Three Ways to Abide in Christ in all Circumstances
“In all circumstances take up…” (Ephesians 6:16a)
This is the last week in our “Strong in His Might” series. I have been encouraged and challenged as we worked through Ephesians 6:10-20 together. As we approach Sunday, I want to emphasize the beginning part of our text for this week. The Apostle Paul charges the church at Ephesus to take up the armor of God in all circumstances.
All circumstances indicate that there is never a time for a believer to not abide (John 15) in Christ. The Lord often uses difficult circumstances to help us learn to abide in Christ, but we also must learn to abide in Christ during the daily mundane seasons of life. For most of us, most of our lives are spent in what we would label as mundane. And if we aren’t abiding in Christ during those seasons, we may go most of our Christian lives not abiding. There is a difference between being positionally right with God based on the actions of Jesus Christ and consciously and daily abiding in Jesus.
As a Christian, I want to be more aware of God’s presence in my life and His calling on my life. I want to be more sensitive to the Holy Spirit. I am often times too callous and desensitized. The remedy for that is abiding in Jesus in all circumstances.
What are some practical and biblical helps God has given believers so that they may abide in Christ in all circumstances? I will give you three from Ephesians 6:16-18.
Helmetof Salvation (6:17a)
This is a meditation on both our present salvation that we enjoy and our future hope of salvation. In Ephesians 2:8-9 Paul says, “by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works so that no one may boast.” Paul here is speaking of the present salvation that all believers enjoy. We stand positionally right with God because salvation is a gift. In 1 Thessalonians 5:8 Paul says, “But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation.” Paul here is encouraging the persecuted Thessalonians by reminding them of the hope of salvation. He encourages them to meditate on “the day” when God through Christ makes all things new. This is the hope of a believer’s future salvation. Believer, thinking
- Sword of the Spirit/The Word of God (6:17b)
God has graciously given us His Scripture. Interestingly, this is the only offensive weapon Paul speaks of in Ephesians 6. This is because God’s Word is sufficient and authoritative. We don’t need anything else. God has given us everything in His Word. As we read, internalize, and respond to Scripture, we really are changed (Romans 12:1-2; 2 Timothy 3:16-17; James 1:22). Believer, to engage daily with the Scripture helps us abide in Christ.
- Prayer (6:18)
The God of the Cosmos wants us to pray to Him. This is a way by which we may commune with Him. And God wants us to bring everything to Him in prayer. Our Ephesians 6 text says that we are to pray in the Spirit asking for supplication for ourselves and for brothers and sisters in Christ. Paul urges us to persevere in this. Believer, to persevere in prayer helps us abide in Christ.
So, are you abiding in Christ in all circumstances, especially the mundane seasons of life? If you are reading this particular blog post, we would love to hear how meditating on salvation, being in the Scripture, and prayer happens in your life. What are your disciplines? Feel free to comment on Facebook. Your story may help spur a brother or sister on to engage in these spiritual disciplines.