The Glory Of His Grace

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Please turn with me in your Bibles to Ephesians Chapter 1.

When Paul wrote the Book of Ephesians (under the leading of God the Holy Spirit – 2 Peter 1:21), he was in his first Roman imprisonment. Paul was under house arrest, living in his home, but guarded by Roman soldiers. Acts 28:16 tells us that “Paul was {allowed} to dwell by himself with a soldier that {guarded} him.” He was not chained in a prison cell until his second imprisonment, and could still receive visitors. Acts 28:30-31 tells us that “Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, and received all that came in unto him, preaching the kingdom of God, and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man forbidding him.” Paul’s imprisonment is a picture of the great Grace of our God. Though we may go into valleys, our Lord will be with us. If we are in a valley, our Lord will adjust the situation so that we can minister to others for Him. Though Paul’s home is invaded by the enemy, Paul is joyous. Why? We read:

Ephesians 1:2-6 Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: 4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: 5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

Paul is joyous in prison because of Grace

Ephesians 1:2 Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.

It is the “Grace” of God that brings the “peace” of God into the life. If you are enjoying God’s Grace, then God is your Father, and Jesus is your Lord. No matter what you are going through, you need not fear it. Our God can do all things, and sees all things, and loves you as His child. And Jesus Christ is your Lord. Not the trial you are going through, but Jesus is your Lord.

Ephesians 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

Our “God and Father” has given us “all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ”. How did God the Father give us these spiritual blessings?

• God the Son became the perfect Son of Man. Jesus Christ is 100% God and 100% Man. We are told in John’s Gospel:

John 1:1-3 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

Jesus Christ is “The Word” – not a human’s word, but God’s very breath. This Jesus, this wonderful Word of God:

John 1:14 … the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us …

God became Man. He did not become Man through the normal, everyday means. Jesus Christ became flesh through supernatural intervention. Jesus Christ was born of a virgin woman. It was by man (Adam) that sin entered the world, and death by sin (Romans 5:12), so God circumvented man when He created the body that Christ would inhabit. God did this by prophecy:

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

and fulfilled this in Mary:

Matthew 1:23 … Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

You must believe that Jesus was virgin born, by God’s supernatural intervention, else you cannot be saved. Gabriel told Mary in Luke 1:35, “The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.”

If Jesus were born like we are, of sinful parents, then He would be just as sinful as we are. Among humankind the Bible says that

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

All humans who have ever been born through the beautiful union of man and woman in matrimony have been born broken. But Jesus Christ was not born broken. He is without sin. When a woman taken in adultery was cast before Jesus to judge, Jesus said “he that is without sin among you, cast the first stone” (John 8:7). Every accuser left. If any could have cast a stone against the woman that day, it could have been Jesus. Jesus Christ is the High Priest of our faith. The Bible says of Him:

Hebrews 4:15 {Jesus was} … in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.

Jesus Christ is God become Man, but Who is still fully God. The Father told the Son:

Hebrews 1:8 … Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom.

• We have “all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ” because the perfect Son of Man Who is the Son of God died in our place on the Cross.

Sin separates every human who has ever been or ever will be from a relationship with God. God said through the Prophet:

Isaiah 59:2 … your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.

It was sin that caused God to cast Adam and Eve out of Eden. It is sin that keeps us all from entering into God’s Heaven. Thom Mollohan wrote in his article, “A Hunger For More: Sin Separates us From God”:

“the idea of sin, as given to us by the Bible, is simply this: a rejection of the authority of God in our lives and a giving of our ourselves to something less than our Creator. Sin in this way is really about our refusal to be subordinate to God Himself and exalting something to the position of devotion and worship that only God deserves. Sin separates us from God. It is not religious issue. It is a life and death issue. Sin debases us, even when we strive to exalt ourselves, because it diminishes the image of God within us. See, we are created in His image and reflect it much like a mirror reflects our own. So if He is not shining upon us because we’ve turned away to serve ourselves, then the image of God cannot be seen in us. Furthermore, sin is a crime because it robs God of what He alone is worthy of…”

The pandemic that is gripping America today is not the Coronavirus, but full blown paganism masquerading under the title “Progressivism”.

God the Son was once born (only begotten) through a virgin to become the perfect and sinless Son of Man. Only the Son of Man – Jesus – has power on earth to forgive sins (Matthew 9:6; Mark 2:10; Luke 5:24). Paganism or as others love to call it, Progressivism seeks to find blessing in more sinful and forbidden ways. There will never be any blessing found in sin. The Bible says:

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

1 Peter 3:18 … Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:

Jesus Christ – the perfect Son of Man – died on Calvary to make full payment for our sins. Jesus was very clear that He and He alone would bring in the New Covenant for those who received Him as Lord and Savior. At the last Passover, Jesus told those who believed in and followed Him:

Matthew 26:27-28 … he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; 28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

When a cancer patient hears that their cancer is “in remission”, they rejoice, for their life is extended. Jesus Christ died on the Cross to cure a much greater thing than cancer. He died to cover our sins. He died for us who, once we believe in Him, are in remission from sin, but in the Family of God. The Apostle said,

John 1:12-13 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

Jesus Christ was born supernaturally into this world as a Son of Man, so that we, sons of men, can be supernaturally re-born into the Family of God. Jesus took our place so we can now take His place!

• Just as God the Son – the perfect Son of Man defeated death, we who belong to God will one day defeat death. If you do not believe in the resurrection of Jesus, you are NOT a Christian. 

The Apostle said in Romans 10:9, “if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”

Two things are required for salvation. First, you declare for all to hear the “Jesus is Lord”. Jesus is not one Lord among many, but is THE Lord. Second, you must “believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead”. The Lordship and resurrection of Christ are non-negotiable for the Christian. When Thomas saw the Risen Savior he declared, “My Lord and My God” (John 20:28). That is exactly what the Christian believes, that Jesus is both Lord and God. Peter preached:

Acts 2:23-24 (ESV) this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.

Jesus did not “swoon”, nor “Pass out”, but died on that Cross of Calvary. He died for your sins and mine. He died so that we might be saved, if we would believe in Him.

Paul Was Joyous In Prison Because Of Grace’s Effect

Ephesians 1:4 According as He {God the Father} hath chosen us in Him {God the Son} before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love:

The Apostle now shows us how deep the love of God is. We are “chosen us in Him {God the Son} before the foundation of the world”. Before God created the world, before He called the first light into being, He knew that Adam would fall in Eden. God told Adam:

Genesis 2:17 … of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Our God is omniscient – He knows all things before they happen. “God knows everything” (1 John 3:20). God knows the number of the hairs on your head (Matthew 10:29-30). God “declares the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things not yet done” (Isaiah 46:9-10). Knowing that Adam would fall, the earth would need a Savior, God the Son, “before the foundation of the world”, agreed to pay for our sins. This theme is repeated by the Apostle:

2 Timothy 1:8-9 … Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God; 9 Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,

God knew Adam would fail, but created him anyway. God knew that you and I will fail, but created us anyway. He saved us with a salvation that was planned in Christ “before the world began”. If you are saved, you are saved by an omniscient God. He knows your weaknesses, but by His power He will save and keep on saving you. You are His Child by faith.

Ephesians 1:4 … that we should be holy and without blame before him in love

The believer is not saved by his works, but once saved is both “holy” and “without blame”. The Christian is – because of God the Spirit Who indwells him – “holy”. This is the Greek ἅγιος hágios, {pronounced hag’-ee-os}, a person set apart to be a son of God. We are to be like our Father. The Lord tells us:

1 Peter 1:15-16 (ESV) … but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

The Apostle quoted Leviticus 20:7 as he wrote this text. Jesus said, “Because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you” (John 15:19). The Christian is not called to be Republican or Democrat, “Woke”, liberal or conservative. The Christian is called to be like God, to be like Jesus, Who is God manifest.

If you profess to be saved, but walk like a worldling, then you are not saved at all. You are “without blame” because Jesus took your blame on the Cross. You are a son of God heading toward Heaven. You are to act as a son of God.

Grace always has an effect on the believer. If you are saved, you are “his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10)”

Ephesians 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,

Each Christian has an appointment with God. During that future appointment in Heaven, we shall be “adopted” into the Family of God because of our faith in Christ.

We Who Belong To God, Glorify God

Ephesians 1:6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

We are “accepted in the beloved”. God the Father accepts us for God the Son’s sake. We who believe in Christ unto salvation glorify our God. Note the phrase, “To the praise of the glory of his grace”. The Apostle repeats this formula twice more in this text:

Ephesians 1:11-12 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: 12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.

A Christian has a purpose in life, and that is to glorify God. We are to live “to the praise of his glory”. God should be honored an what we say and do. Again, in

Ephesians 1:13-14 … ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, 14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory…

God the Holy Spirit indwells the believer, the “earnest” or proof of our future inheritance. We are to live our lives not as worldlings, but as those who belong to Jesus. We glorify our God by how we live our lives.

1 Corinthians 10:31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

Those under saving Grace will live to the glory of God. We live so as to please and honor the God Who saved us. We read:

Colossians 3:17 … whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

We do not follow the crowd. We follow Jesus. We live for God. We know that we are eternal creatures, that will live in glory with the God-Man that saved us. So we praise our Lord, and glorify His Name daily. Listen Beloved:

It is possible to LOOK saved, but to LIVE damned. The first generation of Israel were saved from Egypt, but not from themselves. They created a golden calf, a false god to follow, and lost the Promised Land. God will not share His glory with another. “I am the LORD, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another, Nor My praise to graven images” (Isaiah 42:8). “For My own sake, for My own sake, I do this. How can I let Myself be defamed? I will not yield My glory to another” (Isaiah 48:11). Those who love the Lord, live for the glory of the Lord. We pursue His pleasure, His will, His command. We love Him, for He first loved us (1 John 4:19). Do you belong to God, or to this world? Choose wisely. Choose Jesus.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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