June 8th, 2020 – Ephesians 1:7

Verse of the Day Devotion: Ephesians 1:7  In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace,   

This section of scripture starts with Paul declaring God our Father as blessed.  “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.” “Ephesians 1:3-6. 

Let us look at these verses for a moment.  In verses 4 and 5, many take this to be evidence of Calvinism.  Calvinism is the idea that God chooses whom He will save, and ultimately whom He will not.  However, we were chosen because of God’s foreknowledge and not because He chose us for no reason.  “For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.” Romans 8:29-30.  The word here translated foreknew means exactly what it sounds like, knowing beforehand.  Now, the idea of ‘knowing’ is an intimate knowing, not just knowing of Him.  “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?  And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.” Matthew 7:21-23.

And this salvation, granted to all of us but accepted by but a few, is a free gift from the Father.  It is not  something we earn by working for it.  If that were the case, it would not be a gift but a payment for work performed.  And since no one can live a perfect life, except of course Jesus the Christ, we are unable to earn our salvation.  In this we have a reason to rejoice for He gave us what we needed, not what we earned.  But again, not all have accepted.

Now to our focus verse.  “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.”  Ephesians 1:7.  What a beautiful verse.  This is a great cause for celebration for us who have accepted His work on our behalf.  First, we are redeemed through the blood of Christ.  He loved us so much, He was willing to send His only begotten son to die a torturous death to give us the salvation we had no access to except through His sacrifice.  The Son of God was willing to die on our behalf.  And through His death, we have received forgiveness of all our sins.  The penalty has been paid on our behalf.  It is as if we never committed them.  He did not have to do this, however, there is no greater love.  “Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13.  He gave Himself for us.  He is due all the glory, honor and praise we can give.  And I will add obedience.  “You are My friends if you do what I command you.” John 15:14. 

Christ gave His all for us, the least we can do is give our all to Him. 

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