God’s Plan for Blessing His Children
Book of Ephesians Chapter 1:1-12
The Apostle Paul always reminds us that he was living and acting under the control of a power from on high. The Divine will of God!
In fact, to share Paul’s beliefs is the means of a strong and effective Christian life!
We will notice also that by the power of the Holy Spirit, Paul knew, these letters, these epistles, were not just intended for these Churches of his day but, to all Christians everywhere and in all the ages until the return of Jesus Christ.
In fact, the Apostle Paul was part of God’s plan for blessing His children!
Paul was writing to the faithful in Christ Jesus, all the Saints of God in all ages!
This will not change in this epistle to the Ephesians.
The Book of Ephesians reveals to us a deeper knowledge into the “grace” of God!
The Book of Ephesians will also give us another look at God’s plan for this world.
*****Eph 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus:
Eph 1:2 Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
We are not only to be “saints”, which is clearly misunderstood in our world, but also the “faithful”. We are to be faithful saints!
To be faithful is to obey the truth of Jehovah God. This means all the Word of God and not bits and pieces that we choose to obey!
Isa 25:1 O LORD, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.
Who then are the faithful?
First there is Jehovah God.
Deu 7:9 Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations;
Deu 7:10 And repayeth them that hate him to their face, to destroy them: he will not be slack to him that hateth him, he will repay him to his face.
God is faithful in His love and He will be just as faithful in His wrath.
Next there is the Lord.
Rev 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
Rev 1:6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
So, then we as the saints of God are also to be faithful.
1Co 1:9 God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.
We cannot be in fellowship with the Lord Jesus Christ, without being faithful to the things of our Father in Heaven!
No one can live in God without being a channel for God, by Jesus Christ!
The Lord Jesus Christ is God’s “Grace” poured out onto this world we live in!
2Co 2:14 Now thanks be unto God, which always causeth us to triumph in Christ, and maketh manifest the savour of his knowledge by us in every place.
2Co 2:15 For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish:
2Co 2:16 To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?
2Co 2:17 For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.
If you need a blessing from God, then you better know His Son in a personal way! Amen and Amen!
*****Eph 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:
What is God’s greatest blessing? It is when God can bestow His blessings upon His children!
God will allow some earthly blessings to those who know His Son, but God’s greatest blessings are spiritual and heavenly and not of this world!
Before we go any further we need to know the word “Grace”.
What is “Grace” in the Word of God?
1) The “Gospel” is the “Grace of God.
Act_20:24 But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.
2) The application of the “Gospel” and it’s saving power to our lives is also the “Grace” of God.
Eph 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
3) Everything that comes by Jesus Christ is the “Grace” of God!
1Pe 1:13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
Rom 11:5 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace.
Rom 11:6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.
4) Grace then is certainly the unmerited favor of God!
Eph 3:8 Unto me, who am less than the least of all saints, is this grace given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ;
“God’s Riches at Christ Expense”.
Before Jesus Christ came into this world, God did bless His people with material things. Abraham received land, wealth, and fame.
These are still the same things all the world seeks after today!
We know that as Israel first grew it misused and hoarded up these things refusing to share even amongst themselves and certainly not with any other nations.
These things always go against the will of God and Israel was warned many times and then punished many times.
The great change when the Lord Jesus Christ came, is that God deals with mankind in spiritual things with spiritual blessings.
Heb 1:1 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,
Heb 1:2 Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;
It should be obvious that spiritual blessings can only come by the Holy Spirit!
It is the Holy Spirit who is the major force in our world against evil!
It is also the Holy Spirit who brings forth the act of salvation to the believer! (We call this Holy Ghost conviction)
Rom 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
Rom 8:10 And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
Rom 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.
So, let’s look at this word “chosen”.
*****Eph 1:4 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:
We can only come to one conclusion as we read this Scripture. God chooses only those who are in Jesus Christ!
Without Jesus Christ you cannot be the “chosen” of God! (let this sink in)
Joh 14:17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
Joh 14:18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
Joh 14:19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
Joh 14:20 “At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you”.
Joh 14:21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
God wants us to be with Him. God has wanted us to be with Him since before He laid the foundations of this universe!
Why did God create mankind, the answer is right here in His words?
We can only be holy and without blame, by embracing the righteousness of Christ, because we have no righteousness of our ourselves and then we must be endowed with the Holy Spirit.
This is our only means of being blameless! Amen
Col 1:21 And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled
Col 1:22 In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:
When God first created all things, we should notice though things were good and some even very good, not one of them was perfect.
In the end, when the Lord returns to claim His church, when we meet Him in the clouds, we will have finally reached perfection!
Our perfection can come only by the Lord Jesus Christ! Amen
Because we are chosen to be made perfect through Jesus Christ we are hated by this imperfect world!
Joh 15:19 If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.
So, let’s look at that word “predestinate”.
*****Eph 1:5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
Eph 1:6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
According to Calvinism, God calls only those He has predestined to eternal life ( our own choice is not involved). He renews their spirit (Not the Holy Spirit moves into, not sealed with the Holy Spirit) and then draws only those to Jesus Christ, so in this way salvation is entirely by “grace”.
A free gift to only those God has selected Himself as He created them. This is a false belief and therefore a false doctrine!
They believe, God then justifies just these believers, declares them righteous (not the righteousness of the Lord Jesus) and adopts them into His family and sanctifies them. (this is a false belief)
They believe, saving faith, is a gift of Christ Jesus. Repentance is a doctrine to preached along with faith. Good works are the fruit of true faith. (this is a false belief)
What then is the truth?
The truth is, God has not determined that just certain ones will be saved and the remaining will abandoned to the Lake of Fire!
God has determined that only those who have(chosen) and (accepted), “by faith”, in the work of the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation will be saved and all those who reject the work of the Lord Jesus Christ will be destroyed!
God would not be God if He specifically chose certain ones for salvation and certain ones for damnation!
God has given this choice to us to make freely only after knowing the truth!
The truth is, God calls, and we are the ones who must make the choice!
Therefore, the church is the “Elect”, those who have elected to place their faith in the work and the promises of Jesus Christ.
The Scriptures say, we are predestined but only by Jesus Christ to Himself!
The Scriptures say, we have no righteousness of our own,(our righteousness is as filthy rags) we must be seen as having the righteousness of Jesus Christ by accepting Him as our Savior!
It is Jesus Christ who will present His “bride” to His Father in Heaven.
It was not God who prearranged this marriage contract with those that He chose!
Jesus Christ did not just die for the few believers, Jesus Christ died for all the sin in all the world, past, present and future!
Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Joh 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
Joh 3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
None of these Scriptures in this passage of John point toward Calvinism, in fact these Scriptures destroy Calvinism!
God has only chosen those who have accepted “His” Son and are filled with “His” Spirit!
It is only these who are adopted in the family of God, having been removed from the family of Satan, that are the “Bride of Christ”.
Being adopted, we then have direct access to the throne room of God.
It is only the believer who will become an adopted brother or sister to Jesus Christ with freedom to enter in the Heavenly Mansion of God!
God is so full of “Grace” that it is over flowing, but it is only by Jesus Christ that this “Grace” can be applied to the believer!
Eph 2:7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
God’s “Grace” is in fact His glorious free love for His Son and those of His Son.
God has accepted each believer who is washed in the blood of His Dear Son, He loves so much!
Rom 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
Rom 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
Rom 3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
*****Eph 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;
Those that cringe when they hear the word blood, should not forget that it is through the death of Jesus Christ, who shed all His blood, just so we who believe could be saved. It is the beloved who are saved!
We were slaves in bondage to Satan who directed us according to his will.
We were unable to redeem ourselves to buy our freedom from him because it would lead to eternal separation from God, our Creator.
In the time of the Scriptures, a kinsman could redeem a member of his family if he was able to pay the debt that was owed.
We know the wages of sin is death. The Lord Jesus Christ claimed the right of the kinsman redeemer and paid the debt, which was His own death that we all can be free from the bondage of Satan.
Heb 2:15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.
Heb 2:16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.
Heb 2:17 Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
Heb 2:18 For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted.
We are redeemed from the guilt and the power of sin through the blood of our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ!
We have been forgiven all the sin we have ever had in our lives and forgiven from all future sin until the day God calls us home!
Psa 103:11 For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.
Psa 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.
Psa 103:13 Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him.
Psa 103:14 For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.
We can see that the only thing that may exceed or at least match the “Grace” of God is the “Mercy” of God!
*****Eph 1:8 Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;
We must understand that we cannot be saved unless we are called. (Holy Ghost conviction)
This the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit then freely gives us enough wisdom and prudence to understand God’s process of salvation.
It is only at this time when we have enough knowledge to make a right choice!
Prudence is the ability of judging what is the best choice.
Prudence is conforming to the rules of reason, truth and morality.
Prudence says, being blessed of God can come only by faith in the “Gospel” of Jesus Christ.
Those who have Spiritual wisdom are in the habit of being prudent!
Those who have worldly wisdom will usually make the wrong choice.
Therefore, it is so important to openly show or teach the word of the “Gospel” to those under Holy Ghost conviction!
God will give us enough understanding to know what to do.
Rom_12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.
If not for this measure of faith we would never understand the mystery of God’s will!
What is God’s will? (It is certainly not what the Calvinist teach)
1Ti_2:4 Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
God will make this little mystery known before we make our choice.
*****Eph 1:9 Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:
We should understand when we see the word mystery in the Scriptures, it will not be something mysterious and difficult to understand.
A mystery in the Scriptures is just something God did not show to the Old Testament Saints.
1Co 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
1Co 2:8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
We already know that God is always on time, when the time came to unlock the truth that He was ready to reveal to humanity.
We know that Israel had rejected the idea that Jehovah would also be the God of Gentiles, so God put Israel aside until the fulness of the Gentiles would come to Him in what we call the “Church Age”.
Rom 11:25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
After the rapture of the Church God will return to deal with the salvation of Israel.
Israel had missed the first opportunity to know the redemption of Christ and we should be aware, that the cause of this was the false ministry of the leaders of Judaism of that day.
It is God’s will that everyone will be saved! This has not been the case of the past and will not be the case in the future.
There will always be those who reject the truth of God!
Jehovah God has an eternal purpose and plan for this world and it is His good pleasure to bring it about.
Why do we have so many that teach the Scriptures by dispensation? Verse 10
*****Eph 1:10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:
Some say the method according to which God carries out His purpose towards man is called a dispensation.
Others say God’s method of carrying His purpose is by His covenants.
The key to dispensation is maintaining a consistency in literal interpretation and maintaining a distinction between Israel and the Church.
The truth is, God has set seasons in which He will accomplish His will and His purpose!
Ecc 3:1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
Ecc 3:17 I said in mine heart, God shall judge the righteous and the wicked: for there is a time there for every purpose and for every work.
God has certainly appointed seasons of His will and purpose, just as He has appointed the Summer, the Winter, the Fall, and the Spring of each year.
God has an eternal purpose and plan for this world and He moves at His own pleasure and His own time.
God designs time as He sees fit to fulfill His purpose!
We are foolish to believe that God waits too long for certain things to take place!
We may totally understand the Word of God, but we will never know the seasons which He chooses to keep to Himself!
We must learn to be patient!
The truth is, there is coming a day when God will gather in one, all things in Christ Jesus!
Though “the rapture of the church” is a small part of this gathering, this is not speaking of the “Rapture” which will have already taken place.
Through the ”Gospel” we are first gathered individually and united with God through His Son.
God next gathers those individuals at His own pleasure, whether it be by age, or illness, or other means.
At the Rapture, God will gather all the “Body of Christ” that remain at His coming.
In the Millennial Kingdom, Christ will gather those who remain after the 7 years of Tribulation upon this earth.
At the end of this 1000 years, the fulness of time upon this earth, God will gather all things in Heaven and on this earth and place them in the New Heaven and the New Earth.
There will certainly be a climax to this world we live upon now!
Rev_21:5 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
All these things will be gathered in Jesus Christ!
This world simply refuses to believe that world history lies in the hands of our Righteous God!
In this Scripture that word “dispensation” means stewardship, or better understood “house-management”.
We must realize that God has placed into the hands of Jesus Christ, the management of God’s Spiritual Household!
1Pe_2:5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
Our entire Cosmos, God’s creation, is as a house under the management of God and God has placed all these things into the hands of Jesus Christ!
When death and Hell have been removed and evil will be no more, a new and perfect world will be established for the Lord Jesus Christ and all His followers!
It is the Lords “spiritual house”, the Holy Ghost filled children of God who will join with the angels who elected to stay with Christ who will move on into an entirely new creation!
Until this time we are to go about the work God has given us to do through Christ!
Eph 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
Eph 4:12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
We are all missionaries, if not one of these, for the work of the ministry!
*****Eph 1:11 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:
Eph 1:12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
God lives in the eternal world, which we call Heaven and even Heaven will be made new.
God took only 6 days to create the heavens and the earth that now exist but what did Jesus say?
Joh 14:1 Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.
Joh 14:2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
Joh 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
Joh 14:4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.
How wonderful will this new place be?
1Co_2:9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.
We know that only God knows what we need for a life in eternity, so God foreordained what He would do, for those who had the faith to believe in His Son.
God has made each believer to be His own son or His own daughter and His own most cherished possession, (His jewels).
So, we must also realize that our everlasting joy is a free gift of God.
Certainly, God will always be God, but the New Heaven and the New Earth will be created for the pleasure of each believer.
Just as a father should for their own children, God has implied that He will protect, care for, improve and enjoy His inheritance as much as we will enjoy being with Him throughout eternity! Amen
The New Heaven and the New Earth will be perfect because a perfect God will have made all things perfect even the believer!
God does things as He pleases, and it has pleased God to do these things!
Who can we obtain such an inheritance?
Mar_12:30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.
Those who can love the Lord in this manner!
It’s called “faith”!
It is only by “faith” that we can believe!
Heb 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.