Faithlife Sermons

Never Forget

ABC Sermon 8  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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DT: Remember who you were so that you remember what God did for you.

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Introduction

What is the most important thing you have ever forgotten? Keys? Kids? Class? Homework? Actual work?
Illustration: My mom is notorious for forgetting everything. Usually we get a good laugh out of whatever she forgot, because then she spends 10 minutes going back into the house…going back to work…always going back someplace. But sometimes its frustrating. If we are running late and she forgot the tickets to the place we are going, or her phone dies because she forgot to charge it the night before. The worst is when she forgets her purse or something else really important and she needs someone else to go get it.
It can be frustrating when people forget things!

Setting and Background

In our passage today we see Paul getting frustrated with the church at Ephesus because they seem to have forgotten who they were. The Ephesians were experiencing some unity issues. This is why Paul is writing his letter to them, to encourage them to stop being so divisive and to be a unified church once more. The entire letter seems to be leading them to a point of becoming more unified, and in the first couple of chapters Paul seems intent on reminding them of several foundational things that they seemed to have forgotten.
The Ephesians were experiencing some unity issues. This is why Paul is writing his letter to them, to encourage them to stop being so divisive and to be a unified church once more. The entire letter seems to be leading them to a point of becoming more unified, and in the first couple of chapters
1:3-10: Remember that God had chosen them.
1:11-14: Remember that God had brought them into His family through Christ.
1:15-22: Remember God’s mighty power!

Remember That You Were Dead!

Now that Paul has laid down some foundations, he then begins to build on them by telling his people to remember two very important things: That they were dead, but that God has made them alive in Christ.
Paul wants the Ephesians to Remember what they were so that they could remember what God had made them.
2:1-3: Remember that you were dead! Paul, as he’s seeking unity among the believers, wants them to remember that they were all in the same hole once. They did terrible things and were being overtake by the Evil One. They did whatever they wanted and were being dragged down by their sin and evil. They were dead!
Paul wants them to remember this, because perhaps a part of their disunity is that they had forgotten that they were all outside of God’s grace at one time. They were all on the same road to hell, none was better off than the other. The same reminder can be given to the church today. We often point fingers at one another and pretend that we are better than each other and so easily forget that we were once dead too. It becomes a very dangerous game that leads to outsiders being hurt, and insiders being furious. The church begins to break apart because we forget that we were “dead in our transgressions and sins”. We cannot be the ones who have forgotten the grace extended to us and therefore the grace we need to have for others as well.

Remember That You were Made Alive in Christ!

2:4-10 So they were dead, but that’s not the only thing they need to remember! They need to remember that God loved them so much that he made each of them, and us, alive in Christ. Once the Ephesians remembered that they had all been dead, now they needed to remember that they had all been raised to life in Christ. Not a single one of them was anymore deserving of death than the other, and now not a single one of them was any less deserving of the love of Christ.
Paul goes even further, making it clear in verse 9 that we are saved by grace and not by works. When we start to think that we saved ourselves then its easy to think that we have worked harder than someone else and therefore better, but Paul says no! The reason we weren’t saved by works was so that no one could boast about what they had done.
Just like it’s easy for us to forget that we were dead in our sins, its easy to forget that we were saved by the grace of God. It’s easy to forget that we did absolutely nothing to earn our own salvation. And because of this, it’s easy to forget that we are not any better or any greater than our brothers and sisters who have also been made alive in Christ.
Conclusion
Conclusion
Let us strive for Church Unity, just as Paul was encouraging the Ephesians to do. We cannot let the divisions that we create through pride and boasting keep us apart. It is important that we always remember who we use to be, so that we can remember who we are now because of what God has done through Christ. None of us are better than the other. We were all once dead, and now we have all been made alive in Christ. Let us never forget these glorious things!
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