Everything is in Christ, In Accordance with the Riches of God’s Grace

3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.

 11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.

All these things are in our Lord, Jesus Christ, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace, that he lavished on us!

(Ephesians 1:3-14)


The Bride of Christ

There are many pictures of the Bride of Christ in the Scriptures.  Lately, I have been captured by an encounter in the Scriptures between Jesus and a woman.  I believe this woman is a picture of the corporate Bride of Christ, and our focus today should be the same as hers.  The story is found in Luke 7:

Anointing His Feet

 36-39One of the Pharisees asked him over for a meal. He went to the Pharisee’s house and sat down at the dinner table. Just then a woman of the village, the town harlot, having learned that Jesus was a guest in the home of the Pharisee, came with a bottle of very expensive perfume and stood at his feet, weeping, raining tears on his feet. Letting down her hair, she dried his feet, kissed them, and anointed them with the perfume. When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man was the prophet I thought he was, he would have known what kind of woman this is who is falling all over him.”

 40Jesus said to him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”

   “Oh? Tell me.”

 41-42“Two men were in debt to a banker. One owed five hundred silver pieces, the other fifty. Neither of them could pay up, and so the banker canceled both debts. Which of the two would be more grateful?”

 43-47Simon answered, “I suppose the one who was forgiven the most.”

   “That’s right,” said Jesus. Then turning to the woman, but speaking to Simon, he said, “Do you see this woman? I came to your home; you provided no water for my feet, but she rained tears on my feet and dried them with her hair. You gave me no greeting, but from the time I arrived she hasn’t quit kissing my feet. You provided nothing for freshening up, but she has soothed my feet with perfume. Impressive, isn’t it? She was forgiven many, many sins, and so she is very, very grateful. If the forgiveness is minimal, the gratitude is minimal.”

 48Then he spoke to her: “I forgive your sins.”

 49That set the dinner guests talking behind his back: “Who does he think he is, forgiving sins!”

 50He ignored them and said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you. Go in peace.”

(Taken from the Message Bible.)

What does this story show you about the Bride of Christ?

Scripture says Whaaaaat????

Come to Me, all who [have it all figured out] and [have no needs], and I will give you [more prosperity].

Who says Christians must have everything figured out and be living a perfect life?  Not Jesus.  He has a special place in His heart for the sick, poor, and broken people of this world.

I’m glad I don’t have it all figured out, so that in my ignorance I can realize my need to live by His life and not mine.

Matthew 11:28  Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

Jon Zens: The New Testament Is Plural (Us) Not Singular (Me)

The article in the title was posted by Jon Zens on Facebook.  You can read the article here.

You can read more from Jon Zens at www.searchingtogether.org.

Romans 6:1-11 Paraphrased as Christ Speaking

In Jesus’ Voice

What are you saying to Me?  Are you going to keep on sinning knowing the richness of the gift of grace that I have given to you?  Please, never say this to me! 

I want you to be confident that you are completely dead to sin and death!  Those are the old ways of life.  I have given you a new life that flows from my very being.  I have made you part of Me.  This is why you are baptized into My name. When you are submerged in water all of your sin that was crucified by Me on the cross is buried forever; when you rise from the water you enter a new creation that is sustained by My life, including your new life!  Certainly, if you are buried with me unto death, I will not leave you in the grave to suffer and ruin the plans that were made before the foundation of the world.  My greatest desire is to fulfill My Father’s dream to bring you through that death into divine fellowship with us.

Dear child of mine, please understand that My life is the only antidote for sin.  The cross was the only way for me to save you from that incurable disease.  Sin is so powerful, that your cursed body had to be completely destroyed and made new for My life to take root in you.  Those of you who accept the antidote, a blood transfusion with Me, will be set free from the disease of sin!

Do not fear death!  It is good news for you because it is the gateway to living a new life with Me.  I conquered death itself.  It has no part in My new creation, and it has no power over Me or you.  I want you to know through your entire being that you are surely dead to sin, and thereby are alive inside of Me!

Reposting the first post: The Unsearchable Riches of Christ

7I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God’s grace given me through the working of his power. 8Although I am less than the least of all God’s people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. 10His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11according to his eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.       — Ephesians 3:7-12

The unsearchable riches of Christ.  Unsearchable.  Other translations say unfathomable, unending, boundless, incalculable, exhaustless, untraceable, riches.  Treasures.  All stored up in Christ.

And then there’s this mystery, which is also in Christ.  And what is it?  “In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.”  In Him.  In Christ.

There seems to be a lot of stuff “in Him”.  Riches.  Treasures.  Purpose.  Freedom.  And it is exhaustless…

So here’s a little sliver of cyberspace where I hope we can at least begin to fathom the Unfathomable One, to trace out the riches of the Untraceable One.  No gimmicks.  Nothing for sale.  No agenda.  No left vs. right, donkey vs. elephant, peace vs. war, KJV vs. NIV.  Just Jesus.  Join me if you like.  Comment.  Share.  Contribute.  It’ll be fun!


A Christ-Centered Outline of Philippians

Experiencing Christ—Taking Christ as Our Living
Pattern, Goal, Power, and Secret


  1. Introduction (1:1-2)
  2. Living Christ to magnify Him (1:3-30)
    1. Fellowship for the furtherance of the gospel (1:3-18)
    2. Magnifying Christ by living Him (1:19-26)
    3. Striving along with the gospel with one soul (1:27-30)
  3. Taking Christ as the pattern and holding Him forth (2:1-30)
    1. Joined in soul, thinking the one thing (2:1-4)
    2. Taking Christ as the pattern (2:5-11)
    3. Working out our salvation to hold forth Christ (2:12-16)
    4. A drink offering upon the sacrifice of faith (2:17-18)
    5. The apostle’s concern for the believers (2:19-30)
  4. Pursuing Christ to gain Him (3:1-21)
    1. Serving by the Spirit and not trusting in the flesh (3:1-6)
    2. Counting all things loss on account of Christ (3:7-11)
    3. Gaining Christ by pursuing Him (3:12-16)
    4. Awaiting Christ for the transfiguration of the body (3:17-21)
  5. Having Christ as the secret of sufficiency (4:1-20)
    1. Thinking the same thing and rejoicing in the Lord (4:1-4)
    2. Excellent characteristics in living (4:5-9)
    3. The believers’ fellowship with the apostle and the apostle’s secret of sufficiency (4:10-20)
  6. Conclusion (4:21-23)

Subject and Outline by Witness Lee

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