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The Power

The Verdict / John Munro
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September 26, 2022 11:48 am

The Power

The Verdict / John Munro

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September 26, 2022 11:48 am

Dr. John H. Munro September 25, 2022 Ephesians 1:15-23

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Matthew dove your Bibles to Ephesians Ephesians chapter 1 in these evening messages were looking at Ephesians under the title the general title great salvation and a couple weeks ago.

From the opening 14 verses of chapter 1 we learned of the plan of our great salvation. And if you are an authentic follower of Jesus Christ. I want you to take it very personally.

What I'm about to say if your truly saved before the foundation of the world, God the father chose you and God the son implemented that wonderful plan of salvation and he did so by redeeming your with his own blood. Furthermore, God the Holy Spirit applied that salvation you individually and so you were sealed by the Holy Spirit and that guaranteed your salvation. It guaranteed your future inheritance and so these first 14 verses of Ephesians 100 great doxology this great salvation policy that says it is, to the praise of his glorious grace, to the praise of his glory and as we read these 14 verses and is reflected on them. I trust you felt like bursting out into a song of praise of normative a singer, but I felt like doing that. More importantly than just singing. I trust our lives are being transformed by the work of the triune God in you realize that God the father, God the son and God the Holy Spirit where all involved are all involved in this. So great salvation. And now as we come to verses 15 to 23 this evening. I want us to understand that the Christian life. My civic doctrines of the faith, their sampling to be understood so limited. As difficult as we saw a couple weeks ago, but these truths are also to be personally experienced. That is there not just to be left to a kind of theological theory to articles of faith, the doctrines that we talk about and perhaps even argue about, but rather these doctrines.

These great truths that Paul has presented regarding our great salvation are to be personally appropriated and worked into our personal lives. You remember that God promised Israel the land. It is called the promised land. But although that land was promised Israel before the Israelites could enjoy the land the Lord told the leaders that they had to trade on their food had to be on it was not enough just to claim the promise they in fact had to personally possess the land to tread on it and did not wait to enjoy it and experience it in a similar way these truths that would been thinking about are to be experienced by us. We are to live in the good of these great spiritual blessings. I know some people think that doctrine is not practical but that's totally to misunderstand Scripture doctrine is about God. Doctrine is about the father the son and the Holy Spirit is about salvation. And if you profess to love God as I suggest.

Many of you do this evening. You have been blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ. These blessings have to be understood, but now they have to be worked out in our lives and that brings us to verses 15 through 23. This is Paul's prayer for the Ephesians and this is my prayer for you. I heard during the week that there is a pastor is incredible as a safety good and the only America but she is charging for four months course in prayer $1499. You can sign up for a course on prayer. If you pay 1000 499,000 just to if you sign up you get a totebag you get a binder you get a prayer shawl you, anointing oil, and then when you finish the cochairs certificate of completion, all for $1499 well my lesson on prayer and essays God's lesson prayer is totally free for the membership class we give people a binder. We give them notes we took the photo and we don't charge so I thought is remarkable, isn't it and and people will sign up for this, she can claims that she can take you to a different level of prayer 04 1400 and next in the dollars you get a totebag the binder the prayer shawl anointing and the certificate of completion. You wonder what apostle Paul would've said right. He didn't even he didn't even claim anything as an apostle. So here is Paul's prayer and this is in all seriousness, this is my prayer for you and I trust that you prayer for yourself.

Wonderful prayer. For this reason, he says, because of Herod of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints.

I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the father of glory, may give you the spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him having the eyes of your heart enlightened, that you may. No one is there hope to which he has called you whether the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places thought above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. There's 22 and you put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all. All Paul's prayer for the vision. Notice how different it is from often a prayer for others. A prayer for others tend to be very materialistic. We pray for their prosperity. We pray that the Sala house by house.

We pray for health matters. We pray for all kinds of things, but often the very spiritual is secondary. Also, with Paul profitable in the verses 15 and 16.

He's giving thanks for the Ephesians. He begins for this reason, or therefore in some translations and that takes us back to the opening verses with Paul has emphasized our security and our blessings and they are anchored in the great salvation in the triune God.

Paul is thanking God for their salvation and also because he's Herod of their faith, did you notice this in verse 15 and you love toward all the saints. Paul praises God not only for the Ephesians positions in Christ, but for their spiritual progress is important is that we were following Jesus Christ. We make progress your learning a sport or learning a musical instrument. Your learning new program on your computer at work and we expect progress only in the spiritual life God expects us to make progress in notice this is, as I had of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all of the saints, the evidence of their faith in the triune God is demonstrated in their love for all the saints, love for others is central to the message of the Christian faith love for others member Jesus words in John chapter 13 verse 34.

He's is a new commandment I give to you that you love one another deserves our new commandment were told that the Old Testament would listen to this new commandment I give to you that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Think of the love of Jesus to his disciples, so you are to love one another. By this, so people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.

This is the overwhelming characteristic of the follower of Jesus Christ that we love other people first. We love God, then we love others. Sadly, we love our fellow believers. Those who are in the family of God. If you have children you love your children, especially yes your love overflows the neighbor's children to other members of your family, but you've a special love for your own children.

We have a special love for the people of God but that love is not confined to them, but overflows to others. Love which seeks the highest good of others you think.

I wonder apostle Paul was writing to the believers at Calvary church in Charlotte North Carolina if he would say that he had heard of our faith in the Lord Jesus and her love towards all of the saints. We think so. Well I could do with people lovingly more.

That's not leadership issue is you do you love your brothers and sisters company to do love the people that you sound with in ministry, you have your people in your life group. Do you have a love for others to faith in Christ makes a difference doesn't it. She said you love God you must also love your brothers first on four how can you love God who you have not seen that if you don't love your brother so you have seen, so we are to love others. Note in verse 17 and follow Paul's prayer is that God gives the Ephesians great spiritual insight. He focuses on God giving these believers in Ephesus spiritual wisdom and understanding. He says here that the God the father of glory, may give you verse 17 the spirit.

I would suggest capital assets we have in the ESV gives you the spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, though they already have the Holy Spirit.

But Paul is praying that they have a deeper understanding of spiritual truth that living in a pagan city that are there are a persecuted people, so Paul is praying that will be characterized by winds living and insight, and that this wisdom and insight is grounded in knowing Jesus Christ that is central in the knowledge of him when we come to Christ. We know him, but this is a living personal relationship and we are to grow in our knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. Just as when you meet someone use fall in love with them and you marry them and you live with them.

You know them, but you realize that you are to grow in your knowledge of them if you love that person you seek to know the more you listen to them.

You commune with them. You interact with them both as in Colossians 2, verse three regarding Christ in whom are hidden all of the treasures of wisdom and knowledge with an all wise God and no Paul is telling us we are in Christ and we are to grow in our knowledge of Christ I've asked you Dino Christ personal do you know Jesus Christ but by then, what do you know him.

We can only know Jesus Christ through the Holy Spirit, opening our eyes left ourselves we would never know Christ. Paul writes in first Corinthians 1 verse 21 for since in the wisdom of God the world did not know God through wisdom.

Please God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe no left ourselves. We do not know God, you may be very intellectual. You may be the most intelligent person North Carolina but apart from divine illumination. You will not know God, you will not know Christ, know this gospel that Paul is presenting work of the father the son and the Holy Spirit. It is back to verse 13. It is to be believed.

When you have the word of truth, the gospel of salvation. What did the Ephesians. There they believed in him.

They responded to him verse 15 it talks about your faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. All of the work of the triune God is no good to us. Unless there is a personal relationship between us and God.

John Calvin begins the third book of his institutes. In this way, he says we must understand it is John Calvin Rick did write writing beginning of the 15th century, in his 20s market.

We must understand that this longest Christ remains outside of us and we are separated from him all that he has suffered undone for the salvation of the human race remains useless and of no value for us.

Therefore, to share with us what he has received from the father. He had to become hours and to dwell within us and for this reason is called our head. Luther said the same thing that salvation is outside of us, the world tells you that the answer to your problems or find within you the path of enlightenment is within you. Psychotherapy tells you that the secret for solving a problem lies within you are going to guide you in on the thing. The secret within your this is the opposite of the gospel. The gospel is left to yourself, you cannot know God, but God has done a marvelous thing a wonderful thing. He so loved us that he sends his son to come into our world and how am I going to benefit from this so great salvation God has provided that God takes the initiative that God acts the Jesus comes to seek and to save the lost.

I am to believe him to respond on to embrace Christ. And now, as Paul has told us. Now I am in Christ and he is in me that is this personal more than a connection in the soluble boron an unbreakable bond between Christ and the believer, but know that I am saved unto grow in my knowledge of God to give you. Verse 17 again the spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him and puts it to the end of the second epistle we are to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ you doing that you growing in grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Paul is not praying that the Ephesians have more spiritual blessings that we go to a seminar pay $1499 and I get told her to go up to a higher level you will bring. That's all. He's also not praying that they will receive the Holy Spirit diverted to receive the Holy Spirit.

They have already chapter 3 verse chapter 1 verse three. They have already been blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ. You can get him more than that thing of the wonder of all of the benefits of salvation come to us know they are to be appropriated. I am chosen unredeemed I'm sealed with the Holy Spirit.

I have already being enlightened is better. Therefore, although some disagree in verse 18 having eyes of your heart enlightened for the grammarian us up a perfect participle and is better to say that they have been enlightened.

When we enlightened at the moment of salvation.

This is illumination. The light goes on in our eyes, enlightened, and since our eyes out enlightened at salvation.

Paul is praying that they will have a deeper insight into God's purposes membership class early today so stitching it were talking about the way of salvation takes divine illumination than were talking about the word of God, to understand the word of God. It takes divine illumination agreed with me in first Corinthians chapter 2 never speak to people and they don't understand the gospel. What's the problem intellectual problem know the problem is not an intellectual problem. The problem is a spiritual problem there in spiritual darkness. And if you're in darkness what you need is light for certain things to verse 12 now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God that we might understand the things freely given to us by God. The medication that is if you haven't received the spirit you will not understand the things of God.

You may understand them intellectually, but there is no divine illumination. Verse 14 the natural person. Unbeliever does not accept the things of the spirit of God, for they are folly to him and he's not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned spiritual darkness. Remember meeting week after week after week with an attorney who was a self-professed unbeliever and the but he was seeking, and you'd all kinds of questions we met in the Sunday on a Monday evening. You'd come to my office after work and he had all kinds of questions.

The authority of the Bible we know Jesus is God and so on and so forth and so on the sofa.

All of these questions and of course I asked him to do what you must do when people come with questions asked him to read this book without trying to answer all of the questions you have. But you must start reading the Scriptures we are so I got them to read the book of John, became the symbol of red as a building again goodbye covered again right. I will give you some little more difficult street. The book of Romans written by a lawyer, he sets out his case very logically so you should be able to understand it better than most especially thing and he still fooled all kinds of questions he tried to tell me he wasn't a sinner. I said to Mr. Nero lawyer, of course, to and then one day he came to my office and he told me he was reading Scripture it comes to saving faith in Jesus Christ. The September club are all your questions is that I see it totally different. What happened with all of his questions answered no, you have questions and I am questions about Scripture theology God the mystery of God that are not answered. No was the Christ fact that all of these questions were answered was in the fact that I had been able to persuade him to through logic of persuasion or trying to answer his questions, although I did that.

What happened with the spirit of God had given him illumination you read the Bible totally different and he understood. This is a living bouquet and now he had gone from darkness into light. Most of you here. We claim to be followers of Jesus Christ is a wonderful thing is to pass from death into life from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of the son of his love. As Paul says in Colossians 1, but we are to grow, we are to possess the land and this personal knowledge of God is available to every believer in Christ and increasing illumination is one of the spiritual blessings that we have in Christ and that the more you read of this book, the more you understand that, and the more you read one part of the Bible helps you to understand another. These truths are not just to be understood in their head.

They are there to be grasped there to be experience there to be worked out in our life. Paul prays very similar prayer to in Colossians chapter 1 to the one you just read Colossians 1 verse nine. Here's to the Colossians very similar.

He says from the day we had not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God is a pretty should be praying for yourself as a prayer, we should be praying for one another that we have spiritual wisdom that were walking in a manner that I'm living life in a way that is bringing glory to God in pleasing God. My life is fruitful and I'm increasing in the knowledge of God. The spiritual enlightenment results in three things. First of all, verse 18 it is the hope to which God has called us having the eyes of your hearts enlightenment.

First of all, that you may know what is the whole, to which she has called you think about calling were blessed with every spiritual blessing were chosen before the foundation of the world were predestined for adoption to himself as sons were redeemed through his blood were forgiven were lavish with his grace were sealed with the Holy Spirit. This is the hope to which is called us this hope is to be grasped more firmly I'm to rejoice with her, then meditated and live aloud in my life here we have Paul's one of his favorite tryouts faith, love and hope, faith and love in verse 15 and now in verse 18. He has hope.

Hope for the believer is a sure and certain confidence of the future that confidence comes from knowing the faithfulness of God to deliver on these promises to the certainty of God's purposes being fulfilled in Jesus Christ. We know it on the winning side. God is faithful what is promised he will deliver on that is our hope to go back to verse 10 of chapter 1 he says this plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on our think of that God is going to unite everything in the person of his beloved son. That's the hope to which we are called. That gives us certainty that gives the security that stops us panicking in a crazy world is the first second is the riches of his glorious inheritance again. Verse 18 having a hot eyes of your heart enlightened first that you me, no one is the hope to which you he has called you. Secondly, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints.

We we the people of God of the future inheritance is mentioned that in verse 11 in him we have obtained an inheritance, he mentions it in verse 14. Who is the guarantee of inheritance. So we have this hundred inheritance, but then Paul is emphasizing that we are God's inheritance. Peter says we are a people for his on the possession God commits it this way, God is wealthy because the because of the people of God.

Jew and Gentile are God's treasured possession would been bought with a price. We belong to God.

We are his treasured possession. We are his inheritance purchased by God precious to God and will be fully realized. When the Lord with our Lord Jesus Christ returns we have this magnificent future. This inheritance and we are God's inheritance. Third, the greatness of God's power available to us.

Verse 19. Was he praying having eyes of your heart enlightened. First, the hope to which God is called you.

Secondly, the riches of his glorious inheritance. Third, he says, what is the immeasurable greatness of his power towards us who believe the word immeasurable. He uses it three times in Ephesians is used here regarding the immeasurable power chapter 2 verse seven. Its use.

The immeasurable riches of his grace is used in chapter 3 verse 19 to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge. We have immeasurable power.

We have immeasurable grace. We have immeasurable love. This is God blessing his people with about this power, which is at work towards us who believe, or in us who believe. Well, we can say that our salvation depends entirely on the abundant power of God in electing us and redeeming us and ceiling us if we targeted God's power, our salvation would be in jeopardy were discussing the membership classes morning about eternal security. There's always questions about that movie. Be sure that we won't lose our salvation was not because were wonderful people within is because we have a wonderful strong God that I am held by Christ, the son I'm held by God the father the son and the father are one that I will never perish. My future salvation is absolutely guaranteed because God's power is immeasurably great and this immeasurable power is available to us who believe God. We know that God is powerful. Paul tells us notice verse 19. What is the immeasurable greatness of his power towards us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead is not powerful yes Lord Jesus Christ is in the in the grave, and he is raised from the dead, not only raise from the dead, but exalted overall powers and authorities for all time and eternity that he worked in Christ. Verse 20 when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.

And he put all things under his feet gave him as head over all things to the church which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all. That's power is immeasurable power. Not only is this great part of God manifested through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead our Lord Jesus is seated at the father's right hand in the heavenly places. He seated in a position Paul is saying of authority over all hostile powers and authorities, everything is subordinated to Jesus Christ. The resurrection emphasizes that Christ is alive forevermore, his ascension to the father's right hand emphasizes that he remains forevermore. There is no higher authority. No higher name in all of the universe were mourning the passing of Queen Elizabeth II was Queen for over 70 years, but she screwed no more was another mother can no in the United Kingdom. King Charles III this monarch, our Lord Jesus Christ has a universal rate. He will never die.

He will never, as it were, come off the throne.

He has universal sovereignty and therefore we have nothing to fear as Christ rules over everything.

Verse 21 over all rule and authority and power and dominion. These are cosmic forces of darkness, and he rules over them over to chapter 6, verse two, we as believers, we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places, or we are in the heavenly places within the heavenly places. The spiritual realm that are also forces of darkness.

But is Satan that his demons, there is a spiritual warfare going on and we as followers of Jesus Christ need not fear. We are verse tend to be strong in the Lord and the strength of this his might.

Why my Lord Jesus Christ has risen and he has put all of these under his feet. All of these are under his sovereign control and this power. This power that raised Christ from the dead. This product power which exalted our Lord Jesus Christ. Paul is saying in this magnificent passage that it is now available to us. The immeasurable greatness of his power towards us who believe. Verse 19. Why is that we as Christians sometimes live in such fearful and anxious lives and were worried liquor to the world. Here is Russia threatening nuclear power moving of the problems of Orion we think of inflation here in United States. Here in Western Europe are economies on the mass and threatened were sometimes nervous of me.

Sometimes when there was going to happen only to wonder. No need to be afraid Christ has it all under his control.

We as followers of Jesus Christ have the power of Almighty God at our disposal. And furthermore, this power is demonstrated. Verse 22 and the father giving his son to the church with the results that the church is his body, and is made complete in Christ Toby church is a local manifestation of the universal church who is the head of the church, our Lord Jesus Christ as the head of the church. He has universal authority. Good to remember brothers and sisters, the head of the church of Jesus Christ. His will is to be obeyed. Your personal preferences and mine are literally nothing to do with the tall this is Christ's church.

He is in charge. We follow him. We seek to glorify him.

And Paul is saying, just as the tabernacle of God.

Member was filled when it was completed it was filled with the glory of God. So Christ, in whom the full the whole fullness of deity dwells in bodily form so Christ fills the church with his grace with his power, and with this his authority and this immeasurable power is at work in us. Are you referring to the message this morning said well you know I really struggle with envy, pride, some of these other sins welcome to the human race but think of the power available to you as you seek to live a life pleasing to God. Think of the wisdom available to you as you seek to navigate life as you seek to make decisions as you seek to live a life pleasing to God.

This power is at work in our lives that our Lord Jesus Christ is alive and is alive forevermore is rule is universal. No one will ever overthrow him and we are his body, the church, there is a glorious relationship of intimacy and that Christ rules over all this only said of the church. Verse 23 the fullness of him who fills all in all, with Christ's grace and his gifts in his power and his spirit. The church is his fullness that the church is unique in the outworking of the purposes of God, the power that raised Jesus from the dead is available to us. Christ is the head source.

The very center of the life of the church.

All this is Christ's is no hours. He is in us and we are in him with my to do and to trust them and to obey him and to submit to him. I'm to bow to him. I am to be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might know don't go it alone don't think you're wiser than God. Look to the world for wisdom. Don't think that you can do battle against the enemy on your own. No, there is this wonderful bond between Christ and his people and I'm to understand and experience my great salvation I'm to draw on that powder and that wisdom without vital and indissoluble bond between Christ and us today. Strong in the Lord both as authority live for the praise of his glorious grace repentance of any selfishness and thinking that you can do things apart from Christ all of the benefits of Christ come to us that which once was outside of us when were unbelievers has no come to us that we have the fullness of Christ to live for to surrender to intubation and one of the ways we obey him is by doing what were going to do is to break bread as a command of the Lord. I'm delighted you are my brothers and sisters are gathered here and we can in the simple way take this bread and take this cup and be reminded of the wonder of our salvation. And once again surrender our lives to Christ and ask for his strength for his wisdom for his guidance for his blessing. All for his glory. Help us to do that father thank you for this passage, we feel it would just dabbling in the very shot shallows of the thank you for the elimination which respondent gives us another we humble ourselves as we rejoice in the pilot of the cross and come to the table of the Lord, we praise you and thank you for this so great salvation and Christ's precious name


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