In his advice to the Ephesians, Paul praised God’s plan of redemption through His Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Paul thanks God for His incomparable great power for us who believe in a prayer that asks for the Spirit of wisdom to know God better (Ephesians 1: 15-23). Writing from jail, this letter to the Ephesians is most optimistic and encouraging with meaningful examples of advantages believers have in Christ Jesus. Because Paul’s advice is timeless, it is excellent reading that can strengthen our faith in the reading that can strengthen our faith in the redemptive power of God through His Son, the perfect sacrifice for our sins!
Are we as sinners sometimes in desperate situations? Sin separates us from God. Paul warned us in Ephesians that we need to understand that without Christ we are spiritually dead in our sinful lifestyles. Other problems stem from being without Christ as we may follow the ways of the world instead f following God’s ways. Those who do not accept salvation are under the influence of Satan or the spirit that worketh in disobedience. By choosing not to follow God’s laws we can easily be influenced by Satan for evil purposes. Without God’s saving grace, we as humans are constantly tainted by sin. Also being naturally selfish we want to fulfill our own desires (Ephesians 2:3). We can re-evaluate verse 3 to learn that every human has a sin nature and all of us have sinned. Without Christ, there is no hope for sinful humanity. Without a Redeemer we are doomed! Why would God provide such a wonderful salvation for us? Paul tells us it’s because of God’s mercy and love (verse 4), His grace (verses 5, 8) and His kindness (verse 7). Verse 4 tells us that even while we were still in sin, God loved us. What a mighty God we serve! We need not boast about anything or exalt ourselves because our redemption is solely His doing. We have no power to change our plight.
Thank God that He is rich in mercy. What does it mean to be alive in Christ? Being saved by God’s grace and being born again spiritually, we became alive in Christ Jesus and our lived in Him by the power of the Holy Spirit. In other words our focus is no longer on things of this world, but on things of God. Our position with Christ gives us the rights, privileges and authority that come with being a child of God. So much about our salvation brings glory to God our Father. Verse 7 tells us that because of God’s kindness to us, through Jesus, other people will see and know of His grace, goodness and salvation to those who will accept His offer. How can we become a new creative in Christ? God can transform us into a work of art or an image of His beloved Son, Jesus Christ, who suffered that we might receive this great gift. Although we can never earn salvation on our own God did design us for god works. It may not do much good to just believe that we are saved; we must learn how to live our new lives as God’s children. God can empower us by the Holy Spirit to do good works for His glory!
How can we glorify God today? What are some immediate benefits of becoming a part of the body of Christ? Our relationship with Christ Jesus should be a visible testimony of our new life in Him. Living a life of good works also reflects appreciation for the free gift of salvation. Are we helpless with modern weapons and technology with no divine intervention? Are we including God or are we over-impressed with the magnitude of our knowledge? Let us continue to pray to be strengthened by God’s word to understand that sin is a poison that is 100 percent fatal to the human soul! Know that salvation is for everyone and share the good news of God’s grace with others.
Mrs. Gladys R. McElmore, a resident of Norfolk’s Middle Town Arch Community, is a New Journal and Guide Freelance Contributor on religion. She is a native of Essex County, Va.