“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3).
The first word translated “blessed” means to celebrate with praises. Paul, who wrote this wonderful verse, magnifies the grace of God so that we, too, might be filled to overflowing with praise. God is said to bless us when He bestows upon us every provision for our spiritual peace and prosperity. We are said to bless God when we offer praise and thanksgiving for His provision.
More than twenty-five years had passed since Paul met the Lord Jesus Christ. Yet he was still counting his blessings and praising God for them. Note that Paul is not praising God because God desires to bless him, nor because God has determined to bless him at some future time, but because God “hath” blessed him. Yes, and “us,” too! God is the Blesser, and the blessed are those, and those only, who have received His Son as “our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The nature of these blessings is said to be “spiritual.” Too many of us place the emphasis upon those things that are temporal and transient while we neglect the values that are spiritual and eternal. The Father designed every spiritual blessing for us. They are ours “in Christ,” and are delivered to us by the Holy Spirit. Here are a few:
- Salvation (Ephesians 2:8)
- Justification (Romans 3:24)
- Victory over sin (Romans 5:20)
- Power to testify (Colossians 4:6)
- Strength for service (Heb. 12:28)
- A spirit of generosity (2 Cor. 8:7)
- Ability to stand (1 Peter 5:12)
- Strength in suffering (2 Cor. 12:9)
—Adapted from Ephesians by Lehman Strauss.