The Riches of His Grace
Chosen by God
Chosen by God
As we start our journey into Ephesians it is easy to see it is really broken down into two sections, in section one we see the doctrine. Doctrine that is set to a flowing style like music, broken out in prayer along the way. Truth that sings out, that rings out from his words and his prayers..
Chapters 1-3 are doctrine
Paul has a heart for prayer, not just for himself but for the people, for the church and for the unity of the church. He sings of the riches of God’s grace all to the praise of His glory.
Chapters 4-6 are
Slide) When we think of riches oftentimes we think of financial riches; but the riches of God’s grace is eternal.
(Illustration) - There is a story of a pompous lawyer reading a client’s last will and testament to the group of greedy relatives. The lawyer starts reading and it says I, John Jones, being of sound mind and body spent it all!
When Christ wrote his last will and testament for His church, He made it possible for us to share in His spiritual riches, spiritual blessings. In stead of spending it all, Christ gave it all by paying it all for us on the Cross. The resurrection made it possible for us to inherit it all.
He wrote us into His will, then died so the will would be in force and could not be altered or changed. He then assumed His rightful position as our Advocate (lawyer) in the heavenly places to ensure the will is correctly followed.
Our passage today will touch on a few of the spiritual blessings that give us our wealth in the kingdom of God.
I. Blessings from the Father
I. Blessings from the Father
4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.
A. He has chosen us (v.4)
Think about it before the world was created God had a plan. He chose us in Him
16 You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.
Chose us with a purpose, for if left to our own devices according to scripture we would not seek Him.
10 as it is written, “There is none righteous, not even one; 11 There is none who understands, There is none who seeks for God;
But God, before the world was created had a plan and that plan was Jesus Christ.
10 For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
(Slide) He chose us with a purpose and that purpose is to be holy and blameless
Let me briefly expand on this some. In a society that is permissive of all things, just like you read in the O.T. “they did what seemed right in their own eyes.” That is not what God’s chosen purpose is for us. It is to be holy and blameless
(Slide) “Holy” has the idea of difference and separation - we are to be different from the world, we are to be Christ like, set apart for His purpose and His glory.
(Slide) Blameless - the Greek word is “amomos” and it is a sacrificial word meaning “unblemished.” - so we are to be differant, set apart and unblemished, living sacrificially for Him who gave it all for us so we can have these riches.
We all know or may know
1 Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.
We give our all to the One who gave it all for us. Thinking we can’t do something because we are “only human” is a cop out and it is discounting what God did before the world was created. We are not weak, we are not incomplete, we are not incapable for.
6 For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.
Chosen with a purpose, to be holy and blameless, to live set apart and sacrificially offering our lives to Him daily.
37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out.
(Slide) All three parts of the Godhead are involved in our salvation, our being chosen by God.
The Father gave all to the Son
(Slide) God the Father - chosen before time to send the Son, to redeem you through the Son
(Slide) God the Son - You were able to be redeemed by His finished work on the Cross
(Slide) God the Spirit - this is the Holy Spirit of adoption, the seal we have when we are redeemed
B. He has adopted us (v.5)
5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will,
Predestined - a word that has confounded many and confused others. God has not predestined anyone to hell. Scripture is clear
9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.
This predestined needs to be taken into the context in which the writer is writing. To saved people, to believers, to those who are already in Christ. Predestined with a purpose, God has a purpose for you, just as Christ crucifixion was predestined
23 this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death.
He predestined our adoption with a purpose to be conformed into the image of His Son
29 For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30 and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
All this so we may know the riches of our future inheritance in Him
11 also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will,
He works out all things because He has accepted us.
C. He has accepted us (v.6)
6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.
We are found acceptable by His grace which He bestowed on us in Christ, by Christ sacrifice we can receive our blessings, our riches of His grace and made acceptable in Him and for Him and by Him.
II. Blessings from the Son
II. Blessings from the Son
The riches of His grace come with the work of all three parts of the Godhead as I mentioned a few minutes ago. Each part has a part to play, first in our salvation and then in our ministry (serving).
7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace 8 which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and insight 9 He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him
10 with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him 11 also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will, 12 to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory.
A. (Slide) He has redeemed us. (v.7)
Easton’s Bible Dictionary shows redemption is the purchase back of something that had been lost, by payment of a ransom (apolutrosis -Greek) - the idea of a ransom or price paid.
60 million slaves in Rome at the time, some would be purchased by someone to set them free. That is what Jesus did for us. The price paid was with His own blood .
18 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, 19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.
As a slave we would be poor, but as redeemed we are rich because of His grace!
B. (Slide) He has forgiven us (v.7)
This is divine forgiveness, God’s restoration of relationship entailing the remove of the object of guilt. Forgiveness for the offense against God’s holiness. (Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary)
Christ died not just to forgive our sins, but to carry them away, in the O.T. it would be like the day of Atonement. To carry them away and never be seen again.
12 As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!
Sin made us poor, separated us from God; but grace makes us rich.
C. He has revealed God’s will to us (vv. 8-10)
8 which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and insight
(Slide) To be lavished on - a verb, to bestow something in generous or extravagant quantities
What did He lavish on us besides His grace? His mystery he revealed His will His mystery on us for us to have wisdom and insight the God’s grand plan. See In the garden man was separated from God (Gen3; also know from Isa59:2) then man was seprated from man (Gen4; Cain/Able)
Sin has been tearing the world apart, but God’s mystery - Jesus Christ, once concealed now revealed is uniting all things.
(Slide) United in Christ -
5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection,
United in Spirit -
2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
2 make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose.
God’s grand plan to save sinful man, was through the Jews but not just for the Jew’s it is all inclusive to those who are willing to receive the inheritance.
D. He made us an inheritance (vv. 11-12)
In Christ we have an inheritance -
1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who reside as aliens, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen 2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure. 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you,
(Slide) Notice the flow of Peter’s writing, and Paul’s - Chosen, according to foreknowledge, grace, peace in the fullest measure (sounds like abundance to me) we obtain in inheritance
It is imperishable
it is undefiled
Not only to you receive an inheritance You are an inheritance! - you can spend time in Jn17 and see what Christ had to say to the Apostles and what applies to us too about being an inheritance.
The Church is Christ’s body - Eph1:22-23
It is a household - Eph2:19-21
IT is the bride - Eph5:22-23
We are joint heirs with Him - Rom8:17
17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.
We are His and He is ours; He is glorified and since we are in Him we too are glorified, now can you call that rich? - But wait I mentioned all three parts of the God head earlier and we have not covered the Spirit yet.
III. Blessings from the Spirit
III. Blessings from the Spirit
13 In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.
The blessing from the Spirit. it comes after hearing the Gospel, believing the Gospel and obeying the Gospel in which you believe. Your sins are forgiven (Act2:38) and you are sealed with the Holy Spirit (v.13)
The Holy Spirit of promise, the promise of our final salvation, our final redemption one day. God has given us His pledge, His earnest deposit with a view of our day of final redemption.
Why? - I’m glad you asked
(Slide) It’s to the praise of His glory
It’s to the praise of His glory
(Slide) We know all true riches come from Him
(Slide) All riches come from God’s grace and for God’s glory
(Slide) These riches are only the beginning
There is more to learn, when we study the Bible we see God’s plan before the world began, the Son’s purchase by His blood and the Spirit’s deposit and working in our life, but first you have to receive His riches - lead to invitation
(Slide) Be Rich in His Grace!