SALVATION IN EPHESIANS

#4 BLAMELESS

The word translated  'blameless' [Greek amomos]  is used only seven times in the New Testament.

Twice it is used to describe Jesus Christ, in verses referring to his substitutionary, sacrificial death:

'Christ ... offered himself unblemished to God... ' [Hebrews 9:14].
'Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.' [1Peter 1:19]

The other five times it refers to the saving impact of this death of Christ the blameless substitute, in which he took upon himself all the blame due to us:

'(God) chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight' [Ephesians 1:4].

 

'Christ ... gave himself up for (the church) ... to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless' [Ephesians 5:25-27].

 

'But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without belmish and free from accusation' [Colossians 1:22].

 

 'To him who is able to ... present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy' [Jude 24].

 

'... they are blameless' [Revelation 14:5].

Because Christ took our blame, those who are united to him through faith are declared 'blameless'.

This is similar to the truth that Paul usually teaches by the use of the concept of a 'justification' or 'righteousness' that comes by faith, from God, apart from law, to those who beleive. [Romans 1:16,17; 3:19-31].

But what does it mean in real terms? What does it mean as we live out our imperfect lives in the presence of the holy God? What does it mean when we sin, when we know that in actual fact we are not 'blameless', but stand guilty and worthy of all sorts of blame? And we blame ourselves? And we feel the accusing blame of others? What does this 'blameless  in his sight' mean then?

Paul answers these questions about the reality of this 'blameless' with a series of other questions in Romans 8:21-35:

'If God is for us, who can be against us?' That is, if God, by the means of the death of Christ on our behalf, doesn't blame us, who is there with higher authority than God, who can undo God's decision and declaration?

'Who will bring any charge against those God has chosen?' That is: God, the ultimate Judge, acquits us. There is no higher judicial authority.

'Who is he that condemns?' Jesus Christ is our perfect and permanent Mediator, who by his death has secured for us this 'blameless' affirmation. Who, then, is this little insignificant person who now is trying to blame and condemn us, thinking he can undo and overthrow the work of Christ?

'Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?' That is, Christ's love attained this affirmation 'blameless' for us. Nothing can undo that; and nothing in our lives, no amount of suffering or hardship, can ever be taken as evidence that this 'blameless in his sight' has been revoked.

We are 'blameless in his sight' because Christ, our substitute under the judgement of God, and our Mediator in the presence of God, is blameless.

Copyright Rosemary Bardsley 2007, 2017