Wednesday, December 8, 2010


Ephesians 1:22-23

And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. 

These two verses bring chapter 1 to a close. Chapter 1 has revealed a lot about the gifts that God has given to the church. Here's a reminder: "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ." (vs. 3) We have talked about predestination, grace, forgiveness, redemption, wisdom and understanding -- all gifts to us who believe. It doesn't stop there, however. Our verses today reveal another stunning truth. The supremacy of Christ, His Lordship over all, is yet another gift to us. Paul tells us that God appointed Jesus to be our head, our ruler, and He did this for us. Not in spite of us. Not to control us. He did it for us. It is God's gift bestowed on the church. Jesus Christ is the head of the church and the head over all things on earth and in the heavenly realms, above all rulers and powers and authorities and dominions, and, He is head over the church. Take comfort, friends. Because of this fact, there is nothing that the church cannot overcome -- no opposition that can overtake us because of the absolute Lordship of Jesus Christ. That is good news for you and me.

The church IS Chist's body. It is more than symbolic. It is a fact. The church is not an institution, it is an organism. It exists and functions only because of its vital connection and relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ, who overcame the greatest setback to life there is: death. I love the analogy of the church as a body. All the different pieces working and moving together in perfect synergy. All of it affected when one piece is in pain or not right and all of it working in joyous health when every piece is doing its part and working as it should. Cut off its head, however, and the body falls to the floor -- nothing about it can function or do any more to bring glory to its Creator. (See 1 Corinthians 12:12-27) This is the supremacy of Christ for us. He is the head. Without Him, we have no power to function. We have no power to mourn or rejoice, love, laugh, sing or cry. We can no longer give glory to the God who created us. And even beyond His church, He is supreme. Over all.

"...the fullness of him who fills everything in every way." This is a bit elusive to even the greatest theologians out there, but here's what I've gathered. "Fullness" suggests two things. 1) That which is filled with Christ. The church contains the fullness of Him. Jesus is "all in" when it comes to the church. There is no part of Him that He withholds from His believers. 2) That which is filled by Christ. Jesus pours His life, His gifts, His blessings, His inheritance, His presence into us.

The church manifests the presence of Christ in the world, but only as His fullness lives in us and as He fills us every moment and every day. The church is His treasure. The church is who He is. The church is you and me. It's true. The church is a clay jar -- fragile, broken and cracked. But the holes and cracks of a broken pot allow more light to shine through -- the light of Jesus. "But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us." 2 Corinthians 4:7, NIV The Body of Christ is a most beautiful place and His headship is a gift. Take it from someone who has had to leave and come back again, search for its beauty, health and usefulness and struggle to do her part to help the body function.


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