The Apostle Paul’s letter to the Ephesians begins with a list of our spiritual blessings in Christ. As I was reading them, I was struck by verse 6 in Chapter 1 where he says, “to the praise and glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved (NKJV).” To be “accepted in the Beloved” is such a powerful statement in a world where we frequently feel unaccepted. God not only accepts us but, along with Jesus, we become the “Beloved.”
The English Standard Version translates the verse as “to the praise of his glorious grace with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.” Whether the Greek word, charitoo, is translated as “accepted” or “blessed” or “favored,” we can revel in God’s love.
Vines Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words says of agapao (the Greek word for beloved), “In respect of agapao as used of God, it expresses the deep and constant love and interest of a perfect Being towards entirely unworthy objects, producing and fostering a reverential love in them towards the Giver and a practical love toward those who are partakers of the same, and a desire to help others to see the Giver.”
Because we are accepted and blessed in the Beloved through the glorious grace of Christ, we no longer have to strive to be accepted or to earn blessings. Instead, we can focus on knowing the One who extends the acceptance, the Giver of all blessings, and sharing that love with others.