Christ gives life, breath, and purpose to the Christian. He is the Savior and sum total of our existence. Ephesians 1:3-6 meticulously enumerates the preeminence of Jesus and the extraordinary blessings found in him.
Paul writes, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3, NKJV). “Blessed,” in some form, is used three times in this verse for emphasis. God is blessed and being in the church, the body of his Son, subsequently blesses us (Ephesians 1:22,23). We have all that we have because of Christ.
We are “blessed with every spiritual blessing” which means a continual flow of blessing coming to the child of God. It is a perpetual pipeline of goodness springing from God himself.
The children’s song says, “The blessings come down as the prayers go up.” However, the prayers do not earn the blessings. Prayer in the life of a Christian cannot make God beholden to man. The blessings are a consequence of salvation. Being a saint, separated from the world in the kingdom of God, we enjoy the richness of a God who daily rains blessings down upon his children (Malachi 3:10; Psalm 23:5).
The word “spiritual” means, “pertaining to or belonging to the Spirit.”/1 Thus, “spiritual blessings” signifies those which “properly pertain to the life of the Spirit.”/2 This perpetual fountain of blessings is a natural extension of being in Christ. It cannot be found anywhere else. This wealth cannot be borrowed, purchased, or stolen. It can only be found in the blessed life of a Christian.
These spiritual blessings are “in the heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3). “Christ is exalted to the heavenly realm, and thus those who are ‘in Him’ belong to that heavenly realm.”/3 And they are here for us now. “These gracious gifts are not simply future benefits but are a present reality for us, since they have already been won for us by God’s saving action in Christ.”/4
God took great delight in choosing us to be his children (Ephesians 1:4). His love for his children is overwhelming. We should all feel the love and gentleness of an omnipotent father.
We were not chosen because we were worthy, but because we were in Christ. Paul uses the phrase, “in Him,” over 160 times and 40 times in Ephesians alone. God did the work to choose us; we just have to be obedient and stay close to his side, always bringing glory to Christ in the process (Ephesians 3:20,21).
Christians are “accepted in the Beloved” by “the praise of the glory of His grace” (Ephesians 1:6). “To say, then, that God’s grace is truly glorious means that it reflects his glory, his revealed character, and is therefore worthy of our praise. If God’s choice of men and women to be his sons and daughters arises from his grace, then the final goal of this divine predestination is that it might resound to the praise of that glorious grace.”/5
Being accepted in Christ is such a wonderful blessing. He will never forsake us and will love us perfectly forever (Hebrews 13:5; John 14:1-6). Why would we ever consider being outside of this family? Become a part today (Acts 2:37-47).
1/ Peter O’Brien, The Letter to the Ephesians, Pillar New Testament Commentary, ed. D.A. Carson (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1999), 95.
3/ F. F. Bruce, The Epistles to the Colossians, to Philemon, and to the Ephesians, New International Commentary on the New Testament, ed. Ned Stonehouse, F.F. Bruce and Gordon Fee (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1984), 254.
4/ O’Brien, 97.
5/ Ibid., 104.
Christ is the reason for our existence.