A Functioning Body Part 5

            In this concluding post I come back to some key verses in Ephesians and Colossians. Paul says in Ephesians that everything will ultimately be summed up in Christ. He lays out the goal of the Father.

7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace 8 which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, 9 having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, 10 that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth – in Him. Ephesians 1:7–10 (NKJV)

Everything in heaven and earth will reach a conclusion in Jesus. Later in the same chapter (verses 16-23) Paul prays for a spirit of wisdom and revelation for believers, praying that our spiritual eyes would be opened to see what our calling is all about and that Jesus is seated in heavenly places far above the spiritual forces we are battling. Paul then informs us that we are seated there with Him.

6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,         Ephesians 2:6 (NKJV)

We are to battle from victory, nor for victory.

            That we are still in a battle is very evident, as Paul notes in Colossians.

27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28 Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus. 29 To this end I also labor, striving according to His working which works in me mightily. 1 For I want you to know what a great conflict I have for you and those in Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh, 2 that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. Colossians 1:27–2:3 (NKJV)

The ‘them’ in 1:27 is us, the saints. Thematically Paul focuses on both us in Christ and Christ in us, which is what Jesus taught in John 14:20, that He was in the Father and we in Him and He in us. Paul’s battle, his ‘great conflict’ in his prayer, teaching and preaching was to get us to realize these truths and come to maturity, to a full assurance of the reality of that Jesus is both in us and that He is the source of all wisdom and knowledge.    

            If we as the body of Christ are to function as He designed, we need those called as leaders to draw out the gifts and callings in the rest of the body. We need them to create an environment where these gifts can be expressed and we need to realize the Father’s ultimate intention, to sum up everything in Christ. To accomplish these goals, we need an experiential awareness of two things. First, of Christ in us leading and guiding, second that we are in fact seated with Him in heavenly places, operating from a place of assured victory. If we do these things and do them well, we will be a functioning body.

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I have been walking with Jesus since 1985. I am currently retired from my career in the helping professions but still focused on ministering to others. I completed a Doctorate of Philosophy in Apologetics in September 2020.

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