You were made to live in heavenly realms with God on this earth. Sin separated us from our heavenly inheritance. However, Jesus brought us back into the Kingdom of God to experience all that we were created for. Now, by the Holy Spirit, we can enjoy our place in God’s Kingdom while living in the natural world.
Ephesians 1:3-14, “3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.
11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.”
Ephesians 2:6-7, “6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.”
FOURTEEN THINGS PAUL WAS THANKFUL TO GOD FOR:
- Blessed with Every Spiritual Blessing, (v. 3).
- Chosen to be Holy & Blameless, (v. 4).
- Adoption to Sonship, (v. 5).
- Glorious Grace, (v. 6).
- Redemption & Forgiveness, (v. 7).
- Lavished with Wisdom & Understanding, (v. 8).
- Knowing God’s Mysterious Will, (v. 9).
- Unified with Christ, (v. 10).
- God’s Plan, (v. 11).
- Made to Praise God’s Glory, (v. 12).
- The Gospel, (v. 13a).
- Marked & Sealed by the Holy Spirit, (v. 13b).
- Guaranteed Inheritance, (v. 14a).
- God’s Possession, (v. 14b).
- BLESSED: God’s divine favor (Numbers 6:22-27).
- SPIRITUAL REALMS (PLACES): The place where all spiritual beings reside; God, angels, demons and mankind (Ephesians 6:12).
- SPIRITUAL BLESSINGS: Since God is Spirit (John 4:23), His blessings and favor are spiritual in nature but they impact the natural world (Hebrews 11:3).
- All: All (Psalm 23:1 & 2 Peter 1:3).
HOW HEAVEN & EARTH COLLIDE
GOD & QUANTUM PHYSICS
GREAT QUOTES ON GOD’S IMMANENCE
- “Whatsoever is, is in God, and without God nothing can be, or be conceived,” Baruch Spinoza.
- “God is the sum of all being and there is no being without his being. All things are in Him, and He in all,” Jonathan Edwards.
- “[God] must be present in every single creature in its innermost and outermost being, on all sides, through and through, below and above, before and behind, so that nothing can be more truly present and within all creatures than God himself with his power,” Martin Luther.
- “The marvelous truth is, that being the Word, so far from being Himself contained by anything, He actually contained all things Himself. In creation He is present everywhere, yet is distinct in being from it; ordering, directing, giving life to all, containing all, yet is He Himself the Uncontained, existing solely in His Father. As with the whole, so also is it with the part. Existing in a human body, to which He Himself gives life, He is still Source of life to all the universe, present in every part of it, yet outside the whole; and He is revealed both through the works of His body and through His activity in the world,” Athanasius.
TWO WAYS TO BE REWARDED WITH YOUR BLESSINGS
- FAITH: Hebrews 11:1-3;6, “1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. 2 This is what the ancients were commended for. 3 By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.” “6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”
- OBEDIENCE: James 1:22-25;2:26, “22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.” “2:26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.”
ILLUSTRATION 1: Don’t think of your self as being all alone doing most of the work because you’re trying to “work towards your blessings.” This is the wrong world view, seeing yourself and your blessings as something, “outside of you.” Instead of believing that you are in Christ, in heavenly place and blessed with every spiritual blessing!
ILLUSTRATION 2: Believe you are who God said you are and do what He said you can. Then He will reward you with the blessings in the natural world, that He has already given you in heavenly paces. You, as the Bride of Christ, will show forth the goodness of God.
FURTHER EXPLANATION: We are only rewarded (or credited) with God’s blessings by our faith and obedience but we are not the source of them. The Christian who is neither faithful or obedient and thinks since they are blessed with all spiritual blessings deserve to be rewarded in this life will miss all that God has for them. However, the one who believes and takes God at His Word will enjoy the riches of Christ’s blessings!
Everyone in Christ is blessed with every spiritual blessing, but only those who have faith and obey His Word manifest them in this life. The believer’s blessings are guaranteed because of Jesus, but the believer’s rewards depend on their faith and obedience.