By Gloria Wessner
This week’s Faith Forum is going to explore an excerpt from the book of Ephesians in the scriptures. It was written by the apostle Paul to the people who lived in Ephesus, an ancient city near the Aegean Sea in present day Turkey.
Paul wrote this to the Ephesians as a reminder of what they had once been compared to who they now were in God because of what Jesus Christ had done for them.
I chose to put this into this week’s Faith Forum because it shows what we can be in God if we choose to become a member of God’s family and live the way we were meant to live – in other words, in close day to day relationship with him and for him.
“…He (the devil) is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature.” This phrase describes those who have not yet experienced a changed heart by believing that Jesus is God’s Son and that he died for them so that they may become a member of God’s family.
“By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else.” Contrary to some modern thinkers, we are all born with a nature that wants to do the opposite of doing the right thing-the opposite of what God meant for us all to be originally at the beginning of time. “But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead (spiritually; unable to respond to God) because of our sins (‘wrong doings’), he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead.” This is HOW we even have a chance or even a crack at having the kind of life we were meant to have all along. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved! (rescued, spared from life apart from God)) “For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus.”
“God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation (rescued from a life without God) is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (Ephesians 2:2b – 10 NLT) We are God’s masterpiece! Wow, that makes life worth living! Anyone who feels THAT way about me I figure deserves my attention and consideration…If this life with God is something that you would like to consider or to find, feel free to write me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be glad to discuss any questions you might have.