Let’s look at how we can get fruity;
Now assuming in faith that we are now empowered might seem a bold conclusion, but let’s look again at “You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you” but this time referring back to Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, where Paul amplifies Jesus’ words “I have chosen you” and I am going to work through this for you.
Ephesians 1:3-14 (AMP)
3 May blessing (spoken words of praise laudation, and eulogy) be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah) Who has blessed us [spoken well of us] in Christ with every spiritual blessing [all good spiritual words] (spoken by the Holy Spirit) in the heavenly realm!
Paul is shifting our thinking outside of the natural into the supernatural, he’s taking us outside of time. Notice how in the literal Greek God is speaking these blessings, the fruits and the gifts, into existence in the heavenly realm – God creates by speaking!
4 Even as [in His love] He chose us [actually picked us out for Himself as His own] in Christ before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy (consecrated and set apart for Him) and blameless in His sight, even above reproach, before Him in love.
This is WOW get your head around the idea of omniscience! – God knew you before he created the world, picked you out – decided you were going to be holy and set apart for Jesus; all this God did in and because of the great love he had for you even then!
5 For He foreordained us (destined us, planned in love for us) to be adopted (revealed) as His own children through Jesus Christ, in accordance with the purpose of His will [because it pleased Him and was His kind intent]—
Paul repeats the concept; so its important, God foreordained us, then adds the sugar to the mix, God foreordained us to be his revealed children – sons and daughters of God, this is why after the resurrection Jesus is never again called the only begotten Son of God, instead Jesus is called the Firstborn Son of God
6 [So that we might be] to the praise and the commendation of His glorious grace (favor and mercy), which He so freely bestowed on us in the Beloved [Jesus].
Paul later says in this letter [2:8] “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,”
What is grace, a prayer before meal times? lol as the ‘amplified bible’ translates, grace is ‘favour and mercy’ we are familiar with privilege being a result of ‘grace and favour’; for us this grace is unmerited – “for while we were yet sinners Christ died for us,” but more than that God has always loved us – even knowing that our sins would wound him, and kill him, he still loved us.
7 In Him [Jesus] we have redemption (deliverance and salvation) through His blood, the remission (forgiveness) of our offenses (shortcomings and trespasses), in accordance with the riches and the generosity of His gracious favor,
In the Old Testament there was no remission (forgiveness) of sin without sacrifice - the shedding of blood; in the new covenant Jesus’ Blood (sacrifice) fulfils those obligations. Jesus died in our stead, taking the natural consequence of ALL our sin for ALL time in him, defeating absolute death for us. Thus the words ‘Blood of the Lamb Jesus Christ’ embody this whole mystery…
8 Which He lavished upon us in every kind of wisdom and understanding (practical insight and prudence),
Ok so it might be a mystery to us now, but God has lavished upon us, [what a fantastic image], every kind of “wisdom and understanding”; both natural and supernatural! This is by grace – unmerited favour, and look what wisdom can do; “The Lord by wisdom founded the earth; by understanding he established the heavens;” [Prov. 3:19]
9 Making known to us the mystery (secret) of His will (of His plan, of His purpose). [And it is this:] In accordance with His good pleasure (His merciful intention) which He had previously purposed and set forth in Him,
God’s lavish gift by grace of wisdom makes known the mystery of His will – His good plan and purpose; which He had previously, that is before the creation, literally ‘set forward’ in Him – created ready for us in his very being; because ‘in him we live, we move, we have our being’
10 [He planned] for the maturity of the times and the climax of the ages to unify all things and head them up and consummate them in Christ, [both] things in heaven and things on the earth.
This singular expression of the God’s good plan sums up my understanding; that at the climax of the ages, time will mature, - be fulfilled, time will end; and ALL things will be one in Christ Jesus - Paul labours the point by making sure we understand that ‘ALL’ is all without exception by saying; “[both] things in heaven and things on the earth.” Both the natural and supernatural will be unified – become as one in Christ, and be headed - consummated in Christ.
Paul has moved from the predestination of the chosen, God’s elect, literally his ‘called out ones’ Greek ekklesia, which is translated in English ‘church’, [thus the church is not a building or an organisation ‘church’ is ‘the called out ones’ - is you, is me – all believers!] to a future time when all creation will be one in Jesus; this is why Jesus commands us; “And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. [Mark 16:15 (ESV)]” Now an IMPORTANT word of caution ‘tradition’ teaches a loving God will let unrepentant souls whom He loves burn in hell fire forever. A LOT of Christians believe this passionately and will come down very hard on you if you have the common sense to read the bible and believe what it says! Tradition can blunt your senses – cause you to read what you already believe into the word; rather than allowing the Word to speak faith into your heart when you ‘hear’ the spoken Word/Jesus – as Jesus said “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. Matthew 13:11 (ESV) At least not yet… Look Paul says “…God is not an author of confusion but of peace…” For peaces sake we should avoid dispute, through love accepting differing opinions [usually that means keeping quiet], but remembering all the while if an idea confuses – doesn’t make sense –God didn’t author it!
11 In Him we also were made [God’s] heritage (portion) and we obtained an inheritance; for we had been foreordained (chosen and appointed beforehand) in accordance with His purpose,
Again for a third time Paul says we have been “foreordained (chosen and appointed beforehand)” The bible is economical with words, so repeating an idea emphasises importance, and the more times the more important. This is true for an idea seen throughout ‘the body of the books’ collectively, but in single passage even more so. Remember Jesus is now called the Firstborn Son of God? Jesus is the Firstborn of many, who are called ‘co-heirs with Christ’, sharing his inheritance; the bounty of heaven – prosperity, health, and long life!
Who works out everything in agreement with the counsel and design of His [own] will, 12 So that we who first hoped in Christ [who first put our confidence in Him have been destined and appointed to] live for the praise of His glory!
Paul is revealing here that the early ‘called out ones’ are destined by God within His design to live for the praise of God’s glory – and they do – by this letter; and the new testament record; Paul hopes for a quick end to time, but IMHO he suspects there some time yet to come…
13 In Him you also who have heard the Word of Truth, the glad tidings (Gospel) of your salvation, and have believed in and adhered to and relied on Him, were stamped with the seal of the long-promised Holy Spirit.
So here is the process – Hear the word, - faith cometh by hearing and hearing the word of God, i.e. God must first reveal the Word to you otherwise you can’t ‘hear’ the Word, that is understand or appreciate it; this ‘revealing of the Word’ is the gift of God, because of grace – unmerited favour: Then enlightened by faith we believe in Jesus, and that belief is powered by the Holy Spirit!
This is actually where this letter leads to God shows unmerited favour to His elect, His called out ones, by revealing Jesus to them. Unconditional Love conceives grace – unmerited favour, and the expression of this favour is the Holy Spirit upon us and through us. Put simply ‘salvation’ happens because the Spirit that is God; “for God is a spirit’ moves upon, in and through us; because of His great Love, at His appointed time.
14 That [Spirit] is the guarantee of our inheritance [the firstfruits, the pledge and foretaste, the down payment on our heritage], in anticipation of its full redemption and our acquiring [complete] possession of it—to the praise of His glory.
The Holy Spirit therefore guarantees our inheritance; the Spirit is a down payment a deposit, a foretaste of the future glory that we can enjoy now!
We can enjoy now the fruits and the gifts of the Spirit today in faith knowing that we are empowered, this might have seemed a bold conclusion; but the very fact we take a first step on this life journey with God, can only happen because we have been empowered by His Spirit.
The disciples were ministered too, and empowered by the physical Christ, but even they had to wait to be empowered from on high, they had to enter into the Kingdom of God through the power of the Holy Spirit; that is ‘salvation.’