|Volume 22 Number 5 May 2020||
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in 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. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:3-14)
If God the Father has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places, and has chosen us before the world was formed, that we should be holy and blameless before him in love, if He has adopted us as sons in Christ Jesus and granted us redemption and forgiveness of sins through the blood of His only begotten son, and furthermore, He has sealed us with the promised holy spirit, then I ask you this. What better life could we have as we live and toil on this earth? There is no greater life than this.
For this we owe God our love, our fidelity and full obedience to His instructions as set forth in the Word of God, which also gives us the duty to take that very same message to those about us who are lost and dying daily in their sins. Have we received the message as Paul delivered it to the church at Ephesus? To live out His word, there is no greater life.
Stands Against You
The prophet Isaiah led a school of prophets (Isaiah 8:16-18). Two of his students were Nahum and Micah. I say this because the phrasing in these two books is very similar to Isaiah’s use, and their ministry is in the appropriate time frame for Isaiah’s graduates.
Micah was well-known in Judah, and his writings were used in Jeremiah’s time to show the lawfulness and legitimacy of Jeremiah’s work (Jeremiah 26:16-19). Micah was a champion for the poor and oppressed. He railed against the false teachers of his day. He gave further prophecy of the coming Messiah; it was Micah’s writings (Micah 5:2) that indicated to Herod where Jesus was born (Matthew 2:4-6).
Yet, Micah did all this without the support of his wife. Micah was a man with a family, but his text at the end strongly indicates that, rather than support him, his wife actually worked against him in his efforts to spread God’s Word (Micah 7:5-10). Jesus quoted Micah to let His disciples know that, as with Micah, so it can be with us in our service to the Father (Matthew 10:34-37). Sometimes, even as you seek to do your best, and surrounded by family, yet you may find yourself all alone in devotion to God. The Lord says that this should not discourage us. Instead, be prepared to walk alone hand-in-hand with God.
We must love our family and always seek their welfare, caring for them and being the examples they need. However, they must never be allowed to compromise our service to the Lord. Never!