Many believers really don’t know the spiritual tools they have received. They got the ‘fire insurance package’ but that may be all they think they have. There is more available on our spiritual tool belts. As a believer, you also have the tools of SALT and LIGHT. Matthew 5:13 and 14 (ESV) says, “You are the salt of the earth”, and “You are the light of the world.” Be sure you carry a salt shaker and a flashlight in your tool belt.
Being the salt of the earth is being a believer who goes about his life sprinkling the goodness and love of Jesus to those they meet. Salt enhances the flavor of our foods. Jesus enhances the flavor of our lives. You have the flavor additive that someone else needs. You also carry His light as you lovingly point to Jesus. When the way is dark for some, you carry the light of the revelation of His love, forgiveness, and grace. They won’t stay in the dark when you’ve given them light that will last forever.
These spiritual tools are necessary in life. Be sure they’re stored in your tool belt for easy access and distribution.
Does it seem like your spiritual tool belt is becoming heavy? Just remember, Jesus carries the load, and all you need to do is to receive what is already yours and your load will be easy. Be sure you are familiar with the tool of forgiveness. Not only forgiving others, but understanding that you are already forgiven. Someone questioned a pastor saying they weren’t sure they could believe their future sins were actually forgiven because Jesus lived so long ago. The pastor shared that the sins Jesus bore on the Cross were all future sins to which the person rejoiced when they received that revelation. Past, present, and future sins washed away in the blood of Jesus, forgiven.
Don’t ever consider that God won’t forgive you. He already did in and through Jesus. Realize that you’re not only forgiven but He does not condemn you—ever. The ordinances which were against you were wiped away because of God’s forgiveness. Jesus told the woman caught in adultery to go and sin no more. He knew who she was, but offered her forgiveness and love. She was no longer who she had been. She was a new woman, forgiven, loved by God, and no longer condemned. Let these tools continue establishing you daily in God’s great grace.
We’re refocusing on the truths of our spiritual tools and what we need daily to carry in our spiritual tool belts. So many believers feel they can’t be holy because of their sin but this isn’t the message of the Gospel of Grace through the finished work of Jesus. You are holy because you are IN Christ Jesus. Your holiness doesn’t depend on you. It is totally wrapped up in Jesus. And, as His child, you share in this inheritance. You’re not a rotten sinner trying to become holy. You already are holy because Jesus resides in you.
The Apostles shared the same picture for believers as a spiritual household of God, a holy nation, a holy Temple in the Lord (1 Peter 2:5, 9; Ephesians 2:20-21). You are also righteous as a child of God. You may not feel righteous, or in right standing when you only focus on your past sin and not on His provision. You ARE the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:21), and it doesn’t matter what anyone else says. God says you’re righteousness is because of Jesus and He’s in you.
The more you confess that you ARE who God says you are, the stronger and more victorious in Jesus you’ll be. You’ve got to keep these spiritual tools handy.
It always bears repeating that you are complete in Jesus Christ, yet many believers don’t know they are and keep trying to find their identity in Him. Paul makes it pretty clear to the Corinthian believers when he says ““For in him you have been enriched in every way….God thus confirming our testimony about Christ among you…Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift” (1 Corinthians 1:5-7 (NIV). Most of the time we fail to truly know and understand who we are in Christ Jesus. We’ve either not been given our spiritual tool belt and understand what it is that we have or we’re not wearing it. Let’s refocus the truths of our spiritual tools.
First is your identity is in Christ, a beloved child made righteous because of His finished work on the Cross. Your righteousness is not based on your performance but solely on what Jesus did at the Cross. 2 Corinthians 5:21 (NASB) clearly says, “He made Him [Christ] who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him [Christ Jesus].” Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise or that your salvation is dependent on your works. Keep this truth readily available in your tool belt because it’s all about Jesus, and in Him you are righteous.
In early spring we tackled a project by adding a 20 square-foot closet in an extra room off our basement. We had to cut the wood for framing it, and would end up going back and forth between the garage and the closet area to make sure we had the measurements correct before we cut. Invariably we’d walk off from one place or the other without something we needed, either the measuring tape or pencil or something else. Jack and I laughed about it and said we should have had our tool belt on so we’d have everything we needed with us.
That made me think that many times as believers we don’t have our spiritual tool belt handy. It might be somewhere in your house, but when you need it, can you find it? Your spiritual tool belt is the Word of God’s grace, knowing that you are loved, accepted, cleansed, and holy before God because of the finished work of Jesus. Your tool belt is Jesus and all that He did for you. If you don’t walk in the riches of His provisions and grace, your tool belt isn’t doing you any good.
In light of Ephesians 3:16-19 and what we’ve learned the last few days, we can see that verse 20 is far more than a benediction. “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us (KJV).” When you begin growing in the truth and revelation of verses 16-20, your ‘exceeding abundantly’ will begin to manifest in your life. You won’t wonder if God will answer you or give you guidance and help. You’ll know because He lives BIG in you. You won’t lack faith because you’re grounded in the trustworthiness of His Word and His faithfulness, and Jesus’ provisions.
You wonder if you’ll have what it takes for what you need to do but you’ll know His wisdom and favor will come as He opens new doors. Dig further into what Paul talks about here in Ephesians 3. Fill yourself up with the Word. You’ll fortify not only your mind but strengthen your spirit man. Then you can go out into your world as His ambassador, filled with Him, sharing His love with those you meet.
So how does Ephesians 3:16-19 make a difference and impact my life? We’ve seen the components through these verses in the last few days. Now it comes to understanding how or why they impact your life. Ephesians 3:19(b), KJV, says “that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.” Why does it make a difference in having Jesus dwell in your heart by faith and understanding His immense and unending love that’s beyond anything you’ve known? So that, as Paul says, you will be filled up with the fullness of God—ALL that He is. Isn’t that amazing?
If you’ve had a teacher, friend, or parent who’s made an impact in your life for the good, you can begin to understand God’s desire for you. God wants you to be FULL of Him. He desires to live BIG in you. The God of the Universe wants you to know Him and allow Him to live in His fullness, in His provision, in His power, in His ability in you! When you know the power of His love and what Jesus did for you, you can’t help but be filled with Him, and you’ll easily impact the world around you with His love.
When you begin to fortify your inner man, your spirit, with the truth of God’s love and grace, you’ll find that Ephesians 3:17-19 (KJV) begins to unfold in your heart and life. “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge.” How does God’s love and grace increase in our lives?
By Jesus dwelling in our hearts by faith (personal relationship with Him), and being rooted and grounded in His love. You don’t know how much someone cares for you until you find out how much they love you. We see that in our personal relationships. If you don’t ground yourself in just how much God loves you, you’ll miss all that He has for you. His love is so immense and full for you, and He wants you to open your heart and receive all that He has (and is). The more you do, the more you are truly able to understand (comprehend, taking/receiving, seizing a truth) how wide, how deep, how tall, and how immeasurable God’s love for you is. It can truly boggle the mind. Make sure Jesus lives in your heart, and let His love grow in you so you can share it with others.