How Old Was Queen Elizabeth 2 When Her Father Died Are You a Member of the Royal Family?

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Are You a Member of the Royal Family?

I’m sure most of you are overloaded with water cooler discussions and media coverage of the recent royal wedding. However, there were a few things that I personally gleaned from the coverage (which were so perfectly related to the theme of the newsletter) that I think will help crystallize in our minds just what is meant by commoner, royalty, kingdom, etc.

So let’s begin with a brief discussion of the Lord’s position, rights and authority in the heavenly realm, because after all – in Him we sit – and consequently in Him we derive all our rights and authority.

If we turn to the first chapter of Ephesians, verses 20-22, Paul clearly explains the position and authority given to Christ. When God the Father raised Christ from the dead, He gave His Son about eleven rights and powers. (Depending on the translation of the Bible – wording varies – so I’ll use the Amplified Bible version because it seems clearer.) These authorities are as follows:

1. He seated Him at His right hand

2. In heavenly places

3. Far above all the rule

4. High above all authority

5. Far beyond all power

6. Far above all lordship

7. Far above every name that is named [above every title that can be conferred]

8. Not only at this age

9. But in the future world

10. He put everything under His feet

11. He named Him the universal and supreme head of the church.

This list is so extensive that it is somewhat difficult to fully grasp the full impact of what happened when Christ was resurrected and seated in the heavens. The Message Bible captures the essence of what happened, so it bears repeating: “All this energy comes from Christ: God raised Him from the dead and set Him on a throne in deep heaven to be in charge of running the universe, everything from galaxies to governments . , no name and no power removed from His rule. And not just for now, but forever. At the center of it all is Christ ruling the church. The Church you see is not marginal to the world, the world is marginal. The Church is Christ’s body in which He speaks and acts, filling everything with His presence.”

However, there is so much to meditate on, for the sake of brevity – I will elaborate on just a few things. Perhaps one of the most sophisticated authorities was the fact that Christ sits at the right hand of the Father. This is extremely important for us to grasp as co-heirs with a common seat, because from this position (at the right hand) flows our authority. In ancient royal courts, the right side of the royal throne was reserved for a person who could act on behalf of the king. Wow! So does that mean I can act on behalf of the Lord? Definitely yes!

Another series of rights and privileges is related to the fact that the Lord is the head of everything and everything is under His feet. All. Do you mean my wayward child too? All. Do you mean reporting cancer? All. Do you mean tornado winds? All. I can ask these types of questions from now until Jesus returns and the answer will still be the same. All. This is a key point to focus on as we learn how to begin walking according to our heavenly position. I will talk more about this later.

The last point has to do with the fact that the church is Christ’s body through which He speaks and acts, filling everything with His presence. Sometimes I think Christians read a passage about the body of Christ, the church, and imagine a literal church building. In doing so, it is almost as if they are rather imagining a building (which is an external expression and therefore an impersonal representation of the body); and implicitly relieves them of the need to take personal responsibility for bearing God’s glory… However, Scripture is very clear, each of us, individually and collectively, represents and is called to be the body of Christ. And as a result, we speak and act for Christ.

Now that we have briefly reviewed the rights and powers given to our Lord, let us look at the benefits that you and I receive as we act as heavenly citizens seated with Him.

Before I review the benefits, let me take a moment to cite one of the clearest analogies gleaned from this recent royal wedding. One of the things that struck me was that Kate Middleton, who was ordinary, had to learn the royal ways of Prince William in order to become his wife. A commoner had to learn the duties of royalty in order to associate with him and subsequently acquire his rights, privileges, and authority. And so it is with us. We must learn the ways of the kingdom of heaven, through the Holy Spirit, to fully assume all our rights, etc. And what we gain from this is far beyond anything that the British royal family or any other named royal or government family has to offer.

Sitting in heavenly places has at least four key benefits. They are as follows: 1) we have all spiritual blessings, 2) we rule and reign with Christ, 3) our enemies are under our feet, and 4) we have a clearer strategic vision. Let’s take a closer look at each of them.

Ephesians 1:3 The New American Standard Bible (NASB) states that the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. There are many different blessings that we can associate with this passage – but the ones I want to emphasize are these three. Spiritual blessings are significant in that we have the supernatural ability to know and understand the Lord by the power of the Holy Spirit. Second, we are qualified to receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit—empowering us to live victoriously and boldly for Christ. (See 1 Corinthians 12 for more details). Finally, spiritual blessings are eternal.

In the past, I often read about spiritual blessings, but being so earthly I did not see the full relevance and/or impact of what God was trying to say. It wasn’t until I fully realized that things that are spiritual, even if we can’t see them, always outweigh things that are seen (natural) in terms of truth and power. Therefore, we should sincerely seek to understand our inheritance of spiritual blessings. Wouldn’t you want your children to take full advantage of the rich estate you leave them in your will?

The second benefit is that we rule and rule with Christ. In Him we are established in the heavenly realms and as such rule over His kingdom for His benefit. (Remember the ancient kingdoms analogy earlier?) Also remember how the Bible’s message stated that the church is at the center and the world is at the periphery. Just think about it for a moment. The enemy has really done much to the body of Christ because I am not too sure that most of us (believers) really consider ourselves to be the center of this worldly system. It may not “look” like we are ruling – but if God’s Word says we are ruling and ruling with Him – then it will! That’s why we have to start behaving like that!

Let’s look at the royal couple for a moment. You see, Prince William is not a king. Actually, it’s not even next in line. However, the entire British Empire shut down – during extremely hard economic times – and spent millions of dollars on his wedding. He was given all the rights and privileges just because he is the heir. So it is with the church. We gain the advantage of ruling with Christ because of His universal leadership!

To take it a step further, we are ambassadors for Christ here on this earth. We represent Him and do His bidding. We even have diplomatic immunity in this secular system. The laws of the prince of this world do not apply to us (I do not claim that we are above governmental laws), but we are immune to the spiritual influence of the demonic forces led by the prince of this world, Satan.

The best analogy I could come up with is this (again, not the royal couple): let’s say you’re a diplomat representing the United States in Haiti. You live in Haiti and of course you see the famine and poverty in the country. However, since Haiti is NOT your home country, poverty and hunger do not bind or hinder you. You can operate there freely as a US citizen. How much more should we act as the Lord’s representatives here on earth in His program!

The third advantage is that our enemies are under our feet. I touched on this a bit in the previous section – so I’ll just spend a few moments now. It is so clear to us that Jesus sits in the heavens and is far above everything and everything is under His feet. I want you to understand this – if we are IN HIM and take a SEAT TOGETHER, where does that put us? Imagine a mother holding a baby on her lap. If a small ant crawled around the mother’s feet – it would touch the child’s feet. No. Do you have a mental picture of where you and I sit in Christ in the heavenly places?

As a result, our enemy is already defeated. When life happens, i.e. trials and tribulations, and things start to overwhelm us – most likely we have descended from our heavenly seat – and started to see ourselves as ordinary people. Do you think Queen Elizabeth considers herself a commoner when she gets her way? I don’t know her – but I’d guess that would never enter her thinking. A key advantage for her is that she started out as a child learning the rights and privileges of her royal heritage. As believers, we have much to learn about our heritage.

The fourth and final advantage is that we have a clearer strategic vision. As we sit in Him, far above all, we have the ability to see things from a much wider and broader perspective. For example: when we look to the Lord for guidance and direction – our vision becomes clearer as we focus on Him. It’s amazing how the “light on our path” seems to point us in the right direction.

Moreover, when you sit in heavenly places, the enemy’s plans and tactics are seen earlier. This is what we call spiritual discernment. Jesus was operating in him the whole time. The Bible often talks about how Jesus “knew” what was in the hearts of the crowd that wanted to win him. We too can work with the same type of discernment.

So my question to you is: What rights and privileges do you receive as a result of your royal citizenship and being seated with Christ in heavenly places?

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