From the heavenly places, the realms of glory, have come to us benefits that I would never have known about if I had not come to know God. Eternal life that was given to me when I first trusted Christ as my Savior, has allowed me to know God and the Lord Jesus Christ to the extent of not only being able to communicate with them as acquaintances, but to love God and to share my life with Him. It was no accident because all the benefits of this new life began with Him directing His interest and love toward me. A spiritual awakening by the Holy Spirit has brought me from being spiritually dead to knowing God and to where I am now alive in Christ. This was no accidental nor incidental matter.
The Ephesian believers didn’t get any spiritual blessings from the goddess Diana. Before God saved them they could only give themselves and what they had to that false idolatry. So their morals were sacrificed to that evil god. Their goods were sacrificed to that empty idea. The beneficial principles of normal living were abandoned in the pursuit of the gratification of the flesh. The same problem remains today among many religions that people follow. The religion of materialism is never satisfied with what one gets. The religion of pleasure seeking can be pursued world-wide and will never stop trying to claim the time, attention and the goods of those who go after it. The false gods people have made from the imagination of strained minds has people killing each other in its pursuit; giving all they have and even their own lives to promote it. Poverty, anger, discontent, malice and nearly every evil known to man are claiming the minds and hearts of those who are dead in trespasses and sins.
To those who know God, there has come from His heavenly throne the blessing of salvation from sin and salvation for heaven. Now as children of God “by faith in Jesus Christ,” we are no longer aliens but sons and daughters of God because we have “received the spirit of adoption whereby we cry, Abba Father.” No wonder we bless God! Moreover, we have been forgiven of our sins which have been legally dealt with – past, present and future, through the sacrifice of Christ who was substituted in our place. He bore the punishment of our sins so that God is satisfied that justice has been served. Our sin problem has been justly dealt with and we have been “justified freely by His grace.” No wonder we bless God! Since coming to Him by faith in response to His grace, we are forgiven, given insight into the riches of His grace and have been indwelt by the Holy Spirit. The Spirit has given gifts to us to use in our lives for God. He has not only convicted us to awaken us to bring us from death to life, but He reveals Christ to us, guides us through the events of life so we can do God’s will, and He even teaches us about the future. No wonder we bless God! We have been empowered to do those good things we could never have done. We live in hope in this life of faith. We are assured of being with Christ forever. We have been given eternal blessings that far exceed the temporal blessings we have been given. No wonder we bless God!
None of this has come to us because we deserve these blessings nor because God is obligated to us in any way. It is all because of that wonderful blessing of being “in Christ.” We are accepted in Him. We live and move and have our being in Him. The emptiness of natural human life has been filled with abundant spiritual blessings because we are “in Christ.” “The God…,” the Source of all things, the Giver of all spiritual blessings, has directed His love to us through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Every “good and perfect gift” is from above. The new birth, our new nature, the new life we have, the new family we are in, the new home in heaven is ours because we are “in Christ. New power has been given to us over sin and to live for God because of being “in Christ.” The new nature we have been given enables us to enjoy what God enjoys because we are “in Christ.” We have a new character that makes us live consciously for eternal things, not just things that are temporary because we are “in Christ.” As a new creation “in Christ Jesus,” we share our life with Him who is our peace, who made peace, who gives us peace. As our Lord, He is the embodiment of our peace. As Jesus, He is the means whereby we have received peace with God. As Christ, He is the Object, the Center of our peace. What great and abundant blessings we have received from heavenly realms because we are “in Christ!”