For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope. Romans
Comments, thoughts and reflections welcome
Each one of us, however, has been given grace to be measured by the Messiah’s bounty. This is why it says:
“After he went up into the heights, he led captivity captive, and he gave gifts to mankind. “
Now this phrase, “he went up,” what can it mean if not that he first went down into the lower parts, that is, the earth? The one who went down is himself the one who also went up, far above all of heaven, in order to fill all things. Furthermore, he gave some people as emissaries, some as prophets, some as proclaimers of the Good News, and some as shepherds and teachers. Their task is to equip God’s people for the work of service that builds the body of the Messiah, until we all arrive at the unity implied by trusting and knowing the Son of God, at full manhood, at the standard of maturity set by the Messiah’s perfection.
Grace is given to do. Each one receives an assignment to accomplish. Those assignments are to benefit the whole body not just the individual. They are given with gifts that enable us to fulfill the assigned tasks. They are meant to “equip God’s people” for “work of service;” actions that build up the body of believers with goals of unity and maturity.
It could be said that even as we work at maturing physically, we have work to do to mature spiritually. We provide food for growth from infancy to adulthood. We provide instruction to enable youth to navigate the adult world and its requirements. In the same way, believers are required to assist one another in their spiritual growth.
As we are obedient to our assigned tasks the members of the kingdom of God are able to encourage the maturing of its individual members. Instructions are given in God’s Word. Food is provided in God’s Word. If there is a famine of hearing God’s Word, there will be a subsequent lack of maturity and weakness among the body of believers.
Pray – Deal generously with your servant; then I will live and observe your word. Open my eyes, so that I will see…
Repent – I repent for the time I did not pick up my cross; did not fulfill my assignment as I should.
Ask – Teach me, Adonai, the way of your laws; keeping them will be its own reward for me.
Yes – Turn my eyes away from worthless things; with your ways give me life.
Source: Ephesians and Psalms