Summary: Praising the Father for His blessings in our lives
These verses tell us about the many blessings we have from the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Several years ago the Los Angeles Times reported the story of an elderly man and wife who were found dead in their apartment. Autopsies revealed that both had died of severe malnutrition, although investigators found a total of $40,000 stored in paper bags in a closet.
For many years Hetty Green was called America’s greatest miser. When she died in 1916, she left an estate valued at $100 million, an especially vast fortune for that day. But she was so miserly that she at cold oatmeal in order to save the expense of heating the water. When her son had a severe leg injury, she took so long trying to find a free clinic to treat him that his leg had to be amputated because of advanced infection. It has been said that she hastened her own death by bringing of a fit of apoplexy while arguing the merits of skim milk because it was cheaper than whole milk.
The book of Ephesians is written to Christians who might be prone to treat their spiritual resources much like that miserly couple and Hetty Green treated their financial resources. Such believers are in danger of suffering from spiritual malnutrition, because they do not take advantage of the great storehouse of spiritual resources that are at their disposal (The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: Ephesians, p. vii).
OUR HEAVENLY FATHER IS TO BE PRAISED! WHY? BECAUSE HE HAS BLESSED US, CHOSEN US, ADOPTED US, AND ACCEPTED US.
Martin Luther said, "The most acceptable service we can do unto God, and which alone He desires of us, is, that He be praised of us."
I. THE FATHER IS TO BE PRAISED BECAUSE HE HAS BLESSED US (v. 3).
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places."
This verse may be the key verse of this epistle.
The realization of the truth concerning our salvation always leads to praise.
• "Praise and thanksgiving are ever to be the great characteristics of the Christian life" (God’s Ultimate Purpose: An Exposition of Ephesians 1, p. 48). See Acts.
• "There is no more true test of our Christian profession than to discover how prominent this note of praise and thanksgiving is in our life" (ibid., p. 49).
• "We should not come to God’s house simply to seek blessings and to desire various things for ourselves, or even simply to listen to sermons; we should come to worship and adore God" (ibid., 50).
We bless Him with words; He blesses us with deeds.
A. He Has Blessed Us "in Christ."
It is not who I am, or what I am, but WHERE I am that is important.
Every blessings we enjoy as Christians comes to us through the Lord Jesus Christ:
• ". . . he hath chosen us IN HIM. . . ."
• "Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children BY JESUS CHRIST. . . ."
• ". . . he hath made us accepted IN THE BELOVED."
It is not because I am worthy, but because of who Christ is and what He has done that I am the recipient of all these heavenly blessings.
B. He Has Blessed Us with " All Spiritual Blessings."
"Every good and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights. . . ." (James 1:17).
The word "spiritual" describes the source of our blessings.
These blessings are ours "in Christ," and are delivered to us by the Holy Spirit.
Many Christians continually ask God for what He has already given.
• They pray for PEACE, although Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you" (John 14:27).
• They pray for HAPPINESS, although Jesus said, "These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full" (John 15:11).
• They pray for STRENGTH, although His Word tells them that they "can do all things through Christ who strengthens [them]."
It is not that God WILL give us but that He has ALREADY given us "all spiritual blessings." Notice that verse 3 says that God "HATH blessed us."
Our resources in Christ are not simply PROMISED; they are POSSESSED.
Christ’s riches are our riches, His resources are our resources, His righteousness is our righteousness, and His power is our power.
Our need is not to receive something more but to do something more with what we have.
C. He Has Blessed Us "in Heavenly Places."
This phrase occurs five times in Ephesians (1:3, 20; 2:6; 3:10; 6:12).
Look again at2:6. That means nothing less than that you and I in Christ at this moment are seated in heavenly places. We are there; he does not say that we are going to be, but that we are there.