At-one-ment

But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood.

Romans 3:21-25a

atone – “Middle English – at-onen, become reconciled < at one, in accord; see AT & ONE." If you happen to have a Webster’s New World College Dictionary, this is the first thing you’ll read when you look up the word atone. Atone is an English word that was created from two other English words (at & one) to help communicate a concept that is unique to the Old and New Testaments.

Many translations of the Bible call the lid on the Ark of the Covenant the “atonement cover.” (See Exodus 26:34) Here in Romans chapter 3, Jesus’ sacrifice for the sins of the world is called a “sacrifice of atonement.” That means the cover on the Ark of the Covenant was the place where God taught his people how he would make them “at-one” with him again. (See Leviticus 16) In fact, the sacrifices that were performed in connection with the “atonement cover” all pointed ahead to Jesus’ “sacrifice of atonement.

And if we need to be made at-one with God again, that means we’re not at-one with him by nature. “There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God… But! We are also “…justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.” That means we’ve been declared “Not Guilty” of the sins that separated us from God. Jesus’ “sacrifice of atonement” redeemed us—that is “bought us back!”

Thanks to Jesus, you are now “at one” with your God!

Blessings on the rest of your week!

Pastor Z.