During Fall 2017, I taught Calvary Monterey the book of Ephesians. During the series, I also wrote about Ephesians in sixty-plus short, devotionally styled posts. Each Thursday, through 2018, I will release a post. I hope you enjoy. For the entire series, please visit nateholdridge.com/united-for-unity-posts.
“That you may know…what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints…” (Ephesians 1:18).
Paul, here, is in the middle of a prayer for the Ephesian church. His desire for us is more wisdom and knowledge, the enlightenment the Holy Spirit gives to our hearts as He interacts with our spirits. First, he prayed for us to know of God’s calling, inheritance, and power.
Now we come to Paul’s second prayer for the church, that we would know of the inheritance God has given us. Paul referred to the inheritance as “riches” six times in Ephesians. This wealth is not material, but spiritual. The greatest of all of our spiritual blessings is Christ Himself. In another place, Paul referred to “the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27). The fact of Christ indwelling His people is the deepest of all mysteries and all riches. Here, Paul prays for the church to know these deep riches.
The Christian life is often a battle of beliefs. Will we become convinced God’s spiritual riches are superior in every way? Paul’s prayer seems to wish we would become convinced. But our eyes of flesh see the stuff of flesh, so we are often drawn to the physical world with its physical blessings. We must allow the Spirit of wisdom to interact with our spirits, to rewire our convictions and beliefs. We must come to a place where we confess God’s blessings as the most significant blessings.
When teaching a child about American money, one confusion is inevitable. The penny is the least valuable coin; this makes sense to the child for it is merely bronze, while the other coins are silver. The quarter is larger than the nickel and dime, so the child easily understands it to be more valuable than the others. The one dollar bill has a smaller number than the five, twenty, and fifty dollar bills, so, it stands to reason, it is less valuable.
But, inevitably, there is one breakdown in this teaching, for the dime is smaller than the nickel, yet more valuable. This often perplexes the child, but with instruction they eventually understand. So it is with the Christian life.
The Spirit must teach our inner man of that which is most valuable. This conviction must enter our minds, affecting our lives. Imagine the contentment which would flow from this conviction. Joy, satisfaction, and love would flow from this corrected value system.