July 25th 2021
You Gentiles by birth - called "the uncircumcised" by the Jews,
who call themselves the circumcised
(which refers to what men do to their bodies)
- remember what you were in the past.
At that time you were apart from Christ.
You were foreigners and did not belong to God's chosen people.
You had no part in the covenants,
which were based on God's promises to his people,
and you lived in this world without hope and without God.
But now, in union with Christ Jesus you, who used to be far away, have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
For Christ himself has brought us peace
by making Jews and Gentiles one people.
With his own body he broke down the wall that separated them
and kept them enemies.
He abolished the Jewish Law with its commandments and rules,
in order to create out of the two races one new people
in union with himself, in this way making peace.
By his death on the cross Christ destroyed their enmity;
by means of the cross he united both races into one body
and brought them back to God.
So Christ came and preached the Good News of peace to all -
to you Gentiles, who were far away from God,
and to the Jews, who were near to him.
It is through Christ that all of us, Jews and Gentiles,
are able to come in the one Spirit into the presence of the Father.
So then, you Gentiles are not foreigners or strangers any longer;
you are now citizens together with God's people
and members of the family of God.
You, too, are built upon the foundation laid by the apostles and prophets, the cornerstone being Christ Jesus himself.
He is the one who holds the whole building together
and makes it grow into a sacred temple dedicated to the Lord.
In union with him you too are being built together with all the others into a place where God lives through his Spirit.