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Ephesians overview – 3:14-19, part 29: Inner man; the heart.

EPHESIANS-1-200506
length: 69:42 - taught on May, 6 2020
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Class Outline:

Wednesday May 6, 2020
 
 

Anticipating the attack of the Assyrians on Jerusalem, king Hezekiah got his engineers to divert one of the springs outside the wall to construct an underwater canal that would feed water to the city while hiding water from the invader. It was smart, but it was not what God demanded of His people.

 

ISA 22:11

And you made a reservoir between the two walls

For the waters of the old pool.

But you did not depend on Him who made it,

Nor did you take into consideration Him who planned it long ago.

 

When God chose Jerusalem, He knew all about its vulnerable water supply. Nothing is chance or accident. Jerusalem’s shortcomings made her a place that demanded perpetual faith. If the walls are thin, the water drying up, and the fierce army surrounding the city wants you dead, you have to say, “This is the Lord’s city. He will defend her. Greater is He who is with us that he who is with them.” Every believer in our age is God’s temple. You don’t need to change your circumstances or even question them, but you do need to throw yourself in faith upon the One who adopted you.

 

You have frailties and shortcomings, they perpetually demand your faith, and with that faith, despite them, you will do God’s will rather than using them as a crutch to sin.

 

The phrase (qodesh la-Yavah) adorned the high priest’s turban.

 

EXO 28:36-38

“You shall also make a plate of pure gold and shall engrave on it, like the engravings of a seal, 'Holy to the Lord.' 37 And you shall fasten it on a blue cord, and it shall be on the turban; it shall be at the front of the turban. 38 And it shall be on Aaron's forehead”

 

Qodesh la-Yavah = holy to the Lord. Everything that belongs to the Lord falls under these to words. 

 

A Christian must understand that he has been made new by the grace of God and not because of anything good about himself or anything he has done. Salvation is by faith and not by works.

 

That proper understanding will lead to works. The Christian who understands who he is in Christ will begin to take the steps to be that type of person in his life. To begin to walk will lead to more understanding and more challenges. The challenges are fine, in fact, the challenge keeps the Christian from idolatry.

 

Every man desires things in the material world and every one of them realize they are insufficient to attain them. They discover their insufficient self. It is when this insufficient self partners with the self that desires that idolatry arises. The idol promises to fulfill the desire for a required sacrifice.

 

God’s gospel does not promise deliverance from worldly inability, meaning that it doesn’t offer the fulfillment of the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, and the boastful pride of life. The gospel offers something far greater, the deliverance from sin and death.

 

If the spiritual life were too easy, I would far more easily become distracted, deceived, and look to bow at the altar of idols.

 

The challenge to live the spiritual life of Christ keeps me honest. It keeps me in the understanding that I only am what I am by the grace of God. No false god, no idol is going to fulfill what I’ve been called to. And so, I do God’s will in humility, trusting in His word and the power of the Holy Spirit within. The world’s idols are far too weak for what I have to do.

 

So then, the challenges of the spiritual life, high as the heavens as they are, keeps me obedient and protected from the enemy. My pursuit of the challenges transforms my heart, creating deep-seated faith, virtue, and divine character within me.

 

“All my heart” is used of both God and man = no lingering doubt about the purpose, plan, and power of God.

 

“All my heart” is an interesting phrase. We’ve heard it thrown around so much that we hardly give it a second thought. Yet it is used in the scripture of both man and God.

 

The context of the use of this phrase is very important.

 

JER 32:26-35

Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, saying, 27 "Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too difficult for Me?" 28 Therefore thus says the Lord, "Behold, I am about to give this city into the hand of the Chaldeans and into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and he shall take it. 29 "And the Chaldeans who are fighting against this city shall enter and set this city on fire and burn it, with the houses where people have offered incense to Baal on their roofs and poured out libations to other gods to provoke Me to anger. 30 "Indeed the sons of Israel and the sons of Judah have been doing only evil in My sight from their youth; for the sons of Israel have been only provoking Me to anger by the work of their hands," declares the Lord. 31 "Indeed this city has been to Me a provocation of My anger and My wrath from the day that they built it, even to this day, that it should be removed from before My face, 32 because of all the evil of the sons of Israel and the sons of Judah, which they have done to provoke Me to anger —  they, their kings, their leaders, their priests, their prophets, the men of Judah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem. 33 "And they have turned their back to Me, and not their face; though I taught them, teaching again and again, they would not listen and receive instruction. 34 "But they put their detestable things in the house which is called by My name, to defile it. 35 "And they built the high places of Baal that are in the valley of Ben-hinnom to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire to Molech, which I had not commanded them nor had it entered My mind that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.

 

The drastic turn about to be spoken is not the Lord changing His mind, but Him fulfilling His covenant promise to all in Israel who have believed in His redemption.

 

JER 32:36-42

"Now therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel concerning this city of which you say, 'It is given into the hand of the king of Babylon by sword, by famine, and by pestilence.' 37 "Behold, I will gather them out of all the lands to which I have driven them in My anger, in My wrath, and in great indignation; and I will bring them back to this place and make them dwell in safety. 38 "And they shall be My people, and I will be their God; 39 and I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me always, for their own good, and for the good of their children after them. 40 "And I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; and I will put the fear of Me in their hearts so that they will not turn away from Me. 41 "And I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul. 42 "For thus says the Lord, 'Just as I brought all this great disaster on this people, so I am going to bring on them all the good that I am promising them.

 

All God’s heart means that there is zero variance in His plans. And He has begun this in the church.

 

The fulfillment of this promise, a new heart, and God fulfilling with all His heart, has begun in every church age believer.

 

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