Summer Challenge Hotspot #3
…every spiritual blessing IN Christ… Ephesians 1:3b
This week’s hot spot begins with a song inviting the Son’s soothing Holy Spirit to saturate us with comfort and hope as we grant Him permission to speak to our hearts, minds and souls
Last week Galatians gave insight to the fulfillment for our theme of Soaking in the Son: But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh… If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit (Galatians 5:16, 25), Faith working through love (Galatians 5:6).
We have a full-time challenge to grasp this miraculous work of God! So did the Ephesians! It just may be that Ephesians is the most beautifully written declaration in all of the New Testament, revealing the Fathers’ will, way and work for all who believe and live by “faith working through love.”
The tiny preposition in appears to have little significance amidst the huge scope of the English language, but for the reality of living the intention of the Father, in is always the key link (Ephesians 1:3-5). Paul is adamant that we who claim to belong to Jesus have but one life to live: IN Christ or OUTside of Christ (Ephesians 2:1-3; 4:20). A great deal of teaching is given reminding them that the OLD life, from which they have been called out in order to enter into the NEW, are two distinctly separate ways of living. Paul gives reference in over twenty different statements how they used to live, how they once were and how they formerly walked. It has never been God’s will or way to live in two! When we choose Jesus there can be no other gods, no other center and no other source. Jesus must be enough for us. Christianity isn’t Jesus PLUS….. Christianity is ONLY JESUS! With frank love-filled truth, Paul admonishes the holy ones of Ephesus (and us): Put off living in the old self- center, demanding your own will and the old ways of living, lying and lusting through the deeds of the flesh. As a new creation live in your new Christ-center. Put on the new man now in the likeness of God, created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.
But now you have been united with Christ Jesus. Once you were far away from God, but now you have been brought near to Him through the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:13). For Christ Himself has brought peace to us (Ephesians 2:14a). Oh, what Good News! It doesn’t matter where we’ve been, who we are, what we’ve been into, who we married or who our parents are. The blood of Jesus has covered and cleansed the “once weres”! “Now all of us can come to the Father through the same Holy Spirit because of what Christ has done for us (Ephesians 2:18). Oh the glorious assurance the old “used tos” can can stay in the past. Every moment of every day we can now live IN the “what is.” May the eyes of our hearts be enlightened to the Father’s promise, pledge and guarantee for what is abundantly beyond all that we can ask or think, through the indwelling Holy Spirit of Jesus – if we allow Him all of our heart, body, soul and mind for His home.
Yes, the days are evil; so they were in Ephesus (Ephesians 5:15-18; 6:10-28). Satan still roams and seeks to make you his target of hatred towards God, attempting to steal all that Jesus is within you. A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil….put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil (Ephesians 6:10,11,13). Jesus is Victor…. All the time!
Below you will find beautifully inscribed guaranteed blessings of our inheritance IN Christ Jesus, written by Kelly Hallahan during her personal “Soaking in the Son!”
For an extra challenge read John 14-17