EPHESIANS – AN INSIDE LOOK
PART 1: A DIVINE ENCOUNTER
- RESULT: We stay away from God. We avoid Him and anything related to Him.
- MYTH: HE makes me feel that way when I get around him. Not him at all.
In the same way – our enemy tries to deceive us, instill FEAR – to keep us MISGUEDED in our walk with God.
John 8:44 – Devil is a LIAR
- TAKE OF THE BLINDFOLD, OPEN YOUR EYES, & INVITE YOU INTO HIS PRESENCE.
- TO HAVE A DIVINE ENCOUNTER
- I want you to leave here today with such a confidence, peace, and assurance in your relationship with GOD.
1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, To God’s holy people in Ephesus, the faithful in Christ Jesus: 2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding, 9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ. 11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.
Verse 11 In him we were also chosen,
- Remember back to the local school playground – going to pick teams.
- Remember the fear of NOT being chosen. Or the “I’ll guess we take you.” Guy!
- GREEK: “To choose – to pick out.”
- DEF: Miriam Webster says:: Having been selected as the best or most appropriate. One who is the object of choice or of divine favor: an elect person.
- “I want a relationship with you!”
- “I prefer, desire, select, and pick you!”
- John 15:16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.
- Among the billions of people that have lived, are alive today, and will be born tomorrow, I want to know you, spend time with you, be with you,
Now here is the beauty of HIS decision:’
- We say – “How could he choose me, love me, the way I am, the things I have done??”
- God didn’t choose you because you were good or felt sorry for you.
- Verse 4: For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.
- Before you were conceived.
- We chose him before we ever knew anything about him!!! – Unconditional LOVE
- God said, “I want a relationship with you!
- The number one reason you EXIST – is God wants a relationship with you.
Let’s keep reading. . .
4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—
11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,
(2) PREDESTINED / PREDESTINATION
Two opposing views on predestination:
Calvinism: John Calvin, an early 16th century theologian who was instrumental in the Protestant reformation. This set of beliefs is also referred to as “reformed theology”.
- God has already chosen who will go to heaven and hell and man is saved by the will of God without Those predestined cannot be lost. Those who are lost cannot be saved.
Arminianism: Jacobus Arminius. Arminius was a Dutch pastor and theologian in the late 16th and early 17th century who disputed many of Calvin’s conclusions. His most well-known follower was John Wesley, who became the leader of the Methodist movement.
- Man has a free will. Salvation is by grace alone and God’s election and predestination are conditional upon our choice to put our faith in Jesus Christ. (*This is what we believe at RFC)
The word predestination is composed of two parts:
- “Pre” meaning “before” and
- “destination” meaning “point of final arrival.”
- To predestine something is to determine beforehand where it will end up.
- Actual Greek word proorizo (pro-or-id’-zo)
- and means to “predetermine / predesign.”
- Romans 8:29For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son,
- Verse 5 is telling us God had a plan for us to be His children. The new birth was part of His eternal plan so He could have a whole family as precious to Him as His firstborn Son, Jesus Christ.
- EX: BLUEPRINTS
- It does not mean God has your life planned ahead for you and you have no say about it.
- Your will is precious to God because you were made in His image.
- God’s sovereignty is dependent upon man’s
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
We are predestined for what??? Chosen / Predestined . . .
(3) ADOPTED (DIVINE ENCOUNTER)
VERSE 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—
GOD DIDN’T INHERIT YOU! He chose you and has adopted you!
His predesign – is to choose you, request to adopt you as his son and daughter.
What does this mean?? Eternal!!!
- God wants to make it permanent!
We need to stop seeing ourselves as foster kids, temporary – and visitors in his presence.
Abba Father – Daddy.
When we are adopted – means we take his name!!
We get all the benefits, privileges, and inheritance as his biological kids
- What He will do for Jesus He will do for you.
Romans 8:16-17 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
- He desires us to walk in our inheritance as His children.
Colossians 1:12-13 And giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. 13 For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves,
Bible – tells us he does not show favoritism. He is no respector of persons.
THINK ABOUT IT:
- Your DAD has unlimited power and ability.
- Your DAD has already declared in His written Word and promises to us – that he will provide.
- Stop thinking, “ How are we going to make it?” What’s going to happen? What if it doesn’t work out?”
- My God will make a way when there is no way.
- My God is more than enough! He is bigger than lack, greater than sickness or disease.
- If God be for us – who can be against us!!!
- I’m redeemed from the curse of the law and I walk in the blessings of God
PAUL PRAYED: “GET A HOLD OF THIS GUYS!!!!”
Thanksgiving and Prayer
15 For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all God’s people, 16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, 19 and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.
LAST BIG IDEA THIS MORNING – Pick up in verse 13
13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
(4) MARKED (SEALED) – Divine Encounter
In Paul’s day, important documents were sealed with wax and then imprinted with an identifying symbol, usually by pressing a signet ring into the wax. And that seal had three major functions, each of which helps us to understand something about how the Holy Spirit secures our inheritance for us:
GREEK: Sphragizō (sfrä-gEE’-zō)
1) to set a seal upon, mark with a seal, to seal
a) for security: from Satan
b) since things sealed up are concealed (as the contents of a letter), to hide, keep in silence, keep secret
Colossians 3:3 For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.
c) in order to mark a person or a thing
d) to set a mark upon by the impress of a seal or a stamp
IF YOU’RE TAKING NOTES . . .
A mark of
In Paul’s day livestock, and even slaves, were marked with a seal to show ownership, similar to the way a rancher might brand his cattle even today. The seal helped to prevent theft and to avoid disputes about ownership.
In much the same way, the Holy Spirit seals us as proof that we belong to God.
2 Corinthians 1:21-22 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.
e) in order to prove, confirm, or attest a thing
f) to confirm authenticate, place beyond doubt
g) of a written document
- You’ll recall that when Jesus was taken down off the cross and placed in the tomb, the tomb was sealed with the seal of the Roman Emperor.
- The purpose was to protect, or preserve what was in the tomb from any outside interference.
- When the Holy Spirit seals us, he comes into our lives to preserve us and protect us from outside influences.
- That doesn’t mean we won’t face pain and suffering in our lives here on this earth,
- but it does insure that nothing can keep us from our ultimate inheritance.
- An indication of a completed transaction.
Whenever a business transaction was completed – the purchase of a parcel of land, for instance – the parties involved would seal the legal documents to indicate that the transaction was complete.
ON THE CROSS – Jesus said, “It is finished.”
There is nothing else we need to do to earn our inheritance.
Jesus already completed that transaction on the cross.
- You are CHOSEN by God.
- PREDESTINED to have a relationship with him
- He ADOPTED you into his family so you can share all that he has
- MARKED you as HIS very own
Don’t ever question your rights, privileges, inheritance, position with GOD
Ephesians 2:6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.