Back to the Bible. Let’s talk about Ephesians. I know I started in 1 Timothy a couple weeks back. Don’t worry, my daughter-in-law is compiling the Bible commentary posts into a book.
An author’s favorite posts are going to be those that have made the biggest impact on him. This is one of those.
He has chosen us in him before the foundation of the world that we should be holy and without blame before him in love.
If you don’t know and you’re wondering, I am strongly opposed to Calvinism. For the most part, I am also opposed to the Calvinists it creates.
That’s all I’m saying about Calvinism today, but I thought I’d better mention it since we’re going to be forced to address election (“has chosen us”) and predestination, mentioned in verse 11. Nothing in this chapter justifies the horrid teaching that God randomly chose who would be saved. (Unconditional is the equivalent of random unless it is applied to everyone. By the way, “unconditional” is one of the worst words that has ever crept into Christian tradition.)
Sorry for having to crawl over creepy misinterpretations in order to begin expounding on a verse of Scripture.
The point I want to make here is the importance of the proclamation of the faith which we have received. It’s not a small thing. It is something that God …
… Creator of the Universe, the One who fills all things, the most important life there is because he is the source of all life …
was thinking about before he made anything.
There was nothing. God was alone, conversing with his Wisdom and his Word, which were still inside of him. He was planning, purposing.
One of his purposes was to create the whole universe, which I think was a wonder to behold. We can’t even imagine. A flash of light and a burst of energy of unimaginable force. So powerful was it that no rules applied. Matter spewed forth and expanded at many times the speed of light from this beginning of pure energy from God. Rocketing outward, waves of energy rolled across this unspeakable, exploding creative thought of God, driven by his Word.
Shortly, to God anyway, it was there. Our universe; still expanding, sparkling, still pulsating and glowing with creative power.
He did it all for a purpose.
Primarily, that purpose was that the Word, his beloved Son, begotten before the beginning began, would rule and contain all of this in himself. Secondarily, though there can be no secondary to the will of God, his purpose was to have for himself a people and for his Son a bride, suitable for him.
Wow. Majestic. Awe-inspiring. Breathtaking.
Truly beyond even what we can imagine and fathom, but it is not other. It is not foreign. It is about you. As God surveyed the majestic expanse of the universe and the tiny ball that is earth, he was already thinking of you.
How does one turn that into “going to church.”
“Hey, hon, ya wanna go to church today?”
We—me—we so underestimate the glory that is the salvation that comes from God and the church that arises from that salvation.
Before the foundation of the world he chose …
He predestined, he longed, he wanted, he thought about, he weighed and considered, and he purposed …
YOU … and me and everyone else would be awed by the proclamation that God had anointed a King, his Son, to rule the nations, raise the living and the dead, show inexplicable mercy to those who believed the Gospel and denied themselves in order to serve the weak, lonely, forlorn, and helpless and to discard forever those who have chose evil.
This is the importance of the Gospel and the salvation it brings.
What majesty has been given to us. “The King in us, the hope of glory.”
Not any King. The one who exploded the universe into being so that he might one day gather you not just into his arms or under his wings, but into his heart, so that he might be in you, and you might be in him.
The eternal purpose of God, to gather together as one all things in the King, the Son of God (Eph. 1:10).
That’s enough for one day. We have hardly touched even the first chapter of Ephesians. You don’t need me. There are other teachers, and if you have joined yourself to the saints of God, then you have people to go through Ephesians with you. Nonetheless, I hope you’ll join me as we go on in the days to come.