“There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
– Galatians 3:28
Yesterday, we talked about the variety of races that made up the early church and how they would stand side-by-side during worship and esteem each other as equals. Another interesting facet of the diversity that imbued culture at the dawn of Christianity was a built-in caste structure. The Roman society that had infiltrated the ancient Jewish world had its own brand of aristocracy, with patricians as the highest rank followed by equities, who were like knights, plebeians, freedman, and slaves. While the top and bottom classes would typically have no reason to associate since one ruled over the other, being part of the Body of Christ leveled the playing field and made them the same. In the context of fellowship, believers would meet shoulder-to-shoulder, pray for each other, take communion, and even wash one another’s feet. This means that a man who was selling slaves just days prior was now breaking bread with those he previously considered property and loving them as the Lord did. Such a revolutionary movement was born in the Church of Jesus Christ, and it should live on in and through us today. Regardless of our stature or status in society, we should esteem the least among us as the greatest and honor them accordingly.
My friend, in Jesus, there is no caste or class. His cross was the great equalizer, and His perfection is the standard by which you determined your inability to defeat sin in your own power. Because you saw your need for a Savior, you humbled yourself under His mighty Hand, and He gave you a new identity that rests in His holiness. Walking in the fullness of His gift demands that you surrender the sense of importance you ascribe to status and find your satisfaction solely in the spiritual treasure you inherit as you become more like Him. When you empty yourself of all the world holds dear, you gain a position of authority in His Kingdom that empowers you to do more than you ever thought possible, and all the glory goes to His Name!
Jesus, I humble myself in your presence. Cleanse my heart of the pride that makes me consider myself better than others, and make me more like you.
How does the cross humble and convict you?
If you’re unable to attend your local church or need some additional weekly inspiration, be sure to tune into Hour of Power every Saturday night at 6:30 p.m. PT on TBN or watch online at hourofpower.org/episode.