“Livin’ Large is experiencing the new life we have in Christ. It is living the Christian life in the power of the Holy Spirit and it is practicing (Ephesians 4-6) our position (Ephesians 1-3).”
6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
Did you know that the Bible contains mysteries? I know this is kind of a dumb question—of course the Bible contains mysteries! God is infinite and we are finite; the nature of the case is that there are mysteries we cannot figure out. Even Isaiah records God’s words in Isaiah 55:8-9,
8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the LORD.
9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Given that God’s ways and thoughts are higher than ours, in addition to this there are certain truths that God purposefully keeps as mysteries. In Ephesians 3, one of these mysteries is revealed to us by God. The mystery God reveals is that the gospel of Jesus Christ not only saves individuals but also connects those individuals to a new community, a new body—the Church! All people, Jew and Gentile, as believers in Jesus Christ, are part of God’s new community. We are all sharers in the promise in Christ Jesus. This news, taken for granted by most of us, was shocking and amazing to Paul’s New Testament audience. God’s covenant blessings to Israel are now made available to every believer in Jesus Christ. These blessings are received, experienced and proclaimed not through private reflection but in the context of corporate worship and body-life experience. The point is that we come to understand and experience our new life in Christ by being connected to one another. We need one another and we are spiritually stronger when we are connected to one another. This is God’s design, the mystery that once was hidden but now has been revealed in the gospel.
This revealed mystery means that I cannot live my Christian life in isolation. I need to pray with, study with, share with, laugh with, cry with, and do life with other believers. Other believers need me. Together we are a team that knows Christ and makes Him known. Take a moment to consider this truth and reflect on your own experience. How are you connecting with other believers this week? In what ways are you seeking and allowing others to encourage and build you up? How are you seeking to bless and speak grace into the lives of others? God has blessed us by making us a part of His Body. We experience this blessing as we participate in Body-life. How are you living?