Now He is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else—not only in this world but also in the world to come. God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made Him head over all things for the benefit of the church. And the church is His body; it is made full and complete by Christ, who fills all things everywhere with Himself.Ephesians 1:21-23
Now that Paul has digressed from praying, he continues in that mode and goes back to the theme of the will of God he introduced prior to this. This one Who is the head of everything in heaven and earth is above all rulers, authorities, POWERS, leaders or anything else. Anything – in this world or in the world to come. Does that mean that Christ reigns over the demons in hell? Well yes and no. He has all power over the demons of hell. One day when God brings all things in this current age to an end and ushers in the age to come, life as He meant it to be, He will dispose of the fallen angels. So in that sense yes he rules over the demons. He also rules over them as depicted in the gospels where he says a word and they tremble in fear. They know who is in control; Jesus Christ. He is the one who has ultimate power. But He does not rule over the demons in a personal sense, directing them or overseeing them.
Note that God has given Christ all authority, made Him head over everything, as Paul told us before. This means head on earth, under the earth, in the heavens, anywhere you can think of. For what reason? For the benefit of the church! Oh so we can build bigger and better buildings in order that the edifice of the church as a building or organization benefits? NO. That’s not the church. The body, the people are the church.
I have a friend in NZ who is a pastor and when asked by anyone, especially those not in the Church, where his church is, he answers, “I don’t know.” What sort of a pastor doesn’t know where his church is? How can that be? Is he able to find his office? Does he get to the church on time to be able to preach or does he have trouble finding it? No, his point is that if you ask him at any one time in the day where the church is, it’s hard to answer. The saints are scattered. Some are in school, some are at various offices all over the city, some are on the road moving from place to place.
The church is not the building as most perceive, church is the people. Christ has ultimate authority for you, His saints. The ones He is making holy. At that time His body, the Church will be filled with His fullness and complete in every way. The church will function perfectly as God intended it to. He is working toward that now. This is all dependent on the degree to which we are submitted to His way of doing things; His will. At the moment there is tension and there are squabbles, even within the church. I was shocked to realise when I first became a Christian that church meetings were worse than Tennis Club meetings for tension and “fighting”. The reason is that the stakes are higher in the church and we get passionate about the things we feel are of prime importance. Therefore we are ready to die for our cause when opposed. When He fills all in all, and “we know as we are known”, His will (purpose) will be clear and there will be no confusion. When will that be? When everything is subject to His will. When everything is under His headship. That is what God is moving toward. How is His will working out in your part of His universe? Does He have trouble with rebellious subjects in “your” world?
Having stated God’s will in Ephesians 1:9 and 10 Paul works through layers of it throughout the book. That’s why “submission” is such an important word in the letter to the Ephesians. Grasp a hold of that concept and you come to realize something deeper about the will of God as it applies across the board.
And furthermore imagine what it will like when He is head over everything in the age to come. When life returns to what God intended life to be. Back to God’s intention of perfection. He is perfecting you to fit His redeemed world at a time when everything, absolutely everything is in accord with His will. Now that is something to look forward to. No more tears, no more sadness, no more crying, no more pain, no more sin, no more rebellion. Everything flowing in accord with God’s will and plan, peace and harmony and perfection reigning.
There’s clearly more to come.
Submission to Christ without submission to the Scriptures is submission to a self-made Christ, not submission to Christ.John Piper
Your power to resist temptation is proportionate to your submission to God.A R Bernard
Notice the order of 1 Thess 5:23. “sanctified in spirit, soul and body”. Spirit first then soul then body. When God sets our spirit free then our emotions and body begin to fall in line. We determine how long the process takes by our submission or resistance.Ian Vail
I may not have gone where i intended to go, but i think i have ended up where i needed to be.Anon
My Skype byline: LIFE ISN’T ABOUT WAITING FOR THE STORM TO PASS … IT’S LEARNING HOW TO DANCE IN THE RAIN !Ian Vail