Monday, June 6, 2016

Ephesians 1:1-2

1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, To the saints who are in Ephesus, and faithful in Christ Jesus: 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Apostle Paul now begins what is arguably the greatest of Epistles regarding our position with Christ. And so like Romans and Galatians which are the Magna Charta of salvation by God's grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Here in this most profound Epistle the great Apostle Paul brings to light all that we have as believers in our redeemed standing the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Vs. 1 "Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, To the saints who are in Ephesus, and faithful in Christ Jesus:"

To begin this Epistle Paul introduces himself as an apostle of Christ. Now Paul's doing so is so that this Epistle would be received by the Ephesians (and all who read or hear it) as coming to us all as from Christ. For that is what an Apostle of Christ was, His chosen messenger to all His people, everywhere. And so no matter where the Apostle Paul's letters were initially addressed and sent too we who believe are the intended audience of them all, as is being indicated in his additional phrase "and the faithful in Christ Jesus". Now Paul being chosen as an a Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ did not not come by his own will, or the will of someone else, but only by the Will of God (see Rom 1:1; 1 Cor 1:1; 2 Cor 1:1; Gal. 1:1; Col. 1:1; 1 Tim 1:1; 2 Tim 1:1; Titus 1:1). 

Vs. 2 "Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ."

More than a well wish here, the Apostle Paul extends to us all, "Grace and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." Now grace is not only the unmerited favor of God, that is freely extended to all through the Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, it is a liberating force in our lives as we who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ learn to walk by faith and not by sight (2 Cor 5:7; 15:56). While the peace that comes from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ is not only something we receive when we repent and believe in Christ; that is peace with God by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; and thus our trusting His death on the cross as the atonement for all our sins; it is also an ongoing work of the Spirit of God in our persons and lives from Christ, that we we must also avail ourselves too when we find ourselves facing whatever kinds of tribulations or troubles or unsettling things or circumstances that we will face on our journey home (John 14:27). For through the blood of Christ we have not only eternal salvation, but we have continual and ongoing access by faith into God's grace, when we come to Him in humility through Jesus Christ our Great and Everlasting High Priest, who not only saves us, but always lives to make intercession for us all who believe (Rom 8:33-34; Heb. 4:14-16; 7:24-25; 1 John 2:1). Thus we have the peace of God that comes to us when we lay all our burdens and cares before Him in prayer (Psalm 55:22; Phil. 4:6-7; 1 Peter 5:6-7). Now before we can do that we must first receive the Lord Jesus Christ for ourselves (John 1:12; Rom 10:9-10, 13), and trust His Crucifixion death on the cross and Resurrection from the dead three days later as fulfilling everything required for our eternal salvation. For both having peace from God begins and ends with our having first been reconciled to Himself through His Son Jesus. Everything else then is only our living in harmony with our having first been reconciled back to Himself. Therefore if you have not received the Lord Jesus Christ for yourself, please do so now so that you might have not only remission of all your sins and everlasting life, but peace with God through Christ. Because to either live, or worse die, without Christ is only to be living dead in ones sins and transgressions, and thus only to be "living" separated from all that is life, and all that makes for peace in our lives which only comes to us from God through Christ. Therefore rather than living in a state of spiritual death and separation from God, which only ends in spending an eternity in hell, be reconciled to God now while you can! For God's grace will bring His salvation to you and too every person who repents and believes in the Lord Jesus Christ. And so we all must avail ourselves to God's grace by first seeing our own need for the Lord Jesus Christ, (which precipitates our repentance), and then believing in Jesus just as the Scriptures declare Him to be, call on the Name of the Lord so that you might be saved from your sins and death by Him (Rom 10:9-10, 13). For the Lord Jesus Christ Himself promises that everyone who believes in Him will not only be saved by Him (John 3:16), but will also be indwelt by His Holy Spirit, who not only brings us to life and unites us with Christ the moment we believe, but who also seals us for the day of redemption, and thus assures our being reconciled back to God forever (Eph. 1:13-14). It is then a great and grand and glorious Gospel that God has given us all who believe in Him through His Son, which the world is blinded too, but which you are not blinded too, if your reading and believing. Therefore if your eyes see, and your heart believes, please don't delay, invite the Lord Jesus Christ into your heart, soul, and life today (Rev. 3:20) so that you too might have new and everlasting life (2 Cor 5:17, 21).

Scripture Quotation
The New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982.

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