After Action Report :: Ephesians 1:7-13
We are forever forgiven— living with purpose Remember that Paul is a missionary, drawing our attention to the goodness of God...
Remember that Paul is a missionary, drawing our attention to the goodness of God found in Jesus.
Sunday's conversation centered around the key concepts found in this week's passage. I used images to set up each aspect of the conversation and Zach offered his helpful perspective.
"Through his blood" reminds us that Jesus came in the flesh, died in the flesh, and rose bodily. Though he is fully divine, he became fully human. (Ransomed from slavery.)
1) The Image: A Transfer, from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of light!
Spiritually speaking, we have been transferred from the life of bound poverty to the life of limitless resources.
Have you experienced redemption?
If we have, are we presently finding our life and new identity by dwelling in that redemption?
This concept is defined by the thoughts of being released, finding freedom or liberty, or having our trespass carried away.
2) The Image: Day of atonement (at-one-ment) goat image
Now practically what does this mean?
It means that you never need look over your shoulder again.
If we find ourselves hiding from God, we don’t understand our relationship with him rightly. We have peace with God. We have been given peace with our past, but many are still carrying the weight of it needlessly. We have been given peace with our present, but many are unsure and lack confidence embracing their purpose. We have been given peace into the future, but many of us struggle with experiencing true hope.
Romans 8:33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.
Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
3) The Image: A continually constant direct deposit.
Let us make the forgiveness imagery practical. Imagine a continually replenished bank account. Grace lavished upon us with wisdom and insight.
God spent time planning this. His grace moves faster than our sinfulness!
The mystery: the gift of God to us is something concealed that is being revealed progressively.
Why and how: according to his pleasure purposed in Christ.
In the fulness of time to bring all things to unity in Christ. (Not universalism)
v 11-13 Obtained an inheritance
Underscoring the sovereignty of God
4) The image: tributaries leading into a grand river
Spurgeon used this illustration: “In God’s word the car of truth runs on two rails of parallel statement. A great many people want to pull up one of the rails. They will not accept two sets of truth. Predestination and free agency do not agree,” so the modern Solomons assert.
Who said? “They do not agree”? They do agree as fully as two rails on the tram line; but some narrow spirits must set aside either the one or the other, they cannot accept both.”
vs. 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,
Guarantee of our inheritance-- The Holy Spirit
Those who have believed/ trusted are secure in their inheritance (includes salvation),
Fake Christianity will not bear real fruit; not in this life or in the life to come,
We are bought with a price and therefore are not our own, and
We function inside a new kingdom under a benevolent dictator, a good King.
From the beginning, Satan has been the one questioning God and accusing us. He will often come to you and say "I know God says that he has forgiven you, but has he really?"
We need to spend time telling ourselves the truths of God, dwelling in them and experiencing new life. Jesus has been good for us, having died in our place and for our sins. Billions of lie-filled lives are NOT more potent than the way, the truth, and the life.
Jesus is wealth beyond our current realization.
He is known mystery, but the mystery isn’t even close to being fully tapped yet.
Jesus has placed himself within us!
I’ve been trying to cause you to scatter each week with something practical to progress with spiritually.
Find a way to function in forgiveness over fear this week. Share something with someone about your past or present that you would have felt guilty about but, share it in the light of the gospel. Share it as a benefit; share it as a trophy of God’s grace, a proclamation of your new-found wealth in him.
This works in two ways. First, this transparency allows you to experience community within the family in a way that causes grace-filled sanctification around you. Second, this transparency pictures the gospel far more clearly to the world. It no longer is mistaken for simple moralism, and the grace of Jesus comes into clear focus for those around you.