Blessed with the Spirit
Blessings in the Spirit
Title: Blessed by the Spirit
Scripture: Ephesians 1:11-14
Central Theme: Identity of Blessing
Objective Statement: Our “in Christ “identity can be clearly seen in two ways that Christ has
blessed us in the Spirit.
We are sealed by the Spirit. (v.11-13)
We are heirs with the Spirit. (v.14)
- In 2004 a man was found beaten, naked, and unconscious behind a Burger King in Richmond Hill Georgia.
- When he gained consciousness they found that he had total amnesia.
- The man had no memory of anything about himself.
- He did not know his name, his hometown, or any memory of any relationship in his life.
- He had no drivers liscense, social security card, or birth certificate.
- The FBI did fingerprint and dna analysis on the man and did not find anything.
- Phil did a national tv show on him in 2008 to try to help the man figure out who he was.
- Phil hired a private investigator and couldn’t discover anything.
- Kathleen, a woman who was his nurse, took him in and try to help restore his identity.
- Now imagine that this was you.
- You woke up this morning beaten to a pulp in a place you didn’t recognize, with no past, a confusing present, and no identity to point you to a future. You have no family, no friends, or anything to help you know who you are, where you have been and where you are going. Something traumatic happens and you wake up and for the next 8 years you have no identity. That would be an incredibly scary situation.
- This man ended up calling himself “Benjamin Kyle”, partly because of the BK- He was found at a Burger King
- Interestingly because so many of us have some kind of grasp as to what our identification is- our past and present- our hometown, our earliest relationships- we do not think often about how valuable that is for us.
- We have an identity, and we even make our identity.
- Satan is trying to deceive us into having a wrong identity.
- He is either trying to make sure that your identity is found in the wrong thing, or that your identity is something other than what God says that it is.
- Many of us who do not find our identity in who God says we are end up doing what this gentleman did in our story today.
- We search for an identity.
- When we can’t find our true identity we make up our identity ourselves.
- Over the last few weeks we have been studying Ephesians 1.
- And we have said that the two words that sum up the book of Ephesians are those two words “In Christ”.
- Today, I want to continue to point you to who your true identity is. The most important thing about you is whether you are in Christ or whether you are not.
- If you are in Christ that identity means some amazing things for you.
Our “in Christ “identity can be clearly seen in two ways that Christ has blessed us in the Spirit.
1. We are sealed by the Spirit. (v.11-13)
(11) In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
(12) That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
(13) In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
- As we read the last few verses in this section of Ephesians, I want to remind you that we are in one long sentence in the original language. It is the longest in the New Testament.
- This section is a praise anthem to God for what He has done for those of us who are in Christ.
- These two words, “in Christ”, describe our position and our identity.
- Verses 3-6 praise God for how those “in Christ” are blessed by the Father.
- Verses 7-12 praise God for how those “in Christ” are blessed in the Son.
- The text in today’s sermon starts in that section about being blessed in the Son and moves into the section about how those “in Christ” are blessed in the Spirit.
- Verse 11 describes how that “in Christ” we have an inheritance, and that this inheritance for those who are “in Christ” was predestined. The truth is that God predestined or chose a destination beforehand for all those who would believe and put their faith in Christ.
- Notice when it says all of that happened for those who were “in Christ”.
- This happens for those “who first trusted Christ.”
- There is a responsibility for those who would hear to believe.
- Those who are in Christ are those “who first trusted Christ.”
- How did it happen? “after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation.”
- The Bible says that “faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.”
- Paul asks some questions in Romans 10 that are relevant here.
(13) For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
(14) How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
(15) And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
- To call you must believe.
- To believe you must hear.
- To hear someone must proclaim.
- To proclaim someone must be sent.
- This is exactly what happened for the Ephesians. Paul was sent, and proclaimed the Gospel. They believed and put their trust in Jesus Christ.
- After they believed the “gospel of your salvation” ye were “sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise”.
- What does it mean to be sealed?
- To understand what it means to be sealed by the Holy Spirit you must understand what it means to be indwelt by the Holy Spirit.
- We are “sealed” by the indwelling Spirit that comes to live in every believer.
- When someone hears the Gospel, and places their trust in Christ, God sends the Holy Spirit to live inside of them.
- This happens instantly at the moment of salvation.
- In the Old Testament, those who were justified by faith in God may not have had the indwelling Spirit living inside of them.
- The Holy Spirit would come upon people for acts of service for the Lord, but did not necessarily stay on regenerate people.
- In this present, church age, we understand through the revelation of the New Testament that to not have the indwelling Holy Spirit means to be saved. If you are saved you have the Holy Spirit indwelling you.
(9) But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
(10) And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
(11) But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.
- If the Holy Spirit indwells you then you are saved. If you are saved then the Holy Spirit dwells in you.
- Indwelling is different than filling.
- We are commanded to be filled with the Spirit, but never commanded to be indwelt with the Spirit.
(18) And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
- We are told not to be drunk with wine, “wherein is excess”.
- We are told to be “filled” or “under the influence of” the Holy Spirit.
- If the fruit of drunkenness is “excess”, the fruit of the Spirit is…
(19) Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;
(20) Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
(21) Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
- Filling has the idea of being controlled by the Spirit.
- But interestingly we are also told not to “grieve the Holy Spirit”.
(30) And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
- We are told not to grieve the Holy Spirit of God. Why? “ye are sealed unto the day of redemption”.
- The Holy Spirit comes and indwells you, and you are “sealed unto the day of redemption.”
- We are already redeemed in that we have already been bought by the precious blood of Christ.
- But we will be redeemed when we will be saved from the very presence of sin in the new heaven and new earth- our inheritance.
- So if we are “sealed” until the “day of redemeption” that means the Spirit is indwelling a body that He cannot and will not leave.
- Paul is teaching us- you are sealed. You are indwelt. The Holy Spirit will not leave.
- Don’t fight with the indwelling Spirit causing Him to grieve.
- Be filled with the Spirit- be under the influence of the Holy Spirit
- Galatians also tells us what the fruit of the Spirit is.
(16) This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh.
- We are indwelled by the Spirit, and we are told to let Him control us and not our flesh.
(19) Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,
(20) Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,
(21) Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
- If the only fruit in your life are the “works of the flesh” you are not indwelt by the Holy Spirit.
- But if you have the Spirit in your life there will be the fruit of the Spirit.
(22) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
(23) Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.
(24) And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
(25) If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.
- Now, what does Paul mean when he says we are sealed?
- Sealing points to an official mark that was put onto a legal document, contract, letter, or item.
- Kings in days of old would have a unique, one of a kind ring with a signet mark on it.
- They would close the document or letter with wax and imprint that ring on the seal with the official mark of that king.
- In doing so it conveyed four truths:
- Security- The document or communication was made secure by that identity.
- Authenticity- The document or communication actually came from that identity.
- Ownership- The document or communication was owned by that identity.
- Authority- The document or communication carried with it the delegated power of that identity.
- We are sealed by the Holy Spirit of God.
- Security- God is the one saved us. We are marked with His identity, and kept saved by the indwelling Holy Spirit. He cannot leave. We are sealed unto the day of redemption.
- Authenticity- We have the third person of the Trinity living inside of us. His Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are the children of God.
- Ownership- We are bought with a price. The Holy Spirit’s indwelling communicates to us that we are in Christ and we belong to Him.
- Authority- The indwelling Holy Spirit is this new authority that comes into our lives that we must submit to and allow to grow us into what He wants us to be.
- How are we who are in Christ blessed by the Spirit? We have the identifying mark of the Holy Spirit.
- Our security is set.
- Our salvation is authentic and secure. We are owned by God, and we go out under His authority. Our identity is firmly grounded in who He says we are by the giving us of His Spirit.
- But not only are we sealed, the indwelling Holy Spirit communicates something else.
2. We are heirs with the Spirit. (v.14)
(14) Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
- The Spirit is the “earnest of our inheritance”.
- The word “earnest” is a word that speaks of a down payment.
- When you by something of major value, like a house, you write a contract, and along with that contract you give a payment. We often call that “earnest money”.
- The money that you give along with that contract makes the seller know that you are committed to fulfill the contract.
- Some money has been given so that you know that the rest of the money is coming.
- It shows that you are “earnest” or sincere because you have “skin in the game.”
- You will lose out on that money if you do not fulfill the rest of the requirements of the contract.
- We have already been told that we have an inheritance. God has promised that those who believed will be saved.
(9) That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
(10) For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
(11) For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
- We will not be ashamed because God does not break His promises.
- When we put our trust in God, we will never be caught having trusted in someone that will not come through on that promise.
- The scripture is pointing to the fact that one of the ways we know we will have an inheritance from God in the future is that He is given us the Holy Spirit now.
- The Holy Spirit Himself is the guarantee of that promised inheritance!
- The indwelling Spirit is what tells us, “More is coming!!!!”
(14) For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
(15) For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
(16) The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
(17) And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
- Pastor Warren Weirsbe said this about redemption:
We have been redeemed through faith in Jesus Christ (Eph_1:7). We are being redeemed as the Spirit works in our lives to make us more like Christ (Rom_8:1-4). We shall be redeemed when Christ returns and we become like Him.
- The Holy Spirit indwelling us, filling us, changing us, is the one that seals us until that day of redemption.
- He Himself is the guarantee. He is the earnest that points to the further inheritance we have one day when those in Christ will go to be with Christ forever- when God gathers all things together in Christ!
- Those who are in Christ have been sealed by the Holy Spirit.
- Those who are in Christ are heirs with the Spirit.
- So here are two practical questions that you must answer that I believe will help you.
- How do you know that you are indwelt with the Spirit?
- One of the ways you know that you are indwelt with the Spirit is if that Spirit is producing fruit in your life. Love Joy Peace….
- How do you be controlled by or filled by the Spirit? Let the Word of God dwell in you richly in all wisdom.
- What is my identity in Christ? Let’s sum it up with what we have said over the past three messages.
- Those who are in Christ have been blessed by the Father, blessed by the Son, and blessed by the Spirit.
- In Christ we are chosen to be:
- Without blame.
- Why? “That we should be to the praise of His glory!”
- Do you remember the gentleman we talked about in the beginning of the sermon, Benjamin Kyle?
- Phil’s show didn’t help him find anyone.
- For 11 years he lived without an identity.
- Eventually the state issued him new identity documentation with his newly assumed name so that he could work and live life.
- As a result of a documentary that someone did about him a geneaologist named CeCe Moore- who had spent tow years looking into Kyle’s case- finally cracked the mystery.
- According to grunge.com:
The secret link proved to be a yearbook photo in the 1967 Nautilus, put out by a high school in Lafayette, Indiana. In late 2015, as reported by Journal & Courier, Benjaman Kyle's true name was discovered: he was actually William "Bill" Powell.
By late 2015, Bill Powell moved back home to Indiana, in order to help take care of his aging brother Furman, and reunited with all his previously unknown family members.
Thanks to a cousin, the former Benjaman Kyle also has a copy of his family tree. According to writer Matt Wolfe, Bill enjoys tracing his lineage. "It's the idea of looking at all these names, knowing that I'm descended from all these people," he said. "I have a history now."
Read More: https://www.grunge.com/97171/crazy-true-story-benjaman-kyle-lost-memory/?utm_campaign=clip