Bristol, Virginia

The Path that Upends

Roderick Breem

In Ephesians 1 the Apostle Paul reveals the many great positional truths about the believer. They are not the focus of this teaching but I encourage you to read it. In Chapter 2 it starts off:

And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins.” (v.1) That’s good news. He continues to remind them of where they used to be.

in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience.” (v.2)

I like how Paul used the word “walked.” It gives us the visual of a person walking along a road. Let’s imagine it is a dirt road. Now, the person is walking according to the “course of this world” and of the  “prince of the power” of the air. Let’s imagine further that those two things (course of the world and prince of the power of the air) are signs on the road to be followed. When we set directions in our GPS it is “according” to the address we put it.

Those who walk according to those things are empowered by an evil force. “…the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience.” The Greek word for “works” is energeō, meaning “to be operative, be at work, put forth power.” It is a force operating from within. It can be likened to the engine in a car, working on the inside to propel.

Paul continues in verse 3

among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others.”

The Greek word for “conducted” is interesting. It is an intimate word and comes from 2 Greek words – ana, meaning “into the midst” and strephō, meaning “to turn, turn around.”

Going back to our illustration about the person walking on the road. The person is walking along God’s road and then before they know it they are following the wrong signs (according to the Prince). Then another person enters the same road, gets in their face and persuades them to turn around from God’s path.

The end result of allowing ourselves to be turned around and away from God’s way is “…and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others..” If we walk that wrong path and allow ourselves to be walk on the path of the enemy we will once again become children of wrath. This is not meant to discourage or dissuade you. It is a holy reminder to ever stay near to God on His path. The enemy hates you passionately but God’s love is infinitely more passionate!

Let’s end this with a ray of hope. Verse 4 says “But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us.” Read on for yourself what the “but God’s” are. They are powerful and liberating.

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