Chapter One

 

Ephesians 1     23 verses in this chapter

 

V1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus through the will of God, to the saints who are at Ephesus, and the faithful in Christ Jesus

This letter is written to the Christians in Ephesus. They are all those who are faithful to Jesus Christ. They have been forgiven and made alive in their inner being and they walk with Christ and obey only Him. They have been made holy because they are God’s holy people. God Himself has made them holy, through the perfection of His son, Jesus Christ. They also walk with God faithfully because of what Christ has done for them on the cross.

The brothers and sisters at Ephesus, are regarded as holy before God, through the salvation bought for them by Jesus Christ. Their faithfulness is seen in the way they live their lives to God and serve Him with true and loving hearts.

Paul has been assigned a job to do by God. God’s will is that he is an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. Paul did not choose it – God gave him this might task. This is important as Paul is preaching and teaching the message of Christ to the Gentiles. He rejects the religion of the Jews and preaches Christ from the whole Scriptures. The message is repentance and faith towards God and salvation by God’s grace alone. The message is corroborated by God and through spiritual qualifications.

 

V2Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

All grace, mercy and peace come from God. When we have peace with God we have real peace. That peace was bought at a great price- the precious blood of Christ.

“He Himself is our peace”   Ephesians 2:14

Grace and peace can only come from God. There is a semblance of grace in worldly dimensions, but it does not last and is not founded upon the eternal truth of salvation. There is no peace apart from the justification that comes through Christ. Peace with God is bestowed on us through Christ, and all other peaceful situations stem from that. We are warned about those who pronounce a false peace…

“They have healed also the hurt of my people superficially, saying, ‘Peace, peace!’ when there is no peace.”    Jeremiah 6:14

 Peace in this world can be feigned, but there is a real and lasting peace with God, through the sacrifice of Christ, our Saviour. To pretend that there is another peace leads to ignoring the Lord and to choose sin.

 

V3  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 

We can praise the Father in heaven and worship Him as our God. He is also the God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, and when we are brought into fellowship with Jesus, our Saviour, we become part of the family of God. God is our God and our Father also.

This God and father blesses His people with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places. Our whole being becomes sensitive to God’s spiritual life, and the life of Christ dwells in us by the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit. We can know and feel real life, eternal life, and can relate to God in a peaceful and loving relationship. To comprehend what God as laid up for those who believe, is awe-inspiring.

“What no eye has seen,what no ear has heard,and what no human mind has conceived”—the things God has prepared for those who love him— these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.”   1 Corinthians 2:9+10

God reveals His will and His mind to those who love Him. If we do not have the Holy Spirit of God, we cannot now these deep and glorious truths or the outworking of them in our daily lives.

Christians do enjoy this fellowship with Him because of what Christ did for them. We know God because of this amazing blessing, and we can understand spiritual blessing in fellowship with God and with God’s people. The growing realization of these deep spiritual blessings, evokes our praise

 

 

V4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and without defect before him in love, 

We are not random choices, but a deliberate decision that God made, before time began, that we would be in the family of God. We are members of that family because of what Jesus did for us. We are holy and blameless in God’s perfect sight, for Jesus took the blame for His people.

This should grow our confidence, that we are counted in that glorious family. No one can touch us, or steal our coming glory in that kingdom. We are the children of God.

However, we are God’s children through no deserving of our own or any attractiveness we might think we have. We stand as sinners before God, with no right, and deserving everlasting punishment. God has brought us into His family through grace alone.

The Christian stands holy and blameless before God, because He has made a way for us to be righteous. He picked us out even before He made the planets, the stars or suns. We are His most treasured possession and so we experience His true love and always will.

 

 

V5  having predestined us for adoption as children through Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his desire,

God chose us to be part of His family-adopted into His family as daughters and sons- by the transaction made by Jesus. The Lord Jesus spilt His perfect blood for a race who hated Him. He hung on that cross in agony, so that sins could be paid for. Not His own sins, but the sins of His fallen people who He was redeeming through that act of pure love.  He did this because he wanted to and purposed to sacrifice Himself as an amazing act of love towards us. We did not deserve that He should die for us, but Jesus did this because it was His pleasure to do this. He rejoiced to see His own people in His minds eye, as He hung on that cross, and paid every personal sin on their behalf. The Saviour Jesus saw those who had already lived and those still to come. Every soul was redeemed in that moment in time, so that they would be His people through the countless ages of eternity.

Each and every daughter and son of that kingdom was chosen. None were included by mistake, none were left out who should have been there. If God had not chosen us, and the Son of God had not died for us, there would be no children of God, and no salvation of any of us as a race of beings.

God rejoices to show undeserved mercy towards the least and lowest. He saves because He is love itself. There is no love apart from Him. His name and nature is love.

We are raised to a life, far beyond any imagination. We are sons and daughters of the Living God. These truths should thrill our minds as we think on them, and the growing realization that we will reign with Him, is so glorious.

 

V6  to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely gave us favor in the Beloved.

God’s glorious grace…! We praise Him for this godly attribute- God gives grace to us – freely. He does this because we are in Him. We are in Him because of what Christ has done – He has bought us and demonstrated this matchless grace, by sacrificing Himself to redeem us from our dead state before a holy God.

Because we are in the kingdom of His son Jesus Christ, we have standing before God. God loves His son and so he loves us and gives us all things freely, by His grace. We are sheltered or hidden in Christ. Jesus has paid the dreadful debt of our sin, and on our behalf, and so we can stand before the Father and God of all things, as perfect and righteous. We can now appreciate what God has done, because He has revealed it in this Word of God. We are rescued from this present evil world by His grace alone. Nothing we do can add merit to the perfection of that atoning sacrifice. We will praise Him forever, and be forever overjoyed at how we came to be in that kingdom.

 

V7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to  the riches of his grace 

God’s grace is not a puny amount. He lavished it on us! Just as His grace has no boundaries, so His love towards us and many gifts and grace, also have no boundaries. God has poured out the riches of His grace to us and on us. He does not hold back, but pours out blessing after blessing every day, on those who are His. Just as His love has no boundaries, so he has no boundaries in the quantity and quality of the joys He pours out on His people. We should be a rejoicing nation, full of holiness to the Lord. People around us should see such a difference in us. Too often we display paltry kindness and cold-hearted deeds that make people feel bad rather than lifting them up.

God has made us fit for this amazing gift by buying us back from sinful lifestyles and a sinful nature, and has forgiven us because of the blood of Christ shed for us. Christ Jesus is the only Saviour, and the only one who can make a difference to our lives. His sacrifice on the cross, has made Him the Redeemer of His people. Only He can forgive sin and break the power of guilt in a human life. Forgiveness is the defining factor in the life of a person. Forgiveness makes us fit for heaven and the lack of it will shut us up in hell, forever.

This ought to make a difference…

 

  V8  which he made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence,

As well as this redemption from sin He has lavished on us all wisdom and understanding. Not a mean little amount to see us through, but all of His own wisdom and an understanding about Him that only His people possess.

Too many of God’s people don’t seem to see the kindness of God, and that He gives increasing blessings to us. They do not see how God has lavished the blessings of this life on them, and imagine that what they have is somehow their own. The help they give to others, is feeble. We choose the people we think deserve help and we forget that every person is made in the image of God, and none has more value than another. We judge and it makes us tight-fisted and mean-hearted.

How can we say we have the wisdom and understanding of God and behave this way?

By the free and full mercy of God, I have been brought into the eternal kingdom by the Son of God laying down His life for my miserable life and all is a gift without price. I get heaven and the fellowship of the Creator all my life, but I cannot reach out my hand to give succor to a needy person?!

Perhaps Christians, God’s people, are more valuable…? They have value only because another has given them value. Do we not pity those who stumble into death? Those who have no eternal life, we seem to have no care about. We will not share or care.

Does this mindset echo the lavishing of all good things by God? Does it reflect the wisdom and understanding and mercy of God?

Christians ought to be very different. We are salt and light in a dying world, and the fact of the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, ought to make a difference. Our words and deeds should be holy and full of courage and power to speak for the lost and alone.

 

 

V9   making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he purposed in him 

And again, God has revealed the mystery of His will to those who follow Him closely and desire the same things that He desires. In fact all that Christ enjoys, we also enjoy because God has purposed this state of living for us through the Son Jesus. Human beings can know the mystery of God’s purposes, through the Word and the work of the Holy Spirit.

Christians seek God’s will in their lives, and when we ask Him, he will reveal it to us.

God does not keep His people in the dark – He reveals to us the Mystery of His will – He shows us what He is like and what He wants. The purpose of the Scriptures is that we will know God. God tells us all we need to know to seek Him and find Him. He is not hiding from any of us.

“God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us.”Acts 17:27

This applies to finding God and being changed into His child. But it also applies to finding His will in the circumstances of our lives. His way is before us, and we must walk in it.

God’s grace is demonstrated in salvation of dead souls, and also in the daily support for the living souls of His people. Grace is the power of all those who recognize it. When we see grace acting in our lives, hearts and minds, we learn more about our heavenly Father and about how we should also behave.

This also is grace- it is something He wants to do and is His purpose for us in Christ. Every child of God knows the Father and recognizes His ways. We can see grace upon grace in overflowing abundance. This is how we learn to walk and how we grow in grace, and become more like Christ.

 

 

V10  to an administration of the fullness of the times, to sum up all things in Christ, the things in the heavens and the things on the earth, in him. 

The Christian knows the heart of God and knows what will be and what the fulfillment of the whole of human history is heading towards. They know that everything will be put under the united rule of Christ, and they will see and understand it when it happens. The Christian also knows the purposes of God in this life and that God’s will, cannot be thwarted, and will be done now and in the end. There will be unity, but not in this present world scene. Even the “church of Christ” has less and less unity. The scripture says that at the end time, there will be a unity under the rule of the enemies of God. People will be deceived and Christians are going to have a tough time. But one day, the Saviour Jesus will return, as he said He would, and all evil will be swept away and the unity of the people of God will reign with Christ forever. All deviations and error will be pushed aside, and all will proclaim Jesus as Lord.

God’s will is put into effect even now. He is calling people to himself in every tribe and nation. The one thing that unites all nations, is the acknowledgement and proclaiming that Jesus is Lord of all. When Jesus came time reached its full reason for being. Here was the centre and sun of every time and culture and era. When Jesus made the sacrifice of Himself on the cruel cross, everything was brought under His Lordship. Jesus came to fulfill the will of His Father. The will of the Father is that evil will be destroyed and only love reigns. This will come to full fruition when Jesus Christ returns to wind up human history and unite his people under His Lordship. The Christian repeats the refrain, “even so come Lord Jesus…

“He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.” Amen! Yes, come, Lord Jesus.”Revelation 22:20

 

 

V11   We were also assigned an inheritance in him, having been foreordained according to the purpose of him who does all things after the counsel of his will, 

The Holy God chose His people- chose me, according to a previously decided plan- made by God. Again, we have repeated in this chapter the truth of the author and source of salvation – The Creator God. He chose us and appointed us to be saved, and therefore there are others who are not. The heart that does not know it’s God recoils and repines at this truth. We can see it as unfair and discriminatory. We ask, “how could God choose some and not others?” Surely we should have free will to choose. That might seem true to fallen human minds, but the truth is, we do not have free will. The scripture says we are dead in trespasses and sins. Dead people cannot choose.

“You were dead through your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh. He made you alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses,”   Colossians 2:13

The human body may be alive, but without the new life in Christ, it is spiritually dead. We do not feel God, want God, seek God, or choose God.

The ungodliness of our flesh renders us dead in our soul, and only in Christ are we made alive.

Without the over-ruling power and predestination of God, no flesh would be saved at all.

“There is salvation in none other, for neither is there any other name under heaven, that is given among men, by which we must be saved!”  Acts 4:12
This plan of God works out everything to fit in with His purposes, which are holy and true, fair and just. This plan of time and eternity will certainly come to pass, because of who He is. At the centre of this plan is His divine sovereignty and His love, working out the purposes of the lives of His people, that all will come to pass, just as He intends it to.

The sinner in their dead state may rail against the Lord at this truth, but the saint bows the knee and humbly accepts forgiveness and the energizing power of the Holy Spirit.

 

 

V12  to the end that we should be to the praise of his glory, we who had before hoped in Christ.

The plan of God’s will was carried out so that the New Testament believers who were the first to put their hope and trust in Christ, who bring glory to God. These Christians would in their very beings be the praises sung and raised to God’s glory.  The praise of God’s people is not just songs sung in outward voices, but the inner outworking of the spiritual praise we feel and know. Christians in themselves are the praise to God. As the New Testament believers lived that praise, so also do we in these days.

The praises from the lips of God’s people are what bring Him joy and are the fruit of the Spirit in human lives that were once ruined. God delights to receive our praises as we continually put our hope and trust in Him. The destiny of the Christian is not in this puny physical life on planet earth, but the majestic deeds and purposes of the kingdom, which is coming. We live not for the here and now, but for a future world of righteousness and peace and everlasting praise. This should be our motivation and goal each day.

It is easy to doubt, and even to doubt that we will enjoy that kingdom coming.! The earth-bound desires and thought processes can militate against the Spirit. If we continue to seek Christ we will know increasingly the joy of that kingdom, whatever our outward circumstances. The certain hope will give way to sight and faith will succumb to the viewed fact and the face of our Saviour will be our delight.

 

 

V13    In him you also, having heard the word of the truth, the Good News of your salvation—in whom, having also believed, you were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, 

Succeeding Christians were included when they heard the message and believed. When they believed God marked them, and us, with a glorious SEAL – who is the Holy Spirit promised to us by Jesus. This is our most valuable companion. He dwells in the Christian and empowers the Christian in all goodness. He is the gracious Spirit, and easily quenched. His sensitivity should be in the life on the child of God and people should see the difference.

The mark of the Holy Spirit, is love. Without love we are wasting our time doing deeds and saying words. It is not a sentimental love, but a love that drives holiness and causes us to realize our wretchedness. We must seek this love and desire the fullness of the Spirit in our lives, so that we become more like Christ and less and less like ourselves. This is how we know who Christians are. However, people who do not know the Spirit, will not recognize the godly believer or see anything attractive in them.

Many people of God have struggled and fought for their spiritual lives, and some have lost out in this world. God knows them who are His…

 

“Women received their dead by resurrection. Others were tortured, not accepting their deliverance, that they might obtain a better resurrection. Others were tried by mocking and scourging, yes, moreover by bonds and imprisonment. They were stoned.They were sawn apart. They were tempted. They were slain with the sword.They went around in sheep skins and in goat skins; being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated  (of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts, mountains, caves, and the holes of the earth.”   Hebrews 11:35-38

Those who God makes like this are His people. The seal, is the Spirit of the Living God dwelling in the Christian and includes then in the family of Christ. Those who are most aware of the Spirit of God will forgo the joys of this life, and live life focused on that which is to come. To be included with such a body of people is the greatest privilege. The more we can let go of this world, the better. We need certain necessities of life, which are a promised provision. But there is so much that takes our time and effort and stops us looking to Christ and walking with Him in a deliberate and personal way.

Perhaps we see that God really is “no respecter of persons” and we know he looks for fruit where He does not plant, so we hide and live on a go-slow mode to try to put off the day we will have to give Him everything.! It’s almost funny.

But He knows what is best for us and the sooner we realize that fact and just give in to Him, the more blessing will be poured down on us in ways we did not expect. We will know that it is the Lord, and not coincidence.

To be sealed with the gracious Spirit of God, is to have a life extraordinary. There are no “ordinary Christians” It’s all or nothing. Gods’ way or the highway to destruction. We can find ourselves on a by-road, and waste a lot of time trying to figure out our mistakes and failures, but God will bring us back and we will now our debt, feel our dependency on Him and obey with hearts of gratitude and love.

Praise His glorious name for all His love.

 

 

V14   who is a pledge of our inheritance, to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of his glory. 

This precious seal in the life of the Christian is the person who guarantees our final redemption from the clutches of this fallen world. He is like a down payment on all that is to come. The presence of the Holy Spirit, gives us the certainty that we will enter into the final everlasting kingdom and all the glory and culture of praise that it entails. A person can know that they belong to God, and know the presence of the Holy Spirit in their life. The Spirit teaches and comforts the people of God and lets them know they belong to God and they will finally enter into heaven.

The Holy Spirit teaches the Christians that they have an inheritance in the family of God, that can never be taken away from them.

to an incorruptible and undefiled inheritance that doesn’t fade away, reserved in Heaven for you,”1 Peter 1:4

This is a promise that bolsters the Christian up in times of temptation and tragedy, and reassures the Christian of the reality of the perseverance of the people of God.

The pledge of the Spirit also teaches us that we are redeemed from sin and punishment by the power of God, and not ourselves. We are saved through God’s amazing grace and not a mere choice of our own making. This is because we are the glory of God’s grace. All will see it and marvel at the magnificence of God’s love for fallen human beings.

All glory will be to the Father, and the Son, our Saviour, and to our teacher, the Holy Spirit. Heaven will be full of songs of gratitude from a redeemed people in full outpourings of joy.

The Holy Spirit is not an influence or a feeling. He is a person, the third person in the trinity of the Living God. He is not less than the father or the Son, although He seems to be often left out of conversation or acknowledgment. His gracious character does not permit Him to put Himself forward, but He waits for us to learn and understand. He lives within the Christian. The Christian life is the gradual overtaking of the Spirit’s power to expel self, and enthrone Christ in the centre of the life. Self fades away and Christ gains sway.

The fullness of the Spirit shows us to be possessed by God, and all other lords and influences are cast out. This work in us will forever be to His praise and all the hosts of heaven, earth and hell, will see His glory shining out of all saints, once sinners…All will magnify Him and see grace in all its glory. 

 

  

V15   For this cause I also, having heard of the faith in the Lord Jesus which is among you, and the love which you have toward all the saints, 

The Apostle is thankful to hear good news from the people of God. The Christians in Ephesus have the faith of Jesus among them. The outworking of this living faith they have received, would make them stand out among the people from the godless culture around them. It would not be unlike the days we live in. In fact, godlessness is a feature of every age, and manifests itself in a myriad of ways. The strong desire for money, esteem and influence is always around, and our culture is not different. Even in the so-called church of Christ, there are those seeking to build an empire after their own image. It is so easy to walk the godless walk. Small is good and living and serving in a small group makes it easier to keep account of each other, and the ties of love bring good changes and godly conduct.

This love was evident in the believers in Ephesus. They loved each other and did not oppress each other. They included the outsiders and so people were added to their fellowship. The ideas of becoming a populist pressure group, did not even figure. The individual believers were full of the Holy Spirit and so His fruit was manifest in heart, mind and life.

This love reached out to other believers too. They prayed and gave practical aid, as they saw the need. They did not keep money to aggrandize their own wants, but all belonged to Christ and so there was no problems about giving up what you might have thought was yours.!

The greatest news a Christian can hear is that the people around us have heard the good news and have believed. True love reaches out. True love does not have regard for itself, but does the will of Christ. The outworking of that love flows over to fellow Christians and the fellowship that comes from that. This is the attitude of every child of God and one that God rejoices to see.

 

 

V16   don’t cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers

The Apostle Paul is unceasingly thankful for this obvious work in the lives of the Christians at Ephesus, and God also delights to see the work of the Holy Spirit in the lives of His people. God also will delight in us, as we live for Him and show His love unstintingly to others. The opposite is also true. If we hold back and try to save resources for ourselves at the expense of others, we will loose out in God’s terms. If Jesus gave up all for us, what right do we have to be saved from the rigours of life? The mind set of giving, and giving and more giving. Not just money, but our talents, time and effort as well, which actually belong to God anyway.

Paul rehearses the work of God in the lives of the Christians in Ephesus and knows they have the mind of Christ. He rejoices to be part of their lives and to see the work of grace being enlarged in their daily lives.

He sidelines no one in the fellowship at Ephesus, and knows that every Christian has a work from God to do. He realizes that the fellowship of heaven touches earth, even as it is enacted on the stage of this life, and this group of God’s people. Each person is prayed for individually, because Paul knew them and loved them all.

 

 

V17   that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him, 

Paul’s constant prayer is that all God’s people will have the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that they can know God better and better. The whole God-head is included in this request. The glorious Father, the Lord Jesus Christ are implored to give the Spirit.

“But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach; and it will be given to him.”    James 1:5

The Spirit brings wisdom. All wisdom is from God and is available to those who ask for it, seek it and value it. There is no such thing as a Christian without this gift, and it comes through the working of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Christian. The Spirit is a gift. He is given in grace. No one can buy His influence, though many may try to counterfeit His ways. The wisdom brings revelation. The revelation enlightens the mind of the Christian to a true and deep understanding of the Holy Scriptures, and therefore the ways of God. Every Christian should be seeking to now HIM better. This is the purpose of life, so that we become like our Father, as we draw near to Him and gain a heart of wisdom.

This is not a worldly knowing, but a spiritual knowledge of God. The person who seeks wisdom, seeks insight, discernment, discretion, sound judgment concerning the ways of God. This will also impact on the wisdom used for life, and others will see it and wonder why. It is not necessarily intelligence, but a deep grasp of the Word of God, which is also worked out in a mighty way in the earthly life.

 

 

V18   having the eyes of your heartsenlightened, that you may know what is the hope of his calling, and what are the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, 

Paul prays that the eyes of the heart of the Christian will be open and enlightened so that the person knows God in a deeper and livelier way. He prays for maturity and a growing understanding of the ways of God so that they will really know the HOPE that God has called them to.

The eyes of the heart are opened by the Spirit of God, and all enlightenment come from Him. Only then can we grow and mature into the saints of God – full of wisdom and knowledge of the glorious inheritance we have as God’s holy people.

This living hope is not just for eternity, but gives us strength and love to walk this world, in His power. These infinite and eternal riches, which we enjoy now, and the glorious inheritance in God, are now shared together as God’s people and then onward as we travel into eternity.

 

 

V19   and what is the exceeding greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to that working of the strength of his might 

This incalculable and immeasurable power of God, is for all those who believe in Him. It is a power like the working of His mighty strength, which never fails. Every Christian knows this power and recognizes what it is and who it comes from.

Our first experience of this power is when we are turned from darkness to light and sin is forgiven and dealt with in our lives. We wonder at what God has done and how He can change us. It is a mysterious working that is not from the world. We have not known it before, and so it is fresh and new. We see it in others who have also been changed. People who do not live for this world, and who are taken up with Jesus. They live for Him and serve Him and love Him.

This is the mighty working of God’s power, how He can change an enemy into a dear friend. We look at our own efforts to put sin to death and to fight temptations power. We once gave in, but not any more.

We recognize that this is not a trick, but as the years go by, we are strengthened in all godliness and our tastes change from feeding our desires, to providing for others and thereby denying self. We see increasingly the work of the strength of His might. It becomes our own and we do the greater works.

“Most certainly I tell you, he who believes in me, the works that I do, he will do also; and he will do greater works than these, because I am going to my Father.”   John 14:12

The Father in heaven rejoices with us and in us. He sees that outworking in our lives and the daily bending of the knee to His will.

The power of God that saves us, is the same power that enables us to walk daily. His strength never fails.

 

 

V20   which he worked in Christ, when he raised him from the dead and made him to sit at his right hand in the heavenly places, 

 Gods mighty strength was flexed and used when He raised Christ from the dead and elevated HIM to sit at GOD’S right hand in the heavenly stratospheres and the kingdoms above. That same power is available for those who believe. There is no need to fall or fail.

We fail because we fear. We fear because we do not ask for courage. We fear people too much and God not enough. We lose out and our lives become overcome with fears and doubts, failures and fallings. We must seek the Spirit.

The indwelling Spirit will keep and sustain every child of God. We are not weak and helpless beings. We are not at the mercy of the enemy. We do not need to succumb to temptation. The power of the resurrection is there for us, in all our struggles in this life. We need only take hold of it. Believe and receive it. That place of glory that our Saviour and brother has ascended to, is the place of every one who overcomes and walks as He walked.

There is only one way to walk with Jesus. To rid ourselves of sinful self, and look to Christ on His everlasting throne. When we see Him there, we see the reality and not fears and doubts. Faith looks to Him. Faith obeys whatever the seemingly negative consequences might be. Faith is kept by the mighty power of God. We must pray for it.

 

V21   far above all rule, authority, power, dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in that which is to come.

The Christians looks to the throne of God. Christ is now on that throne, forever King of Kings. None can touch His authority or thwart His will.

The authority and dominion of Christ is far, far above any other kind of rule, authority or power, that God or man could give. JESUS the CHRIST supersedes all in this age of time and space, and in the perfect kingdom to come. The kingdom has already come. He himself is building it daily, and calling people to Himself. No one can subterfuge His saving power. No one can stop a child of God being redeemed.

Christ will bring all His people home and they are forever safe in His domain. The authority of Christ puts down any false authority of the enemy over His people.

His name is high above all, all names, titles, station’s of office… The name is the name above all names, and every knee will bow to it. All power and authority is bound up in that glorious name, and those who believe in Him, will never be confounded.

The age of eternity will come. It is unthinkable that the present state of sin will go on indefinitely. The believer sees that and knows that the eternal kingdom will be one day full up. All God’s people will be gathered in, sins forgiven, characters restored and mortality swept away by immortality. Whatever we suffer in this world, will be a faded memory in that great day. We will see only Christ.

He in His eternal person, will be our delight, our God, and dear brother and friend, as He has been in this world too.

What joy. What privilege. What power we possess.

 

 

V22    He put all things in subjection under his feet, and gave him to be head over all things for the assembly, 

 Paul has now left the realms of sin and death, and sees his Saviour, Jesus so clearly. Paul knows who He is. Every Christian has some view of Jesus, but Paul is helping us to see Him in a wonderful and glorious light. The language and concepts are now supremely eternal. Christ the everlasting King has come and is building His Church and no one can stop it happening.

God has placed the authority over everything under the feet of the Lord Jesus. Jesus determines everything. He has chosen His own and they will come when He calls them. Paul shares his rejoicing with the believers in Ephesus, knowing that they will rejoice with him.

God has given Jesus the rule and control over everything to do with the church of God. Christ is the judge and mediator in that kingdom. As Christ saves His people, so He also keeps His people for ultimate harm, temptation, sin, the enemy. The Christian can be confident that Christ is always on the throne, and will keep them.

As Christ is over all, so the church will one day, reign in the eternal kingdom. We will overcome by His power.

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Could oppression, or anguish, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?Even as it is written, “For your sake we are killed all day long. We were accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”  No, in all these things, we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.  For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,  nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”    Romans 8:35-39

 

 

V23   which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

Christ is over His church- He is the head of it, and the authority over it. The members of that Church are His body, as a group of believers. They are united to Him and loved by Him and they extend that love to each other. This is not an earthly institution, but a spiritual body where every part is known by Christ and all will be kept safe in Him to the very end.

It can be difficult to know who is a Christian and who is not. The two types of person grown together in this world, but will be judged at the end of time, by the ruler of this eternal kingdom. There will be no mistakes. He is the searcher of human hearts. He knows who is for real and who is a fake. He knows who loves Him and who just wants what He has to offer.

His love will fill everything in every way. Sin will be destroyed and will not trouble His people any longer. Hell will be closed, and forgotten about forever. God’s love will prevail and hate will be finished.

The body of Christ is His fullness – the expression of His own perfect and holy self. Christians will finally get what they desire – to be like Jesus. They will be set free from all evil and all negative influences. Nothing will trouble them in the eternal kingdom.

They are to be the perfection of His being. Every member is filled with the Spirit and lives their eternal lives out, for His glory and the building up of each other, as a holy temple of God.

The kingdom will have come in all its amazing glory, and we will all be changed.

“Behold,I tell you a mystery. We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed.  For this perishable body must become imperishable, and this mortal must put on immortality. But when this perishable body will have become imperishable, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then what is written will happen: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”

  “Death, where is your sting?
  Hades,where is your victory?”

 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the Lord’s work, because you know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”    1 Corinthians 15:51-58

 

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