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FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL
 
 

FROM THE SERVANT GENERAL

OUR THEME FOR 2014
(Part 17)

THE PRAISE OF HIS GLORY


January 19, 2014
Today’s reading: Ephesians 1:3-18


In order to know God’s plan and properly discern His will for our lives, we need “a spirit of wisdom and revelation resulting in knowledge of him.” (v.17b). This is why God gives us themes for the year, and we expound on the meaning of these themes. Though God’s workings are always mysterious, God does allow us to understand enough of His plan in order to move forward according to His will. “In all wisdom and insight, he has made known to us the mystery of his will in accord with his favor that he set forth in him” (v.8b-9).

What are the aspects of God’s plan for us and for the life of the world?

One, God “chose us in him, before the foundation of the world, to be holy and without blemish before him.” (v.4). God chose us! God chose us from all eternity! It is our eternal destiny! We are to be holy as He is holy. How can this happen? God “destined us for adoption to himself through Jesus Christ, in accord with the favor of his will” (v.5). We are to meet Christ and to live Christ. “In him we were also chosen, destined in accord with the purpose of the One who accomplishes all things according to the intention of his will” (v.11). God intends it, God will accomplish it.

Two, to get everything moving according to His plan, God sent us His Son Jesus. “In him we have redemption by his blood, the forgiveness of transgressions, in accord with the riches of his grace” (v.7). Jesus is our Savior. By the blood he shed on the cross, we have forgiveness of sin. Jesus restores us to the Father.

Three, we are not only restored to the Father, in whose image and likeness we are created, but we are to be perfect as the heavenly Father is perfect. God calls us to the very high calling of holiness. As such, being impossible on our own, God provides what we need, as He “has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavens” (v.3b). We are provided fullness of grace, the sacraments, the Bible, and our community for formation and support.

Four, as we walk the path of holiness, we become fitting instruments that God can use to reach many others. So God reveals His plan to us so that we might participate in carrying out His plan. It is “a plan for the fullness of times, to sum up all things in Christ, in heaven and on earth.” (v.10). Thus we evangelize. We share Christ. We let people hear “the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation” (v.13a). We look to the Spirit’s work in them, such that they “have believed in him, were sealed with the promised holy Spirit” (v.13b).

Such is “our inheritance toward redemption as God’s possession, to the praise of his glory.” (v.14). We are redeemed, we belong to God, we exist to praise and glorify Him. What is the purpose of our life? We “exist for the praise of his glory” (v.12a).

There is much work to be done. We are already empowered to witness. Understand our theme, realize our call, grow in holiness (be saints), and revel in the glory that is to come. “May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones” (v.18).

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