BLESSED BY THE FATHER
INTRODUCTION: Do you ever feel
like you donít have any good things happening in your life? Do you feel
like everyone else gets all the breaks? But we need to remember how Christians
are abundantly blessed.
Today we begin a series on the
book of Ephesians. Paul addresses the church of Ephesus and declares the
they have been blessed richly.
I. WE ARE BLESSED WITH EVERY
SPIRITUAL BLESSING IN CHRIST.
A. Christians have access
to Every Spiritual Blessing.
II. WE HAVE BEEN CHOSEN "BEFORE
THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD"
1. Our blessings are not
physical in nature. Christians are promised the physical necessities, not
B. Those blessings are "in Christ."
a. Matthew 6:33-34 ""But
seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things
shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow
will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."
2. Our blessings are spiritual in
nature. Since our eternal nature is spiritual, we would expect God to be
most interested in it and that those things which help us spiritually will
tend to give us true satisfaction.
3. What are some of the great blessings
that God has given to His children.
a. Ephesians 1:7 - the
forgiveness of sins
b. Romans 8:28 - Godís providential
care for us.
c. 1 John 3:22 - "And whatever
we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those
things that are pleasing in His sight." - The assurance that God hears
and answers our prayers.
d. Romans 8:15 - "For you did not
receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit
of adoption by whom we cry out, "Abba, Father."" -The joy of having the
heavenly Father to call our father.
phrases as in Christ, and their equivalent, occur 164 times in the writings
C. How do we get "into Christ?"
2. "In Christ" simply means in
the body of Christ.
3. 2 Corinthians 5:17 - "Therefore,
if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away;
behold, all things have become new."
1. Galatians 3:27 - "For
as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ."
2. Romans 6:3-4 "Or do you not
know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized
into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into
death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the
Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life."
A. God chose us before
the world began.
III. ALL CHRISTIANS "SHOULD BE
HOLY AND WITHOUT BLAME BEFORE HIM IN LOVE."
1. Before creation God
had a plan for the salvation of mankind. This implied that God knew before
the creation of man that mankind would choose to sin and depart from Godís
B. How are we chosen by God?
2. Revelation 13:8 - "All who dwell
on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the
Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world."
3. 1 Corinthians 2:7 - "But we
speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained
before the ages for our glory,"
1. Calvinists claim that
God chooses each Christian individually.
a. "By the decree of God,
for the manifestation of his glory, some men and angels are predestinated
unto everlasting life, and others fore-ordained to everlasting death. These
angels and men, thus predestinated and fore-ordained, are particularly
and unchangeably designed; and their number is so certain and definite
that it cannot be either increased or decreased."
2. But this doctrine directly contradicts
the biblical principle that men and women have a free-will to obey or disobey
b. There can be no doubt that "Predestination"
is taught in the New Testament.
i. Romans 8:30 - "Moreover
whom He predestined, these He also called; whom He called, these He also
justified; and whom He justified, these He also glorified."
a. 1 Timothy 2:3-4 "For
this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires
all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth."
3. God does predestine us.
b. Revelation 22:17 - "And the
Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" And
let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life
a. God predestined all
who obey the gospel to be saved.
b. The text here tells us. God
chooses "us in him." God predestines that all who accept the gospel and
are "faithful unto death" will be saved. All those outside of Christ are
lost, based on their sin.
c. Ephesians 1:11 - "In Him also
we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose
of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will,"
A. Because we are part
of Godís elect, we have an obligation to live holy lives.
IV. IT IS NOT BECAUSE OF OUR OWN
SELF-RIGHTEOUSNESS THAT WE ARE SAVED, BUT IT IS "ACCORDING TO HIS GOOD
1. This involves the putting
off of the old man and the putting on of the new man.
B. We are to live lives "without blame."
a. Ephesians 4:22-24 "that
you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt
according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your
mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God,
in true righteousness and holiness."
2. 2 Corinthians 7:1 - "Therefore,
having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness
of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God."
3. While we cannot be holy in the
absolute sense, as God is, we can live differently from the world.
a. Hebrews 12:14 - "Pursue
peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the
1. How can we live "without
blame?" Can we live sinless as Christians?
a. 1 John 1:8 - "If we
say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in
2. We are made perfect (sinless) by
the blood of Christ.
b. Matthew 5:48- ""Therefore you
shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect."
a. Acts 22:16
3. We are continually sinless through
the blood of Jesus.
a. 1 John 1:7 - "But if
we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one
another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin."
b. As we walk in the light we will
continue to receive forgiveness. But this also requires continued faithfulness
and repentance of sins.
A. We cannot be saved
by our own efforts.
CONCLUSION: During the Depression,
Charles Darrow could find no work. Although he was broke and his wife was
expecting a baby, he wasn't discouraged. Every evening they played a game
which he had devised. Remembering happy vacations in nearby Atlantic City,
he laid out his own little boardwalk on a square piece of cardboard and
pretended to be rich. On his "properties" he put miniature houses and hotels
he had carved out of small pieces of wood. The game, called "Monopoly,"
was later marketed by Parker Brothers and ultimately made Darrow a millionaire.
Christians may not have earthly wealth, but they have a wealth that should
cause us to never get discouraged. We have the wealth of our heavenly Father.
1. There is nothing we
can do which can cause us to deserve salvation.
B. It is according to Godís "good
2. Titus 3:5 - "not by works of
righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us,
through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,"
3. Ephesians 2:7-9
1. God did not depend
on us. He did not need us. We rebelled against Him.
2. God conceived the plan, set
it into place, sent His Son, allowed Him to die.
3. Romans 5:8, 10 - "But God demonstrates
His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died
for us....For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through
the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved
by His life."
Copyright 1999 by Grady
Scott may be reproducted for non-commercial purposes at no cost to others.