That’s supposed to be the comforting message of Ephesians 1? Yes. It’s comforting because of a second foundational truth:
God is very fond of His children.
He’s “…blessed us with every spiritual blessing…” (Eph 1:3)
Which means what?
First there is the blessing of being chosen (Eph 1:4).
Do you remember what it was like in middle school to be the last person picked for the kickball team? Do you remember not getting an invitation to the birthday party that everyone else was going to? How did you feel when your long shot college sent you a rejection letter? What was it like hunting for a job all those months and having doors slammed in your face?
Can you imagine what it is like to be chosen? Chosen, neither for what you have to offer nor for how you stack up against the competition. In fact there is no competition because there is no contest. Remember, it’s not about you. It’s all about the One who chooses. Can you believe that He has chosen you for no other reason than it is His pleasure to include you?
Second, there is the blessing of holiness (Eph 1:4).
There is this idea that holiness is all about what you don’t do, as though the most holy thing in the world were to be inert so that we might not accidentally be bad. Holiness is about being set apart for special use. The things we are called to refrain from are trivial compared to the good works we are called to, good works which God has prepared us for (Eph 2:10).
Third, comes the blessing of adoption (Eph 1:5).
Did you know that you are not simply in a one to one relationship with God? Of course you have such a relationship, but you also have so much more. You have been adopted into the world-wide family of God. Every one who calls Jesus “Lord” is your sister or brother – no matter where they live or what their ethnicity. Never are you alone, because you have family.
Fourth, the blessing of redemption (Eph 1:7).
It sounds odd – we think of redeeming a coupon, not redeeming people. It is the idea of buying back something that is held by another. A store redeems a coupon by exchanging monetary value for that little slip of paper in our hands.
Jesus exchanged something of great value in exchange for our souls. You’ve been bought back, and you are free from slavery to guilt, shame, fear, anxieties, or anything that binds your heart.
Fifth, the blessing of knowing the mystery of His will (Eph 1:9).
And these five only scratch the surface. These five give us reason to pause, to reflect, and to offer praise.
Soli Deo Gloria
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