Ephesians 1: 4-6

Accepted in the Beloved


Intro. The book of Eph. was written to a group of people who were spiritually rich yet were living like they were Poor

A) Problem was They were ignorant of their spiritual riches / wealth.


   The great newspaper publisher of the early part of this century, William Randolph Hearst, spent a great deal of money collecting art treasures for his collection.  The story is told that one day he found a description of a piece of art that he felt he must own, so he sent his agent abroad to find it.  After months of searching, the agent reported that he had found the treasured object and that it was close to home.  Where was it? In Hearst's warehouse, with many other treasures he owned that were un-opened & still in their crates.  The great Hearst had been searching for a treasure he already owned!


B) Problem w/ the Christians in Ephesus- they’d been given an abundance of Spiritual treasure it was in their possession but they didn’t realize it !! 

    1) Paul wanted them to see how rich they really were!  !


C) Paul puts it this way in the third verse  3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,


D) Now what is really intriguing to me is where Paul was at when  he penned these words:   PAUL WAS IN PRISON

1) And Yet in Prison – he isn’t saying woe is me / feel sorry for me / keep me in your thoughts  - But Blessed be God who has ……….


E) See Paul understood something that we need to understand tonight – We are Blessed – Paul was in Prison but in Prison he was focused on God

1) John the Baptist – Dungeon of Doubt – Behold / heard God’s voice


F) Focus not on what is happening in this moment – but who we are in Christ – What God has done / Promised us – Yes / Amen in Christ

So Paul is ecstatic here – Blessed be God who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,

A) The Phrase in the Heavenly places is a reference not just to Heaven but to the invisible realities of our life now.

A) It is our inner life where fellowship w/ God is experienced / where the spirit of God reaches us at the seat of our emotions/ intellect & our will


B) It is that aspect of our lives/ where Purpose is discovered / where the spiritual battles are waged / victories are won/ where Ministry takes place


C) It is the everyday blessings that we experience being a Child of God and it is the Future rewards & blessings waiting for us in Eternity

1) All of these are made available for one reason – Because we are

                                             IN CHRIST  


Now If you are not a Christian you cannot possibly claim these benefits. You cannot buy them, you cannot discover them,

A)you cannot sign up for a course about them in a university.


B) You can't send away 100 dollars in the mail and get a pamphlet that will lead you to them.

1)   There is no way you can appropriate them unless you are in Christ.


C)  But if you are "in Christ" there is nothing to keep you from having all of them, every moment of every day.


Now we noted in our study last time that in Chapters 1-3 Paul lays out many of these Blessings – IN CHRIST statements Sun am{at least 15

A) We quickly went thru a partial list – pick up tonight – going into the ones listed here in v.4-14 in a little more detail


B) Now There is an unusual structure in this passage to which I'd like to call your attention.  From V 3 thru V. 14 in the Grk text (not in the English) you have one complete, unbroken sentence filled with many adjectival phrases brought in to amplify and enrich it.

C) Paul has crammed a lot of Truth into this great sentence.

1) It's almost as though he is taking a walk through a treasure chamber, like ONE OF those of the Pharaohs of Egypt, describing what he sees.


D) He starts out with the most immediate and evident fact and tells us what that is. Then something else comes into view and he puts that in.

1) And glory flashes upon glory here until he has this tremendously complicated sentence which includes vast and almost indescribable riches.


E) That is Paul's way of showing us how truth is interconnected, that one truth leads to another

1) and soon you find yourself caught up with a treasure Chest full.



What you notice is that these blessings are divided into 3 groupings – thru which we see the Triune Godhead at work

A) Trinity – Father / Son / HS – 3 Distinct persons – Yet one


B)  Here is what I mean: There is the work of the Father, the work of the Son, and the work of the Holy Spirit.

1) In Verses 3 through 6 you have the work of the Father:

2) Then, in Verses 7 through 12, you have that which relates to the Son:

3) Finally, in Verses 13 and 14, you have the work of the Holy Spirit:


C)  Now I don’t know if we will get to all of that tonight – but we are going to try: - Start with the work of the Father – Rd v.4 again

4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love,


Now here we have the great Doctrine of Election – God Chose you

A) One of the great mysteries of the Bible – God Chose us –


B) But we struggle with this because – How can God choose us and yet still offer us a Choice that we make to come to Him

1) Debate between God’s Sovern. & man’s responsibility { Man’s Choice

C) Jesus says John 15: 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit,


D) But in  Rev 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is thirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.  KJV


Matt 11:28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  NKJV


So How do we reconcile the two – God Choose us or we came to Him

God’s Sovereignty or man’s Free will –

A) It is both together – Simply put - God in His Sovereignty – has chosen to give man a Choice in coming to Him


B) The Father Draws us – but we have to respond to Him

1) And God in His foreknowledge { Note Chose us in Him } Saw us in His Son – knew that we would respond – He Chose us


C) Notice the Timing of His Choosing – Before the foundations of the world

1) DL MOODY – I am glad God Chose me before He made me – Because I don’t think He would have Chose me after he had watched me live !!!


D) The Truth of the Matter – God’s time frame – everything is in the Now – so He saw us perfectly – He chose us anyway.


Now on Sunday am – We are going to take a closer look at the Doctrine of Election – First of our In Christ Statements

A)Tonight: Focus on the Purpose of God Choosing us – Note __ things


B) 1st He Chose us to be Holy & Without Blame Before Him in Love

1) Now how many of You would say tonight – I am Holy ?


C) If you are a Christian – You are Holy !!! – Holy = Whole / Separate

1) Been Made Whole in Jesus – How many are Holy ?

Now I used to read this verse – He chose you – Now be Holy & blameless – as a response

A)There is truth to that – We are exhorted to be Holy in the Scriptures to live a life of Consecration


B) But that is not what Paul is talking about here – He will get into that in Ch.4 & 5 – Focus here is our Position in Christ

1) Saying: God Chose you to be Holy & Blameless before Him in Love


C) In other words thru His love for you displayed by His Son Jesus – You have the Privilege of Being – Holy & Without Blame before Him


 D) You are Holy in your Position – Shall be Holy in your Person !!!


BLAMELESS: Did you know that you are Blameless – You know why you have an advocate

A) Satan is the Accuser of the Brethren – comes day & night – Rob did today


B) Jesus is our Advocate – Defense attorney – Charges have been Dropped – { Righteous

1) SO Before God – we are Blameless


C) See a great Picture of this in Zech. 3 – Turn there !!!


D) We are Blameless now because of Our Advocate – No Charge can stick –

1) We will one day – in Heaven be blameless because we are going to be like Jesus – New Bodies – No Sin


E) No more Battle – The world / our Flesh / the Devil

1) Satan uses this world to tempt our flesh – we sin / No world – Just us and the Devil no Problem – No Devil us & the world we are great{ All 3 is trouble for us -  Heaven – No Flesh / No world / No Devil = NO Sin


Next Purpose of our Election: Why God Chose us found in v. 5

5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will,

A)Before the world was even made – God the Father Predetermined that He was going to adopt you { Make you Son & Daughter *****


B) Now this term adoption doesn’t speak of how we were brought into the family of God

1) But rather it speaks of our Status in the family of God


C) When ever you read in the Bible of God Adopting us – understand it is speaking of our status { Adult Sons & Daughters – Privileges


See Biblical days – adoption wasn’t so much the adopting of Babies like we do today –

A) But rather it was taking someone who was an adult – who wasn’t a part of the family & adopting them into the family to share in all the benefits


B) Share in the inheritance { to have all of the privileges of an adult son or daughter –

1) So when God says that He adopted us into His Family – there are two ideas being communicated here 1st is Status – Adult Privileges { Join work


C) The 2nd idea is INTIMACY – WE get to call Him Father !


Did you know that in the entirety of the OT God is only referred to as father 14 times –

A) IN those 14 times – always in reference to the nation / not to individuals


B)  But When Jesus came on the scene he addressed God only as Father – he calls God his father – 60 times in the gospels

1) Only time He didn’t Calvary – My God – Separation


C)  Jesus taught Disciples to Pray: Our Father

1) Gal 4:6 – Spirit calling Abba – Daddy

D)  Fathers love: Pleasure – Refrigerator / Accepted / Be there / Count on me

1) God Chose you to be a Father to You !! – Know Him in that way


Adopted for that Reason: Sons & Daughters

A) Most people who adopt pick out – Beautiful kids – healthy kids

    Mom was Crack addict kid has good chance crack addict { Pass


B) Thompsons : Marcos – trash dump in Mexico – 7yrs old weighed 50 lbs

                                                                    Crippled w/ _________________

C) That is a good picture of us – in light of God

1) Our problem so often is we compare ourselves w/ each other & some have a tendency to think -  God got a good catch when He got me


D) Wrong comparison – compare ourselves to the almighty God

1) Spoke the world into existence / Holds world in the Span of his hand /


E) Catch a glimpse of the greatness of God – and we start to see ourselves like Marcos in the trash dump


Now I don’t know why the Thompson’s did that – 50’s kids raised grand kids – Starting new life as missionaries – hard place

A) Why take on an added burden and responsibility ? – God would


B) I am not sure why they did it – but Paul tells us why God did it – 3 things


#1 It was according to the good pleasure of His will

A) God took pleasure in pulling you and I out to the trash dump – It pleased Him to Bless you and to rescue you


B) Part of His nature is to be giving – it is to bless – to bestow Kindness

1) He takes pleasure in that – Gifts for your kids – look on their faces


C) What is really heavy is that in order to Bless you & I – The Father had to Bruise His Son

1) ISA 53:10 – It pleased the father to Bruise His Son

D) In seeing the Blessings & the lives that would be changed by the Cross the Father could take pleasure in the death of His Son

1) FLT – crashed in Pennsylvania – Pleasure in Knowing Son / Husband was a Hero – Let’s Roll ________________________________


#2 V.6 To the Praise of the glory of His grace – Magnifies the grace of God

A) When we grasp what God the father did He choosing us / making a way to adopt us / Sending son to die for us { All Grace – Not us


B) No Boasting in Heaven !!!!!!!


In 1715, Louis XIV of France died.  Louis, called himself "the Great," he was the monarch who made the infamous statement "I am the State!" His court was the most magnificent in Europe, and his funeral was spectacular.  His body lay in a golden coffin.  To dramatize the deceased king's greatness, orders had been given that the cathedral should be very dimly lighted, with only one special candle set above his coffin.  Thousands waited in hushed silence.  Then Bishop Massilon began to speak.  Slowly reaching down, he snuffed out the candle, saying, "Only God is great!" 

C) We come here today – Sing Hallelujah – Not Hallelu- me – Praising the Glory the Majesty of His Grace


#3 reason why: V.6 To make us accepted in the Beloved

A) Accepted = welcome w/ a feeling of belonging – The Beloved = his Kingdom / his family


B) Not Accepted: Looks the Stares – what is He doing here

1) Who let Him in – Look how they are dressed – I am sure


C) None of that in Heaven- Robed in the righteousness of Christ


D) Rejoicing – We are there !!!


Now as we come to verse 7 the structure abruptly switches from the blessings of election past to the celebration of present redemption

A) Focus moves from the Work of the Father – to the Work of the son

Jesus accomplished what the Father Decided


B) The Father Choose us / Adopted us / made us accepted in the Beloved

1) But it was the work of the Son – that accomplished or made each of those blessings Possible- Only as we are in Christ