This past Sunday, Pastor Earl began a six week study on the book of Ephesians. He suggested that members of the congregation go ahead and read through Ephesians so that they are prepared for the next six weeks. Today, we’ll start a 14 day journey going through the book of Ephesians, to better prepare ourselves for what Pastor Earl will be sharing in the next six weeks.
This study comes from the YouVersion Bible App…and can be downloaded to your phone. https://www.bible.com/
We all live life vertically and horizontally, that is how our identity works. Vertically, our identity describes where we stand in relation to God. Horizontally, our identity describes where we stand in relation to other humans. Vertically in Christ, Christians are now able to dwell with God. This means, horizontally we are able to dwell uniquely with other humans; in particular, others ‘in Christ’.
In Ephesus, this was seen in the remarkable truth that enemies (Jews and Gentiles) could now live in peace (vs.14). This was unheard of in those days. But it is the reality of God’s people; those naturally divided by human markers are now united to each other in a new humanity with no divisions: no divisions of colour, education, class, employment, geography. Why? Because we are both ‘in Christ;’ the same in sin and the same in salvation!
Think about God’s people – how might we best express what this ‘new humanity’ looks like as we meet together?
Dear Father, you have created for yourself a new household, one where there is no division. Thank you that this household is created, organised and run by Jesus. Amen.
11 Therefore remember that at one time you Gentiles in the flesh, called “the uncircumcision” by what is called the circumcision, which is made in the flesh by hands— 12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. 14 For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility 15 by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, 16 and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. 17 And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. 18 For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. 19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens,[a] but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by[b] the Spirit.