“God has enabled you to share in the inheritance that belongs to His people, who live in the light. For He has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of His dear Son, who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins.” (Colossians 1:12b-14 NLT)
[The Apostle Paul] does not view
salvation as simply a transaction between the individual and God. A person
prior to his experience with Christ belongs to a community, however much his
actions incline him (or his immediate circle’s) self-interest. And it is a new community that his reconciliation with
God in Christ brings him, however much he experiences that event as an
So this freedom granted by God not only
transfers men and women out of a broken relationship with God, and a defective
solidarity with others, into a new community with both, but also inclines them
to live the kind of life that will extend and deepen that new community itself.
The gospel is not purely a personal
matter. It has a social dimension. It is a communal affair.
-- Robert Banks in “Paul’s Idea of Community”