“That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in [his] kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.”
The Gracious Works Of The Trinity In Salvation: Ephesians 1:3-14
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.
In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace; Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence; Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself: That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
We now begin the first section of Paul’s explanation of the gracious works of the Lord in our lives. In this section, he looks at the individual workings of the three persons of the Godhead in salvation. This section can be broken up into three basic parts:
1. The work of the God the Father vs 3-6
2. The work of the God the Son vs 7-12
3. The work of the God the Spirit vs 13-14
In this morning’s devotional, Paul now turns our attention to the work of God the Son in our salvation experience……
(Eph 1:11) In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
(Eph 1:12) That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
Paul now turns our attention to the eternal blessings that await us through the work of Christ….
In whom also we have obtained an inheritance
The same Lord through whom we receive our salvation is the same Lord that has assigned to us designated blessings that will be possessed throughout eternity. Some of these include: forgiveness of our sins, eternal communion with our Lord, rewards for obedience, citizenship in New Jerusalem, etc. etc. (see Revelation 21:-22: for great details on our inheritance)
being predestinated according to the purpose of him
“predestinated” is the same Greek word that we looked at in verse 5. This phrase helps us to understand that God had determined in His eternal counsels, before time began, that we would obtain this magnificent inheritance in Him.
What an amazing truth, before the world existed…
1. God knew of us,
2. placed His love upon us,
3. chose for us to receive our eternal inheritance. This choice was not made from obligation but out of a loving and merciful heart choosing to grant to us that which we did not deserve.
who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
The same Lord that chose for us to receive our inheritance is the same Lord that establishes all the events that take place throughout history. It is these determined events that align themselves to secure the receipt of the divine inheritance by God’s people.
In other words, God controlled all the events necessary for us to receive our eternal inheritance, some of those include…
1. the sustaining of our physical life (prior to our salvation experience)
2. the gospel message being proclaimed to us
3. our response to the gospel in repentance and belief
4. our eternal security in Him
That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
Why did the Lord do all of this for us? That He might be glorified in the lives of His redeemed people. The saved are described here as those “who first trusted in Christ”.
What is meant by the phrase “first trusted”? The Greek word translated “first trusted” is a word that is made up of two parts that are fused together:
1. “pro” – in front of, prior to, to precede
2. “elpizo” – to expect, to anticipate, to be confident
In other words… “to confidently expect prior to receipt”
This helps us to understand that those who are saved by God’s grace come to Him confidently, in an attitude of trust, believing He has secured our salvation and our promised eternal inheritance. A true saving faith is “the substance of THINGS HOPED FOR the evidence of THINGS NOT SEEN”! (Hebs 11:1)
When we are saved, we are exercising saving faith we have “first trusted in Christ” before we experience our eternity in His presence.
In this devotion we have seen that through our Lord, He has:
1. given us an inheritance
2. predetermined that we would receive this inheritance
3. controlled all events in our life to bring us to salvation and our eternal rewards
4. chose to do all of this for us because He loved us and is pleased in doing so.
All of this was done so that He might be honored and glorified by His people!
May we all get a clearer picture of our Lord and Savior, and the great grace He has shown to us. Let us be always watchful to keep His great acts of grace on our behalf in the center of our attention… In doing so, may we be motivated to LOVE Him more, APPRECIATE Him more and SERVE Him more!
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