Tuesday, September 18 2018
After the death and resurrection of Jesus we hear about Saul who in his religious zeal began pursecuting the followers of Christ. We know the story well, how Saul became Paul. Saul encountered the living Christ (Acts 9:4). Like much of our lives we were "blind" to the love of God until Holy Spirit revealed the living Christ to us. The religious structure of our day still denies the power of the cross to save, heal and prosper and are fighting against what is meant to set them free.
Paul, by divine revelation received the mystery of this dispensation of Grace. Prior to Jesus' death we lived under the law. Jesus came to fulfill that law through his death on the cross. He paid all our debt in full that the law required for our sins. We then entered into a time of His Grace. Saul became a picture of that Grace. Through unbelief he attacked the very thing that was about to set him free. He was commissoned by the Lord to reveal this mystery to the church. Paul through revelation began to reveal to the church this new dispensation of Grace. God choose Paul to be an instrument of his grace so that Paul through this revelation could reveal it to his church.
Ephesians 2:1 - And you He made alive, who were dead in trepasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the prince of power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved) and raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His Grace in his kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith and that of yourself it is a gift of God.
Paul begins in Ephesians by revealing to us what we have IN CHRIST. He reveals the mystery that was revealed to Him and what Grace we now walk in because of the cross. Ephesians was written to the church who was not walking in its authority and living far below its intended purpose. Paul lays out in Ephesians 3 this mystery that was revealed. What is that mystery? That through the cross God would bring together the Jew and the Gentile under the same promise. That the cross reconciled that separation and made us one. We became His body. He restored the horizontal union between Jew & Gentile to create one new man...His Body, the fulness of Him who fills all in all. The truth is revealed that the Jew & Gentile both are partakers of His promise In Christ. This dispensation of grace gathered all things together in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth.
With all things being reconciled In Christ we now can preach the unsearchable riches of Christ and to make ALL see what is the fellowship of the mystery which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden In Christ. Here....God restored the vertical union between man and God. That the purpose of His mystery was to bring together ONE new man (His Church) IN CHRIST revealing to the principalities and powers in heavenly places this mystery. Through HIS church the manifold wisdom of God is on display to the principalities and powers in heavenly places. Ephesians 2 tells us that we are seated IN CHRIST far above all principalities and powers. It would seem that we have this GRACE message all wrong. Paul clearly is telling us that the mystery revealed is the church IN CHRIST having all authority and that we are revealing the manifold wisdom of God to the principalities and powers. Colossians 2:15 tells us that Jesus on the cross disarmed principalities and powers and made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them. That means through what Jesus did on the cross disarmed them...they no longer have any rule or reign.
So the grace that Paul is talking about in Ephsians 3 is that we as HIS church have been reconciled as one IN CHRIST and are revealing that wisdom of God to bring all things together through Jesus and making that known to the principalities and powers that keep his church anemic, sick, and weak. We have all the authority to tread upon that serpent that through deception is lying to the church that HE is still in control of this fallen world. Sadly most of the church still operates under the thought that whatever happens is meant to be and we have no control because God is soveriegn and does whatever he wants. WE as HIS church have all authoriity to rule and reign because we are seated IN CHRIST in heavenly places FAR above all principality, powers, might and dominion. Wake up CHURCH! We don't have to settle for sickness being from God. We have been reconciled IN CHRIST! We now are seated in heavenly places having authority over sickness, disease, poverty and ALL the works of the enemy that the original fall created. Stop allowing the enemy to steal, kill and destroy because we are ONE body revealing the manifold wisdom of God to these principalities and powers.
Paul then goes on to pray that we would all be strengthened and all may understand the love of Christ and what he did for us and that we might all be filled with the fullness of God. Can you see what Christ truely did for us on the cross? Yes, through faith we are saved and will enter into heaven when we die but it is so much more than that. We are IN CHRIST...we are the fullness of God and we have ALL authority in this life NOW because we are seated IN CHRIST in heavenly places. That means it is up to us to create on earth what is in heaven. We pray that all the time. The Lord's Prayer..."on earth as it is in heaven". Do we really understand what we are praying? We have the authority to execute the plan of God on this earth and take authority over that which tries to stand in its way. It is all up to us. We now can live again in that perfect garden because he took the keys away from the enemy that Eve gave away and now it is up to us to tend to that garden and keep the serpent out of what belongs to US. God's GRACE was that even when we were sinners he sent his son to die on the cross to redeem us back to the Father and give us our positional place of authority back in the garden.
That is the message of salvation. Not just that we go to heaven...but what Jesus did reconciles us back to the Father's original plan and purpose. Jesus wants the reward of his suffering. He died to redeem all mankind. We as HIS church need to see what we walk in so that we can set other's free. We need to reconcile all of God's children back into the body of Christ...back into fellowship with the Father. We now have the ministry of reconcilitation (2 Corinthians 5:18). Restoring all things back to the Father.