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Thought for the Month- March 2014
Ephesians Chapter 1 – God’s Will
The epistle to the Ephesians is about the Church, and it covers both doctrinal and practical teaching. A careful and prayerful study of this letter, will improve our understanding of God’s plan for us and the church.
The book starts by identifying the author and the recipients. We can see that this is no ordinary letter, as it is from “Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus”. Paul writes with Divine authority to reveal the mind and will of God. Paul’s preaching was, and still is authoritative. When we read this letter, we are reading what God wants us to know.
In chapter 1, we read four times about “the will of God”.
Paul was “an apostle by the will of God”. How good to know that any authority we have is granted to us by God. It also reminds us to seek His will in our lives. How often do we pray to know His will for us, so that we can live accordingly? Paul had no doubt about this (see Galatians chapter 1), and lived his life In God’s will.
In verse 5 we learn that our predestination and adoption was by Jesus Christ, and according to His will. This not only gives Him “good pleasure” and demonstrates His grace, but because of this, we are “made accepted in the beloved”. What a position to be in, and all according to His will!
In verse 9 we learn that He has “made known unto us the mystery of His will”. ie. that “in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ ” This great plan, conceived before "the foundation of the world" and embracing the totality of human history and the completion of all times, is all made known to us in His Word. Of course, we have to read, study, and pray in order to understand it.
Finally in verse 11 we learn that we have an inheritance provided , all in accordance with His will, as it has been worked out by Him “after the counsel of His own will”. In a disposable world we have comfort knowing that our “inheritance is incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you.” 1 Peter 1:4.
We should endeavour to please Him by finding out His will for us, and keeping in His will, knowing that in His hands it is all worked out, and under control.