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Marking the Twain

http://graceambassadors.com/tradition/marking-the-twain

By Justin Johnson

By now everyone knows that American humorist Mark Twain’s name came from the steamboat man’s cry for measuring a two fathom depth in the Mississippi river – “mark twain!”

Hardly anyone seems to know the significance of the twain marked in Ephesians 2:15.

“Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;” – Ephesians 2:15

Paul describes in Ephesians 2:11-12 that in the Biblical past there were two people: Jews and Gentiles; Israel and the nations; circumcision and uncircumcision.

God was with Israel, but not with the Gentiles who were spiritually and physically separated from God and Israel.

Ephesians 2:13-14 explains that the separation has now been removed as part of the mystery of Christ (Eph 3:6).

Through the fall of Israel, salvation has now come to Gentiles (Rom 11:11). Like the Gentiles, Israel is now counted in unbelief so that God could have mercy upon all men (Rom 11:32).

It is in Ephesians 2:15 that Paul explains that the twain have become one in the creation of a new creature in this dispensation of grace.

In time past there was twain, Jews and Gentiles, but now there is one new creature.

“For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.” – Gal 6:15

All of the old things pertaining to Israel and the Gentiles are not carried over into this new creature:

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” – 2 Cor 5:17

That this one thing is new means none of the old things are applied to it: old covenants, old laws, old lands, old national boundaries, prophecies of old are all passed away.

The covenants to Israel, the kingdom to Israel, the land to Israel were not and could not be transferred into this new creature, because Israel ceases to be Israel in this one new man.

Likewise, neither do the Gentiles remain Gentiles far away from God and without hope. Instead, in this new creature they become members of the very body of Christ (Eph 5:30).

The description of God in Christ making “of two one new” is most important in distinguishing Israel from the church of this dispensation.

In time past there was Gentile and there was Jew, but now what is new can be neither of the original two (Eph 2:15). It must be something entirely different.

This new creature is called the church, the body of Christ (Eph 1:22-23). Mark this twain made new in your Bible and your ability to rightly divide will greatly improve.

“For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free…” – 1 Cor 12:13

“Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” – 1 Cor 12:27

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No More Strangers and Foreigners

http://graceambassadors.com/mystery/no-more-strangers-and-foreigners


By Justin Johnson

Ephesians 2:12 says Gentiles were “aliens” and “strangers” from Israel and the covenants of promise. Seven verses later Gentiles are “no more strangers and foreigners”.

“Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;” – Eph 2:19

Something happened in those seven verses that granted uncircumcised Gentiles benefits they did not have before.

What happened? What are the benefits?

The answers are in the context.

If we ignore the verses between Eph 2:12 and Eph 2:19, we could easily jump to the wrong conclusion that the church is Israel now and the true recipients of Israel’s covenants of promise.

In Time Past

Between Eph 2:12 and Eph 2:19 there is a dispensational change. That is to say Paul explains a change in God’s revelation concerning how he relates to us and we to him.

In Ephesians 2:12 Paul is explaining the way God related to the world in “time past” as seen in the previous verse.

“Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;” – Ephesians 2:11

In time past God purposed to work through Israel to bless the nations. Israel was the channel of blessing from God to the world. No one had closer access to God than did a Jew.

Jews were separated from Gentiles by their God given covenants, circumcision, and laws.

In time past, Gentiles had no access to God or his blessings except through Israel and their covenants. Gentiles had no hope without Israel, the created nation of priests.

But now, it is different.

A Dispensational Change

“But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.” – Eph 2:13

In a single verse Paul leaps a dispensational boundary from how God operated in time past, to describing how God operates now.

Now, Gentiles have the privilege of being “in Christ Jesus” by the blood of Christ offered to all, both those that were far off in time past, and those that were nigh in time past (Eph 2:17).

No longer do Gentiles need to go to Israel or be partakers of their covenants of promise to receive hope and blessings from God.

Eph 2:13 describes their privilege of gaining access to God and his blessings by means of the blood of Christ.

Instead of requiring Israel to offer sacrifices to make peace with God, Gentiles could now glory that Christ Jesus is our peace (Eph 2:14).

The same Christ according to the mystery has broken down what separated the Jew and Gentile in time past, and which, at that time, gave Israel special access to God and salvation.

Now, all have free access to God through Jesus Christ by the preaching of the cross.

A New Creature

Paul continues to explain the change in Eph 2:15-16. Whereas in time past there were two peoples (Jew and Gentiles), there is now only one man.

Moreover, the one man is a new man, being neither Jew nor Gentile.

“For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.” – Gal 6:15

Both Jew and Gentile are reconciled to God equally in one body by the cross (Eph 2:16).

In time past, the house of God was the house of Israel. But now, the house of God is a body of believers in Christ.

“Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?” – 1 Cor 3:16

Gentiles do not need to go through Israel to be reconciled. They now have access in the “one body” of Christ.

Gentiles do not need to partake in Israel’s covenants of promise to have peace with God. They can now be saved freely by the cross (Eph 2:8-9).

Access Through Christ

Eph 2:18 explains the benefit and privilege that is now accessible to Gentiles.

In time past it would’ve been a privilege to be part of Israel, and heir to Israel’s covenants, because it would grant exclusive access to God and his blessings.

But now, access to the Father is offered freely to all men through Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery.

“For through [Christ] we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.” – Eph 2:18

Men no longer need to be citizens of Israel to have access to God. We need to be members of the one body of Christ, the new creature.

Neither do men need to be heirs of Israel’s covenants to receive blessings from God. We need to be part of God’s promise in Christ to offer salvation freely to all men by his grace (Eph 3:6).

No More Strangers

In time past Gentiles were aliens from Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise given to Israel, making them far off from the only channel of access to God and his blessings.

But now, a new channel of direct access to God is revealed for both Jew and Gentile which is through the Lord Jesus Christ according to the gospel of the grace of God.

“Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;” – Eph 2:19

There is no more separation between Jew and Gentile. We are fellowcitizens with all saints (who are no longer called circumcision nor uncircumcision, but saints).

Instead of becoming part of the house of Israel and Judah according to the old and new covenants, we are partakers of the household of God, which is the church (1 Tim 3:15).

Instead of strangers we are all familiar to God, and instead of being foreign we can now receive the benefits of God’s grace as rightful heirs in Christ (Rom 5:2, Rom 8:17).

If any be in Christ, he is no more strangers and foreigners.

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On 7/14/2018 at 2:48 AM, patrick jane said:

Marking the Twain

http://graceambassadors.com/tradition/marking-the-twain

By Justin Johnson

By now everyone knows that American humorist Mark Twain’s name came from the steamboat man’s cry for measuring a two fathom depth in the Mississippi river – “mark twain!”

Hardly anyone seems to know the significance of the twain marked in Ephesians 2:15.

“Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;” – Ephesians 2:15

Paul describes in Ephesians 2:11-12 that in the Biblical past there were two people: Jews and Gentiles; Israel and the nations; circumcision and uncircumcision.

God was with Israel, but not with the Gentiles who were spiritually and physically separated from God and Israel.

Ephesians 2:13-14 explains that the separation has now been removed as part of the mystery of Christ (Eph 3:6).

Through the fall of Israel, salvation has now come to Gentiles (Rom 11:11). Like the Gentiles, Israel is now counted in unbelief so that God could have mercy upon all men (Rom 11:32).

It is in Ephesians 2:15 that Paul explains that the twain have become one in the creation of a new creature in this dispensation of grace.

In time past there was twain, Jews and Gentiles, but now there is one new creature.

“For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.” – Gal 6:15

All of the old things pertaining to Israel and the Gentiles are not carried over into this new creature:

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” – 2 Cor 5:17

That this one thing is new means none of the old things are applied to it: old covenants, old laws, old lands, old national boundaries, prophecies of old are all passed away.

The covenants to Israel, the kingdom to Israel, the land to Israel were not and could not be transferred into this new creature, because Israel ceases to be Israel in this one new man.

Likewise, neither do the Gentiles remain Gentiles far away from God and without hope. Instead, in this new creature they become members of the very body of Christ (Eph 5:30).

The description of God in Christ making “of two one new” is most important in distinguishing Israel from the church of this dispensation.

In time past there was Gentile and there was Jew, but now what is new can be neither of the original two (Eph 2:15). It must be something entirely different.

This new creature is called the church, the body of Christ (Eph 1:22-23). Mark this twain made new in your Bible and your ability to rightly divide will greatly improve.

“For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free…” – 1 Cor 12:13

“Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” – 1 Cor 12:27

I read your last post very carefully. 

To me this is the first time that I have seen someone going beyond, and attempting to distinguish the old world from the New. 

The Holy Spirit show to Peter for the first time the NEW WORLD. 

The Holy Spirit show him in a vision the NEW WORLD, a sheet full of uncleen animals coming down from Heaven, and going up, three times and then remained in Heaven. 

And he said: 

What the Lord -referring to Jesus-has cleansed do not call unclean.

At the Last Supper he said to the disciples that you are clean because you have believe the words I spoke to you .

Here Jesus was telling them the NEW WAY to be cleansed in his Name. 

And for Jesus while he was living, everytime something unclean touch him, he remained clean. 

"The Leper touch him",

Jesus remained clean, and in this case as in the case with the woman with the issue , both became clean.

Jesus was teaching them the things in the NEW WORLD. 

How is referent the New World from the Old. 

There not Gentiles in the New World, and also there are not Jews.

The world has been reconciled to God, 

The "world" is within the same meaning as the meaning, Jesus died for the "whole world". 

Today the massage we give the people is "choose life or death". 

This is the massage in the Gospel. 

The same message to all who have not hear the Gospel, and to those who have denied the Gospel but are still alive. 

Those who have denied Jesus Christ are in death, but still are called to LIFE , to believe. 

Those who have never heard the Gospel they are neither in LIFE or DEATH.  

The Devil can take only those who die in denial. 

This is the NEW WORL. 

people are born in LIFE, but never in DEATH.

 

 

 

 

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Not Every Gentile is in the Church

http://graceambassadors.com/midacts/not-every-gentile-is-in-the-church


By Justin Johnson
A common mistake made when first learning to rightly divide is to divide Jew and Gentile into different dispensations.

Salvation was of the Jews in time past (John 4:22), and is sent to Gentiles now (Rom 11:11). Armed with only these verses, muddled minds jump to the wrong conclusion that only Israel had access to salvation in time past, and only Gentiles have access to it now.

This error is perpetuated by oversimplified or simply wrong statements like these:

“Prophecy is about Israel, and mystery about the Gentiles.”

“Israel inherits the kingdom, and we [Gentiles] the Church.”

“Israel was promised the earth, and Gentiles inherit heavenly places.


Actually, there are Jews and Gentiles in both prophecy and mystery, and also in both God’s purpose for Israel and for the Church.

Jews in the Church

That there are Israelites in the church of today, which is the body of Christ, has been discussed before and should be obvious. The new creature is neither Jew nor Gentile, but is made up of both (Gal 3:28, 1 Cor 12:13).

Paul himself was a Jew (Phil 3:5), and there were not a few of his kinsmen that participated in the gospel of the grace of God that were Israelites (Acts 17:4).

Any Israelite who desires salvation in the present dispensation of God will be saved only by faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross, just as every Gentile today, not through covenants or circumcision.

Gentiles in Prophecy

Not every faithful Gentile in the Bible was a member of the church the body of Christ first revealed to Paul in a mystery. Many were part of Israel’s earthly purpose. God had always made provision for these faithful Gentiles.

Although Israel was the chosen nation of God, and to whom God gave the oracles, the purpose of God raising up Israel is so through them the world would be blessed.

“And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” – Genesis 12:3

Though blessing was available to all, Gentiles had to go to the nation Israel to access it, as they were the trustees of God’s word and promises. So, truly, salvation was of the Jews.

Gentiles Blessed through Israel

Throughout the scripture there are examples of Gentiles who were faithful to God’s instructions and received blessing by blessing the God of Israel.

Consider righteous Abimelech who provided protection for both Abraham and Isaac, testifying that God was with them.

“And they said, We saw certainly that the LORD was with thee: and we said, Let there be now an oath betwixt us, even betwixt us and thee, and let us make a covenant with thee;” – Genesis 26:28

Remember the Gentile harlot Rahab who by faith in the God of Israel did not die in Jericho, and lived among the Israelites (Heb 11:31, Josh 6:25).

The Ninevites repented of their sins and cried unto the God of Israel for salvation (Jonah 3:7-10).

The Gentile queen of Sheba blessed Solomon and the God of Israel when she saw the wisdom that he spoke, and his righteous acts.

“Blessed be the LORD thy God, which delighted in thee, to set thee on the throne of Israel: because the LORD loved Israel for ever, therefore made he thee king, to do judgment and justice.” – 1 Kings 10:9

Gentiles in the Kingdom

Prophecy even tells of Gentiles in the future kingdom of Israel. After all, to whom would the priests of the Lord minister if there were not other saved nations on the earth?

“And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it [the New Jerusalem]: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it.” – Rev 21:24

The Gentiles would come to Israel’s cities to receive blessing, healing, and instruction (Isa 2:2-3).

In Jesus’ kingdom ministry to Israel there were Gentiles who showed their worthiness of entering the earthly kingdom by their faith in the Messiah.

Remember the Gentile centurion who did not think himself worthy of being in the presence of Jesus, but knew he could heal him.

“When Jesus heard these things, he marvelled at him, and turned him about, and said unto the people that followed him, I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.” – Luke 7:9

Or the Gentile Canaanite woman who recognized that although she was not among the people to whom Christ came [Israel], as a Gentile she could be blessed through Israel.

“Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table. Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt.” – Matt 15:28-29

Gentiles before Paul

All of this should teach us that Gentiles could be blessed through Israel even before the revelation of the mystery of Christ was revealed to Paul in mid-Acts.

That Paul was sent to the Gentiles directly (as well as unbelieving Israel), only showed that the message he taught did not put the Gentiles under the covenants of promise which required them to go through Israel to receive a blessing.

There were faithful Gentiles before Paul. There were faithful Gentiles who followed Christ before Paul according to prophecy. Peter spoke to some in Acts 10. Paul speaks to these Gentiles in Romans 9:24 and Romans 11:13.

[For more details about the Gentiles in Romans 9-11 listen to our verse by verse series here.]

The prophecy given to Israel would bless both Jews and Gentiles in the earthly kingdom.

The mystery of Christ given to Paul spoke of God’s new creature for heavenly places. By the preaching of the cross, salvation, blessing, and inheritance was freely offered to all men apart from Israel’s kingdom, covenants, and law.
 

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Unsearchable Riches

http://graceambassadors.com/mystery/unsearchable-riches


By Justin Johnson

“Unto me [Paul], who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ” – Ephesians 3:8

Christ gave to Paul a message of grace containing riches unknown since the world began.

If we searched enough we can find all sorts of riches God has promised in the scriptures, but if they are found in the Jewish scriptures then they are not “unsearchable” as Paul describes.

Jesus told Israel to “search the scriptures” to hear his testimony:

“Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” – John 5:39

Anyone in Israel could read about the riches God had promised through the Messiah to Israel. They are found in covenants and promises and are all a part of prophecy. This is why the noble unbelieving Berean Jews “searched the scriptures daily” to find out whether Jesus was the Christ (Acts 17:11).

Certainly, they were not reading Paul’s epistles which had not even been written yet!

In the Jewish scriptures, they could have searched out the many prophecies about the first coming of Christ being fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth.

Peter at Pentecost preaches the coming restoration of Israel and the fulfillment of God’s promises to Israel in the new covenant. All of the new covenant riches were spoken by the prophets since the world began, and could be searched out (Acts 3:19).

What is unsearchable is not included in what can be searched from the scriptures. Unsearchable riches were not part of Peter’s message.

The searchable riches to Israel under the new covenant are not the unsearchable riches Christ gave Paul to preach.

We have riches in Christ that are not found in Israel’s scriptures (Eph 3:8).

“And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God” – Eph 3:9

These unsearchable riches are the subject of what Paul calls the mystery of Christ (Eph 3:4; Col 4:3).

“To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” – Col 1:27

God is creating a new creature today in Christ (2 Cor 5:17). This new creature was not described and cannot be searched out in the Jewish scriptures. It was a mystery kept secret.

God has a heavenly place for the church, the Body of Christ, that cannot be described in the prophetic revelations, promises, and covenants to Israel.

The unsearchable riches of Christ according to the mystery, cannot be searched out in the scriptures to Israel.

We can only learn about these unsearchable riches from our apostle Paul who was first sent to preach Christ according to the revelation of the mystery.
 

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Things Old and Things New

http://graceambassadors.com/midacts/things-old-and-things-new


By Justin Johnson
 

Nothing mysterious was happening at Pentecost. The powers that came down from heaven had been foretold by the prophets and explained by Jesus in the flesh (John 15:26).

Peter begins his explanation by hearkening back to the old writings of Joel saying “This is that!” The events were part of the prophetic purpose of God to fulfill his promises with Israel.

Jesus said he did not come to destroy the old law but to fulfill it (Mat 5:17). Instead of changing the old instructions he amplifies them and instructs his disciples to do all that they are instructed by Moses seat (Matt 23:1-2).

After his resurrection Jesus explains how his ministry was all foretold in the old writings of the law and prophets.

“And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself. ” – Luke 24:27

The new covenant which was destined to replace the old had been implied in the original covenant, in the thousands of year old promises, and by prophecies recorded for hundreds of years (Jer 31:31).

What was happening was anything but a surprise. God had spoken of it ‘since the world began’ (Acts 3:21).

However, something unprecedented happened on the road to Damascus. A man who had slaughtered Spirit-filled disciples and decried the teaching of the Messianic Jesus was offered free justification.

He was then given an unprecedented commission and a message unrevealed to any man before (Gal 1:11-12). He would be taught that God had ushered in a new period of grace and peace to all men whereby forgiveness would be offered by the cross and membership in a new creature.

In this dispensation Israel would be counted in unbelief along with the Gentiles and circumcision would not profit anyone.

“For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. ” – Gal 6:15

Even the teaching of Jesus Christ became new. We are told we no longer know Christ as the the disciples knew him in the flesh as the prophesied Messiah. We know him as our Saviour!

“Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.” – 2 Cor 5:16

Neither do preach salvation based on a covenant or through Israel but by God’s grace. The old things of the kingdom and Jew and Gentile distinction would be put aside and all things would become new. This revelation was called a mystery (Rom 16:25).

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” – 2 Cor 5:17
 

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Christ in You vs. You in Christ


http://graceambassadors.com/mystery/christ-in-you-vs-you-in-christ


By Justin Johnson

About those who are saved Paul says these two things: you are in Christ, and Christ is in you.

“To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory: Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:” – Colossians 1:27-28

The phrase “Christ in you” is found in Col 1:27, and in the next verse every man is presented perfect “in Christ Jesus” (Col 1:28).

What do these seemingly opposite but similar sounding statements mean?

What’s the difference between ‘you in Christ’ and ‘Christ in you’? The difference is important to see as it concerns the very mystery of Christ.

You in Christ

You in Christ is where you are placed according to God’s purpose. Your position is in Christ.

“And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” – Ephesians 2:6

When you dwell in a house, you call it your house. Since you are placed into Christ, then Christ is yours, with the high calling, spiritual blessings, inheritance, and power that Christ possesses (Eph 1:18-21).

The imputation of righteousness by faith is due to you being in Christ (2 Cor 5:21). It is his righteousness imputed to you.

‘You in Christ’ concerns you being in his body, the body of Christ.

We are all put into one body by the Spirit (1 Cor 12:13), in a fellowship with Christ (Eph 3:9), when we trust the gospel of Christ. Christ has many members and we all are in him according to the mystery.

“For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.” – Ephesians 5:30

It is the mystery of God’s will that eventually all things will be in Christ so that his power, blessings, and grace can be given to all things in him (Eph 1:10).

Christ in You

If you in Christ is where you are placed according to God’s purpose, then Christ in you is where he is placed according to God’s purpose.

If all that is Christ’s belongs to you when you are in him, then all that is yours belongs to him when he is in you.

You received Christ in you when you heard and trusted the gospel of Jesus Christ (Eph 1:13; Col 2:6).

Paul prays that Christ may dwell in our hearts by faith (Eph 3:17), and that we walk in him having received Christ in us (Col 2:6).

“But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. “ – Romans 8:9

If ‘you in Christ’ is about His body, then ‘Christ in you’ is about your body. Your members are now his (Rom 6:13; 1 Cor 6:19-20).

What drives a man is what is inside him. Faith resides in the inner man. The Spirit of Christ dwells in you (Rom 8:9). When your flesh fails, it is the power of Christ that rests upon you (2 Cor 12:9).

‘You in Christ’ concerns what Christ does toward you, ‘Christ in you’ is what Christ performs in you and through you.

A Great Mystery

Upon salvation we are not only moved to a new place in Christ as a new creature, but we are changed from the inside out with Christ in us.

We are not placed into Israel, covenant, nor into a religion, but into Christ! ,,, and there by grace.

What is put in us is not the law in our heart, the power of positive thinking, nor the hope of feelings and healing, but Christ! …and Him by faith.

This is the great mystery of Christ and the church. It is our job to come to a knowledge of it, and to make all men see it.

“This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.” – Ephesians 5:32
 

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Joint-Heirs with Christ


http://graceambassadors.com/life/joint-heirs-with-christ

By Justin Johnson
From the moment you trust in Christ, you become a member of the body of Christ.

Like any membership, there are immediate benefits. The benefits are given to you freely by your identification with Christ.

For example, did you know that if you were baptized into Christ you were crucified with Him?

“I am crucified with Christ…”- Gal 2:20

A dead person has already paid the penalty of death. This is a huge benefit, but what is more is that you are also resurrected with Christ.

“Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him:” – Rom 6:8

Life is a great benefit. Eternal life is eternally beneficial. The power to live after death is God’s gift to all who receive benefits with Christ.

“For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.” – 2 Cor 13:4

Since you are receiving benefits with Christ, and Christ is seated in heavenly places, you also inherit a position there with him.

“Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:” – Ephesians 2:5-6

When Christ died and resurrected he inherited “all things” from God (Eph 1:22), so would not you receive all things as well?

“He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?” – Rom 8:37

Certainly. After all, you are with Christ and enjoy all the benefits of being a member of His body (2 Cor 6:10).

“[God has] blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:”- Eph 1:3

The Mystery of Fellowheirs

Perhaps you have noticed that all of these membership benefits in Christ are found in Paul’s epistles.

This is because God revealed to Paul the mystery that by faith in the gospel you can be fellowheirs with Christ, of the same body of Christ, and partakers of his promise in Christ (Eph 3:6).

It’s only by being a joint-heir with Christ that we have access to all of these immediate benefits (Rom 8:17).

Without being a joint-heir with Him according to the mystery, we would lack a host of riches given to his sons by grace.

Without the revelation of the mystery, we would not know the riches of the glory of His inheritance, and ours (Eph 1:18).

What do Members do?

If we have all these free benefits as joint-heirs with Christ, then what is a member of the body to do?

Being a member of the body of Christ gives you the duty of labouring together with him, and the opportunity to receive rewards for proper service.

“…every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour. For we are labourers together with God…” – 1 Cor 3:8-9

It may be that we suffer with him, and if you do, you will reign with him.

“If we suffer, we shall also reign with him:…” – 2 Tim 2:12

In the end, because everything we receive, whether freely or by our labour, is a result of our being joint-heirs with Christ, we are glorified with him.

“When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” – Col 3:4
 

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Saved by the Body of Christ

http://graceambassadors.com/books/ephesians/saved-by-the-body-of-christ


By Justin Johnson

Without Christ giving his body to die for my sins and raising his body from the dead, I could not be saved.

This salvation is not offered to me through a chosen nation, an anointed priest, or a special covenant. According to the great mystery of Christ, this salvation is possible because I am made a member of his body.

“That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel” – Ephesians 3:6

Every one who is saved today is a member of the body of Christ, which is now called the church.

“…and gave [Christ] to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body…” – Ephesians 1:22-23

I am saved by the body of Christ. Salvation is not found outside the body of Christ. It is impossible to be saved today without being in the body of Christ.

“For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body…” – 1 Corinthians 12:12-13

Salvation is found in the body of Christ, because it is in the body of Christ that we are joined with Christ in his crucifixion and resurrection.

“Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death…For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection” – Romans 6:3-5

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me…” – Galatians 2:20

All spiritual blessings I now receive are a result of my being joined to Christ in his body (Eph 1:3). God’s calling and position given to me is in heaven, because I am joined to the body of Christ which has been called up to heaven where it now sits (Eph 2:6; Col 3:1-2).

Christ is the heir of God. I am an heir of God by the body of Christ, because I am joined to Christ.

“Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. “ – Galatians 4:7

“That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:” – Ephesians 3:6

Being joined to His body gives me salvation, a calling, an inheritance, and power (Eph 1:17-23). Moreover, I receive it all freely and graciously! This is the great mystery revealed to the apostle Paul.

If I do not have all spiritual blessings, hold a heavenly position, a joint-inheritance, nor a complete position in Christ, then I am not joined to the body of Christ.

If I am not joined to the body of Christ, then I am not saved. Without the body of Christ there is no salvation today.

This is the great mystery revealed to the apostle Paul (Eph 3:3-4).

Anyone who thinks I can fall out of salvation, I must work for my blessings or inheritance, or that my salvation is joined to a nation, priest, or covenant does not understand this great mystery of the body of Christ nor how we are joined to it by grace through faith.

I am saved by the body of Christ. I am sealed by the Spirit of promise. I am enriched and inherited by the Father of glory, as a member of the body of His Son.

“ For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.” – Ephesians 5:30

“This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.” – Ephesians 5:32

Praise God.

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Posted (edited)

Your Holy Calling

http://graceambassadors.com/life/your-holy-calling


By Justin Johnson

God has called you to be something. Do you know what it is?

If it is anything that pays you in dollars you are not thinking deep enough. If it is anything that requires less than a lifetime of training you are not thinking long enough. If it is anything less than worldwide, you are not thinking big enough. If it is anything on this earth, you are not thinking high enough.

I’m not sure you will immediately comprehend (I didn’t when I first heard it), but I join Paul in praying that you do:

“For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ… that ye… may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;” – Ephesians 3:14; 3:18

You may be thinking, “How can I not comprehend? Just tell me.”

You will know if you do not comprehend if there is disappointment when I tell you. If you have an eye roll, a sense of being let down, thinking that it is nothing special then you probably do not comprehend.

If you did you would realize the great power and wealth it bestows to you and it would drive you to deep gratitude toward the love of Christ (Eph 3:19).

It would also set you at peace from trying to find who you were meant to be, what it is you ought to do, and satisfy your craving for leaving a lasting legacy in this world.

“And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called …” – Colossians 3:15

What is this great position you have been called by God to fill? What is this great vocation God has purposed for you?

It is not something you earned or deserved: it was given you by grace. It is according to his purpose, not yours.

“[God] hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose an grace…” – 2 Tim 1:9

Enough delay! What is it? Here it is; your holy calling:

God has called you to be a member of the body of Christ.

There it is. Did your eyes roll? If you thought, “I’ve heard this before”, I wouldn’t doubt it:

“ye are called in one body” – Col 3:15

“Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular.” – 1 Cor 12:27

“There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;” – Eph 4:4

But now you need to comprehend it.

Start to Comprehend

Your holy calling, if you choose to do it, is to learn and exercise the great responsibility, position, power, and privilege you have as a member of the one body of Christ.

Being a member of this one body is called the great mystery in Eph 5:30-32.

Being a member of his body makes you a child of God and joint-heir with Christ (Eph 3:6; Rom 8:17).

Being a part of this new creature, the one body of Christ, makes you an ambassador for Christ who is set at the right hand of God (2 Cor 5:20).

You are the example and minister of his power through the gospel to save the world, regenerate the dead, and give hope to hopeless, grace to sinners, and God’s calling to those who do not know who they are.

Being his body is called the fullness of Christ, and allows you to be filled with the fullness of God (Eph 1:23; Eph 3:19). You truly can only be all you can be in Christ.

Where do you go to learn more about this high calling? Start reading Paul’s epistles… right after you thank God for giving you this great opportunity by grace, and ask him to help you comprehend the highest calling anyone could ever have.

“Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers… that ye may know what is the hope of his calling…” – Ephesians 1:16-18

Edited by patrick jane
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