Dr. Phillip E. Davis, Sr. | Holly Springs, North Carolina
The apostle Paul was called and set apart to take the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles. Paul says, “God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 3:10 NLT). What does Paul mean? God’s purpose was, or is, to use the church to display His wisdom. We are God’s church, both as an individual and collectively. And, in this case, I am not speaking of a building or a facility, but rather people who profess to be children of God. So, how does it feel to be on display for God? How does it feel to be God’s “storefront?”
I completed some research on the importance of a window display as it relates to merchandising or having a storefront. According to Shopify Blog,
Your retail window display is one of the most powerful weapons in your arsenal of tools to stand out. Not only are you going head-to-head with other small businesses, but you’re competing with big-box retailers and chain stores as well. A unique, compelling retail window display has the power to differentiate you from competitors as well as draw in more foot traffic. Store window displays are your chance to highlight your brand’s unique personality and turn the heads of passersby. The right window display design can engage shoppers enough to cause them to stop, look back, and walk into your store where your floor staff can help close the sale (Humayun Khan).
Let’s put this description of a window display in spiritual terms. Paul says, God’s purpose was to use the church, meaning you, to display His wisdom in its rich variety. As God’s window display, you are one of the most powerful weapons in God’s arsenal of tools to spread the Good News. Not only are you going head-to-head with other distractions, such as worries of life, money, idols, relationships, fame, work, fortune, hobbies, satanic influences, and anything else that draws one away from God, but you’re competing with other religions as well that include Islam, Atheism, Hinduism, Chinese traditional religion, Buddhism, Judaism, Shinto, and many others. (Stephen Juan, “What are the most widely practiced religions of the world?” https://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/10/06/the_odd_body_religion/ accessed April 14, 2019).
As God’s unique and compelling display, He has given you the authority to differentiate Him, from anyone or anything else. Jesus said,
All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age (Matthew 28:18,19 NKJV).
As God’s storefront display, only you can highlight God’s unique brand, personality, grace, mercy, patience, understanding, love, and the many other attributes of God. As God’s storefront display, your mission is to gain the attention of those who come into your presence day in and day out. As God’s storefront display, you should be able to engage others enough to cause them to stop, look, and listen to what you have to say about God. Like it or not, God’s purpose was to use you to display His wisdom in its rich variety to the world. You should position yourself as God’s storefront and as people walk by they will see, sense, or feel the presence of God within you. As such, they are drawn to the powerful attraction of God, who lives in you in the person of the Holy Spirit. You’re on display for God!
According to Ephesians 3:8, God is using us to display to others the endless treasures available to them in Christ. What are these endless treasures and how do we display them to others? The challenge we have, as members of the body of Christ, is to understand that when we speak of heavenly blessings, spiritual blessings, and endless treasures, God is looking at our life from a spiritual perspective. While God cares about our physical well-being, His primary focus is, and always will be, on our spiritual well-being, both now and in the next life. We may be able to see the manifestation of some of these blessings, but most likely these treasures will be things that you cannot see.
Paul spoke of the treasures in Heaven as being worth more than silver and gold. In fact, Paul counted everything he had done in the past as being useless, or loss, in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus. Paul suffered the loss of all things but counted them as rubbish so that he would gain Christ (Philippians 3:7–9). What a testimony! What a statement of faith! What if we, as followers of Jesus Christ, forfeited all that we had for the sake of Christ? God has you on display!
In today’s world, and for that matter even in Paul’s time, people were focused on man-made treasures. But Paul says that man-made treasures cannot compare to the hidden treasures of wisdom and knowledge that only come from God. Many Christians look for physical pleasure, monetary gain, and a lavish lifestyle; however, this is not what God had, or has, in mind at all. This is not to say that Christians cannot have access to many of these things, but this is not God’s primary focus when He thinks about blessing us. The Bible says, “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Matthew 6:33). The challenge for most Christians is getting God’s commands in the right order.
Yet, despite these forces, both seen and unseen, God decided to use you to display His wisdom in its rich variety to the world. Paul said just the thought of what God was asking him to do caused him to fall on his knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. What about you? Does the thought of what God is asking you to do cause you to fall on your knees and give thanks? Does it cause you to pray for guidance? We should feel proud that God thinks enough of us to have chosen us to be displayed to the world as children of God. God wants to display you to the world; therefore, go put on your best spiritual attire, go out into the market place, and see who God puts in front of you, looking for answers only He can provide, through you. Let us be found worthy of being on display for God.