Ephesians 1:3-10. 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places… 9 making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ10 as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.
Ephesians 1 walks us one by one through the spiritual blessings in the heavenly places that we have in Christ. Paul takes us back before time began declaring us to be chosen and predestined in Christ. Then he moves us into our present reality as holy, blameless, adopted, loved, forgiven, and redeemed. And finally he takes us on a journey into our future with Christ – a plan for the fullness of time to unite all things in him.
If you haven’t noticed, this blog is all about our union with Christ. Ephesians 1:10 is one of those verses that comes along once in a while that is so specifically about union with Christ, so foundational, so rich in its pronouncement, that it almost knocks us out of our chairs.
Unite all things in him.
The word unite means to “sum up,” or “to gather together into one.” Paul is letting us know that one day everything in the universe will be unified in Jesus. It will all “add up” to him. He will be the head of all things. He is the final answer. Union with Christ is the ultimate plan of God for the entire universe. Everything in heaven and earth (that’s a figure of speech which means everything) is going to be united to Jesus Christ. This is where all of time and space is headed. The goal of all of history is Christ. His glory. His rule. His goodness. His love over all things.
Alright, I need you to open your spiritual eyes with me right now. Can you see it? Can you see that we are already united to Christ? But also one day all things will be united to Christ. What does this mean? It means that right now we who are in Christ (the church) are a glimpse of what the world will be one day. We are THE New Creation before there is a new creation. We are redeemed before there is a redemption of all things. We are reconciled before there is the reconciliation of all things. We are the “coming attractions.” Just as Christ rules our lives right now, he will rule the universe one day. Just as Christ has glorified us now, he will glorify the entire creation one day. Just as Christ has restored the spiritual right now, he will restore the physical someday.
Let’s pause and make sure we understand that Paul is not saying Christ will one day absorb all things into his being – that would actually be the destruction of all things. Notice Paul uses the word plan. This word means administration, management, or overseeing. Jesus will rule all things, administer all things, manage all things. This is not the Greek teaching that all things are absorbed into the divine Logos. Nor is it the Hindu belief that we are absorbed into the Brahman. Both of these, if true, would destroy the personal being – the decaying body leaving only a soulless spirit to be melted into some sort of larger spirit. But that would not be the incarnated Christ. The personal Christ. The physical Christ. The God-man who is still a person.
Again, we learn what unite all things to Christ means by looking at our current union with Christ. Has Christ absorbed us spiritually, destroying our bodies and eliminating our personalities? Nope. Rather, he has united his life to ours while maintaining our individual unique lives, and our physical bodies. Union with Christ does not destroy us, on the contrary it emboldens and energizes us. It makes us more “us” than we’ve ever been. It makes us our true selves. The persons we were meant to be.
One day everything else in the universe will also be brought to its fullest potential. It’s true self. Everything will function exactly how God intended for it to function. God’s just rule will be established everywhere. Christ will reign supreme. It’s coming. And “to live is Christ” is the first-fruits. What has happened to us will happen to the rest of the universe when Jesus returns for his children. O Glorious day!
How does Ephesians 1:10 give your life purpose?
You in Christ
In Christ we are the preview of what is to come when all things are united in Jesus. Does this change how you see your church? Your mission?
Christ in you
How can you live as the “coming attraction” of God’s kingdom today?
Playlist: United to Christ.
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