“That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in [his] kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.”
The Grace Of Unity: Ephesians 4:1-6
1) I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,
2) With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;
3) Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
4) [There is] one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
5) One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
6) One God and Father of all, who [is] above all, and through all, and in you all.
With this devotional, we are beginning the second division of the book of Ephesians. Previously, we have looked at “Reflections Of His Grace Revealed” (chaps 1-3). It that section, Paul revealed to us the gracious works of the Lord in the lives of His chosen people.
In this new section “Reflections Of His Grace Applied” (chaps 4-6) Paul will be explaining to us the practical effects of God’s grace in the lives of His people.
- The Grace Of Unity (4:1-6)
- The Grace Of Maturity (4:7-16)
- The Grace Of Renewal (4:17-32)
- The Grace Of Imitation (5:1-14)
- The Grace Of Wisdom (5:15-21)
- The Grace Of Relationships (5:22-33)
- The Grace Of Authority/Submission (6:1-9)
- The Grace Of Preparedness (6:10-21)
The first effect of God’s grace we will be looking at is the grace of UNITY (4:1-6). This is a very basic outline of this section of Scripture:
I. The responsibility of the Lord’s call upon His people (vs 1)
II. Characteristics of the grace of unity (vs 2-3)
III. Godly examples of unity found in the Lord and His people (vs 4-6)
After explaining the importance of seeking unity, Paul now shares with us a total of seven examples of unity that God has given to us…
(Eph 4:5) One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
In our text this morning we will learn of three more of these examples…
In the person of the Messiah, Jesus Christ (our Lord), we find the ministries of Prophet, Priest and King being fulfilled. These three offices are being performed in harmony and unity to bring about the salvation of His chosen people.
1. Prophet – John 6:14 – Jesus revealed the Person and Word of God to man
2. Priest – Hebrews 5:5-6 – Jesus performed the work needed to bring sinful man to a Holy God.
3. King – Revelation 19:16 – Jesus is Sovereign Ruler over all.
When we exercise saving faith, it involves the acceptance of many different teachings concerning the Persons and works of the Trinity, our condition as sinful mankind, our responsibilities as before God… etc etc. These various truths that bring us to Christ are united in design and make up “the faith” the set of Biblical doctrines we have come to believe.
“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort [you] that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” (Jude 1:3)
The ordinance of baptism involves making a public declaration of three different truths. These truths can be found in Romans 6:3-9…
“Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also [in the likeness] of [his] resurrection: Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with [him], that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him.”
1. Our Lord died on the cross for our sins, was buried, and was resurrected the third day. (vs 4,9)
2. We were spiritually dead in sin, but now spiritually alive in Christ. (vs 5,8)
3. We are dead to our old sinful life and now living a new life in Christ. (vs 4,6,7,9)
All of these truths are publically declared by the saint in the one act of baptism.
Paul continues to show us several examples of unity that is worked by God on our behalf. So they include:
1. Unity within a local assembly
2. Unity of the workings of the Holy Spirit
3. Unity of our eternal inheritance
4. Unity in the workings of Jesus Christ
5. Unity in the true doctrines which we believe
6. Unity in the symbolism of baptism
ALL of these come to us entirely as gifts of God’s grace. May we all seek for peace and unity keeping in mind the wonderful graces of unity that He has worked on our behalf.
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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