God's Great Purpose in Christ
Studies in Paul's Letter to the Ephesians
His Calling, His Inheritance, His Power
Ephesians 1:15-23 • April 21, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
As we have considered this prayer of the Apostle Paul in these verses, we are confronted with a dominant series of threes: A Trinity of Christian Graces: Faith, Love, Hope A Trinity of Spiritual Prerequisites: wisdom, revelation, light A Trinity of Godly Insight: “that you may know” (v. 18): the Hope of His Calling (Past), the Glory of His Inheritance (Future), and the Exceeding Greatness of His Power (Present).
Boasting Only in the Cross
Galatians 6:14 • April 19, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
We are met together this evening to consider the most pivotal event in all of human history: the crucifixion of the Son of God, our Lord Jesus Christ. How do you see it? What is your interpretation of what was happening on Calvary’s hill? An injustice? A tragedy? The death of a good man? How did those who witnessed it see it?
Knowing God: Prerogatives and Prerequisites
Ephesians 1:15-23 • April 14, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
How does God make Himself known to us? God holds the prerogative to make Himself known to whomever He wills. He exercises His prerogative through a trinity of prerequisites: the giving of the spirit of wisdom, the spirit of revelation, and the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
From Praise to Prayer
Ephesians 1:15-23 • April 7, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
Having begun his letter with a hymn of praise to the Trinity, Paul now turns to prayer for his readers which begins with a "trinity" of graces which should be evident in the life of every believer, but especially evident in the life of every true church.
Evidences of the Sealing of the Holy Spirit
Ephesians 1:12-14; Romans 8:1-17 • March 24, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
If the sealing of the Holy Spirit is the assurance that we are the unique possession of God, what are the evidences that I have been sealed by the Spirit? Romans 8 gives us at least eight of these evidences.
"To Praise of His Glory"
Ephesians 1:14 • March 10, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
Paul's three-fold use of 'to the praise of His glory" in Ephesians 1 is rooted in his Old Testament understanding of God's initiative in claiming a people for himself in texts like Deuteronomy 7:6-11. Our response to God's choosing us is lives lived for his praise.
"You Heard, You Believed, You Trusted"
Ephesians 1:12-14 • March 10, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
We come now to the third and final stanza of Paul’s Great Hymn of Praise to the Trinity. How do we reconcile v. 4 (“chosen in Him before the foundation of the world”) with v. 13 (“you heard, you believed, you trusted”)? If our salvation is all of grace and due entirely to God’s choosing us before the foundation of the world, why is it necessary for us to believe the gospel and to trust in Jesus Christ? God does not save any man or woman against their will. God’s choosing is not God coercing. And yet it is also true that because man is “dead in trespasses and in sins” (2:1), no unbeliever would be willing to believe the gospel and trust in Jesus Christ without God first bringing that person to spiritual life. God persuades the will. He makes the gospel attractive to us. “The goodness of God leads you to repentance.” How then does God bring us to spiritual life?
"The Mystery of His Will" Part One
Ephesians 1:6b-12 • February 24, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
Why does God do anything He does? Because it pleases Him. God is working out the mystery of His will in history through the administration of Jesus Christ in the open secret of the gospel. Why do some people see it and others don't?
In Praise of the Trinity: Stanza 2
Ephesians 1:6b-7 • February 17, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
In eternity past, God the Father chose us in Christ for holiness, adopted us for sonship, and accepted us in His Beloved Son (Ephesians 1:3-6a). In the present, God the Son has executed His Father's will by ransoming us from the tyranny of Satan, remitting our sins by removing them from us and forgetting them, and rescuing us from our fall into death, all through His precious blood (Ephesians 1:6b-7).
The Election of Grace
Ephesians 1:3-4 • February 10, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
No doctrine provides more comfort and assurance while at the same time generating so much debate as does the doctrine of election. What does it mean that God has chosen us in Christ before the foundation of the world? Does God choose some people for salvation and condemn others to hell even if they desire to be saved? If God sovereignly chooses those whom He saves, why does anyone need to repent and believe? These and other questions raised by the doctrine of election are considered in this message,
In Praise of the Trinity: Stanza 1, Part 2
Ephesians 1:3-6a • February 10, 2019 • Pastor Paul Edwards
Before we examine the particular blessings which are ours from God the Father through Jesus Christ it is essential that we consider the character of the God from whom these blessings flow. Paul has one phrase to describe God's character: "the glory of His grace."