Blessings For Us and Through Us
What does salvation mean to you? When Christians are asked this question, they generally respond with something such as, “it means that I am saved,” or “it means that I will go to heaven after I die.” Indeed, salvation saves us from a devil’s hell, and it assures us of our forever home in heaven where we will receive unimaginable blessings and rewards. However, we often overlook the amazing blessings and rewards that salvation brings for us and through us in the “here and now.” God’s work of salvation does not begin with our physical death; it begins the moment we place our trust in Jesus as Lord and Savior. In Romans 10:9, we read, “if we confess with our mouths that Jesus is Lord, and believe in our hearts that God raised Him from the dead, we will be saved.”
In Romans 6:23, we are told that “the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” When Jesus said, “it is finished,” He was telling the world that His sacrificial death satisfied the wrath of God – His death paid, in full, the wages of our sin. Anyone else’s death would not have been sufficient because Jesus was the only One without sin. While the work of Jesus as a sacrifice for mankind was finished, His public preaching along with His death, burial, and resurrection were the beginning of God’s kingdom coming forth on earth. The word, “kingdom” implies that there is a King who rules and reigns. When we are born again, the very Spirit of Christ comes to live in us, to rule and reign (John 3:3); we become God’s children; and God commissions us to become right- now instruments in His beautiful story of redemption to bring about blessings – for us and through us.
Blessings For Us
We can only imagine the future blessings that God has for us in heaven, but may we never forget that God desires to bless His children now with a life of power and purpose. In John 10:10, Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it more abundantly.” As believers in Christ, we are not exempt from trouble, but, when (not if) trouble comes, we have access to a storehouse of infinite resources simply by calling on the name of Jesus. Even in our fiercest storm, He gives us joy and peace. In a world filled with ungodly enticements and temptations, He gives us contentment. His death, burial, and resurrection give us victory over the power of sin and death. (1 Corinthians 15:55-58) In our weakness, He is strong. In our need, He equips and provides. In our anxiety and fear, He protects and brings stability. God has a specific plan and purpose for each one of His children, and through His mysterious and supernatural intervention, He customizes the circumstances of each one, causing all things to work together for our good and His glory. (Romans 8:28) Day after day, God bestows mercy and grace on us – forgiving, restoring, redirecting, delivering, rescuing, convicting, and transforming us to be more like Jesus. The flow of His eternal grace is relentless to complete the good work He has begun in each one of us. (Philippians 1:6) Our Living Hope, whose name is Jesus, never leaves us to our own resources in this broken-down world. He provides everything we need now and forever in His presence and perfect power.
Blessings Through Us
The grace that God bestows on us (His children) is the same grace that is available to others who will repent and believe. In Mark 1:15, Jesus said, “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” God wants to build His kingdom on earth through us (His children), and, therefore, bless others through us. How can this happen? First, and foremost, we must be born again; the Holy Spirit must indwell us! His presence living in us supernaturally transforms our innermost being, giving us the power to live out the Christian life. Our part is to release control over ourselves and allow the Holy Spirit to control us. We are to be different from the world, humbly showing the world God’s love, forgiveness, mercy, grace, power, authority, and glory! The light of Christ should be evident in our lives. We become the mouthpiece, the hands, and the feet of Jesus. Paul said in Galatians 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” The death of Christ was offered as a substitute for you and me because He bore our sin. So, in a spiritual sense, when we place our trust in Jesus, we die, meaning that we have put to death our sinful nature (sometimes referred to as the “flesh”). The “old” self is gone and the “new” has come; we are now hidden in Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:17; Colossians 3:3) One day, the Kingdom of God will reach fulfillment, but in the “here and now,” God wants to work through us to further His kingdom on earth. We are told in Matthew 28:19-20, “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
How can I cooperate with God to be a powerful instrument in God’s Kingdom on earth to accomplish what He desires to do for me and through me? I pray that the below acronym will help you remember to make Jesus your B-O-S-S!
B Believe God’s Word is true. Believe that God will do what He says He will do. Do not waiver in your faith. Do not compromise God’s truth. (Jesus said in Mark 9:23, “Everything is possible for one who believes.”)
O Obey God’s Word and the promptings of the Holy Spirit. Obedience is the hallmark of a Christian. This is how we know that we have truly been born again. (1 John 2:3-4 reads, “We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. Whoever says, ‘I know him,’ but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person.)
S Submit your self-will to God. God is wiser and smarter than we are. Surrender your hopes, dreams, desires, and “life’s agenda” to God. Be loyal to God’s kingdom, not your little kingdom of “self.” (Jesus said in Luke 9:23, “Whoever wants to be my disciples must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”)
S Stand firm in the armor of God. (Ephesians 6:11 says, “Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.”)
Written by Judy Tabor