May 1, 2008

The Centrality of Christ in all the Christian’s Blessings

Posted in Christian life, Gospel, Jesus Christ at 5:51 pm by Dan Lowe

Have you ever noticed the centrality of Jesus Christ in all the blessings which God freely bestows upon His people?

Ephesians 1 provides us with an exquisite description of some of the blessings which are ours in Christ…

Ephesians 1:3-14 (ESV) – 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, 8 which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight 9 making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ 10 as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. 11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, 12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

1) The Christian is blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places “in Christ.”

2) We are chosen by God the Father “in Him” before the foundation of the world.

3) God has predestined us for adoption as his sons “through Jesus Christ.”

4) We are the recipients of God’s grace “in the Beloved” (i.e. in Christ.)

5) We have redemption “in Him…through His blood”, resulting in the forgiveness of our trespasses.

6) God has made known His will for us “in Christ.”

7) We have a spiritual inheritance set aside for us “in Him.”

8) We hope “in Christ” and, therefore, we will bring glory to God.

9) After hearing the gospel message, we believe “in Him.”

10) “In Him” we are sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance stored up in heaven.

“In Ephesians 1, (the great doctrines described) are spokes in a wheel which centers on Christ….Paul is drawing out the fullness of the grace which becomes ours when we become Christ’s” (Sinclair Ferguson, The Christian Life, Banner of Truth, pg 23.)

“It is in Christ we receive all the blessings of the Christian life.  We are chosen in Him.  In Him we are predestined to be like Him.  In Christ we are called, and in Him born again to newness of life (I Pet 1:3.)  In Him we have faith, and receive the Holy Spirit.  In Him we are brought into the privileges of brotherhood in the family of God.  In Christ is our sanctification (I Cor 1:30.)  When we see Him, we will all be made like Him, for when He appears in glory, we shall also appear with Christ (I Jn 3:2, Col 3:4.)  From beginning to end all blessings are ours in Christ” (Sinclair Ferguson, The Christian Life, Banner of Truth, pg 25.) 

 

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