The BLESSINGS of being “in Christ”
Ephesians 1:1-14 contains one of the most glorious theologies in the entire Bible. This passage covers the entire sweep of salvation, from its beginning in our adoption as God’s children to its consummation in the receiving of our eternal inheritance. We are also shown the roles each Person of the Trinity has in the process of regeneration.
- The Father chose you to be His child.
- Jesus redeemed you with the riches of His grace.
- The Holy Spirit sealed you for a guaranteed inheritance.
- When you realize your rescue, you respond with praise.
Personal and Group Study
1. If you are a child of God, how do you picture your relationship with your heavenly Father? Have you ever prayed and used the name “Abba”?
2. The Holy Spirit living inside us is a guarantee of our eternal life (2 Corinthians 5:1-10; especially verse 5). When doubts enter your mind about your future, how do you cast out fear? Are you living with the mindset that you are fully God’s possession?
3. Discuss vertical, horizontal, and diagonal redemption. Which one have you struggled with the most in your life? Do you struggle with trying to “do something” to earn your salvation? Do you have a hard time eliminating the guilt from certain sins you have committed? Do you carry your cross well?
4. Read through all of Ephesians and write down each time it states “in Christ/Him”. Then read what it says right before or after. This is your identity. For example, we have “spiritual blessings in Christ” (1:3), “chosen in Him” (1:4), “in Him we have redemption” (1:7), “purpose in Christ” (1:9), “hope in Christ” (1:12), “sealed in Him” (1:13). Pray for these truths to become a reality in your life.
Applying the Bible
5. Fill in the blank: “When I die a little to self, my ____________ gets better” (Matthew 16:24). Where do you need to carry your cross to accomplish Christ’s purpose?
6. When is the last time you have paused to let the salvation story overwhelm your soul? What can you do this week to thank God for choosing you, redeeming you, and sealing you?