Thursday, September 2, 2010

September 1-7 - What Others Said on Ephesians

two posts in the same day - whoa.  Anyway, last April I learned a lot listening to one of my sem Profs speak on Issues, etc. 24 about Ephesians.  As we read through this book together this week, I think you will be extra blessed by the insights of Dr. Tom Winger.  As for saying something of my own, within the last year I've started seeing Ephesians as Paul's letter about the Ascension.  Chapter 1 is used on that day in the Church.  But Chapter 2 includes this amazing bit: not only has Christ ascended, and not only did He by grace make us dead people into living people by His gracious gift of faith as the Ascended Christ comes to preach peace to you (whether in Ephesus or America), but He has ALREADY made you to ascend too!  Raising YOU up NOW to be seated there in Heaven with Him today.  Preaching on this text some years back, I adapted this bit from a sermon by Rev. William Cwirla:

Panorama of Busch Stadium.Image via Wikipedia
Be astounded once again at all God’s undeserved gifts for you.  And if you are not yet astounded, think of your being seated with Christ in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 2:6) in this way:  It is not as though God is offering you tickets to Opening Day at Busch Stadium providing you straighten up and behave yourself.  Nor is it as though you have to walk up to the Stadium box office to pick up the tickets on reserve for you.  And it is not even like God put the tickets in your hand and you have to decide whether or not you go to the game.  Your salvation is more like you are already at the game in Christ, with a drink in one hand and your food in the other – and you know that you do not deserve to be there.  And yet there you are, and you do not want to be anywhere else in the world – and all you can do is thank the Man that got you there for free.  Those who attend Opening Day will have to leave their seats.  The game will come to an end after the final out – but your life in Christ, true Man and true God, never ends.
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