All Things Under Christ’s Lordship (Ephesians 1)

In the opening section of his letter to the Ephesians, Paul admirably encompasses the purpose of God’s plan for the ages: to bring all things back under Christ’s authority (Eph 1:10). The rebellion against God started in the angelic realm with the fall of Satan and his demons. It infected the human race when Satan incited Eve to eat of the forbidden fruit, and Adam followed suit. In fact, the entire universe is groaning and awaiting redemption (Rom 8:22).

But God is still the sovereign Ruler and King of the universe. And he has chosen for his Son, the Messiah, to be the designated Lord, so that, in keeping with Isaiah’s vision, “at the name of Jesus every knee should bow … and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Phil 2:10–11). As Paul points out in Ephesians, God showed that this was his will by Christ’s resurrection:

He demonstrated this power in the Messiah by raising him from the dead and seating him at his right hand in the heavens—far above every ruler and authority, power and dominion, and every title given, not only in this age but also in the one to come. And he put everything under his feet (alluding to Ps 8:6) and appointed him as head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of the One who fills all things in every way (Eph 1:20–23).

If Christ, then, has already been exalted and every knee shall one day bow to him, how shall we then live? The answer: we should submit to his lordship in every area of life already in the here and now, “to the praise of his glory” (Eph 1:12, 14): in the church (Eph 4:1–16); in our personal lives and relationships with one another (Eph 4:17–5:21); in our marriages and families, as wives and husbands (Eph 5:22–33), children and parents (Eph 6:1–4), and at work (Eph 6:5–9).

Not that we are “making him Lord”—he already is. He has created us, and he has bought us by dying on the cross for our sins—we are doubly his. So let us live our lives fully submitted to his lordship, and worthy of the immeasurably great calling we received.

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