“It is [God’s] will, that we should imitate his fatherly goodness and liberality. This was perceived, not only by heathen philosophers, but by some wicked despisers of godliness, who have made this open confession, that in nothing do men resemble God more than in doing good.” — John Calvin, Commentary on Matthew, Mark, Luke – Volume 1
Calvin’s words, “in nothing do men resemble God more than in doing good,” tell us a major truth of the Christian life. Those who follow Jesus’ teachings demonstrate the blessings of belonging to God’s people.
Since we belong to God, we have the blessing of living freely. We are free from the prideful desire to wreak payback on those who wrong us. We are free from the need to defend ourselves when wrongly attacked by the oppressors. We are free from the need for vengeance.
We are free to love! We are free to love our enemies just as we love our friends and family. We are free to show the love of God as He has so loved us.
We are free to live generously, knowing that God graciously provides for us. The Psalmist said, “I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread. He is ever lending generously, and his children become a blessing” (Psalm 37:25-26).
St. Paul wrote, “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). God demonstrated His love for us even while we actively rebelled against Him. In mercy, God sent Jesus to live among us, to teach us, and to die as a sacrifice for our sins and rebellion. Jesus went further; He also rose again from the dead, defeating sin and death on our behalf.
Then, in love, Jesus calls us to Himself. When we confess Jesus as Lord, believing in His resurrection, we become part of the family of God. We belong to Jesus! We belong to God! We become free to bless others. The blessing of belonging to God is knowing God has freed us to love recklessly, give generously, and forgive everyone who wrongs us, knowing God loves us, provides for us, and has forgiven us.
Christian, you belong to God’s family, not because you keep an onerous law code, but because He has shown you grace. Since we belong, let us live in that blessing. Free yourself to love, give, and forgive, knowing that this lifestyle will show the world the blessing of belonging to God.