Summary: 8th in the series dealing with God's enlightenment of belivers in including them in the mysteries of the universe.
I woke up Saturday morning with some different applications of the message on grace that were in the original notes what had already been printed.
I am including them here so that you will have them to review.
Application to the message of Grace
1. Understand His grace
Understand who you are. You are justified, righteous by His doing not yours. He did what you couldn¡¦t and can never do. It was such a healthy understanding of grace that enabled Paul to rise above his own horrible persecution and execution of Christians and realization that he was the worst of sinners. but the grace of God. Failure to believe God¡¦s word concerning grace causes you to still feel indebted and alienated from God even through our monumental and impossible debt of sin has been fully paid. There is therefore now NO condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus (Rom 8:1).
2. Appreciate His grace
Part of our appreciation is to realize the great cost and seek to live pleasing to Him.
3. Seek and apply His grace for life and ministry
Peter instructs us to be good stewards of the manifold grace of God. Don¡¦t ¡§fall short¡¨ of the grace of God by failing to make daily trips to the throne of grace.
4. Grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus
5. Extend His grace to others
Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person. Col 4:6
Let no rotten or worthless word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. Ephesians 4:29
So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience; bearing with one another, and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone; just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you. Colossians 3:12-13
It is not hard to see why such blessing will eternally motivate exuberant praise to the glory of His grace.
I. Our Wealth and Worth In Christ 1-4
A. Paul blessed God for blessing us with every spiritual blessing 1:3-14
1. Specially Chosen 1:4
2. Purposefully Adopted 1:5-6
3. Freely Redeemed and Forgiven 1:7-8a
Most everyone loves a mystery. Everyone likes to be informed and posses insider information.
A mystery is a mystery because the final outcome is yet unknown. We even have television shows based on "Unsolved Mysteries". In this first chapter of Ephesians, Paul amplifies his discussion of God¡¦s blessing by specifying yet another privilege extended to undeserving creatures by a benevolent Creator. God provides enlightenment to darkened hearts and minds of fallen man so that they might know and truly understand His plan for the ages which is the unity of all things under Christ as the ultimate focal point and unifying figure of everything in the heavens and on the earth.
4. Clearly Enlightened 1:8b-10
In all wisdom and insight having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him Ephesians 1:8-10
Several things can be gleaned from this passage.
Hopefully we will find the answers to some basic questions.
What does the Bible mean by a "mystery"?
How, and to whom does God reveal the mystery of His will?
On what basis does God unveil this mystery?
What is this great mystery?
What difference does it make? How should I respond?
What is a mystery?
A "mystery" is a truth or fact that is not yet known due to lack of insight or sufficient clues.
It is not something that is unknowable. Just that it is not yet known. The fictional Sherlock
Holmes exhibited unusually deductive capacities that enabled him to uncover and subsequently reveal mysterious events. The ultimate mystery of the ages involves the origin, purpose and ultimate destiny of man. Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? Philosophers have contemplated and contended these questions for centuries.
The Biblical concept of mystery does not refer to something unknowable or something that defies the laws of logic. A mystery is simply a secret that can only be known when the holder of the secret chooses to reveal it. God provided many clues to understanding His ultimate plan from the beginning. He kept the full picture a mystery and reserved its unveiling until just the right time. The mystery of God's will of which Paul refers here is the unveiling of God's plan for the restoration of fallen man into proper relationship with Himself through His own Son.