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Acceptance, human

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The response of human beings to the revelation and grace of God. It is seen in receiving Jesus Christ, his words and the message of the gospel, and in the acceptance of one another for his sake. Believers are called, too, to accept instruction and discipline and to submit to God’s will for their lives.

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Human beings are to accept Jesus Christ

Receiving Jesus Christ

John 1:12 NIV
Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—
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Accepting Jesus Christ by accepting others

John 13:20 NIV
Very truly I tell you, whoever accepts anyone I send accepts me; and whoever accepts me accepts the one who sent me.”
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Accepting Jesus Christ’s words

John 17:8 NIV
For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me.
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Refusing to accept Jesus Christ and his words

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Acceptance of the gospel

The gospel is worthy of acceptance

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Examples of those accepting the gospel

3,000 on the day of Pentecost; the Samaritans; the Gentiles

Believers in Corinth:

believers in Galatia

Believers in Thessalonica:


Rejection of the gospel

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Acceptance of one another

A right self-acceptance

Paul accepts himself as a sinner saved by God’s grace and entrusted with an important ministry; Loving others requires a proper self-love: the recognition that people are made in God’s image and are the objects of his love.
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Acceptance of one another because of God’s example

Romans 15:7 NIV
Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.
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Acceptance of those whom God has accepted

Romans 14:1 NIV
Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters.
See also God’s people should reflect his concern for the weak and defenceless; Jesus Christ rebukes his disciples for turning away children.

Ananias’ acceptance of Saul:

Barnabas’ acceptance of Saul

Acceptance of the Gentiles:

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Acceptance of outsiders who join God’s people

Leviticus 19:33–34 NIV
“ ‘When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord your God.
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Acceptance of itinerant ministers

Galatians 4:14 NIV
and even though my illness was a trial to you, you did not treat me with contempt or scorn. Instead, you welcomed me as if I were an angel of God, as if I were Christ Jesus himself.
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Acceptance of things given

Acceptance of gifts

1 Samuel 25:35 NIV
Then David accepted from her hand what she had brought him and said, “Go home in peace. I have heard your words and granted your request.”
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Refusal to accept gifts

Abraham refuses gifts offered by the king of Sodom; Elisha refuses a gift offered by Naaman; Mordecai refuses fine clothes from Esther.

Acceptance of instruction

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Acceptance of discipline

Job 5:17 NIV
“Blessed is the one whom God corrects; so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty.
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Acceptance of God’s will

Matthew 26:39 NIV
Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.”
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Acceptance of bribes forbidden

Exodus 23:8 NIV
“Do not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds those who see and twists the words of the innocent.

God is impartial and cannot be bribed:

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