Kenneth S. Wuest, Teacher Emeritus of New Testament Greek, at the Moody Bible Institute is one of my favorite Bible translators. I know that he is with the Lord now, but his brilliant work continues to help many gain a deeper understanding of the Bible.
One of my favorite books is Ephesians. I read it often as it gives me such a view of God's heart. This morning as I was reading in the first chapter, I saw something I wanted to share with you today.
It is in verses one through ten. Mr. Wuest did not put a number by each verse as some Bibles do, so I will write it as it is written here.
"by grace have you been saved completely in past time, with the present result that you are in a state of salvation which persists through the present time"
The words "saved completely" should thrill our souls. So many daily live in fear of losing their salvation through the commitment of some sin. I know when I was a young Christian, I sometimes shuddered thinking I had committed the unpardonable sin.
Let me offer words of encouragement to you today. In this first chapter of Ephesians, Paul assures us that, if God loved us when we were dead in our trespasses, and at the same time made us alive together with Christ, then how could any sin separate us from Him?
Rejection of the free gift of salvation, offered through Christ Jesus, is the unpardonable sin. If you have, according to Romans 10:9-10, confessed with your mouth, Jesus as Lord, and believed in your heart that God raised Him from the dead...you ARE saved!"
The chapter in Ephesians goes on to assure us that this wonderful gift comes from no work that we have done. A gift is different than a paycheck. If I labor for you, then I expect you to pay me. If you come to my door and give me a gift, it is because of YOUR generosity, and it is not based on anything I have done to deserve it.
Let me focus on how the gift came. It came through the Person of Jesus Christ. God didn't need UPS. He had a Faithful Son, Who willingly became the Messenger to this earth, that God loved us. Jesus often spoke of not saying anything unless the Father told Him what to say. God put "love" words in the heart of His Son for you and me.
We are reminded of what we were before receiving the free gift of salvation. Mr. Wuest writes in the first chapter, verses 11-18, that we were at one time without a Savior, not having hope, and without God in this world. But, praise God, He did send a Savior, gave us hope, and showed us Himself through Jesus Christ.
What brought us near to God was the precious blood of Jesus. Hallelujah!! When His veins opened up due to the intense pressure put upon Him, the flogging inflicted upon Him, and those cruel nails being driven through his wrists and feet...SALVATION was freely bestowed upon this world.
God reconciled us...made us acceptable...offered a complete and eternal work of salvation by GRACE - His Son, Jesus Christ! Now, all we have to do is believe this wonderful message!!
Your mind will argue with this! Your feelings will scream that this can't be true! But, IT IS!! God wrote it down, so that we could read it for ourselves, and become convinced as the Holy Spirit makes it alive to us.
Even Jesus said that "if My Words abide in you - ask what you will, and it shall be given unto you." Spend time today in Ephesians. Let God's Word settle into your heart. Let Him assure you that your salvation is complete, and let the wonder of that fill you with more love for Him.
God left no stone unturned to save us! He even rolled stones away to prove that NOTHING could stop His plan from being fulfilled. He did what He came to do! Now, do what YOU need to do. Allow the Holy Spirit to write the eternal truths of Ephesians upon your heart.
Once dead, but now alive! Once lost, but now found! Once far from God, but now near to Him! Once in the world without God, but now God IN me!! Glory to His Name!!
Loving Him and you,