June 26, 2018
THE GEORGIA CAPITOL DEVOTIONAL - 26 June 2018
Ephesians 1:3 - 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,
The Greek word translated “blessed” is used only in reference to God; it refers to Him as the one who is worthy of adoration, praise, and worship. In his very character and being, God is blessed. God the Father is identified in the context of Jesus Christ. The primary emphasis for the redeemed is upon Jesus Christ and his substitutionary atonement on behalf of sinners.
The believer’s relationship to God the Father is also addressed. The redeemed have a relationship to God the Father by virtue of their relationship to Jesus Christ. God the Father is seen in the context of his relationship to Jesus Christ, and believers are seen in the context of their relationship to Christ because it is through Jesus Christ that believers have a relationship to God the Father. God is the one “who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.” He who is blessed in his very character and being bestows blessings upon others. God acts (blessing) and believers are the recipients of the action. All spiritual blessings come from God but they do so only in Christ Jesus. Throughout this passage, the phrase “in Christ” or “in Him” is repeated which is to emphasize the uniqueness of the gospel, whereby God saves in Christ and in no other manner.
The one who is the God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ regards all believers as sons by virtue of their relationship with Jesus Christ. Jesus remains the unique Son of God in a manner that is true of no other, yet those chosen in the Lord receive the prerogatives of sonship. They receive a role as sons in the context of God the Father. As a redeemed person, the believer may truly address God as Father.
Verses 3-14 use some redundancy. Grace is referenced as freely bestowed, which is true by definition. When the redeemed stand before the presence of God, all attention will be focused on the Lord to the effect of praising his glory. One of the evidences of true redemption is that those in Christ are in that process already. The redeemed are to have an appreciation of the overwhelming greatness of God’s grace and be living in a manner glorifying to Him. The essential character of grace is expressed as “freely bestowed . . . in the Beloved.”
The redeemed have redemption through the blood of Christ. The present tense verb, “we have,” indicates that redemption is a continuous possession; it is not hypothetical. There is no reason for suspicion with regard to God’s goodness and grace. The riches of his grace are lavished upon believers. God’s character is to bless, and redemption is his gracious provision. The spiritual blessings in Christ include: heavenly citizenship, election, adoption, redemption, forgiveness, revelation and wisdom, completion, inheritance, and glorification. The evidence of God’s spiritual blessings is confidence, empowerment, hope, peace, assurance, and sanctity.
The purpose for God’s choosing and blessing is “to the praise of His glory.” How does one become a child of God? Hearing the gospel, believing the gospel, and being sealed by the Holy Spirit. What a glorious inheritance and opportunity granted to those who hear, believe, and are sealed.
Your Missionary to Georgia's Leaders,
Ron J. Bigalke, Ph.D.
Capitol Commission Georgia
Capitol Commission is prepared to encourage and enable local churches to participate in reaching our capitol communities for Christ (1 Tim 2:1-4). We only need to hear from you, if you have not already contacted us. We also seek to enlist individuals, businesses, and churches to become strategic partners with us in this ministry (2 Cor 8:3-6). Our success as a ministry is based upon God blessing all facets of the ministry, which certainly includes partners in this ministry. We earnestly desire to engage those who desire to participate in the ministry by offering their time and talents (Matt 25:20). If you have not already done so, join us and experience the joy of bringing hope, light, transformation, and truth to those who constitute our capitol communities.