Restoring Our Relationship
Unregenerate man is consistently described as being in a state of alienation and enmity. This is the condition that makes reconciliation necessary. Reconciliation is necessary only when a state of estrangement exists between two or more parties. Estrangement is the natural fallen state of our relationship to God.
How are we enemies of God? Jonathan Edwards provides an insightful summary of the problem. He lists several points of tension between God and man:
- By nature, we have a low esteem of God. We count Him unworthy of our love or fear.
- We prefer to keep a distance from God. We have no natural inclination to seek His presence in prayer.
- Our wills are opposed to the law of God. We are not loyal subjects of His sovereign rule.
- We are enemies against God in our affections. Our souls have a seed of malice against God. We are quick to blaspheme and to rage against Him.
- We are enemies in practice. We walk in a way that is contrary to Him.
Coram Deo: Examine your spiritual condition in light of Edwards’s five points of tension between God and man.
Ephesians 2:12: “At that time you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.”
Ephesians 2:14–16: “For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of division between us, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity.”
Romans 5:10: “For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.”