How CERC’s Ephesians Series Taught Me to Wear My Armour
Posted on 4 Oct 2021 by CERC
Going through the book of Ephesians has once again reminded me of God’s immense grace and mercy towards my life as I recall how He opened up my eyes and mind to notice and question things that mattered in His perspective. When I was a teenager, I couldn’t reconcile how life and death could take place in a world that was under God. I thought that tragedies shouldn’t happen if God is in control of everything. I also didn’t feel like I was good enough as a Christian back then because of the times I failed to act like one.
In my adolescence, I was taught that people are essentially good. I was also taught that only blessings can come from God and that my own spirituality e.g. being more prayerful, doing good deeds, fasting, etc., can activate God’s goodness and blessings to come upon my life. I was sucked into this lie until a series of events made me think about and question human nature, which I noticed to be predominantly self-centered, including the way I thought about God’s sovereignty. I always accepted the fact that there is a higher being who is the Creator of all things, but I struggled to accept that there is seemingly (influenced by society’s general view about God) a dichotomy of what God is in control of and what He is not; that this God is powerless and not in control over the evil, pain and catastrophes that happen in our lives and in the world. I thank God that He caused this restlessness in me to call out to Him and that He led me to all the answers through the Scriptures when I attended CERC where His Word is taught faithfully.
The Ephesians series was therefore a good reminder of God’s sovereignty, explained in Chapter 1 and 2 as how He had already predestined His chosen ones to be part of His kingdom through the redemptive work of Christ, even before the creation of this world.
I learnt that the revelation of Christ as well as our hope of salvation in Him are only possible through the work of the Spirit.
This is because humanity after the fall is sinful and rebellious to the point where we have no capacity on our own to choose to follow God and do good as further explained in rest of the chapters. Along with this, God has subjected all dominion and authority under Jesus; justice and vindication will be carried out by Jesus through His final judgement in the end times when He returns.
Looking back, without Him causing the urge in me to seek His truths by stirring up difficult questions in my mind and in my heart about ugly realities of myself, life and the rest of the world, I would never be able to notice or even care about seeking His truths. I realised that this is the progressive work of the Spirit in enabling me to now see who Jesus really is and how it’s only through Christ that true life exists. I’m always brought back to a state of humility and indebtedness towards God whenever I’m reminded that, without His work of revealing Jesus Christ to me, I would still be enslaved to the darkness of this world.
The Ephesians series has taught me that we have been made alive and transformed into a new humanity that is now able to glorify God through the work that He has accomplished through Christ.
This privilege of being part of God’s household is something that we must not take for granted, but rather, we must walk the talk and love others as a Spirit-filled person, in a manner worthy of our calling because of what God has accomplished in our transformation.
My eyes have been opened to see how the members in church strive to live out what they have learnt from Ephesians; from the way they do ministry to the way they serve and love others. CERC has constantly strived to attain this unity of faith and to grow each other into mature manhood for the glory of God. I want to strive together with this church (even through persecution) for God’s mission, and to love, grow and strive together with my fellow soldiers in this war until Christ comes again.
Committing myself to CERC allows me to join this army of like-minded Christians who seek to fight for and grow God’s kingdom. In fact, I’ve completed the membership course and am waiting to swear in officially as a member now. I look forward to that day, so that I may officially serve alongside God’s people for the growth and unity of the church.
The Ephesians series has rebuked me of my habit of navel-gazing. I resolved to see the church as the crown jewel of Jesus Christ and His kingdom, instead of letting troubles and tough times tempt me into giving up.
The power of God has been manifested in us Christians who are now living as a new humanity. I resolve to live out Eph 4:28 (Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labor, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need) as one who has been made alive in Christ and now part of God’s household. Being filled by the Spirit in the fullness of Christ, I will love and care for the church, bearing with one another in love, until we all attain the unity of the faith and knowledge of the son of God.
In other words, this would look like loving people who will not return the same love. I’ve witnessed the apostasy and rejection of previous church members, and that has affected my will to do ministry and remain steadfast in God’s Word. However, with this new knowledge from the Ephesians series, I have decided to not give up, but to view this suffering as glory, for I am suffering for God’s ministry.