Ephesians was written by Paul to a congregation established on one of Paul’s later missionary journeys (Acts 19). It was written from Rome, probably in a.d. 62 or 63. Ephesus was “the” religious center of the province of Asia. The great temple of Artemis (daughter of Zeus) there drew tourists and worshipers. This highly successful institutionalized religion is the backdrop against which Paul gives us a vision of the church of Jesus Christ.
The church of Jesus Christ is not an institution, but rather the body of Christ. It is a body, a family, a holy but living temple. This is in understanding our personal relationship with Jesus, and how to live with our fellow Christians in a nurturing, ministering relationship.
This book is an important one for Christians to study today. It helps us not to think of our own churches in institutional terms—as buildings and programs and activities alone. It helps us to see ourselves, and one another, as living expressions of a Christ who still expresses His glory in human lives.
We are after the renewing of our minds today. How we see ourselves affects our behavior.
Structure of Ephesians 1:1-14
- Eph 1:1-2 is an introduction
- Eph 1:3-14 is known as a doxology, it is one long sentence. It is believed that this was an early teaching in the church that Paul used in this letter.
Observe Three Parts
- The Father's Contribution (Eph 1:3-6)
- The Son (Eph 1:7-12)
- The Holy Spirit (Eph 1:13-14)
The Creation of The Body of Christ (1:1–14): The entire Trinity was involved
It was planned by the Father (1:1–6).
- He blessed us (1:1–3).
- He selected us (1:4).
- When this occurred (1:4a): “Before he made the world.”
- Why this occurred (1:4b): That we might be “holy and without fault in his eyes.”
- The doctrine of election is an incentive to holiness, not to sin. (v4)
- The doctrine of election is a stimulus to humility, not to boasting.
- The reason God chose us was in Himself, not in us. (Deut 7:7-8)
- We were chosen before the foundation of the world, before we could do anything of merit
- He adopted us (1:5–6)
- It was purchased by the Son (1:7–12).
- What Jesus did (1:7–10)
- He redeemed us by his blood (1:7–8)
- He will someday gather us in his name (1:9–10)
- Why Jesus did it (1:11–12)
- That we might give praise to God
- It is preserved by the Spirit (1:13–14).
- What the Holy Spirit does (1:13)
- His presence serves as a special seal on our heart
- Why the Holy Spirit does it (1:14)
- His presence guarantees our eternal security.