Foundational Theology: Blessed in Christ, Part 1
May 12, 2019 Speaker: Cameron Barham Series: Paul's Letter to the Ephesians: Life in Christ, Life in the World
Scripture: Ephesians 1:3–1:10
Key Truth: God is worthy to be blessed because He has blessed us in Christ in the past, present, and future according to His love, grace, and redemptive will.
What would make you want to bless and praise someone for something they’ve done?
Blessed be the God and Father Who Predestined Us for Adoption in Christ:
“That God (predestines)…, encompasses huge mysteries. The moment we recognize that virtually everything that has to do with God takes place previous to our knowing anything about it, it becomes obvious that since we are not gods ourselves, we are forever unable to totally comprehend this “everything.” This has two very salutary effects on us: it absolutely demands humility—we don’t know enough to either protest or approve; and adoration is spontaneous. We become aware that we are in the presence of a reality that cannot be used, cannot be packaged, cannot be grasped on any other terms than are given to us by God. We open our hands and receive.”
Eugene H. Peterson, Practice Resurrection: A Conversation on Growing Up in Christ
Are you thankful that God predestined you in love before the foundation of the world to be adopted as His child to be transformed in Christ?
Are you only thankful for things that you can fully understand or explain?
Blessed be the God and Father Who Lavishly Redeems Us in Christ:
“Union with Christ means the reality of knowing God and living in communion with him doesn’t begin when you die. Eternal life begins in this life when Christ joins his life to yours (John 17:3). We can have fellowship with God through Christ (1 John 1:3). We can begin to experience heaven in our lives here and now….You have “every spiritual blessing” (Eph. 1:3). You participate in heavenly realities even as you walk around with both feet on the ground.”
Rankin Wilbourne, Union with Christ: The Way to Know and Enjoy God
What are some ways that you are presently living out your lavish redemption in Christ?
Blessed be the God and Father Who Will Unite All Things in Christ:
“…we are caught up into the program of God in his giving of himself for the redemption of the world. God sent the Son as the Savior of the world, and as we are “in Christ,” we are now brought into this purpose. God’s passion is for his life-giving presence to spread across the world and for all nations to experience shalom. This means that an essential part of our character is missional. Just as God gave his Son for the life of the world, so we must understand ourselves as being given for the life of the world.”
Timothy G. Gombis, The Drama of Ephesians: Participating in the Triumph of God
How does the fact that God will unite all things in heaven and in earth in Christ affect how you engage the world?
Ephesians 1:3-10 teaches us that God is worthy to be blessed because He has blessed us in Christ:
- in the past having predestined us to be adopted as His children in love
- in the present by redeeming and forgiving according the lavish riches of His grace
- in the future when we will be part of all things being unified in the fullness of time
More in Paul's Letter to the Ephesians: Life in Christ, Life in the World
July 14, 2019The Bonds of Peace: Unity in the Church in the World
July 7, 2019A Prayer for Growth in Christ and the Fullness of God
June 30, 2019A Purposeful Prisoner: Paul’s Life in Christ, Part 2