Ladies Bible Study
Read Ephesians 1:1-12 (read in both NKJ and Phillips).
"..who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,"
To recap what we discussed last month, we have been blessed with every spiritual blessing IN Christ! That means that everything Christ is blessed with, receives and has, we have.!
We have received this special blessing, because we are IN Christ.
Romans 3:24 tells us that we have been justified freely by his grace through redemption that is in Christ.
Read Ephesians 1:7-9
We have been redeemed, our ransom paid by the Blood of Jesus and we are now in a special place -- IN Christ.
We discussed that - IN- denotes our position, we are in Christ not in the World.
I want to stress that position and circumstance are not the same thing, they are not synonymous terms.
Your circumstances may be bad, but your position never changes!
Because we now have a new position, as it says we have had our eyes open and God has revealed the truth or mystery of God to us.
What are some of these truths:
"ÖHe chose us in Him before the foundation of the world,.."
Ephesians is addressed to the Church, not the unsaved.
One of the truths we now know, is that we were chosen, we by virtue of our decision to accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, to accept His atoning Grace, have been chosen from the foundation of the world.
This verse tells us 3 important facts.
God chose a special people to be called by his name.
2 Peter 3:9
So God chose the children of Israel to be a special people unto him.
When we became redeemed, we now inherit that same calling.
"But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;" 1 Peter 2:9
So we are called to praise Him, worship Him and fellowship with Him, as He intended from the foundation of the world, when He created Adam and Eve.
Read 1 John 4:7-10
God is love, it is His nature and love cannot exist alone.
We have been given a glorious gift, the life of God!
In John 10:10, Jesus says that He came that we may have life and have it more abundantly.
This is a verse we quote all the time but do we really understand what that abundant life is? We have the Life of God in us, the Zoë Life of God. That word means all the life God has to give. And when he gives us this life He blesses us with all spiritual blessing In Christ Jesus. It is the foundation of "all spiritual blessings".
This changes us, we were sinners deserving of death as the penalty of sin, eternal damnation, separated from the Presence of God for all eternity. But God in His mercy sent Jesus to save us and pay that penalty. We have been redeemed with a price. Now we are New creatures.
2 Corinthians 5:17 We are a new creature. Old things have passed away, all things have become new. What we were doesnít exist anymore!!! What we did has been forgiven and covered in the blood! We are walking in the newness of life!!! Donít let the enemy beat you up and tell you that you are not deserving, or worthy or that God canít use you .
You are a daughter of the King!!! You are blessed with all spiritual blessing which includes the wisdom of God, peace of God, love of God, ability of God, divine health and prosperity.
God has a call on every life here, draw near to him and let Him show you what it is.
"..that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love," Ephesians 1:4
The third fact is that we have been chosen to be holy and blameless before Him in love.
"to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He has made us accepted in the Beloved." Ephesians 1:6
We are made acceptable in the Beloved. That term is referring to Jesus. We have been made the righteousness of Christ.
Read Romans 3:20-26
Romans 5:17-21 10:4
1 Corinthians 1:30
Paul thought of righteousness in the Hebrew sense, that is the right relationship between God and an individual or with God and a people.
It is an attribute of God:
Psalms 71:15 "My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness And Your salvation all the day, For I do not know their limits."
Psalms 119:142 "Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, And Your law is truth."
Righteousness has a two fold meaning, it describes the nature of God, He is righteous.
He is just and faithful, this is part of his nature. He cannot tolerate sin and does not, as we saw above. For us to fellowship we had to be made righteous, we had to be cleansed and made new, For God cannot, cannot associate with death.
Therefore,Paul is talking about the reestablishment of our right relationship with God, that we have right standing with God.
He compares the sin of the Gentiles (Romans 1:18-31) and their inability for redemption and lack of excuses to that of the Nation of Israel, (Romans 9:31-32) and their strict adherence to the rituals of the law and their inability to obtain redemption through it. Both led to spiritual death. No one receives righteousness under his own power. Romans 3:23 "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,"
What the law could not do Ė God did by sending His own Son, in the likeness of sinful flesh Ė so that the righteous requirements of the law could be met!
Therefore the righteousness of God is a free gift. We do not deserve it but obtain it through faith.
Once you are declared righteous we seek to do deeds of righteousness and grow in righteousness.
Which leads us to our last term for tonight:
I Thessalonians 4:3-7
Sanctification: the separation of the believer from evil sinful ways. It is Godís will for us as believers to be holy as he is holy.
I Peter 1:15-16
Romans 6:1-23 Ė Paulís explanation of sanctification.
It is learned from Godís Word and must be pursued by the believer all out!
John 17:17 "Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth."
Psalms 17:4 "Concerning the works of men, By the word of Your lips, I have kept myself from the paths of the destroyer."
Philippians 4:8-9 "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy meditate on these things.
9. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you."