Summary: This is a sermon showing what God’s desire is for us.
Introduction: I want to start out today by taking a poll. All this takes is a simple show
of hands. The question is this: How many of us have some idea as to what takes
place when someone adopts a pet from the humane society? You first have to go
and select the animal, and then you must adopt the animal before taking it home.
Once you get the animal home you begin to train your new pet. The next thing
you do is go out and buy a nametag to show that you own this animal. Well,
much like this process, the Bible tells us that God goes through all these steps with
believers. The reason is simple: GOD WANTS US TO BE HIS!!
I am going to be preaching today from the book of Ephesians, which is in the New Testament.
It is located right after the book of Galatians and right before the book
of Philippians. I am focusing on the 1st chapter. Verses 3 through 14. I will
be reading the scripture today from the New International Version, so if you
happen to have a different version, your words may differ slightly.
3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the
heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4For he chose us in him before
the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love
5he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with
his pleasure and will-- 6to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given
us in the One he loves. 7In him we have redemption through his blood, the
forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8that he lavished
on us with all wisdom and understanding. 9And he made known to us the mystery of his
will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10to be put into
effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment--to bring all things in
heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.
11In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him
who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12in order that
we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. 13And
you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your
salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,
14who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession--to the praise of his glory.
As we read through this passage one of the first things we notice is that in verse 4 God
chose us to be His. This must mean that we are pretty special to God if He chose
us. Let’s think about what this verse really says. Of course we see that it says that God chose us, but more importantly than that is when He chose us. He didn’t choose us when we were in our mother’s womb, but before the creation of the world. This says a lot about how truly important we are to the creator of this world, to be chosen before He creates anything.
Now, there is a controversy over this verse. There are some who say that
this means that God will only save a certain number of people. Yet if we look
in 1 Timothy 2:3-6 we see that God wants everyone to be saved. What this means, is that it is God’s desire for all mankind to know Him. Yet, we know that this is not the case.
1 Timothy 2:3-6: 3This is good, and pleases God our Savior; 4who wants all men to be
saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. 5For there is one God and one mediator
between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all men--the
testimony given in its proper time.
There are several reasons why God has chosen us. Obviously He cares enough about us to
select us. He loves us. But most importantly the reason God chose us is that God
wants us to be His.
The next thing we see is that God adopts us. We see this in verses 5-8. When it comes to
adoption there are some things we must understand. When someone is adopted, the
person doing the adopting must pay a price. But, in order to pay that price,
there is obviously some kind of feeling for the person they want to adopt. Once the
adoption takes place, the person who was adopted becomes a part of the family and