—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. —Ephesians 2:6-7
From the beginning God has taken the initiative to save us. He gave the promise of redemption to Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:15), made covenant with Abraham (Genesis 15), renewed that covenant to Isaac (Genesis 26:2-4) and Jacob (Genesis 28:10-22), and to all their generations. God said “I will . . .” and they said “we believe You.” Even this power to believe God’s covenant promise came not from man’s heart, but from God, a gift from Him enabling us to know and love Him who is the covenant-initiator and the covenant-keeper. The covenant language in the Old Testament was constantly pushing us forward: “I will, I will, I will.” But now in Ephesians, we have a clear description of the fulfillment of the old covenant promise and the blessings that flow from the gift of a new covenant with us, initiated by God in Christ Jesus.
Now, we hear God speak in the reality of past and present, “I have . . . in Christ Jesus.” The Apostle Paul writes as the Holy Spirit gives God’s Word to the Ephesians and to us.
Ephesians 1:3-14; 2:1-7
He has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.
He has chosen us before the foundation of the world to be holy and blameless.
He has predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself—according to the kind intention of His will for the praise of the glory of His grace, freely bestowed on us in the Beloved (in the love of His dear Son).
In Him, we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses according to the riches of His grace. Now enjoying lavish grace in Christ, we are no longer our own, but have been bought by Him from the slavery of sin and death.
In Him, He has made known to us the mystery of His will that everything is summed up in Christ, things in heaven and on earth.
In Him, we have an inheritance according to His will to the end that we who believe would be to the praise of His glory.
In Him, we who have believed the Gospel have been sealed in Him by the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance.
In Him, we have been made alive together with Christ Jesus.
He has raised us up with Him.
He has seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.
Is it any surprise to us that Ephesians 2:6-7 tells us not that God will raise us up and seat us with Christ, but that He already has raised us up and seated us in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. This work is done. Why has God done this? Ephesians 2:7 tells us—so that in the coming ages He might show the immeasurable riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus!
From the foundation of the world, God set His love on us who were a mass of corruption, dead in our trespasses and sins. Such unlikely objects of the kind intentions of God’s will! But this is precisely why He did it—to show forth to everyone in every age His lavish grace. Who is like our Holy God? Can you comprehend such lovingkindness? He would give His only Son to die the death we deserved on the cross—that we dead sinners could be in Christ Jesus, have Him forever—and in Him have new life, a new heart, faith, salvation, forgiveness of sins, adoption into the Beloved of God and the countless blessings of a heavenly inheritance!! Secured by His blood, sealed by the Holy Spirit! Let us praise Him today and forever!
Read through the Scriptures referenced in this article. Write down your prayer of praise to God for His mercy and covenant of lovingkindness to us in Christ Jesus our Lord.
How can knowing the glorious benefits of life in Christ Jesus be experienced in effectual prayer? (From Charles Spurgeon: If God loved you when you were dead in your sins, will He not answer your prayers now that He has made you an heir of heaven in Christ Jesus? Do not doubt Him.)
Listen to the hymn, In Christ Alone by Stuart Townend and Keith Getty.