Spiritual Blessings Are in Christ
Christians are blessed by God with many spiritual blessings. "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) These are not natural or physical blessings even though there are many blessings of that type given by the hand of God. Spiritual blessings include things like be holy and blameless in Christ, being chosen out of the sinful world, beings adopted as sons and daughters of God, being forgiven of sins and the blessing of mercy. God provides His children with spiritual blessings and these spiritual blessing are only "In Christ." The expression "in Christ" or its equivalent is found 11 times in the first 13 verses of Ephesians one. In some verses the expression is found more than one time.
Ephesians 1:1: "Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus." The faithful in Christ Jesus are those obedient believers who had received Jesus as Messiah and Lord. They continued faithful in God's Grace.
Ephesians 1:3: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ." "In Christ" is the spiritual state where life and immortality are brought to light by the Gospel.
Ephesians 1:4: "According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love." God chose the gentiles "in Christ" before the foundation of the world just as He had chosen the Jews.
Ephesians 1:6: "To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved." The gospel was given by God's grace and through our obedience we are made acceptable by God's grace in His only begotten Son.
Ephesians 1:7: "In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace." It is in Christ that we enjoy redemption or salvation from sin through Jesus' sacrifice.
Ephesians 1:9: “Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself." The beautiful truth is that the Gentiles who are "in Christ." are received into the Church have all the privileges that the Jew have.
Ephesians 1:10: "That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him." God gather all Jews and Gentiles who were "in Christ" into one flock or one church.
Ephesians 1:11: "In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will." God determined to bring both Jews and Gentiles to salvation in Christ. No one is left out!
Ephesians 1:12: "That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ." The apostles first trusted in Christ and then they preached the salvation message to the Gentiles.
Ephesians 1:13: "In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise." The Gentiles heard the gospel from the apostles. They believed and obeyed the salvation message and God blessed them by putting them "in Christ."
Please observe again the words of Ephesians 1:3, "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ." The blessing spoken of here are spiritual blessings are from God our Father. These blessings are spiritual in nature, relating to redemption and salvation. The spiritual blessings are in heavenly places; that is they are now in the church and will later be in heaven itself. The spiritual blessings are in Christ. Following are a few of the great blessing that we have received from the hand of God that relate to our salvation.
We are blessed by the fact that God gave us His Son. John wrote, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." (John 3:16) God gave his only begotten Son for our salvation. "But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone." (Hebrews 2:9) The conversion of a soul from darkness to light or from Satan to God is amazing. Jesus told Paul that He was sending him to the Gentiles, "To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me." (Acts 26:18)
We are blessed by the fact that God gave us His church. The church was bought with Jesus' blood. "Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood." (Acts 20:28) In Ephesians 5:25 we learn that "Christ loved the church, and gave himself for it." This blood bought body is essential to our salvation.
We are blessed by the fact that God gave us the Bible. The Bible reveals God, Christ, eternity and salvation. "And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." (John 8:32) The word of God has power to convert. "The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul; The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple." (Psalm 19:7)
We are blessed by the fact that God gave us His promises. Peter wrote, "By which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust." (2 Peter 1:4) God's promises are "exceedingly" great. His promises are precious. It is through these promises that we become partakers of the divine nature.
We are blessed by the fact that God gave us the hope of heaven. The hope of heaven fills the hearts of Christians. "In hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began." (Titus 1:2) God has promised eternal life for the faithful. "And this is the promise that He has promised us - eternal life." (1 John 2:35) Heaven is that wonderful place where the difficulties of this life will be left behind. "And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away." (Revelation 21:4) Heaven is that unfading inheritance of the Christian. "To an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you." (1 Peter 1:4)
Spiritual blessings are found in Christ. Are you in Christ? Have you heard the gospel (Romans 10:17), believed in Christ (John 8:24), repented of sins (Acts 17:30-31), confessed your faith in Christ (Matthew 10:32-33) and been baptized into Christ for remission of sins? (Acts 2:38, Acts 22:16) Are you faithful in Christ? Spiritual blessings come to those who surrender their lives to the life of Christ.