Updated: Sep 8, 2021
Frank Friedmann | IOM Staff Writer
We do not Know What We Have
If I put a million dollars in a bank account in your name, but never told you about it, would you still be a millionaire? Absolutely, there is a bank account with a million dollars in it in your name. Isn’t that wonderful? No, not really. Because you do not know of the riches I have given you, you do not live out of those riches, but continue to live like a pauper.
That is much the state of the modern church. God has blessed the body of Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus (Ephesians 1:3), but the church at large does not know of those riches and continues to live as paupers constantly begging for more. We pray for forgiveness, when we have already been forgiven of ALL our sins (Colossians 2:13). We pray for more strength, when Almighty God Himself, lives inside us (Colossians 1:27). We pray for more love, when He has already told us He loves us with an infinite love (Jeremiah 31:3). It seems to me that the Holy Spirit anticipated this phenomenon would occur.
In Ephesians one, Paul made an incredible declaration concerning this issue. In Ephesians 1:3-14, he informs us of all the blessings that we have in Christ. He was so excited, this is actually one, long, run on sentence in the Greek! It was as if he simply could not contain himself as he pondered all that God has done for us.
But then do you know what Paul did? In Ephesians 1:14-20, he prayed that we would receive a spirit of revelation so that we would know the hope of our calling. In other words, he prays that we would understand what we have, point being that we can have and not know what we have. As those who have had the Spirit open our eyes to those blessings, our present ministry is really “Evangelizing Christians” - helping our brothers and sisters in Christ also come to understand what we have in Christ. But is that enough? No, not really.
Let’s go back to my gift of a million dollars to you. Let’s say that after several years, I finally tell you that you are a millionaire, that years ago I put a million dollars in the bank in your name. You now know you are a millionaire. Isn’t that exciting? No, not really. In your mind, you reason that 1) I don’t have a million dollars to give you; and 2) That if I had a million dollars, I certainly wouldn’t give it to you! The end result is that you don’t believe what you now know, because it is too good to be true. So, even though you now know you are a millionaire, you continue to live as a pauper because you do not believe what I have told you.
Again, this is the state of the modern church. When we tell them how good God is and
all that He has done for us in the New Covenant, they simply refuse to believe it. They fail to believe they are saints, and no longer sinners. They refuse to accept their forgiveness and insist they have to continue to ask for it or they won’t be forgiven. They shudder at our telling them they are righteous, even though II Corinthians 5:21 makes it very clear that Jesus has made us righteous. What are we to do if they will not believe what we tell them?
By all means, continue to pray for these dear people that the Holy Spirit will open their eyes to the glory of the finished work of Jesus. Even when Jesus Himself taught the disciples, without the Holy Spirit teaching those men it was just speaking and hearing, and not teaching and learning (John 14:25-26).
I do believe though, that the very best thing we can do is experience by faith the life that Jesus has brought us, and then express that life to others. This life in the Spirit is clearly defined in Galatians 5:22-23. as a life that is full of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Remember, these are not behaviors that we try to accomplish out of our resources, but the incredibly dynamic life of the Holy Spirit Himself placed into union with our own life. As we walk by faith, the dear people we are trying to teach with the glory of the New Covenant will actually get to experience the reality of the New Covenant in and through us. This is the greatest gift that we can give them, to let them see the gift of God manifest in our lives. Our lives can offer proof of our riches in Christ, just like I can produce a bank statement to prove the riches I put in your bank account.
Make sure my friends, that we not only teach of this life, but that we live it, to the glory of Jesus, Who is saving us with His LIFE!
Wow. And again, I say, WOW! Make your Amen count. Comment below.
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