Summary: A look at the encouragement and promises of Ephesians and how to draw from the "Bank of God"
The Promises of Ephesians – Draw from the Bank of God
Over the last few weeks as my wife Angie and I have spoken to various people within and outside of the church – a current theme seems to be running through all our conversations.
People are going through some hard times – there are some hurting people within the church, people are going through some tough times and comments like that.
Someone said to me the other day “there are some really hurting people in the church right now.”
Well - I don’t want to frighten you all – but maybe I need to give you all a reminder. It’s going to get worse – persecution like you have never known it before, is going to come - mark my words – how do I know that –
It says it in the word of God. And we can see it happening around us right now. If you are a Christian – an outspoken one and not a closet one – then being a Christian is fast becoming the fastest way to being hated by all & sundry.
But I think it’s timely to revisit Ephesians and look at some of the awesome believers promises listed there. God wants me to encourage you and to remind you that He’s supplied all the resources needed for living a victorious life. He hasn’t promised it will be a bed of roses, that we will all live happily ever after - after accepting Him. He is looking for people of COURAGE – over-comers those who will stand in these last days.
In Ephesians 2 v1 to 3 we are reminded of from where we came.
In the news over the last week or so we hear of Graham Capill’s demise. I don’t want to go into this too much – but I will say - we as the body of Christ, need to come from a heart of forgiveness and make sure we don’t judge.
We need to pray to the lord for Graham’s full & heart felt repentance and his restoration. As well as pray God’s protection on the victims.
The point I’m wanting to make here is “ there but by the grace of God go I” and I think everyone in this room needs to say the same thing.
While I’m definitely not condoning what took place – we all need to come from the point of love acceptance and forgiveness.
I’m reminded of the first chapter in the book “ Love Acceptance and forgiveness” by Jerry Cook. There but by the grace of God go I.
Let’s read these few verses.
Ephesians 2 v1 to 3
Here- Paul is reminding the Ephesians from whence they came – Paul used to kill these Christians – he persecuted them. He of all of people would know the saving grace of the Lord. His forgiveness – His Mercy –
Paul goes through a whole list of things which we will have a look at shortly.
Then in verse 4 Paul then states : But God – who - God who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses ( worts & all people) made us alive together with Christ – then in brackets ( by grace you have been saved) and raised us up together ( us - Paul is saying you and me people) and made us sit in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.
Jump to verse 8 & 9.
Now Paul tells us all this to remind us of whence we have come.
Illustration - The story of old friend Keith coming to visit me)
Now I believe the Lord wants to remind us firstly of from whence we have come – not to dredge up the past but to show us His amazing love for us - His grace and mercy - which He freely gives to us –
There is a condition here!!!
When we say God loves us unconditionally - He does
BUT – there are conditions to get from there to here.
We have to accept His terms – not ours
Repent of our sins
Accept the Lord Jesus Christ as our Lord and saviour
Many can and do accept Him as their saviour –
different story to make Him your Lord - are you struggling? –
I will ask you WHO IS ON THE THRONE?
And the third condition is “be baptized”.
Verse 8 & 9 For by grace, you have been saved through faith