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Church of Christ Sermons and Lessons from Ephesians

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Bobby Stafford That You May Understand (Studies from Ephesians)       Ephesians May 11, 2014 Sunday AM Sermon

That You May Understand

Introduction:

How many in the world today claim that it is impossible to understand the Bible. That it is a mystery. We must have divine help. Official interpreters are needed. But our text clearly affirms that we can know Godís will for manís salvation. That Godís plan for manís redemption has been fully revealed.

Text: Ephesians 3:1-7

Body:

I. Paulís Stewardship of the Mystery Verses 1-2  Paul had just discussed how the Gentile Christians in Ephesus had gone from being dead in trespasses and sins to being a temple where God dwells. Paul had been given a stewardship [entrusted with] by God to preach the gospel [good news] to Gentiles. (Acts 26:16-18, Galatians 1:15-16) It was by their acceptance of and obedience to this gospel that had caused this great transformation. His preaching had caused something else. He was now a prisoner! (Ephesians 6:19-20) Note also Colossians 1:24-25. 

II. The Revealing of the Mystery Verses 3-5  ďMysteryĒ is information which cannot be known unless it is revealed by the originator. ďRevelationĒ is to remove the cover from or to unveil. Godís plan for manís redemption [the mystery] was not fully revealed until the first century. Paul, as well as the other apostles, prophets, received it through the Holy Spirit. (Romans 16:25-26) This was the way God chose to do it. (Galatians 1:11-12, I Corinthians 2:11-14Verse 4  Paul makes an extremely important declaration. ďThe revelation he received of Godís plan has been set forth in the written Word. When they read it, they would have the same knowledge of the plan that the apostle had.Ē This underscores the necessity of reading the Word today.  First Scripture can be understood. Paul said so! It can be understood, clearly seen in order to get the sense and meaning. Second We cannot just skim over the Bible. We must devote time and energy to truly understand. (Psalm 1:2) Acts 17:11: ďThese were more fair-minded that those in Thessalonica in all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.Ē NKJV Third Apply a careful method of study. Check the passage to know who is speaking or to whom the passage is speaking. Why were statements made; what were the circumstances? Godís Word is the most important book in all the world. Letís become the best students of it that we can! 

III. The Result of the Mystery Verses 6-7  Godís plan, from the beginning, was to unite the redeemed, both Jew and Gentile, in the one body of Christ. Note the ďin ChristĒ in verse 6. Jesus gave a preview of this in John 10:9, 16. Recall that the one body is the church. (Ephesians 1:22-23) The saints, whether from Jewish or Gentile backgrounds, are partakers of the same blessings and privileges, because both are in the same body, the same church. They are ďin Christ.Ē (Colossians 1:27-28)  

Invitation:

All can receive that eternal inheritance, everlasting life in heaven. How? Be baptized for forgiveness of sins. (Galatians 3:27) Will you? 

Bobby Stafford 

May 11, 2014

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