ADVENT DEVOTIONAL FOR 2017
REIGNING WITH CHRIST
“But God who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins hath quickened us together with Christ--by grace ye are saved--and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 2:4-6)
FJ HUEGEL: Here we have the amazing declaration of the inspired Word of God to the effect that the Christian sits where Jesus sits, that he actually shares, though it be only in spirit—there is nothing so real as spirit—his Savior’s very throne.
We must note carefully here that there are no approximations. He does not come gradually to this infinitely exalted position. It is not that he struggles to attain, getting better day by day, as he prays more, reads his bible more, serves his church and his fellowmen more, earnestly reaching up to approach God. He does not come little by little to a closer relation to the Throne of God. This is the human way of thinking. Were it so, it would all come back to the one great question; namely, the merits of man. It is not God helping man to improve himself that he might at last attain so lofty a position.
It is all a gift. It is all of grace. Man’s merit does not qualify him, not does his shame and his sin disqualify him, if he will but believe. He comes at a blow, from the lowest possible position—dead in sins—to the highest position in the universe, raised up with Christ by a sovereign act of God and made to sit together with Christ in heavenly places. On the one hand it leaves us breathless with wonder and gratitude; on the other hand resentful that such an amazing omission of all human merit or demerit, such a sweeping discarding of all self-effort and achievement springing from “flesh,” should be made. But there is stands.
PRAYER: Dear God, I cannot believe it—yet I must! At the moment in which I yielded my life to the Lord Jesus—and yet also from the foundation of the world—you placed me spiritually next to Him, and next to you. Please show me what it means to live in this amazing position. In Jesus’s name, Amen.