Can’t Get Over This!
I want to share a few thoughts with you today that we discussed in the Connect Group I attend. I CAN NOT get these truths out of my mind! Unlike some songs that get stuck there…like “Don’t Worry Be Happy…du du du du da du da du da du de du” (or something like that! And…yes you are welcome…enjoy singing that the rest of the day!!) I don’t want this section of scripture (which was actually ONE run on sentence in the original Greek) to ever quit playing in my heart and head!
To start let’s all read this…Ephesians 1:1-14.
The first thing I want to point out is who Paul is addressing in this letter. Obviously, it is the Ephesians…but beyond that, verse 1 says, “To the saints in Ephesus…” Saints? When’s the last time anyone has addressed you as “Saint”? For me I think it was…maybe…um… NEVER!! But Paul is not looking at their behavior or even their morality! He is looking at their identity in Jesus! In Christ our identity goes from sinner to saint! Not of our own merit but because of Him and His righteousness given to us through faith!
Dos…that’s Spanish for 2! I know you’re impressed! Verse 3 says that we have received every spiritual blessing in Christ and the first blessing He list is that we were chosen “before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.” And that we were “adopted as his sons (and daughters) through Jesus Christ”! I can’t get over the fact that God chose ME! And that it was His “pleasure” to adopt me into His holy family! Now I am His child, secure as His son, never to be separated from Him again! THAT’S AWESOME!
Third…verse 7 says that “in Him we have redemption through His blood”. Redemption is a word that is probably best understood in regards to slaves. There were times when people would actually purchase a slave from someone with the intent of setting them free. It is much like someone paying a ransom for the release of someone being held captive. What’s amazing is that in verse 7 this is what Paul is telling us we have in Jesus! FREEDOM FROM SIN AND DEATH AND FREEDOM TO KNOW GOD!! When Jesus who was perfect died for those who were imperfect He took our imperfections on Himself and paid a debt we could never pay to God. Our sin left a debt that no amount of good could ever pay back so Jesus became the payment for us! That’s pretty hard to fathom because we don’t see the value in ourselves and others that God sees! If you are in Christ you have been redeemed…SET FREE! And this was done at a great cost…DON’T WASTE IT!
Finally…verse 9 says that “He made known to us the mystery of his will”. This is incredible because we no longer walk in darkness wondering why we exist! God has made it abundantly clear in His Word and especially through Jesus why we are here! We exist to fill the earth with God’s glory! We are here so that the work of God in our lives would point to the magnificence of God and be “for the sake of [His] holy name”! (Check out Ezekiel 36:16-32) What a great and awe inspiring privilege!
We need to understand that the Bible is very clear why all of this is possible. It is because the grace he has “lavished” on us. In short…grace is the love, redemption, forgiveness, and mercy that God gives us through Jesus that we do not deserve! Even shorter…It is God’s unmerited favor! The word translated lavished literally means to give in abundance until it overflows! WOW!
No kidding…I CAN NOT GET OVER THIS!!
Looking forward to Sunday! GATA!!
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