Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Beyond Salvation

Alan Knox said in his blog, The Assembling of the Church, that his church was soon going to study the book of Ephesians. In that regard, did anyone have any favorite verses to share?  Well, I had more than a verse is mind.  This is the comment I left...

I love this book! How do I pick a favorite verse or even a phrase? It's the whole thought and intent I love: the mystery of the gospel made known to Paul by special revelation, not known to other generations, and now revealed to us.

What is this 'mystery of the gospel', or 'the mystery of His will'? Isn't salvation the greatest gift there is to know? No! Neither was salvation a mystery not revealed to other generations. Is it that by grace we have been saved and not of works? No! Far from it! Rather, it is what is now available to those who are saved in this church age.

Through salvation, we already have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms. It can't be that. Through salvation, we are already seated with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. It can't be that. Through salvation, we already have redemption in His blood, forgiveness of our trespasses. It can't be those either.

Then what?! What could possibly be more than salvation by grace while we're still on earth and awaiting our heavenly bodies and inheritance?! Is it merely that we love each other and worship God? What a privilege, but no, it is not those either.

This is what... and it is far MORE abundantly than ALL we could possibly ask, think, or imagine!  It is the strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth and fullness of God! It is to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge! It is that Christ will dwell in our hearts through faith, and we will be filled with His indwelling Spirit. It is that He will manifest Himself in us!

Perhaps all these things are summed up in this verse: "This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church. (Ephesians 5:32 ESV)"  It is through this profound mystery that we grow up in Christ, that we mature and move beyond the milk of the word and sink our spiritual teeth into the meat of the word.  If it were just salvation, it wouldn't be profound unless we artificially inflated it.

Don't take the verses out of context. Don't read the verses in this book quickly and say, "I know that already." Instead, let us humble ourselves and be as nothing, so that He may exalt us at the right time. It's ALL about Him! Let Christ and His Father come and make their home in our hearts! Amen!

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