Honest writer moment here: Aside from the typed title, I’ve been staring at this otherwise blank screen for the better part of an hour trying to decide where and how to start. I thought about leading with the story of how I saved my hard earned money to buy a $13 Mr. Potato Head when I was 7 years old. In my mind I would then connect that experience to other times in my life when I felt temporarily rich and how riches in this world are just that…temporary. But then so many verses and song lyrics came to mind about all that we have in our Savior that I just couldn’t make sense of where to start.
So, I’m starting with this: “Blessed be the God and Father through the Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 1:3). To the glory of God, we are infinitely rich in Christ. The Apostle Paul continuously made this known in his letters to the churches at Ephesus and Philippi. Remarkably, he penned these words while he himself was in prison. I can only imagine what it was like for him in that dark, dingy cell- how uncomfortable and lonely it must have been. Yet, it was in that place he wrote of the secret of being content in every situation: he could do all things through Christ who strengthened him. A few verses later Paul confidently encouraged his brothers and sisters in Christ, stating, “And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).
I praise God that He revealed these truths to Paul because these truths have not changed. He will supply every need through the riches of Christ. There is nothing that we can experience that is outside the scope of his knowledge and power. He is just as aware of our physical needs as he is our spiritual and emotional needs. Too many times I have doubted this; yet he has never failed to take care of me. I have always had food, clothing, and shelter. He has been a friend when I’ve been lonely, a comforter in grief, and my source of peace during anxious times. Just as his riches in glory are unlimited, so are the graces he gives. He indeed is our all in all. As C.S. Lewis once said, “Look for Christ, and you will find him, and with him everything else thrown in.”
Not only does Christ supply all of our needs here on earth, but through him we have an unfathomable inheritance. Through the letter writing of Paul we again learn more of the truth revealed to him about our life in Christ: “But God, being rich in mercy…made us alive together with Christ…and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:4-7). No wonder Paul could not contain his joy, even in the pit of prison! Peter spoke of this glorious truth as well when he wrote, “By His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, reserved in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:3b-4). This rich inheritance is only possible through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus, through whom we have everything.
Through his perfect life on this earth he has become our righteousness; for we have no righteousness of our own but only that which we possess in him. Through his death he became our substitutionary sacrifice, having bore the wrath of God we so mightily deserve. Through his resurrection he became our victory, raising us to new life with the promise of eternity with him. We indeed are abundantly rich through the power of the gospel.
As I conclude this writing, I find myself in the same predicament as described in the beginning of this post. So I will only end with this:
I praise God that we are permanently rich in Christ; for just as we have him now, so we will have him forever in the place where no eye has seen, nor ear has heard, nor heart of man has imagined; the place prepared for us where we will sing medleys of these riches for all eternity…
Hallelujah, all I have is Christ; Hallelujah, Jesus is my life;
Riches I heed not nor man’s empty praise, thou mine inheritance now
and always, thou and thou only first in my heart, high king of heaven my
Treasure thou art;
Hallelujah, all I have is Christ; Hallelujah, Jesus is my life.