Filled With Grace, Wrapped in Glory

God’s grace and God’s glory were uppermost in my mind and heart when I started this blog. Yet, the ability to write about this realm was difficult to grasp. Four years later these are still not simple things to write about but they are worthy to be expressed as best as possible, using His words. As, from my experience of the past years, it is good and nourishing to go, filled with grace, into another year, wrapped in His glory. Such of God is unsearchable, and what we find is more than enough for a book. When we look to the source we find this pouring out by His grace and from His glory. Please read and meditate on what God speaks to us as His children. We may take each as a separate part, but to meditate on His words are important to understand the content and the effect of His grace and glory.

We speak of these separately and yet they are both part of the wholeness of God. Both are realized in and through the trinity, especially as they are revealed in Jesus Christ, the Son.

 Filled With Grace
The fullness of grace is at first seen in its source. The apostle Paul to the Colossian church tells us that Christ, being the image of the invisible God, by whom all things were made (to be receptacles of His grace) by whom all things consist; (everything is held together by Him) and it pleased the Father that in Him should all fulness dwell ~ all of which we are in need. (Colossians 1:15, 17, 19)

 In John 1:14, and 16 Jesus was the Word made flesh, to dwell among men, full of grace and truth.  And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.

“As many as received Him to them gave He the power to become sons of God; born not of the will of man but of God.” (John 1:12-13)

Grace births us into His family and His kingdom (a new realm).   This is to be filled with grace, filled with His fullness (Ephesians 3:19). This is the mystery of which Paul spoke.

Christ in you, the hope of glory.” Colossians 1:27

 Our justification, our faith, our joy and hope are through the grace that is given in Christ. “Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” (Romans 3:24); and by which we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” (Romans 5:1)

Paul speaks extensively of grace and faith, being of Jesus Christ, and planted in us; “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?”
2 Corinthians 13:5

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

“That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,” Ephesians 3:17

“so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.” Philippians 1:20

“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:”  Philippians 2:5

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom;” Colossians 3:16

God’s grace and glory are accorded with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

“And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.”  1 Timothy 1:14; 2 Timothy 1:13

 

In Christ ~ Wrapped in Glory
Grace is that power that fills us and brings us into God’s glory, which is Christ. He is both the filler of grace and the wrapping of His glory.

 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him:”
Colossians 2:6

 Christ is not only the hope of glory, but the manifestation of glory in us and surrounding us. We experience this glory, not only by the power of Christ in us, but bringing us to the reality that we are “IN CHRIST.” The person who is born of the Spirit of Christ, the Spirit of God, is brought to dwell in Christ.

 We are “sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints,” 1 Corinthians 1:2  

 The promise of life is in Christ Jesus.  2 Timothy 1:1

“Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,”  2 Timothy 1:9

 “But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:”  1 Corinthians 1:30

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

 Baptism is the sign that Christ is in us and we are in Him.

“For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”  Galatians 3:27

Christ in us, and us “in Christ” is the reality that we are filled and wrapped in Him.

 “In Him we live, and move, and have our being.”  Acts 17:28

In His church,  He fills all its members with all the grace that is needed. (Ephesians 1:23) Paul prayed for this as the power (of the Holy Spirit) working in us exceeding abundantly above all that we could ask or think (Ephesians 3:14, 16, 20).  The fullness of His grace, and the completeness of our being in Christ and His glory are not for our fulness alone. It comes in the unity, as each member comes together as one body of Christ; each one bringing the measure of grace that we receive. (Ephesians 3:18-19) We continue to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ as we together wait for His coming.

 “For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus:”  1 Thessalonians 2:14

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

 “teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:”  Colossians 1:28

“Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:”  Ephesians 4:13

His fullness and His wrapping keep us; yet, in this world, His grace and glory in us will be always susceptible to attack by the enemy.  But His grace is sufficient.

 “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.”
2 Timothy 3:12

“be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.”   2 Timothy 2:1

Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ,”  2 Corinthians 2:14

There are promises given in Christ for future glory.

“For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God.” Colossians 3:3

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

“That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:”  Ephesians 1:10

the dead in Christ shall rise first:”  1 Thessalonians 4:16

As we continue in Christ we experience more of His fullness of grace and more of His glory. It is the Spirit’s work of sanctification in and through us.

“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 3:18

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Dear Father, all grace and peace are from you, in Christ, and by your Holy Spirit.  We thank you and praise you for a blessed year; and pray your blessings on your people and mercy for all in the coming year  ~ for your glory and our joy.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

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Deliverance from Oppression

oppression2

“Surely oppression drives the wise into madness,” Ecclesiastes 7:7

Oppression is not an ordinary subject of conversation, nor one that we spend much time thinking about; but it has become a primary thought for me, which has grown to greater proportions of my thinking in the last three years. It came to a point just a few months ago ~ at the point of deliverance; and I have just begun to know what to write about this subject of which most are not aware.  I am not speaking here of the new birth that is ours in Christ at conversion, but beyond this, to a realization of where we live, even as Christians, in the world today; in the deliverance from the spirit of oppression that pervades and rules this world.

The thought of oppression usually comes when we hear of the holocaust. Christians associate the word with the Israelites’ bondage in Egypt. In other countries beyond the United States we hear of oppression, but we don’t consider the idea of oppression as pertaining to our own lives.   We live in a free country where we have the liberty to do what we want to do, go where we want to go, and say what we want to say. We can choose our own circle of friends and the sounds we want to hear, or we can choose isolation and silence. Either of our own choosing makes it seem as if we are free. But my purpose in writing on this subject is to make aware the truth that, in this world we are all under oppression. Until we are delivered from oppression we will not understand this truth. It is when we are free that we can look back and see where we were.

An example that comes to mind is that of the Pharisees, when Jesus opened the eyes of the man who had been blind from birth. Jesus had come to heal the sick of heart and to open the eyes of the blind. The Pharisees did not know that they were blind and so, could not be healed. They were unaware that they were oppressed and that they were oppressors.

My meditations in Galatians have helped to bring some thoughts together on this matter of oppression. Paul’s salutation to the churches in Galatia is “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age….” (Galatians 1:3) Who considers that we all live in this same evil age? This is the bad news of oppression; but the good news is that the Lord Jesus Christ is still delivering His people. He came once and for all time to save His people from their sins. (Matthew 1:21)

“The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.”Psalm 9:9

Sin and Oppression
So, how are we associating sin with oppression? We shall attempt to show the twin effect of the two. Oppression can bring about sin; and sin can bring about oppression. It is a vicious cycle, but one that we need to understand. When we are delivered from the power of one we are delivered from the power of both. They both stem from the fallen nature of man. No one is exempt, no matter how free we think we are.

The extent of this matter, like many others that come to mind, cannot be covered in a single article. So far we have the biblical references that speak of oppression and deliverance from it. These alone are eye opening. Deliverance from oppression begins by definition, seeing where it began, where we are individually in the state of oppression, how it is perpetuated, how we are delivered, the reality of deliverance, and the deliverance of others.

We will end this introduction with the definition. (Mirriam-Webster)

Oppression: noun

  1. a. Unjust or cruel exercise of authority or power
    b. Something that oppresses especially in being an unjust or excessive exercise of power
  2. A sense of being weighed down in body or mind

I welcome your comments. If there is interest I may share with other posts on this subject.

 “In righteousness shalt thou be established:
thou shalt be far from oppression;
for thou shalt not fear: and from terror; for it shall not come near thee.”
Isaiah 54:14


Dear Father, thank you for another blessed day of your grace and peace. We praise you for delivering us from the power of darkness and translating us into the kingdom of your dear Son. Let us with true freedom in Christ share this good news with those who are still in bondage. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Angels from the Realms of Glory

Where are God’s angels today?

3_angels_flying_over_earth_-_x350“Angels from the realms of  glory,
Wing your flight o’er all the earth;
Ye, who sang creation’s story,
Now proclaim Messiah’s birth.”

The angels that were present at the creation, have been present throughout all of history, waiting the time when God’s word would be fulfilled in the incarnation of His Son, Jesus.

Without doing a whole series on angels, we want to look at  one segment of the record of angels from God’s word, to compare the angel’s announcement of Mary’s conception,  to Jesus’ proclamation of our new birth.

The Angels Proclamation:
“And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee; therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.”  Luke 1:35

 Jesus’ Proclamation:  
“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God…except a man is born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit…The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”   John 3:3,5-6

The same Holy Ghost (Sprit) that came upon Mary is the same Spirit that comes upon us to reveal Jesus Christ in us. The power of the Highest that overshadowed Mary is the same power that overshadows His people today; by which we conceive in our hearts the image and Spirit of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

He told His disciples that He would not leave them helpless, but would come to them, by His Spirit. When Jesus comes He does not just come unto us, but into us, by His Spirit.

Mary could not conceive a child of her own.  It was God’s gift to her and to us.
We cannot conceive a child on our own.  Whether flesh or Spirit, it is God’s gift to us.
We cannot will this gift to ourselves.  We cannot birth Christ in our own hearts.
We cannot decide to believe in Christ.  Only He can send His Spirit to be born in us.

Was Mary’s conception a phenomenon?  So is our faith in Jesus Christ.
Was the birth of Jesus Christ through a virgin a supernatural event?  So is our new birth.

Apart from Jesus Christ, we can do nothing.  As He continually sends His Spirit to do His work in and through us we can do all things that He wills for us, no less and no more ~ all miraculously!

“CHRIST IN YOU, THE HOPE OF GLORY
Colossians 1:27

What are the angels doing, now that Christ has accomplished His work on earth and “It is finished?” They are still winging their flight o’er all the earth; and in heaven rejoicing over every sinner that repents! images

The work of the Spirit of Christ keeps the angels singing. “Are they not all ministering spirits sent forth to minister for those who will inherit salvation?” Hebrews 1:14

   Angels We Have Heard on High
Sweetly singing o’er the plains
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous strains.
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Glory to God in the Highest!

 “All creation, join in praising God, the Father, Spirit, Son,
Evermore your voices raising to the eternal Three in One.”