and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
Even when we were dead in our trespasses, God raised us up with the sinless Christ. The "sons of disobedience" are made alive in Christ, and this miracle is all for the glory of God. Not only are we saved, but we are seated with him in the heavenly places despite the fact that we should be relegated to the dungeon. We are united in Christ in His sufferings and His joys. His resurrection is proof that we can be resurrected from our present lives of sin as well as bodily resurrected into the heavenly realms in the future – fully justified and sanctified.
So what does it mean that we are seated in the heavenly places with Christ? For one, heaven is where our heart is. Our lives on earth will be lived for God’s glory, our time and treasure used to further the kingdom, and our minds set on things above, not on earthly things (Col. 3:2). We live in the power of God, exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit in supernatural ways that glorify Him rather than pointing to any personal merit.
Many look at the world as a place filled with tragedy and disaster and question the existence of an all powerful yet good God. But the fact is, none of us deserve salvation. Sure some may do great deeds in the eyes of man while others wallow in their sinfulness, but no one attains the glory of God. We only know holiness through the righteousness attributed to us through the blood of Christ.
I struggle with the thought that I would be counted worthy to sit in the heavenly realms with Christ. To merely allow me hang out just inside the pearly gates would be evidence enough of God’s great mercy and kindness. Whether Ephesian turning from ritualistic religion or modern man turning from worship of self, God’s grace is astounding. That he has both the power and the willingness to view us as He views his perfect Son is indeed evidence of his goodness and his omnipotence.