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July 3, 2022 8:00 am
Let's go to Ephesians this morning I decided that since I will be preaching to you for about a month or so that I wanted to leave you with a word that focuses quite heavily on the glories of our Lord and on our salvation, our study in second Timothy's getting real close to the EN will see how that goes. When we get back together this morning. Ephesians chapter 1, I will look at verses three through eight.
All right, Ephesians, chapter 1 verses three through eight and once again I will not be unpacking everything that's here, but I will be interpreting everything. It's here in the context of all that is here okay. Don't just pick stuff out the Bible and run away with it will to pick stuff out and interpreted in the flow of the context which is written Ephesians chapter 1 beginning in verse three Paul writes, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world that we would be holy and blameless before him in love he predestined us to adoption as sons through Christ our Jesus Christ himself. According to the kind intention of his will, to the praise of the glory of his grace, which he freely bestowed on us in the beloved.
In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished on us in all wisdom and insight. I've entitled this exposition. The sovereign purpose and plan of God in salvation.
The sovereign purpose and plan of God in salvation. This talk about sovereignty again for a moment. It's one of those words that we hold to and we treasure, but you need to stop sometimes and think on just what all does this mean that God is sovereign will. First of all, we can't fully grasp all of it. I certainly cannot accurately articulate all this involvement is take a stab at it being sovereign means you have supremacy supreme rank power or authority sovereign our sovereignty means you are preeminent is nothing compared to you. You are indisputable you are above all others and all excellence and in character, and certainly in important's being sovereign means you are always and only efficacious efficacious is a word that means everything you initiate, you completed perfectly.
God sovereign. He never initiated anything.
He did not bring to absolute perfect in it he accomplished exactly what he set out to accomplish.
And by the way, that include salvation, and that includes his building of his church. After all it is for him. He would leave that halfway done Woody being sovereign means one is holy. I might even use the word radically independent. In other words, a sovereign is not influenced by any outside person or thing, or event, they act solely on their own by their own desire. According to their own will. God is sovereign. There is and always has been only one truly sovereign being, and that is God. God is sovereign in right know the words it's only and can be truly fully right that he is sovereign. If he is God.
He sovereign. If he is not sovereign is not God.
He sovereign in power, he has all power and authority. He sovereign in wisdom. He has always done.
There's nothing elects is wisdom to do whatever he pleases over his creation and again is influenced by no other everything that was everything that is everything that will be is dictated and completely controlled by God's sovereign hand that we have those in every age who revile in rage and rebel and shake their fears as if they are their own authority and their their final ruler and they'll decide for themselves what's good and bad and they'll decide for themselves what's right and wrong, you have the sovereign God feels about that. Psalm 115 verse three. Our God is in the heavens. He does whatever he pleases. Psalm two verse four says, who sits in the heavens laughs. You might as well be a flea attacking an elephant because he is sovereign.
One. So let's talk about this sovereign one and you know that's what we love about God so much as he's totally radically infinitely unlock us hallelujah and amen. He's not like us sees he's not like us, but just a heart but a higher better version of us is holy and that he's radically different and superior, and unlike us, but through Christ in the Scriptures we begin in this lifetime to learn over 30 years and who he truly is a great joy to privilege mended. Do not even know they need to learn of God until the new birth comes in or given new appetites a new affections and the desires to learn and know about God. Well, this note number one in our outline. This notice that it is concerning the sovereign purpose and plan of the father salvation.
Number one he picked his own. How else would salvation occur if the sovereign God is saving people to stop right there. Don't move from that.
How else could it happen if these truly sovereign, which includes he's effectual or efficacious.
He can only complete what he starts to perform he's going to save a people for himself, his church. He cannot do that part where halfway and is not dependent in any way on man or any other force or being to determine how he completes his church because he sovereign, I sometimes wonder if some preachers who put God up here and put man pretty high, but maybe not quite to God and God depends on us to make sure people get saved and God depends on us to make sure the church is the heaven full and complete. I wonder just how big is their God dysfluency and is a sovereign at all. He says in verse four, just as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world enough when were you chosen for salvation before salvation of the world, not in the Greek that phrase before the salvation of the world literally means before the salvation of the world remains suppressor can't wrap my mind around that. If you're new around here, and you haven't heard this kind of preaching first about somebody's been skipping over a lot of Bible verses because it just clearly. One way to think about this is God's word often puts us in large sections of Scripture where primarily the viewpoint is God's viewpoint. It's it's it's the viewport from God's perspective in a case of the Bible turn around and and it'll give us man's perspective, that's why we would look at a person, so you must repent, you must believe you must come to Christ. You're responsible to do that. But this section of Scripture and by the way, this is the same church.
Paul left Timothy to pastor the church at Ephesus stuff that the letting for context and so he begins this letter to this church is as I just want you to remember you were chosen in him before the foundation of the world doesn't cross reference is where we see that this is a phrase of the apostle the word of God likes to use for those who are Christian first Peter 11 and two Peter and apostle of Jesus Christ to those who reside as aliens scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia At Asea Asia Bithynia who are believers no you could say that because of notably at this from my perspective, who are chosen were chosen in verse two, according to the foreknowledge of God the father of the sanctifying work of the spirit, to obey Jesus Christ to be sprinkled with his blood migration peace be yours in the fullness second Timothy 210, Paul writes to Timothy. We looked at this verse already, of course. For this reason I endure all things for those who might believe know you could say that the success of the sake of those who are chosen, so they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus, and with the eternal glory.
Colossians 312 so as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. So we were chosen picked out for God to be his children to be saved to be a part of his church before the foundation of the world. The brothers and sisters with that doctrine does is it builds into your system and in your thinking, your heart a deep, deep humility and a deep, deep gratitude, God's great great wonders wisdom and power and sovereignty and love toward us unworthy, once you could use the word elect here. Our election is the exact same truth of few words we find in the New Testament that are quite interchangeable calling are the called chosen are the chosen ones elect are predestined and even a word very kindred that foreknowledge all Bible word for those that God is intending to save Luke 18 seven now shall not God bring about justice for his elect, his chosen ones. Of course he will have the ports, how in the world could God choose you and he be sovereign. Therefore, effectually, cannot not complete what he started. I could he choose you before the foundation world and not provide the means whereby you sinful unjust ones would ultimately ultimately be just in his side will not God bring about. You don't bring about your own justice before God. God brings about your justification before God.
This is good stuff. I'd encourage preaching.
Luke 833 will bring a charge against God's elect. Know Satan is the accuser of the brethren we can think in our minds help. We often accuse ourselves as God, though I don't know that I'm cited what I keep a floundering and struggling in an sinfulness and audit all we could go at others will accuser Satan accuses us we accuse ourselves and God said, looking my son bleeding on the cross, who can bring a charge that he has not absolved and vicariously atoned for God picked his own.
So Christians believers are God's elect not by chance, not by human design but by God's sovereign unconditional choice. That's why the Bible also speaks in Philippians that we right now have citizenship inhibited so finished God already enrolled you in the citizenry of heaven. I don't know about you, but as a pastor I grieve over this. The shallowest concept that I have a part in securing God's church not know that we are the instruments God uses. And that's sobering and humbling. I get that but at the end of the day sovereign God pictures all and builds his church, and you get to get in on it, how in the world did that happen unmerited favor on earned grace is grace.
It has to be unearned wealth.
Secondly, in our text depict his own to be sons depict his own to be sons. Notice how the words there was a look at verse five he predestined us. The word predestined me to mark out before hand, but just mark you out beforehand. He marked you at beforehand to a certain end, he protested us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to himself, I wanted to do this this way.
Look at the last part of verse five. According to the kind intention of his will. You could say because God will do that. What God decided that what shut up don't protest about it. No other thought viewpoint understanding insight matters. He chose to do it that way. SanDisk illuminates the yes Lord yes Lord I love what you do things Lord so he didn't just Marcus out or pick us out beforehand. He mark this out. He picked us out beforehand to be sons stopped there for a moment, not stepchildren sort of on the outskirts of the inner circle of family, no no no no, he gives you the very righteousness of this unique and one only son Jesus Christ. You come before the father in the various steam credibility qualification, brightness, i.e. righteousness of his very son, Jesus Christ. You see when you get saved, when you become a Christian, you gain a better righteousness than Adam and Eve had before they fell in sin because you gain the righteousness of the one and only true son of God, Jesus Christ, the new creation is greater than the old creation. He did not choose me, merely to be a captive, he could have in the sense that true but not merely to be a captive, he did not choose me, merely to be a bondslave. We are the slaves, but not merely that he did not choose me just be a servant in Obama captive is captured in real Bonnard fiesta, a bondslave works apart from love and acceptance a servant obtains favor on a conditional basis the best of who we are born only accepted in the beloved sons sons of God. So when you think about election and you think about choosing and you think about called and you think about for known and you think about all those glorious terms that describe the sovereignty of God in making New Year's don't stop there. He didn't just make you he is.
He made you he is to be his precious son child of God.
You are the apple of his eye.
You are the delight of his heart.
All because of the merits of the son, Jesus Christ, on your behalf so I'm not now just on God's side. I am not now just on God's team. I am his beloved son whereby Romans 815 remind us we cry out, Abba, father not just any son but a son in the image of his special son, Jesus Christ.
Romans 829 reminds us for those whom he foreknew that means he knew them before he exited them before they were using. Another thing about this greatness of God that we have to accept that we keep rep.
Our little teeny tiny gray matter brings around is that God is not subject to time. God does not see things according to time God sees the past in eternity past, God sees the present and God sees the future an eternity prep future. All is one thing at one time you and I can do that God can't and that's the way God sees us today. He sees us as already perfected in the beloved. He sees us already has a citizen of heaven he sees us already has his glorified son in eternity. He never changes and he is above time he made us verse four. Look at the last part of verse four.
In our text not only to be sons back up in verse four that we would be holy and blameless before him in love. So God marked out newest before Marcus out before chose us and called us before the foundation of the world that we would one day be holy and blameless before him in love with the glorious thing would not only this, he pick his own. Not only did he pick his own to be sons but thirdly he favored and blessed them with God -sized blessings is favor toward you is not some partial thing. It's a full fledged God sized blessing and favor that he pours out on this is what he says in verse seven in him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses so much we could say there but the last phrase is what I will look at this morning. According to the riches of his grace, not literally. The Greek does not say it does not say out of the riches of his grace, but according to the riches of his grace, God did not go into the vast storehouse of grace and scrape up a great handful and put it on a slight one might scoop out a measure of grain from a storage bin.
God did not go into the safe of is a grace and select an article of grace to give us like one my open there safe and bring in a precious jewel to give to someone they loved out of their collection. God did not reach into the reservoir of his grace, and about a gallon bucket of it and poured on us like you might grab a bucket or withdraw the bucket from an old fashion well no it's more like the locket Wilson. Damn I fish below the lot. There wasn't that many times in the make a siren go off and it took you there about two displays all the water that's in the log into the waters below the dam and I'm telling you when that water comes out of that locket is a funeral Lori bowling bobbling target and force, and everything that was in the law is now poured into the river, stream that's what, according to the riches of his grace means he poured the whole load on. He poured the whole thing on. We had planned out here one summer when it was hot and dry and wooden reindeer experience summer like that, and this plant was struggling and so are bidding and lands fill up put up put nozzle in the ground the diffuser a diffusion novel nozzle and heat. He hooked it up to the water and he turned it on and he just let it flow and he walked off as what utilities on the split get the full flow.
That's what… He opens it wide open and blesses us with God sized blessing's as his grace rock children. When God put his own son on the cross to become sin and to bear the weight of our sin for us, bearing it in our place. That was the full measure of God's grace.
Indeed, God himself in the person of the son dying on the cross for our sin.
You see, it's grace. When the sun rises. It's grace. When the rain falls. It's a grace that means a favor.
We don't deserve. That's what grace is when we enjoy the fellowship of family and friends. It's it's grace that we are fed and it's a grace that we are clothed, this is a grace that we have a means of transportation. All of these are partial measures of grace. When God chose someone to be his sons.
He gave the full measure of grace.
He exemplified that so perfectly and that he sent his very son to shed his blood on the cross, and take the raging wrath of a holy God on his son in our place.
That's the measure of the wealth of God's unmerited favor for all those who are chosen human side toward all those who believe. First Peter 118 and 19 reminds us, knowing that you are not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold, from your futile way of life inherited from your far-off forefathers, but he goes on with precious blood, even the blood of Christ. Lord Jones said the riches of his grace are as large and as great and as profound as God himself, for God gave himself in his son. Literally millions of saints of God. Over the centuries have have drunk from this fountain and it is as full as it was at the very beginning. Millions will yet drink from this flowing fountain of grace, but it will still be bubbling up to the overflowing.
You can exhaust a sovereign, infinite God's grace.
That's why Susan verse eight look at in verse eight, which he lavished upon us for the context.
The riches of grace. Verse eight which he lavished upon us.
So God doesn't just forgive you center you sin this week sin this morning. You'll sin this afternoon. Those whom he chose who have believed God doesn't just forgive but his forgiveness is lavished upon us. We never need to worry that our sin will outstrip God's gracious forgiveness. We cannot sin be on God's grace and notice how your theology is so essential to having a foundation for these beliefs because he is the sovereign God. He cannot kinda forgive. He can only fully forgive is a place a condition on that. He chose you to be his sons. He chose you to be holy and beloved, so therefore he lavishes on your forgiveness.
That is a God sized forgiveness, and here's what happens. I say this to you what you say but wait a minute somebody hurts me and offends me and wrongs me and their deliberate in its habitual and I have a hard time forgiving yes you are not God hallelujah is forgiveness is greater than your forgiveness more wonderful than your forgiveness, however wicked or extensive our sin. Romans 520 reminds this child of God were sin and grace, grace abounded all the more. Same God knows the depth of your wickedness. Cut knows hundred black defilement of your natural hearts cut knows how prone you are to selfishness and self concern thinking and strive to be the only Lord of your luck he knows it better than you know it.
Yet he chose you to be the object that he would pour this unmerited favor on lavished upon you. Blessings beyond comprehension.
But one quick word on the human perspective. Look at verse 13 in him that Paul uses the phrase in him are in Christ a lot tougher got him a ton nothing to hundred or something to hundred times the New Testament speaks of in him are in Christ.
In him you also, I think the idea there is you Gentiles versus that the Jews you also, after listening to the message of the truth. You just heard the message of the truth, the gospel of your salvation. It is having also believed it doesn't mean it doesn't mean after you believed it means believing is part of the package you were sealed in him with the Holy Spirit of promise till we cite our service again on the Sunday morning is hot summer dry Sunday morning how you reconcile these two God is absolutely sovereignty predestined and chosen called for new that we would be. To this end, yet we must listen and believe you reconcile to love never tried reconcile old friends is not for me to figure that out. God help all you preachers out there that try to help got out on this preachers word preachers word, as Paul told these this very church.
The Ephesian elders 40 was carted off and locked in prison.
He said I declare to you the whole knowledge of God boy sure is a man, he sure is reading it right here human responsibility here is a part of God's overall sovereign plan. Maybe you could say it's like a man looking at a house it's one house, but you can only look at it from the God side one side and then from inside the other side but it's the same house conclusion is if you've come to repent of your sins and believe on Christ your chosen if you're one of those is chosen, you will come to repent of sins and believe on Christ. I don't know about you, child of God, but it is a great and glorious security to this preacher to know that my father picked me and predestined me when I didn't deserve it. He didn't just pick me and predestined me he picked me and predestined me to be his son and he will also bring it to pass. Because if we get to heaven and there's one person who made up the church. You didn't get there in God is not God and God is not efficacious in God is not sovereign seen a very real sense the Bible teaches that the church us and all true believers, we are the father's precious gift to the son in honor of his work of redemption on the cross you just listen to me.
I'll run through that wall if I have to. God the father will not give an incomplete or imperfect church to God the son.
You talk about security of salvation. Why do Baptist traits. The security of the believer is God cannot give a gift to his son is lacking anything it of one of us loses our salvation. The gift is not of God's deficient we know it can't be deficient because it comes from God and now just encircling the field and landing here. Look at if you will. It verse three within talk about these God sized blessing.
These are God's eyes.
Blessings birthday verse three Blessed be the God and father Lord Jesus Christ who has blessed us. Note the wording with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ other words, we gain everything heaven has because Jesus saves us and keeps us eight spiritual blessings he talks about here.
You see, those are far different, far distinct from just earthly blessing earthly blessings. They faded they rust they deteriorate. They diminish and ultimately they just disappear. Earthly possessions fail us earthly relationships don't last, but succumb to illness. Do you live long enough you be a stranger down here but you know that those are earthly blessings but spiritual blessings are God sized and of a God type if you will. There far superior our spiritual blessings reserved for us in heavenly places, and that means the type of gifts that they are holy and pure cannot fade away. They cannot, then they can never deteriorate. They can never diminish. But listen.
Listen to me.
The blessings we have as God's children in Christ Jesus always and only increase year that if you looked at your start retirement account lately.
I thought I was doing pretty good. Six months ago. Two years ago a follicle start death benefit when it's coming on pretty good and I looked last night it ain't so good.
No more with the bank of heaven which holds spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus always and only increasing.
These are God's eyes. Blessings. Every spiritual blessing emphasizes every every it's all hours every part of God's infinitely glorious eternal state eternal kingdom. All of his joys all of its pleasures. All of the happiness it's all hours God holds nothing back from his children. First Peter 14 to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved for you in heaven. Every good and glorious thing that the tribunal holy God. This God of all all sovereignty.
This God of omnipotence. This God of all wisdom.
This God of unfathomable beauty everything he could possibly create as a blessing to put in heaven.
It's all there, and it's all hours.
That's why Jesus before the cross.
Oh my goodness, oh my goodness all my goodness, his disciples could not even begin to fathom what he was meaning and you and I we can't I'm tinny. I strained every fiber of my being to grasp all that's there and I'm not even touching the hymn of the garment of what Jesus meant this before we went to the cross. He said Phyllis I'm going to prepare a place for you, wait to you see this place will flex one place. One place. This is a God designed place we don't know what we've got.
We don't know what week I look at my grandchildren sometime in their in-laws on that side.
The group in-laws a missile.
They love Jesus and they love them and they have so much in their blessed us on up fail in October. They have no idea what that got I did have all that a lot of you didn't have all not even to be mentioned in comparison to what Jesus is preparing for us.
Every spiritual blessing since house. Oh my God take the spirit of God and implanted in your heart and mind something of an understanding far beyond this week. Pastor's ability to vocalize and verbalize it to you if you'd ever get over him. I don't you ever get over him all God's people said