Romans 15:7 “Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.”
In the English Standard Version, the word “accept” is interestingly translated to the word “welcome”. This word “accept” comes from the greek word “προσλαμβάνω” proslambanō (strong g4355), which means “to take to oneself.” Strong’s dictionary further explains the common usage of the word “accept” in the bible as “to take as one’s companion”, “to take by the hand to lead”, “to receive into one’s home with kindness”, “to grant access into one’s heart for friendship” and “to take into one self as taking in food.”
Wow! A whole new idea explodes in my mind. Acceptance is not merely acceptance. Jesus did not just merely accept us as who we are with all our good and bad. He did not accept us with the attitude of casualness, as in he doesn’t mind being with us even though he doesn’t like the way we dress or the way we color our hair. Nor did he merely accept and forgive us of all our debts and let us be.
Acceptance is more than that to Jesus. Acceptance means that he wants us to be his friend and companion. He wants to take us home to live with him. He desires to walk side by side with us and lead us by the hand as a mother leads her child closely by holding his hand in love and security. He wishes for us to know him through and through by granting access into his heart. And he wants to fully hold us in his heart as a man romantically relishes his loved one obsessively.
This is what it means when Jesus accepts us – “I want to take you into my heart, live with me, and be my friend and companion forever. Welcome to my life”