Waking with The Word | Ephesians 3:4-7
:4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; :5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, :6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. :7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
Our verses today tell use about the distinguishing graces that mark ever Christian. I have purposely included verse seven to put us in mind of what the verses following deal with. Verses 4-7 deal with our distinguishing graces and verses 7-11 deal with our differing graces. We'll leave our differing graces for another day and deal with our distinguishing graces today. We as born again Christians are united with a bond closer that that of our own earthly families. We all have the same Lord, the same faith, the same baptism, the same God and Father of all, the same hope and the same Spirit. We are so closely connected that we are called the body of Christ. Closer than a family bond but a bond as close as the finger is to the hand. These things that connect us are the things that every Christian has in common. The Spirit, our Hope, Our Lord, The Faith, One Baptism and We all have the Same Father.
If you are saved then you have the Holy Ghost of God dwelling with you. In Chapter 2 Paul deals with the same idea of our oneness in Christ and He compares us to a building fitly framed together. the purpose of this building is to be a habitation of God through the Spirit. As Christians who have been born of the Spirit, we all have the same Spirit of God residing with us, sealing us, admonishing us, pressing us to be more like Christ, pointing our hearts and minds toward Christ. God's Spirit is the invisible link that connects me to other Christians, Christians from other countries, Christians from other denominations. Christians who view things much differently than I do. But there is a undeniable link to other true Christians. We can fellowship, if not at church, then at least in conversation. The Spirit of God unifies us as The Children of God and presses us all in one direction, to be formed into the image of Christ.
We also share a common hope. Hope is the thing that keeps you going. Men can endure horrible seasons of pain so long as there is hope. If a man loses all hope, he has lost any reason to exist. We as chistians have a great hope that reaches beyond the bound of this mortal life and into the eternal. Our hope is in Jesus Christ and He lives eternally, He conquered death, hell and the grave. Our hope goes beyond death and gives us hope of eternal life. Because Jesus lives, I will live, Because Jesus conquered, I will conquer. Because Jesus went to prepare a place for us, He will return again and receive us unto himself.
Peter said it like this:
1Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
We are united by a common hope that reaches from into the eternals and we are persuaded that neither death nor life nor any other thing can separate us from the love of God.
We are united by the Lordship of Christ. In the heart of every Christian there is a allegiance to the Christ. Some may be babes in Christ while others have grown and move to the meat of his teachings but all are under his Lordship and care. The ministry of Christ as Lord is twofold and we most often consider our service to Him when we think of His Lordship but the second area of Lordship is in His care for us. It is true that fro someone to have a Lord it means that they serve that Lord, But the Lordship position a man holds over another man isn't determinate on how that Lords subjects serve Him. That Lord may have very faithful servants and he may have very burdensome servants, but He still has the same responsibility to care for and provide the same care all of His subjects. I want to do my very best to be a faithful servant and that is one aspect of Lordship but I want to highlight the other side of Lordship and that is the responsibility of the Lord over His servants. There has never been a better Lord than the one we serve. He is completely just, merciful, righteous, fair and forgiving. We never have to worry about him raising his hand against us in a fit of rage or dealing unfairly with any of His subjects. He clothes us, He feds us, He loves us and all his subjects will have to testify that theirs not another whom I would ever dream of serving. If you are born again He is absolutely fulfilling His responsibility to you as Lord, Are you fulfilling your responsibility to Him as your Lord?
His Lordship unites us in the common ground of his care for his people. I meet people, even here in Africa, that testify of his kind care and faithfulness to meet their needs, in the same ways He has meet mine so many times before.
We will save the other distinguishing graces for another day.
According to the riches of His Grace!!