11 This was in accordance with the eternal purpose which He carried out in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and confident access through faith in Him.
In the last passage, Paul was talking about his mission. Today we read his validation. Let’s notice, however, that in verse 12 he says “we” not “I”. What does this mean for us? It means we are no different in regards to being empowered by God to carry out His will.
Last night I was watching part of a sermon by Steven Furtick. Ironically, he was teaching out of Ephesians, but I do not remember which verses he was talking about. He was reminding us that the same Spirit that was in Christ on earth, the same Spirit and power that raised Jesus from the dead, is the same Spirit we have inside us today. It is the gift, the guide, the counselor that He promised us once Christ ascended into heaven. So why do we live as if we are still of this world?
A saying I have repeated a few times now: “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings having a human experience.” Quite honestly, I think that is a very difficult thing to understand. I mean, yeah, we can “get it,” it sounds cool, but do we understand it in an over washing epiphany sense? Can we grab a hold of that and make it part of us. If so, this will change our understanding of our place in the world altogether. I’m not even saying I fully grasp it in this way.
Boldness and confident access through faith in Him. Are we ridiculously courageous through faith in Christ? 2 Timothy 1:7 tells us, “7 For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.” However, we balk at the idea of telling someone about Christ. We cower at the thought of standing up for what is right. We hesitate when we feel an urge to help someone out of selfless love. We have been gifted with the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome this! Why are we not living up to our potential?
Just like any addiction I have encountered, I believe we are afraid to let go of our old selves. We are afraid to let go of the part of ourselves that keeps us connected with this earth, because we do not know what we will become. As humans, we generally like to be in control of things, some moreso than others (myself included). We feel defined by that which we have control over. What we don’t realize, however, is the fact that we have been redefined by Christ and His Holy Anointing by the Spirit. Yet we continue to fill the old wineskin with new wine.
We have become complacent in our newness. All it takes to realize what God has in store for us is boldness in faith. Do something ridiculous! How many people jump off of a bridge, out of an airplane, or into an ocean with the faith that their equipment is going to work and save them from death? How much more can our God save us? He wants us to act in our faith. Just as when Israel first crossed the Jordan to begin their conquest of God’s Promised Land, the water did not rise until they took the first step.
How are you acting with timidity in your life today? Where is the boldness God has gifted you with to take the land He has promised? What action can you take that is ridiculous to this world but in tune with God’s will?