By Rev. Alex Rockwell
Special to The Guardian
A cartoon showed a lawyer reading the last will and testament of a deceased man to a group of greedy relatives. As they leaned forward expectantly, wondering what they would receive, they heard the lawyer read, “I John Jones, being of sound mind… spent it all!”
When Christ left His last will and testament, He made it possible for true believers to share His spiritual riches. Instead of spending it all, Jesus paid it all, on the cross of Calvary. Every person who sincerely trusts Christ as Saviour becomes a child of God. And no matter what he or she has in terms of earthly goods, is truly “well off” in the place where it counts most - in eternity.
Earthly treasures are temporal, while heavenly treasures will last for eternity. We know that from a long sentence in the book of Ephesians chapter one, verses 3 to 14. Here Paul names several of the blessings that make up the spiritual wealth of born again believers. He describes them under three main headings: blessings from God the Father, blessings from God the Son, and blessings from God the Holy Spirit. So, believers have it all. The triune God in three persons, is involved with our salvation and the associated blessings which are our inheritance.
Verses three through six reveal the part played by God the Father. In verse four we learn that He has chosen us- “…He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world…” Verse 5 tells us that the Father has adopted us-“…having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself…” Verse six reveals that He has accepted us. We cannot make ourselves acceptable to God because of our fallen sinful nature, but this verse assures us that He “raised us up together and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.” That’s what the Father has done in bringing us into His family.
Verses seven through twelve explains the part which Jesus the Son has played in the making of Christians. First, He has redeemed and forgiven us. Verse 7 says, “…in Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.” Verses 11 and 12 proclaim that all true believers have an inheritance, with the words, “In Him also we have obtained an inheritance…” This is what Jesus has to do with our becoming God’s children.
Verses 13 and 14 tell us the work of the Holy Spirit in our salvation. We read in verse 13 that the Holy Spirit sealed us explaining, “In Him, you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, in whom also having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise.” When God gives eternal life, He never takes it back. True believers are eternally secure. As a matter of fact, we are told in verse 14 that the Holy Spirit, who indwells every genuine believer “is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession.” The Holy Spirit in the believer is God’s installment guaranteeing that He will finish His work eventually and take us to glory. This is what the Holy Spirit has to do with our salvation.
The Father, Son and Holy Spirit are involved in the salvation of every Christian. Because of that, weather rich or poor, from God’s perspective, we have it all. We were saved when God the Father chose us in eternity past, when Christ died on the cross, and when the Holy Spirit brought conviction to us and we recognized our need and received Christ as Saviour.
John Peterson, in his gospel song sums up our happy condition when we have Christ in our lives. He wrote, “How rich I am, Since Jesus came my way. Redeemed my soul and turned my night to day. How very rich, how very rich I am.”
Rev. Alex Rockwell is the host of Just a Minute, an inspirational thought for the day heard weekdays on Charlottetown radio stations CFCY at 5 p.m. and CIOG at 8:05 a.m. and 5:05 p.m. He also serves as visitation pastor at Georgetown Baptist Church) A guest sermon runs regularly in Saturday’s Guardian and is provided through Christian Communications.