For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith . . . it is the gift of God . . . so that no one can boast. (Eph. 2:8–9)
Expanded Passage: Ephesians 2:8–9
I will never be able to join the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). While I easily exceed their “eighteen years or older” qualification, I do not have and cannot prove “lineal, bloodline descent from an ancestor who aided in achieving American independence.”
There’s no other entry point. All access to DAR membership depends on lineage that is beyond my control and occurred well before my birth.
I am, however, a lifelong member of the Mossburg and Kinsey families. I can easily prove bloodline descent from Mossburg and Kinsey ancestors, and I belonged without needing proof or ancestral achievement.
There’s another family to which I belong. I can’t prove myself into it. I wasn’t naturally born into it. Membership is only attainable by accepting Jesus Christ as Savior, bowing before the undeserved gift of his sacrifice that gives eternal life to a sinner, otherwise eternally dead.
My membership into God’s family occurred during a Sunday night church service, in response to the pastor’s invitation and altar call. Others have joined in a variety of ways, each uniquely significant. A membership invitation (verbal, discerned, read) is extended, conveying the truth of God’s love and the fact that God sent Jesus to die for every sinner. All are invited. Not all accept.
Every person, regardless of pedigree or ancestry, is loved and desired by God. Everyone—anyone—can join God’s family.
Invite a new member to join God’s family.
Janelle Vernon serves The Wesleyan Church as executive director of Communication and Administration, general secretary, and publisher for Wesleyan Publishing House.
© 2023 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission. Scriptures taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®.