Summary: First of a series on Ephesians 3
Compelled... to Reveal the Mystery
The mysterious formula for Coca-Cola
In 1925, the only written copy of its formula Coca-Cola admits to having was retrieved from a New York bank (where it had been held as collateral on a sugar loan) and reverently laid in safe deposit box in Woodruff’s Atlanta bank, the Trust Company of Georgia (which later merged with Sun Bank of Florida, creating SunTrust Bank).
But that was only the first step. That same year the company set a policy whereby no one could view the formula without written permission from the Board, and then only in the presence of the President, Chairman, or Corporate Secretary. Furthermore, the rule dictated that only two company officials would be allowed to know the recipe at any given time, and their identities were never to be disclosed for any reason. In keeping with the spirit of things, company policy was amended once air travel became the norm to preclude those two officers from ever flying on the same plane.
The mystery revealed
In 1993, Mark Pendergrast published what he believed to be Coke’s original formula in For God, Country and Coca-Cola. He’d come across the following among John Pemberton’s papers:
Citrate Caffein, 1 oz.
Ext. Vanilla, 1 oz.
Flavoring, 2.5 oz.
F.E. Coco, 4 oz.
Citric Acid, 3 oz.
Lime Juice, 1 Qt.
Sugar, 30 lbs.
Water, 2.5 Gal.
Mix Caffeine Acid and Lime Juice in 1 Qt Boiling water add vanilla and flavoring when cool.
Oil Orange, 80
Oil Lemon, 120
Oil Nutmeg, 40
Oil Cinnamon, 40
Oil Coriander, 40
Oil Neroli, 40
Alcohol, 1 Qt.
let stand 24 hours.
The Coca-Cola Company was quick to label Pendergast’s published find as "not accurate" and "the latest in a long line of previous, unsuccessful attempts to reveal a 107-year-old mystery." Mind you, given how much Coca-Cola has invested in proclaiming its formula to be a carefully-guarded secret, it is never expected to react in any other fashion even if it is someday handed the real formula.
The greatest mystery is now revealed
When Paul wrote to the Ephesians he explained his part of the revelation of the greatest mystery of all times.
A mystery so powerful, so important, so exciting, so awe inspiring, so consuming that it changed Paul’s life completely.
It changed him radically as it compelled him… you see when it comes to God and his affairs with men there is first of all a calling
There is a calling…
Paul referred to himself as a “Prisoner of Christ”
It’s interesting that Paul refers to himself as a “Prisoner of Christ” – not once but several times.
Christ Jesus made me his prisoner, so that I could help you Gentiles. You have surely heard about God’s kindness in choosing me to help you.
I prefer to make my appeal on the basis of love. I, Paul, as an old man and now a prisoner of Christ Jesus,
Many of you have read the book about the prayer of Jabez.
Some of you have begun to pray that prayer.
1Ch 4:10 ASV
And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my border, and that thy hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it be not to my sorrow! And God granted him that which he requested.
Listen – God chooses the border to enlarge in your life when you give yourself to his work.
This was certainly true in Paul’s life
Phi 3:5 CEV I was circumcised when I was eight days old, and I am from the nation of Israel and the tribe of Benjamin. I am a true Hebrew. As a Pharisee, I strictly obeyed the Law of Moses.
He was at the top of the food chain. He describes himself as a Hebrew of Hebrews. Trained at the feet of a renowned teacher named Gamilel. He was at the top of his class in Harvard Law School. He was a Rhodes scholar. He worked as an intern under the greatest leaders in Jerusalem.
But on the way to Damascus there was crisis in his life and he came face to face with God and had to look at himself…
Phi 3:7-9 But Christ has shown me that what I once thought was valuable is worthless. Nothing is as wonderful as knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have given up everything else and count it all as garbage. All I want is Christ
Warning: There is a calling and when you really listen to God’s calling it will change your life.
There is a Mystery…
God has had a plan from the very beginning to pull all of His creation out of the fire but he has not been so foolish as to lay all his cards face up on the table – until now!