20. Ephesians 1:1-4 Introduction~The Blessings of Redemption XX. IN THE HEAVENLY PLACES IN CHRIST Part 1.
November 29, 2017
Ephesians 1: 1 “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful IN CHRIST JESUS: 2 GRACE to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blesse ind us with every spiritual blessing IN THE HEAVENLY PLACES IN CHRIST, 4 just as He chose us IN HIM before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5 He predestined us to adoption as sons THROUGH JESUS CHRIST to Himself, ACCORDING TO the kind intention of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His GRACE, which He freely bestowed on us IN THE BELOVED.” (NASB)
This may sound just a little bit morbid, but Christ Jesus our LORD did solemnly bequeath to The Church His life. In other words, He willed that we should have and live His life. But thanks be to God He is Risen, and by the power of The Indwelling Holy Spirit by faith we can successfully live out that life in this world, and in the world to come. So, what we received in this divine transaction was His Eternal Life…and that Life was manifested, and the Apostles saw it and they have testified and proclaimed to The Church that same Life, which was with the Father and is now manifested to us in the person of The Holy Spirit (1st John 1:2). When you think about it in human terms, it would seem He got the short end of the stick, because on the cross Christ took on to Himself our life. It should be obvious that His Life is a much higher form of life than ours. The Greek word for human life is psuchē; the English version of that word is psych, which is the root word for psychology. If you would look up the word psuchē, you would find that it is the same word for the soul, or human life.
In verse four of Ephesians chapter one Paul proclaims that He chose us IN HIM before the world ever was, to be Holy and Blameless before our Father God. But how could we possibly be either of these things when the Bible specifically states in Isaiah 64:6 (KJV) “But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.” You could say we have nothing to offer before Almighty God that would be of any worth. On the other hand, because of His great mercy, His intention toward us is quite the opposite:
Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the Lord, “Though your sins are as scarlet, They will be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They will be like wool.”
Adam and Eve were once “holy and blameless before Him”. However, after the fall their innocence was lost, and as we all know we inherited their failure. I found something the other day in The Apostolic Bible Polyglot with Strong’s Numbers. You see when it comes to studying The Word of God I’m like a kid in a candy store, I just can’t seem to get enough. This Bible is like The Septuagint, which is the Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible. The Polyglot included the Strong’s Greek numbers. So, if you wanted to know what the Greek counterpart for a specific Hebrew word or phrase might be, this would be a good resource. For instance, above I mentioned that the word for human life or soul in the original Greek is “psuchē”. But that’s life as we have life apart from God. I won’t give you the complete Thayer Definition because it would take too much space. The next post will elaborate a little more on psuche relative to Adam and Eve before and after The Fall. To be continued…