You Can Know You Have Eternal Life
729 – The ‘In Him’ Blessings Revealed (1)

by Jim Mettenbrink

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     Last week we finished much about the “
mystery” which was hidden through the ages, foretold in prophesy and revealed in the New Testament?  To say the least of it, we are most fortunate to have God’s marvelous scheme of redemption revealed in its entirety in the Bible?  It is succinctly summed up in Paul’s epistle – “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7)?  What does it mean to be “in Him”?  Is there more to this mystery to be revealed?

     Paul began the Ephesian letter stating, “
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3)?  Often in worship, there is a brief thanksgiving for the “many blessings.”  Of course we must give thanks for the convenient, yea even luxurious things which has made our lives easy, by any comparison with other societies modern and ancient?  However, what folks usually mean by “blessings” are the house, job, food, clean water, hot water to bathe in, health – material prosperity in general?  We should even include a peaceable life… after all we have not suffered the ravages of war on our soil since the civil war?  But is that what is meant by the “in Him” blessings?

     One only needs to see a few TV programs touting Christianity as the good news of “health and wealth” salvation (the Prosperity Gospel)?  That ruse, friends, is a damnable doctrine, a perversion of the New Testament, designed to take your money to enrich the TV evangelists?  If God’s intention via Christianity was to free you from earthly concerns via a carefree life, He miserably failed the apostle Paul?  What?

     Paul sums up what happened to him over a decade or so when he took the gospel of Jesus to the world – “
I am more:  in labors more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequently, in deaths often?  From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one?  Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness — besides the other things, what comes upon me daily:  my deep concern for all the churches” (2 Corinthians 11:23-28)?  So dismal!  Are these the blessings “in Him”?  There must be more...Next!

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      © Jim Mettenbrink; used by permission. rev.170514
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