Part 2, The Marvelous Plan of God for the Church Sermon Series, A Study of the Book of Ephesians
1. God revealed the human condition.
“As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins,2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath.” Eph. 2:1-3.
· The human condition: spiritually dead.
· Sin separated us from God.
· Satan rules in the disobedient.
· God’s remedy to our fallen condition: Jesus and His death on the cross.
2. God made the dead alive in Christ.
4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 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. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.” Eph. 2:4-9.
· Nobody forced the hand of God to bring us to life.
· It was in God’s nature to bring grace and mercy to the ones He loves.
· Believers have been given an exalted position in Christ.
o He made us alive in His Son, Jesus Christ.
o He raised us up with Christ,
o He seated us with Himself, in heaven.
3. God still works to bring us to obedience.
“10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. 11 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (which is done in the body by human hands).” Eph. 2:10-11.
· God prepared a pathway that we may walk on it that teaches us obedience.
· God determined the work we must do – imitate Jesus.
· We are to reflect Jesus to the world.
· Obedience is a consequence of being made alive in Christ.
4. God united us together.
“12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ. 14 For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility,15 by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace.” Eph. 2:12-15.
· The word Gentile does not describe who the people were but who they were not.
· Gentiles are non-Jews.
· Believers do not become Jews, and Jews do not become gentiles, rather, they become Christians.
· The word Christian means “little Christ”, followers of Christ.
How do you become a Christian?
By trusting Jesus for your eternal life and obey all His teachings. You become a Christian when you believe that Jesus died on the cross in your place, that He gave His life for the forgiveness of your sins that you may repent, and believers what He had done is enough for your salvation.