by Pastor Adekoya Akinbode
O the joy, the gratitude and the peace that both permeates and emanates from a saved soul that fully comprehends the works, and the riches of redemption! Such a soul feels eternally indebted to God and revels in singing the praise of Him Who did it all without leaving a stone unturned.
In all honesty, the worth of our redemption in Christ Jesus and the gift of eternal salvation that we have received cannot ever be evaluated or estimated. It is worth so much that all the treasures of this world couldn’t suffice, but the blood of Christ. What a treasure we have in Christ! It is a great disservice to ourselves to deny ourselves the knowledge of the truth concerning what we have in Christ by being too lazy to study.
The book of Ephesians is such a treasure chest filled with the full revelation of God’s plan, as executed in Christ, and where we belong.
Ephesians 2:1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins;
Until redemption, we were dead, separated from our Source (God) and alienated from God’s provisions for His own. We were darkness, in darkness and under darkness, absolutely lost! Our lives were under the influence of the forces of darkness by which Satan rules the world. We were helplessly under the control of the power of the air until the works of redemption was accomplished and the grace of God that brings salvation appeared! It is worthy of note that we found ourselves in such a sorry spiritual state because of the transgression of one man. By the obedience of yet one Man, we are set right with God!
In Adam, we died. In/through the resurrection of Christ, we are made alive!
The only reason why Jesus cried on the Cross was because, for the first time, He as a man experienced what it means to be without the Father (disconnected from the very source and the essence of life!), bearing our sins in His body. To think we were to live without the Father all our life. Or, to think anyone in this world is living without the Father (God)? A terrible state of existence that surely is! We were once subject to that deplorable state of existence until the resurrection. In His death we died, in His resurrection we gained life eternal!
In Christ, we are reconnected back to our Source. Set right with God. Made to sit at His right hand together with Jesus. There’s no treasure, no honour and no achievement that is in anyway near all these!
I can say it a thousand times and over again for all to know and be persuaded thus, that all we have and all we are in Christ are all accomplished works of God, with no inputs from us. He did it all, we get it all by faith in Christ Jesus!
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
I don’t think he/she is saved: anyone who boasts of what he/she did to be saved other than believing in the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ.
God did it, grace makes it ours, through faith!
We cannot do or add to the done-work of redemption. Otherwise, we undo what is done concerning us. That is falling from grace! For instance, we live right; we do good works but not so that we can be saved or to keep us saved but because that’s what we are originally made for, until death occurred in Adam.
Doing good is our natural attribute as children of God. That couldn’t have earned us forgiveness of sins or bring us salvation. If it could, Jesus wouldn’t need to come, die and had to be resurrected. So, the necessity and the requirement for salvation is such that we can never and ever meet up with if left for us. Love propelled God to get the deeds done, and to show how rich He is in mercy, He graciously called us into His finished work, even while we were yet sinners!
Now, we are no longer dead in His sight; we are made alive!
We are no longer Godless, no longer hopeless; we know our fate and place in God’s future plan!
We are no longer far away; we are made nigh; granted access; made to sit together; made one with the fellow saints and fellow partakers in God’s provisions for His own.
All because of Jesus Who is our peace and Peacemaker before the Father.
BUILT THROUGH THE SPIRIT!
Ephesians 2:20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:
22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.
In Christ, we have a new foundation. We don’t struggle with the old! (Let the redeemed of the Lord say so!) We belong in a new family lineage where all we have are blessings and no curses! (Let the redeemed of the Lord say so!)
Each time I read the 21st and 22nd verse of this chapter, I remember God’s vision to have a temple raised up to the heavens wherein He domiciles in His fullness without leaving His throne. The imprint of this vision of God in, though, the fallen men inspired the idea of the tower of Babel! Yes, God desired such “building” but it won’t be by human hands, but by the Spirit.
When a redeemed of the Lord admits to the finished work of Christ, he/she is set on the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, to be built-up together with fellow saints as holy habitation of God, by the Spirit.
On the contrary, those who are still found in religious struggles to be right with God are simply rejecting the new foundation, which is Christ. They can’t be built up, that’s why such individuals don’t grow in the things of the Spirit. It doesn’t matter how deep they are or sound in the scripture. For as long as they’re still upholding what Christ has broken down; admonishing themselves with what Christ has abolished, I mean, holding on to the law of commandments rather than turning to the Lord and His finished work of redemption, they remain cut off from the riches of redemption which includes peace, assurance of salvation, guaranteed access to the Father through Christ Jesus and so on! They continually strive to fill the vacuum by rigorously engaging in religious practices.
If I am to summarize what I think the entire book of Ephesians is passing across as a message, it is this: Christ did it all; just believe and have it all!