“A captive with a cause”
In the 2nd chapter of Ephesians, Paul marveled at the work of reconciliation where He took the US’s and THEM’s and created a new race called the “In HIM’s”! In the 3rd chapter we realize just what this means. If you read the gospels you will discover that the world Jesus promises His followers has three things:
· That IN Him we will be absurdly happy
- That THROUGH Him we can be completely fearless
- And that BECAUSE of the above two we will be constantly in trouble
But it is important that we don’t allow the third promise to negate the first two. Listen up, the truth is (as we shall see in these verses) it is because of the third truth that we can be completely fearless and absurdly happy. In verse 1 of chapter 3 Paul starts out with the words, “for this reason”; we all struggle at times from thinking of ourselves as victims of life. This is especially true when it comes too adverse situations and circumstances. That is not How Paul saw it, as he was writing this letter he was in a prison in Rome on trial for his life. Though the facts were true, there was yet another greater truth. Paul was first and foremost a captive of Christ, a prisoner of a person who had given His life that Paul may have life everlasting. Our happiness is made up of our personal experiences, but our joy will come NOT by getting what we want but rather when we want what we get! I am convinced that my happiness or joy is far more dependent upon my perspective in my circumstance then it is upon the circumstance it’s self. Paul realized that above the Jews hatred and jealousy, the Roman’s cruelty and the Caesar’s insanity, loomed a Loving Savior who can not do wrong and will make every work great and marvelous. That means that what we are now going through or will go through in the future is not in the hand of whimsical fate but rather in the hand of a loving savior! As far as our faith is concerned we have peace based upon knowing Who holds our future and NOT in what our future holds. Paul may not have been fully able to grasp the WHY but He was resting in the WHO that had allowed it. He saw the wonderful glorious wisdom of God’s plan of making Him a prisoner. That leads me to the 2nd great discovery that Paul speaks of here as he sees himself not only a “prisoner of Christ Jesus” but also the purpose of this incarceration was “for you gentiles”! Paul’s perspective of looking at his life as being in the hands of his Savior caused him to see that there was a purpose as well! Paul was not only a prisoner of a person, a captive of Christ, he was also a prisoner with a purpose, a captive with a cause! I’m convinced that God wastes nothing in my life and that some how my bondage seen in difficulties and struggles will be used to not only set myself free but through His power others as well!
This has been Pastor Dale, Blessings!