All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ. Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into His own family by bringing us to Himself through Jesus Christ. This is what He wanted to do, and it gave Him great pleasure. So we praise God for the glorious grace He has poured out on us who belong to His dear Son. He is so rich in kindness and grace that He purchased our freedom with the blood of His Son and forgave our sins. He has showered His kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding. God has now revealed to us His mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill His own good pleasure. And this is the plan: At the right time He will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for He chose us in advance, and He makes everything work out according to His plan. God’s purpose was that we Jews who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, He identified you as His own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom He promised long ago. The Spirit is God’s guarantee that He will give us the inheritance He promised and that He has purchased us to be His own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify Him.Ephesians 1:3-14
Well, now you know when I said we were going to focus on one sentence I meant it. I bet you didn’t think it would last so long. With this Gem it has taken me 33 Gems to work my way through this one long sentence. It is a sentence which I am sure you now agree needed unpacking. Time now for you to go back and read it again knowing what you now know. See if means more to you now. Take the advice of my Greek Prof and read it through 7 times. Just do it! It will do wonders for your understanding of this passage. As you read it through these seven times let the parts of it sink in. Allow the flow of what Paul is saying to become a part of you. Let the circles of thought wash over you. I trust you will see the way in which themes or focal points keep coming and back again and again.
Take note what I said in the propositional analysis notes of how the end of this sentence connects back to the beginning of it. As you read it through seven times pick out the high points. The significant things that Paul has to say about these major truths of God’s word. Many of which he develops in the body of the letter to the Ephesians. This is a very impressive, deep beginning to a very significant letter. A letter that many question as to whether it was meant for the Ephesians per se or if it was a more general letter meant for numbers of churches. A little like the beginning of Luke. Is this a Gospel for Theophilus, a particular man, or is it a letter to all “God Lovers”? Go ponder these things in Ephesians. It’s all deeper than you think.
Tomorrow we will move on from the long sentence. I am sure that is good news to those of you who are getting bored. Mmm, getting bored with the Word of God . . . Now that is indicative of something, isn’t it?
Only bookstores were not looted in the UK riots. What does that say about where society is at?Anon
There’s trouble ahead when you live for the approval of others…Your task is to be true, not popular.Ian Vail
The truth that sets us free will make us feel bad before it makes us feel good.Anon
I would rather my heart be without words than my words be without heart.Sidney Mohede