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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Saturday, December 6, 2014
We receive many unique gifts, but the best unique gift is from God. God gives us His mercy, he loves us so very much, and He gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead.
Kay L. Campbell (Connecticut) titled her story “FREE GIFT” in The Upper Room.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – God’s love is the greatest gift of all.
Prayer: Dear God, help us to humbly receive the gift of your son, Jesus, and to keep gratitude in our hearts all year long. Amen.
To read the entire story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
In the resurrection, Christ was victorious over Satan and his power. Therefore, Jesus Christ is the permanent ruler of the whole world; Satan is only the temporary ruler of the part of the world that chooses to follow him.
Only through being united with Christ’s perfect life can we become good in God’s sight. “Under God’s anger” refers to those who are to receive God’s wrath because of their rejection of Christ.
Because of Christ’s resurrection, we know that our body will also be raised from the dead and that we have been given the power to live as Christians now (Ephesians 1:19-201). These ideas are combined in Paul’s image of sitting with Christ in “the heavenly realms” (see Ephesians 1:32). Our eternal life with Christ is certain because we are united in his powerful victory.
When someone gives you a gift, do you say, “That’s very nice—now how much do I owe you?” No, the appropriate response to a gift is “thank you.” We become Christians through God’s unmerited favor, not as the result of any effort, ability, intelligent choice, or act of service on our part. However, out of gratitude for this free gift, we will seek to help and serve others with kindness, love, and gentleness, and not merely to please ourselves. Because our salvation and even our faith are gifts, we should respond with gratitude, praise, and joy. (NLT)
Ephesians 2:1-9 – Once you were dead, doomed forever because of your many sins. You used to live just like the rest of the world, full of sin, obeying Satan, the mighty prince of the power of the air. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passions and desires of our evil nature. We were born with an evil nature, and we were under God’s anger just like everyone else.
But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so very much, that even while we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s special favor that you have been saved!) For he raised us from the dead along with Christ, and we are seated with him in the heavenly realms—all because we are one with Christ Jesus. And so God can always point to us as examples of the incredible wealth of his favor and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us through Christ Jesus.
God saved you by his special favor when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.
For more Helpful Inspirational Material:
SPIRITUAL GIFTS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/spiritual-gifts/
ABUDANCE, ABUNDANT: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/abundance-abundant/
HELP, HELPING: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/help-helping/
1 The world fears the power of the atom, yet we belong to the God of the universe, who not only created that atomic power but also raised Jesus Christ from the dead. God’s incomparably great power is available to help you. There is nothing too difficult for him. (NLT)
Ephesians 1:19-20 – I pray that you will begin to understand the incredible greatness of his power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms.
2 “Who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms” means that in Christ we have all the benefits of knowing God—being chosen for salvation, being adopted as his children, forgiveness, insight, the gifts of the Spirit, power to do God’s will, the hop[e of living forever with Christ. Because we have an intimate relationship with Christ, we can enjoy these blessings now. The “heavenly realms” means that these blessings are eternal, not temporal. The blessings come from Christ’s spiritual realm, not the earthly realm of the goddess Artemis. (NLT)
Ephesians 1:3 – How we praise God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we belong to Christ.
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