Thought for the Week - 2nd DecemberPastor Gareth Watkins
Ephesians 1: 22-23
22 And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church,
23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all.
Paul is writing to the Ephesians. God put all things under Jesus’ feet. He put all things under Jesus’ control. God made Jesus the head over all the church. The church is us – the believers. God made Jesus the head over all the people in the churches. It’s not a man, it’s not an organisation – it’s Christ Himself.
He made us to be filled with the Holy Spirit and to be His body here on earth. That body represents Jesus Christ in the society in which we eat, breathe and move. Our function is to be part of His body in the place where we are. We are to be part of that body, filled with the Holy Spirit and under the headship of Christ, doing what He wants us to do in that place.
Christ is the head of the church. He should be the head of each of us in that church. He’s not talking about an organisation or denomination, it’s about the individuals who form the church. He should be over it all. Jesus Christ is over all things.
God didn’t abandon Christ on the cross. God allowed Him to go through this period of time, allowed Him to be a sacrificial lamb. But afterwards He gave Him wonderful gifts, one of which was to become the head of this body. That’s a wonderful gift that He gave to Christ. We can’t comprehend what God has given to Christ in that way.
To be the head of this body, He has to be the head of all things.
Yet I wonder what some people think of what Christ is in relation to them. Is He just a good man? Is He just a good story? Or is He the head over all things, which God has written in this scripture for us. He put all things under His feet, to be the head over all things to the church which is His body.
Who is Christ in relation to you? Is He the head over all things in your life? Do you believe Christ can be the head over all aspects of your life? Either we give Him all or we’re holding a bit back.
This scripture tells us that He put all things under Christ’s feet, which includes all aspects of our life. That includes everything about us. Paul is telling us this so we can mature and grow up. In some places, finding Christ is the end of the journey. But that’s the only the outset of our Christian walk. He takes us into new realms, new times, new challenges, new relationships, new circumstances etc.
Ephesians 4: 14-16
14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,
15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ –
16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together…
We should no longer be children. Do we find strange types of doctrines in this world? Yes, there’s a lot of them around. They can come in subtly or as an affront. That there are many ways to God. That the broad way is okay. That all love is under grace, that all love is good. Suddenly, doctrine becomes important. Paul says we shouldn’t be like children, carried about by every doctrine.
We have to allow Christ to be the head of the doctrine that governs our lives. He can’t be anything but. Every doctrine needs to be held unto his authority. That’s what God wants. We’re not meant to thrash around in this Christian walk around and hope for the best. We’re meant to quietly grow, mature, become stronger, take our part in the kingdom that God has for us. This part is held together by Jesus Christ Himself. We’re not going to be blown about by the craftiness of men.
Paul knows the problems that are going to come to us. Paul knows about growing up straight and true. He knows the things that stop us fulfilling our walk in God. He knows the purposes that God has planned for our lives. He says we should no longer be children tossed to and fro. Everything should come under Jesus, as He is the head.
What areas of our lives aren’t under God?
Use of our money?
Use of our time?
Use of the tongue?
It comes between you and God. God’s called us to be part of His kingdom. If we don’t put everything under Him, what happens? We have our own free will and can do what we like. Paul is telling us that Christ wants us to put all things under Him. The benefit to us is that we won’t be like little children tossed around by doctrine and tricks of men.
God put all things under His feet. We can kick against it. We can cry out, we can argue. But the fact is that God has still put everything under Jesus’ feet – whether we agree, disagree, argue – these things are still under Jesus’ feet. We have to submit ourselves to that authority. If we don’t, we don’t obtain those blessings that would be ours as children of God. He is still in that place.
All things are under the Lordship of Jesus Christ:
All things have to come under the Lordship of Jesus. Why? Because He’s been made Lord over all.
Anything kept back in some sense would be considered a sin. If we’re not bringing everything under His Lordship then it would be a sinful thing in some sense. Even though the thing itself might not be wicked, the fact we’ve held it back not placed it under the Lordship of Christ, is sinful. We haven’t yielded it to God. The motive of our heart isn’t right before God.
Christ comes into the individual life. He’s promised to help us, lead us, lift us up, and strengthen us, in all areas of our life.
John 14: 16-18
16 And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever –
17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.
18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.
How can Christ come to every one of us and be in us after He’s been resurrected and ascended? The answer is – through the Holy Spirit. Every person needs the Holy Spirit in them. It’s Him who ministers to us the words of Christ and the love of God. What a wonderful thing that God is promising! God is promising – and Jesus is speaking the words of God – that He will send another person to be with us whoever we are and wherever we are. The Holy Spirit will be with us. If we’ve yielded to God, He’ll be with us, and in us, and He’ll help us.
He knows we’ll face challenges. He knows we’ve got weaknesses, failings and need lifting when we’re down. He’s promised another – a Helper – who’ll be with us forever and will bring us a spirit of truth.
If we’ve yielded to him, the truth will be evident. Listen to the testimonies of the believer who find Christ with them in the most challenging and darkest of times. That helper that Jesus has promised is with us, and is evidenced by the things that come out of our lips. It’s in us.
When we go through troubles and difficulties, we yield everything to Him. We hold nothing back. He will send another helper. He will never leave us or forsake us. No longer an orphan! Sometimes we can feel awfully alone in our Christian walk. But there is our answer – in all of it, God is in it with us if we keep on yielding.
Every believer has access to this way of life. It’s not through the minister, the connection is between the believers as part of the body straight to Christ Himself. We don’t need a pope or a priest. It’s a direct flow of life that comes from the head that is Christ, through the Holy Spirit, into the life of the believer. The church at large often cuts off the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is central and fundamental from the very beginning of time to now.
Would you put yourself under Jesus Christ as Lord over all things? Is He with you in all things? Is He pleased with you in all things? Ask Him. If He’s not, He’ll tell you. If something’s not right, bring that thing back under His authority. He is the head over the body.
Is Jesus Christ effective in your life through the Holy Spirit? Will you let Him be the Lord of your life?