4 When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. 6 This mystery is[a] that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.
7 Of this gospel I was made a minister according to the gift of God's grace, which was given me by the working of his power. 8 To me, though I am the very least of all the saints, this grace was given,to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to bring to light for everyone what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in[b] God who created all things, 10 so that through the church the manifold wisdom of God might now be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. 11 This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord,12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. 13 So I ask you not to lose heart over what I am suffering for you, which is your glory.
Okay, so it seems that very simply the mystery of Christ is that the gentiles are awarded the same benefits as the Jews. If I'm getting this all straight the Jews have been God's chosen people and they seem to have let it really get to their heads. They've lost their love for God and they're just following rules now. So now they're being told that they need to forget all the rules and just love God and treat others with God's love. "members of the same body" wow, we as believers seem to miss the mark here. I keep thinking about all the denominational differences that we keep on letting get in the way of all Christians functioning as a body. Doctrine, rituals and traditions are the heavy burdens of a lot of churches just as the Jews back when this was written... I think that we are being reminded here that we need to put all the man-pleasing aside and just serve God.
I love how he's such a humble man. He always remembers that he doesn't deserve to be God's messenger. I also love how he sticks to the topic. He doesn't get off rambling about weird ideas or personal opinions here. He's just telling us how it is. He reminds us of God's power and that its the churches responsibility to ensure that God's wisdom is made known. Then really it is up to the church to continue to break down the barriers that separate us and help us to function as one. Christ has come to make a way for us to get to heaven and all we need is faith.
I guess the main thing that strikes me here is the idea of sticking to the point. I keep thinking about the verses in Matthew that say Love the Lord your God with all your heart....love your neighbor as yourself....on these hang all the law... something like that. I know thats not what I'm reading here but it keeps popping in my head. I think that we are supposed to be united for Christ. I don't really know how to apply this idea in my current circumstances. I just want to make sure that I show God's love first and foremost. Let my light so shine before men that they may see my good works and glorify GOD ... not me. That means it needs to be sincere.
Lord, let me truly love you with all my heart, my mind and my soul. Help me to focus on you and not let all the chaos of life pull me away from you. Help me be united with the fellow believers in my life. ALL of them.Well, I think I got a little off the topic but its where my mind just went swimming to!