This post is adapted from Alive in Him: How Being Embraced by the Love of Christ Changes Everything by Gloria Furman: Real Blessings from the Triune God The blessings we have in Christ are more than social niceties like saying “Gesundheit” after someone sneezes. Paul is describing how we have been blessed “with every spiritual blessing.” Often, when we hear of these blessings, we just smile and nod and utter a polite “Thanks,” as though someone has just blessed a sneezing fit. “Spiritual blessings” sounds fake, like a warranty for an appliance that expires the moment you open the package and use the machine. That warranty was never meant to benefit you, the consumer. But God’s blessings are utterly real. The indwelling Holy Spirit is the one who mediates these blessings to us; he brings them to us and applies them to our lives. In the first fourteen verses of Ephesians, Paul writes to unwrap these blessings in a massive
Blessed Is She Who Believed
John Bloom: Mary was “blessed among women” (Luke 1:42). She received the singular holy gift of being the mother of our Lord (Luke 1:43). God the Son dwelled inside of her body in human form. Then he lived in her home and was under her care until adulthood. This has tempted some to worship her. In fact, one woman publicly exalted Mary by crying out to Jesus, “Blessed is the womb that bore you, and the breasts at which you nursed” (Luke 11:27)! But Jesus corrected her by replying, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it” (Luke 11:27-28)! Do you see what Jesus is doing? In this correction Jesus is protecting Mary’s true blessedness and protecting us from idolatry. Gabriel told Mary that she had “found favor with God” (Luke 1:30). Certainly bearing and raising the Christ Child was an incredible favor. But it was not the greatest favor God bestowed on Mary.
The Dynamics of Faith and Receiving from God
Jeremiah Burroughs: All good is in God, true, but how shall we come to partake of that good? There is such a distance between you and God that, were not Christ in the middle, you would never come together. But Christ has come between and joined you together so that all is yours because you are Christ’s and Christ is God’s. Think of God as the Fountain of all good, and Christ, as it were, the Cistern, and from Him are pipes converged to every believer. Faith sucks at the mouth of every pipe and draws from God, but it comes from God through Christ. The Father fills the Son with all good and so it comes from the Father, through the Son, by faith unto the soul of every believer. Excerpted from Christ Is All In All. (HT: Desiring God Blog)