The Story: The Bible’s Grand Narrative of Redemption, One Year Daily Devotional for Students by Jon Nielson

The Story_photo

Day 319

Act 5: Jesus to the End

Ephesians 1:1–14

If your family is like most American families, at Thanksgiving you probably share what you’re thankful for. Aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, and grandparents probably talk about the blessings of health, family, food, and friends. And this is all good! It is right that we remember our blessings. But when was the last time that you thought deeply about the immense spiritual blessings that you have in Christ Jesus? It’s with these blessings in mind that Paul begins his letter to the ancient church at Ephesus. What are the blessings of Christ Jesus all about?

First, we are blessed through God’s sovereign choice to save us. This is probably one of the places where the Bible most clearly teaches the doctrine called election or predestination. Paul says that Christians are blessed because God “predestined [them] for adoption,” and this is something that God decided to do “before the foundation of the world” (1:5, 4). If you have trusted in Jesus as your Lord and Savior, that means that God chose you long before you were born to be his child. That is a great blessing!

Second, we are blessed through redemption and forgiveness through the cross of Jesus Christ. Remember, friend: your redemption comes through the blood of Jesus! Your salvation was not cheap; it was bought through the work of Jesus. This work was God’s lavishing his grace upon sinners like you and me.

Third, we are blessed with a future inheritance in Jesus that will last forever. Since we belong to Jesus, we are going somewhere! We share a future home with our great Savior and Lord. That’s not all; God has given his Holy Spirit to dwell in us and act as the guarantee of our future inheritance with Jesus. Heaven is coming, and the Spirit’s presence in our hearts and lives is God’s promise to us that we will get there!

There are many small blessings to thank God for—and we should thank him for blessings great and small! But today, make sure that you are most thankful for the eternal, infinite blessings that you have through faith in Jesus Christ, the son of God. Thank God for his sovereign choice of you. praise God for the gracious work of redemption. ask God to help you trust his holy spirit’s presence as the guarantee of your future life with Jesus forever!