Ephesians 1:13-14 – When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
“When the Holy Spirit takes up residence in our lives, we too can cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The same Spirit that proceeds from the relationship between the Father and Son is implanted in us…A Christian who lives a life empowered by the Spirit will be reminded of who Jesus is and what He taught, of His character, and their identity in Christ. The Spirit gives us power to speak the gospel and demonstrate the gospel, to be disciples and make disciples. Essentially, the Holy Spirit compels us to glorify God.” [Brad Watson, Ephesians, Kindle loc. 248]
1. In today’s verses, we find the words: seal, promise, deposit, guarantee. How do they speak of the security that God desires us to have through the Holy Spirit?
2. How can you make space today to listen to what the Holy Spirit tells you about Jesus, your identity, and God’s glory?
Let’s ask for the Holy Spirit to fill us today, and for our hearts to follow the Spirit as He reminds us and guides us into the truth of God.
Father, thank you for giving us the Holy Spirit. We say yes to the prompting of the Spirit, that our lives may bring glory to You today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Let’s also sing this as our prayer: “Anointing” by Jesus Culture (Click here).
Ephesians 1:9-10 – He thought of everything, provided for everything we could possibly need, letting us in on the plans he took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long-range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth.
“Many people are asking, ‘Where is history heading?’ A careful student of the Bible will see that God is in control. Amidst the world’s confusion, God’s omnipotent hand moves, working out His unchanging plan and purpose…God is not absent. By His providence He sustains us, and behind the scenes He is working out His divine purpose…Someday all the sin and rebellion of this corrupted universe will be destroyed, and Christ’s Kingdom of righteousness and peace will rule forever. So don’t be discouraged by what you see in the headlines every day. God is at work, and someday Christ will rule.”
[Billy Graham, Hope for Each Day, p.513]
1. How is your life a testimony that God is indeed at work, bringing all things under Christ?
2. Being assured of God’s sovereignty, in what ways can you participate more in the work He is doing?
Sovereign Lord, thank you that You are at work and in full control. May the goodness of Your kingdom come in greater measure in our cities and in this world. We offer our lives as your churches, use us to accomplish Your work! Come Lord! In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Let’s declare the praises of our faithful God: “Way Maker” sung by Leeland (Click here).
Ephesians 1:3-7 – All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.
During a recent difficulty, I was feeling bad for myself and downcast. In prayer, the Lord asked me: “What have I not given to you?” I was struck because it wasn’t necessarily what I wanted to hear – I wanted to be assured that God saw what a difficult time I was facing, which He indeed did. But the Lord knew what I most needed in that moment was some realigning, to shift from a position of lack and self-centeredness, to my true position in Christ.
1. According to today’s verses, what has God given us in Christ?
2. Where in your life do you need to shift to your true position in Christ?
Father, help us to live today in our incredible position in Christ. With new boldness, we claim all you have given us in Christ. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Ephesians 1:5 – God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.
“Our heavenly Father didn’t need us, but He wanted us. This unconditional love and acceptance of God is the essential foundation for our holy living…There are no illegitimate children of God; none of us were unwanted or unexpected accidents.” [Neil Anderson, Who I Am in Christ, p.77]
1. How does it help your understanding of God and how He views you to know that with love and delight He wanted and decided to be in relationship with you in an ongoing way?
2. In what areas of your life do you need to know in greater measure that God is your Father, who is ready and committed to walk with you, and that you are His child, fully belonging and accepted by Him?
In prayer, declare the truth of Ephesians 1:5 over your life. Welcome your Heavenly Father into the areas that need to experience His intimate care and love.
Thank you God for your intense desire that wanted and planned and willed to bring us into Your family through Jesus Christ! You are our Heavenly Father and we are your children – help us to live more deeply within the intimate relationship we have with you. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Let’s praise God for adopting us as His very own sons and daughters:
“Who You Say I Am” by Hillsong (Click here).
Ephesians 1:4 – Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.
“God’s love did not begin at Calvary. Before the morning stars sang together, before the world was baptized with the first light, before the first blades of tender grass peeped out, God was love. Turn back to the unwritten pages of countless eons before God spoke this present Earth into existence, when the Earth was ‘without form and void’ (Genesis 1:2) and the deep, silent darkness of space stood in stark contrast to the brilliance of God’s glory and His cherubim and seraphim. Even then, God was love. Before the worlds were created, He knew all about us and the need we would have someday for Christ to die for us. So in His love ‘he chose us in him before the creation of the world'(Ephesians 1:4). God does not change—and neither does His love. He loved you before you were born . . . He loves you now . . . and He will love you forever. Will you love Him in return?”
[Billy Graham, Hope for Each Day, p.192]
1. What was God’s motivation in choosing us?
2. How does God’s unchanging love anchor you to live today and face its challenges?
God, thank you for your unchanging love for us. Within the security of Your love, we respond with our lives, in surrender, trust, and worship. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
With thankful hearts, let’s worship God:
“On and On” by Phil Wickham (Click here).