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overview of 1:20-23 – What Christ brought about in the world.

EPHESIANS-1-1905019
length: 81:37 - taught on May, 19 2019
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Class Outline:

May 19, 2019
 

EPH 1:19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might

 

EPH 1:20 which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,

 

EPH 1:21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come.

 

EPH 1:22 And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church,

 

EPH 1:23 which is His body, the fulness of Him who fills all in all.

 

The church does not fulfill Christ, but rather she is filled with Him. The church is the fulness of Him like a masterpiece painting is the fulness skill and beauty of the master painter.

 

The painter pours the fulness of himself into his ultimate masterpiece, and the church is Christ’s ultimate masterpiece. Jesus has given us His life, His mind, His Holy Spirit, His inheritance, and foreknown, elected, and predestined just like He is, we share His life and are filled with it. Only of the church is this true, no other people or society or organization are filled with Him.

 

The grace gifts and praise of them, EPH 1:3-14.

Paul’s desire for our lives to be filled with them, EPH 1:15-20.

Christ brought them about when He rose, EPH 1:20-23.

 

LUK 24:17 And He said to them, "What are these words that you are exchanging with one another as you are walking?" And they stood still, looking sad.

 

At the graveside of Jesus, they all thought that He was over and done with. He was too good for this world, too pure, too godly. They were sure they would never see Him again. But, despite human nature and human experience, He has risen again; He lives forever, and He gave His power to all who would accept Him. For those who believe it, all things are possible. A life is within your reach that seemed as far off as earth is from heaven.

 

After the salutation (vv. 1-2), the doxological poem of God’s purposes past, present, and future (vv. 3-14), and Paul’s prayer (vv. 15-20) for our eyes to perceive God’s glory, Paul now launches into doctrine, for the rest of the book is God’s doctrines for the church.

 

EPH 1:19 and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might

 

EPH 1:20 which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,

 

EPH 1:21 far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come.

 

EPH 1:22 And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church,

 

EPH 1:23 which is His body, the fulness of Him who fills all in all.

 

EPH 1:20 ff. are doctrines for the church.

 

Vv. 20-23 are placed into the doctrine as it refers to what God brought about in Christ.

 

These were brought about when Christ was raised from the dead. When He was resurrected, He became the head of all things as a Man. All things were put under His feet. The universe became His footstool. Yet, there was one living thing on the earth that would be filled by Him and that was the church. He became the head of the church and filled the church with His own life. The church doesn’t fill Him or fulfill Him as has been concluded in the past, but the church is filled with Him. She is the only thing in the universe that is filled with His life.

 

We cannot overestimate the impact of the resurrection of Christ. It was absolute proof that a new force of life had come into the world, the power of which was incalculable.

 

This power has always been. It revealed shadows of itself in various places throughout history, but at the incarnation, this power was held by a man, yet it was mostly hidden.

 

During the incarnation, the power of divine life revealed by Christ was in self-denial and sacrifice, hence even His closest disciples didn’t see Him for all that He was. But upon His resurrection, the victory over all opposing forces, He revealed His power.

 

Even though they had seen His miracles, the disciples had no idea of the power of the Godhead that was within Him. Outside of three miracles (Jewish leper, man born blind, mute demon possession) the prophets had performed similar miracles to Jesus.

 

Therefore, miracles alone do not reveal the power of divine life in the person of Christ. Overcoming death, redeeming all mankind, ascending to heaven, and giving His very life as a gift to others were greater revelations of His power.

 

The ultimate expression of the power of the life of Christ is being able to share that very life with fallen men.

 

It’s one thing to be great at something, but if you can make another person, who knows nothing about that thing, become as good as you in doing it, that is an ultimate display of your skill.

 

The clear contrast of power is seen in the cross with our physically brutalized Lord hanging from it, and the resurrected body able to go and do as He pleased, delaying His fantastic journey billions of light years into heaven in order to prepare His brethren for the age to come. The contrast is also seen in the disciples themselves; grief stricken and despairing in Jesus’ death and bold and powerful after His resurrection.

 

His resurrection power became the disciple’s resurrection power.

 

The disciple’s love of their Master made them fearful of self-deception, and so they did not even believe in the resurrection even with the witness of Mary Magdalene who saw Jesus alive, talked to Him and He to her, and touched Him.

 

Think about it. If your greatest love in the world recently died and someone came to you and said they saw them alive again, would you simply say, “Oh, great. That’s a relief.”? Rather, you would deride the witness as pouring more grief onto your already unbearable sorrow. If the dead person was someone you did not know nor care about, you would simply dismiss the idea of their being alive again, but of such a one that you loved, you would be most fearful, adamantly avoiding any hope, which if shown to be a lie, would compound sadness. Some blame Thomas for his doubt. If he didn’t have doubt, we would have to doubt that he loved Jesus at all, yet he did, and that is evidenced by his behavior.

 

Mary and Martha refused to believe that Jesus could raise Lazarus because they loved Lazarus so much.

 

Do we realize that in all the long record of human imposture and illusion, no resurrection story has ever found general credence outside of the biblical revelation? And yet, our system of faith is completely built upon it.

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