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His Work of Art

For the last three or four weeks, I’ve been renovating my bedroom, and I’m not done yet. My poor husband, all my bedroom furniture is in my dining room. I’ve scraped loose paint, patched cracks and holes in the plaster. I’ve primed the woodwork, painted it, the ceiling, and the walls. Scrubbed and vacuumed the carpet, and yesterday, my husband fixed the window, but not without some damage to my newly painted woodwork. Ugh! Today, I’ll do touchups, move the furniture back in, and decorate. My goal is to create a beautiful and peaceful environment—a masterpiece—my work of art.

Our house is old, so anything I do is cosmetic. I’m not an HGTV type of renovator. Still, all this work and planning has given me insight into a verse I’ve been stuck on for quite some time—Ephesians 2:10. Originally, I contemplated the word walk, but now workmanship.

In the two previous verses, God tells us it is by His grace we have been saved. I know, I know. This is elementary, but please stay with me. In Ephesians 2:8-9, God makes sure we understand salvation is not of ourselves. It’s a Gift. We can’t work for it because if we could, there would be boasting. Nevertheless, this Gift comes through faith.

Seriously? We’re talking about faith now?

Yes. Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.[1] Substance and evidence are tangible. Hope and things unseen are intangible, like faith. How do we reconcile the two since it’s impossible to please God without faith[2] and, as Ephesians implies, receive salvation? Romans tells us God gave to each one a measure of faith.[3] So, we didn’t conjure up faith on our own. And before that, Jesus said, “No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him...”[4]

Seems like salvation is all of God. Right?

The Father draws us by whatever means, and our measure of faith responds. Our problem? Free will. Either we believe or disbelieve. When we choose to believe, intangible things happen. We are adopted as sons, possessing every spiritual blessing in Him.[5] The trials of life are easier because God leads us through.[6] He chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world,[7] meaning He knew and loved us even in our sin,[8] yet elected to give something we do not deserve—the gift of salvation.

And now, we have work to do.[9]

Work? Why? We are God’s workmanship[10]. This word is why I’ve been stuck. Workmanship or handiwork in the Greek is pŏiēma pronounced poy’-ay-mah meaning a product, i.e., fabric (lit. or fig.).[11] The LifeChange Bible study book gives the meaning as “a work of art,” kinda like my bedroom.

We are a beautifully woven fabric, crafted by our Maker, and all we had to do was allow our measure of faith to believe. God did it all. But He didn’t give us a costume or a cosmetic covering. No, we are a new creation,[12] changed inside and out, like a tapestry of cunning work—woven through and through. And because Jesus, God the Son, loved us enough to shed His blood and die on the cross for our sin, we, as God’s workmanship, must “walk” in His work here on earth.

And how do we walk? If we have truly believed, we walk in the Spirit.[13] Again, it’s all of God—it’s no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.[14]

So, on this day, when our country celebrates evil and death, let’s celebrate Jesus. He’s not a cosmetic covering or a costume! Christ in you is your faith and your hope of glory.[15] You, my friend, are His work of art.

[1] Hebrews 11:1
[2] Hebrews 11:6
[3] Romans 12:3
[4] John 6:44
[5] Ephesians 1:3
[6] Proverbs 3:5-6
[7] Ephesians 1:4
[8] Romans 5:8
[9] Ephesians 2:10
[10] Ephesians 2:10
[11] Strong’s Concordance
[12] II Corinthians 5:17
[13] Romans 8:1-4; Galatians 5:16-18
[14] Galatians 2:20
[15] Colossians 1:26-27


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