- [Eph 1:3] Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
- [Rom 9:23] And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had before prepared unto glory,
- [Eph 2:7] That in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
- [Col 1:27] To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
Paul said, [Eph 3:8] ĎUnto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christí. The Scriptures use the adjective Ďunsearchableí only a few other times. It applies to:
- Godís great doings (Job 5:9)
- Godís judgments (Rom 11:33)
- Godís greatness in general (Psa 145:3)
To this list is added the riches available in Christ. Unsearchable! Past finding out. Itís no wonder that Paul kept praying for understanding in the churches. For example: [Eph 1:17,18] ĎThat the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints...í.
When was the last time you heard someone in church pray for the things Paul prayed for? The typical prayer request is for somebodyís relativeís sickness, someoneís friendís bereavement, someoneís safety in traveling...etc. I do not want to minimize the need to pray for all our concerns, but why donít we pray for what the Spirit of God considered important? It is sad that the Body of Christ is so ignorant of what we are in Christ, and the riches we have in Him.
Listen to C A Coates:
ĎNow, let me ask, what is the gain of being IN CHRIST JESUS ? In other words, what are the revenues of this new and exalted position? If the Queen gave some poor man a high position, everybody would expect her to furnish him with means to stand in that position with comfort to himself and credit to her. It is not less so with God, and when you take this new position you find that there are wonderful revenues connected with it. What vast stores of spiritual wealth are unfolded to our gaze in the words, "But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: that, according as it is written, He that glories, let him glory in the, Lord."
ĎI fear that many of us are like the Indian spy who received from General Washington, for services rendered during the American War, a parchment entitling him to a considerable pension. He hung it round his neck as a charm, and many years after, when he was dying in great poverty, it was found there -- the written authority for him to have so many dollars a year until his death. He had never drawn a cent of the money, and though nobody could question his title to it, he had been no better off than if he had been without it. Would it not have been well for that man to have had some good friend to make him acquainted with the real value of his parchment, and to see that he got the good of it?í
Paul told us, [2 Cor 6:1] ĎWe then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vainí. The faithful spy received that valuable gift from General Washington in vain. We are in danger of losing Godís precious gifts as well, through our spiritual ignorance and unbelief.
Consider [Eph 1:3] ĎBlessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christí. How many spiritual blessings does that say that we have? All spiritual blessings. Think of some spiritual blessing -- the greatest spiritual blessing you can imagine. The Word of God says you have it, if you are in Christ. And what staggers my mind is that in the next verse, Paul says that we were chosen for these blessings, even from before the foundation of the world.
Consider what Peter wrote: [2 Pet 1:3-4] ĎAccording as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that has called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.í How many things have we been given that pertain to life and godliness? All things. What kind of promises have been given us? Exceedingly great and precious promises.
Note, however how the Holy Spirit by Peter says that we are to come into possession of these riches: Ďthrough the knowledge of Him that has called us to glory and virtueí. Thatís why Paulís continual goal in life was, íThat I may know Him...í. Thatís why Paul kept praying for knowledge for his converts, that their spiritual eyes would be opened. Thatís why he said: [Rom 6:6] ĎKnowing this, that our old man is crucified with Him...í. Thatís why we need to saturate ourselves with the Word of God, especially the church epistles. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of God, we are told. Knowledge of God and His word brings faith, and faith brings the riches: joy, peace, victory -- all the spiritual blessings.
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said,
You, who unto Jesus for refuge have fled?
In every condition, in sickness, in health;
In povertyís vale, or abounding in wealth;
At home and abroad, on the land, on the sea,
As thy days may demand, shall thy strength ever be.
Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid;
Iíll strengthen and help thee, and cause thee to stand
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.
When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of woe shall not thee overflow;
For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,
And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
When through fiery trials thy pathways shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply;
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.
Even down to old age all My people shall prove
My sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love;
And when hoary hairs shall their temples adorn,
Like lambs they shall still in My bosom be borne.
The soul that on Jesus has leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
Iíll never, no never, no never forsake.