in Me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in Me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers." (John 15:5-6). Every Christian is attached to the Head, Jesus Christ.
Again Jesus said, "I am the bread of life. Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, yet they died. But there is bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven." (John 6:48-51).
All these Scriptures point us to Jesus Christ, the root and substance of the Christian Church. And Paul said we, the Gentile believers have been grafted among the Jewish branches, into that same root, to share in the nourishing sap (Romans 11:17-20). Jesus Himself said, "I am the Root and Offspring of David.".(Rev 22:16).
God broke off the dead branches (dead because of unbelief), so that you and I could be grafted in."They were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid (or stand in awe)". Lest you should boast about this remember: "You do not support the Root, but the Root supports you." (Romans 11:18-21).
Paul assures us that if the Jews "do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. How will the natural children of Israel be grafted in? Paul answered: "Even to this day, when Moses (the law) is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away." (2 Cor 3:15-16).
When Christ died on the cross, the great curtain was torn from top to bottom and fell at the feet of the priests making the evening sacrifice (Matthew 27:51). God removed the great curtain (veil) that separated the Holy Place in the temple from the Holy of Holies, where only He dwelled. This signified that the way was now open for man to come into the very presence of Almighty God.
In the same way, God will remove the veil that covers the eyes of the unbelieving Jews and Gentiles. He will do this when they "turn to the Lord Jesus" and accept His great sacrifice for them. And they will be grafted into the Root and substance of Christ.
Believe this great truth. Repent of your sins and receive the wonderful salvation that Jesus Christ offers to you. He waits to welcome you into His world-wide family.
Many who have believed feel isolated and lonely. Some are secret believers; others have no fellowship with fellow believers because they are separated by long distances. It was the same in the early Christian churches.
Pray for those who are isolated and cut off, that the Holy Spirit will sustain them and that they will turn often to the written Word and feast on it. John the apostle reminded the early believers, "Our fellowship is with the Father and with the Son, Jesus Christ." (1 John 1:4).
Prayer: Thank you God for Your love and grace to me. In this moment of quiet, I seek You. Breathe new strength into my spirit and give me a greater desire to study Your word and to meet with You in fellowship each day. Amen.