There are so many wonderful, wonderful instructions given to us in the letters of the New Testament that comprise the teaching that relates to our Christian living and Christian ministry that it's good to go back and be refreshed in these things.
Turn in your Bible, if you will, to chapter 6 in Ephesians, a very familiar portion of Scripture is the main focus of this chapter. It actually begins in verse 10 and it runs all the way down through verse 20. It is about the Christian's war, or, if you will, the armor of the believer. This is really the end of the epistle and needs to be seen a little bit in its context. This particular epistle follows a pattern that many of the epistles of the New Testament follow, particularly those written by Paul, in that the opening chapters, namely in this case chapters 1, 2 and 3, identify our position in Christ. They are doctrinal. They define for us what it means to be a Christian.
For example, back in chapter 1 it means that we have been blessed with all spiritual blessing or every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. And then Paul unpacks all of that, starting in verse 4, in one long sentence running down to verse 14, "We have been chosen before the foundation of the world to be made holy and blameless before Him. In love He predestined us, so that we have been adopted as sons through Jesus Christ for the purpose that we might be to the praise of His glory." We have redemption, verse 7, through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses according to the riches of His grace and that grace He lavished on us.
Furthermore, He has given us revelation in that all wisdom and insight has been made known to us. And that involves the mystery of His will, that which was formerly hidden and is now revealed. We are able through the revelation of Scripture to understand not only the past and the present but the fullness of the times, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in heaven, and things upon the earth. We have obtained an eternal inheritance to which we have been predestined. We have been sealed through that eternal redemption with the Holy Spirit of promise in verse 13, who is given as a guarantee and engagement ring, a down payment, the Greek word arabon, sealing our final inheritance and our final redemption as God's own possession to the praise of His glory.
So Paul starts out with this long staggering list of benefits and blessings that belong to us because we belong to Christ. And Paul praise then that we would understand all of this, verse 18, the eyes of our heart being enlightened to know what is the hope of His calling and the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, what is the surpassing power that has been extended to us, the working of His might, the very power that raised Jesus from the dead."...
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