Sunday, 24 July 2016
…and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, Ephesians 2:6
By taking this verse with the previous one, we can see Paul’s intent more clearly –
“…even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”
His words are tying our state directly to the work of Christ.
- He was crucified for our sins and was buried; we were “dead in trespasses.”
- He was brought back to life because He had no sins of His own; we were made alive together with Christ (because our sins were dealt with through His cross).
- He was raised from the tomb; we were raised up together.
- He was seated in heaven; we are made to sit together in the heavenly places in Him.
What occurred with Christ is what has happened to us in the same order; the two parallel, Christ being the pattern for those who would follow after Him. These actions are described by Paul in the indicative. They are a simple state of fact concerning what has occurred. He has raised us up, and He has made us to sit together. In God’s dealings with us, it is an accomplished fact. We are merely awaiting its actual occurrence. Christ’s resurrection and seating in the heavenlies guarantees our entrance there as well.
In fact, Vincent’s Word Studies notes that when the word “together” is used for the translation, it is ambiguous. To clarify its meaning, he notes that the Greek more fully reads, “Even now we sit there in Him, and shall sit with Him in the end.” The deal is done. Just as Christ is seated on His heavenly throne, we are – ipso facto – seated there with Him.
These things are, as Paul notes, done by God “in Christ Jesus.” The term is used to show that we are not simply granted these privileges because of His work, but somehow at a distance. Instead, they come to us because we are intimately connected to Him; united to Him through faith. What occurred with Him, indeed occurs to us as well.
Life application: We may, from time to time, do something so utterly stupid that we might feel that we have blown it with God – once and for all He has rejected us because of our failings. Paul’s words show that this is incorrect. By faith in Christ, we are united to Christ. God could no more reject us now than He could reject His own Beloved. Deal done. The victory is secure.
Lord God, we see the marvel of Your wisdom displayed all around us. The intricacy of what You have created is beyond imagination. And yet, the Bible shows us that Your attention is far more directed to Your redeemed than to anything else. In sending Jesus, You have opened a path back to You. We can come to the throne of grace and find help in our time of need, and we have the absolute assurance that we will someday be seated there with Him. Thank You for this cherished knowledge. Thank You for Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.