Monday, January 16, 2012

Ephesians 1:1-4

Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him.

Paul notes that he is an apostle because of the will of God – not because he chose to be, not because he was seeking power and authority, but because God chose him for that purpose and he could do nothing but obey! He writes this letter to saints – this sense of the word encompasses all believers (saints = set apart for God).

Sometimes in our lives we may not feel spiritually blessed – we may even feel like we are in a spiritual drought. So to begin his letter Paul explains what our spiritual blessings are. The first is that God chose us from before time began, desiring to sanctify us into the holy and blameless beings we were originally created to be. It blows my mind to think that God chose me before the foundation of the world, even knowing my shortcomings and how I would fail Him. As chosen and adopted children God sees us as holy and blameless, not because of any “good work” or ritual we may perform, but because we are covered by the blood of his holy and blameless son, Jesus Christ. At the moment of our salvation the righteousness of Jesus is credited to us, and the day will come when we stand before God as holy and blameless – finally freed from the bondage of sin. God knew you and had a plan to redeem you even before the world fell into sin. His eternal plan will be accomplished, and what a blessing and privilege it is to be a part of it!

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