Grace & Peace – A study in Ephesians


Day 1: Eph. 1:1-14

Ephesians 1: God has chosen you! Adopted you! Saved You by the work Jesus did on the cross, and given you a guarantee of this – the Holy Spirit! Life is good!

Let’s start with verse 1 of chapter 1. I bet you looked right past this one :o)

“Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,”

Paul was so secure in the call of God on his life that he boldly wrote, “chosen by the will of God”

I’m pretty sure there are seasons we could really use a dose of this kind of confidence in our call and in the things we are assigned in life right now. . He knew the role God had called him to play in his season and walked in confidence in the authority God had given him. So this is our first challenge….. Seek God for confidence and assurance that you are acting and walking in “by the will of God”. I believe as we dig into this book, we will come out with this assurance. If you are in the will of God, and acting on His promptings… you will have PEACE & GRACE in each situation. Nothing like starting off with a challenge…

Walk confidently in the call of God!!! No matter what!

Grace and Peace…
I love it when Paul begins by “giving” this blessing to the people he is writing to. Ever notice that a lot of the books in the Bible written by Paul start out this way? If you study the life of Paul it is obvious why He starts with this… He knew the value of Grace and Peace from God about His own life and he also wanted others to receive these free gifts. They are two of the most powerful things God gives… They are new and fresh for each day…. and I sure need them!!!!

What is Grace?
One of my favorite definitions is “the divine ability to do God’s will, His way, with joy”.

How do we get it?
Ask (PRAY and seek God in every circumstance) for His way of doing & seeing things… and then just watch how that free gift of Peace will overtake our mindset for each situation, a settled heart, (worry not needed).

Most of the time, we do not have God’s grace and peace simply because we did not ask for God’s help and perspective, we just did it ourselves…. It’s pride – a lack of need for God in each situation.

But Watch this:
When we admit our need for God: And receive His free gifts each day… These two characteristics (Grace+Peace) combined produce a divine JOY in the middle of any situation, regardless of circumstances. I desire to live each day with unmeasured joy – Don’t You?

Joy is not the absence of trial – it is the ability to walk through it with God’s peace and grace overtaking your mindset = it’s CHOOSING to trust God.

Don’t forget Grace & Peace is free everyday! It’s Gods way of helping us to accomplish ALL that is in our path for the day!

As we grab ahold of this, watch how much more “Armed&Dangerous” we will walk through our day!

“All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with EVERY spiritual blessing” When we choose to Praise God in-spite of, in the midst of, and through all your daily trials: Our perspective changes and we see ALL that God has blessed us with: Did you catch this nugget ?  Look at Verse 3 My friend Catherine says it this way: “God is a LAVISH giver!”  Think about it! Let it sink in! God who is RICH in kindness & grace has LAVISHED these things on us: Eph 1:3-8

 

EVEN BEFORE HE MADE THE WORLD; GOD LOVED YOU AND CHOSE YOU!!!

Imagine- Our incredible Creator… was thinking about our lives before he even created the world. He was planning our purpose and loving us already. We were created for excellence! His best creative resource was put into you! Stand up and be confident today! “For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.” – Ephesians 1:4
He purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. THE ultimate act of Love, God planed for you to be seen as without fault in His eyes. THIS is how God views you because of JESUS>
“Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. 5God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. 6So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. 7He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. 8He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding.”
Photo: I LOVE these words: ALL, BLESSED, RICH, LAVISHED. THESE are words described in Ephesians when it talks of how much God cares for us. Look at Verse 3: "All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with EVERY spiritual blessing" When we choose to Praise God in-spite of, in the midst of, and through all your daily trials: Our perspective changes and we see ALL that God has blessed us with: Did you catch this nugget from Catherine a few days ago? "God is a LAVISH giver!" Think about it! Let it sink in! God who is RICH in kindness & grace has LAVISHED these things on us: Eph 1:3-8 - Have a good day! Pr. Elana
Think for a minute about adoption. As the child grows older, It is the adoptive child’s biggest hurdle to believe this love is enough, to feel accepted and loved by the adoptive parents because there was rejection in their history. The love of the Adoptive parent is sometimes apparent to all but the adopted. Think about how this child was actually chosen by their parents, picked out and purposefully added to the family, before they were anything important to the world. In fact, usually they are adopted out of a bad situation – plucked out of the bad environment, and placed into a loving family with a new legacy of family and opportunities to succeed. The love of the parent is not obligatory – it is a free gift and a choice. THIS is what God has done for you and me! Think about it! Do you believe His love for you?
I LOVE these words: ALL, BLESSED, RICH, LAVISHED. THESE are words described in Ephesians when it talks of how much God cares for us.
“God has now revealed to us his mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill his own good pleasure. 10And this is the plan: At the right time he will bring everything together under the authority of Christ—everything in heaven and on earth. 11Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for he chose us in advance, and he makes everything work out according to his plan”..
Ephesians 1:11bRight now- we can participate in this great plan by allowing Jesus to “take the wheel” –  to be in control. To be our authority. Our LORD> This is our confidence as we obey – HE MAKES EVERYTHING WORK OUT ACCORDING TO HIS PLAN!!! We can give up our control freak side and just trust!!!!

“12God’s purpose was that who were the first to trust in Christ would bring praise and glory to God. 13And now you Gentiles have also heard the truth, the Good News that God saves you. And when you believed in Christ, he identified you as his own by giving you the Holy Spirit, whom he promised long ago. 14The Spirit is God’s guarantee that he will give us the inheritance he promised and that he has purchased us to be his own people. He did this so we would praise and glorify him.”

God’s purpose as you trust Him is for you to bring Him Glory and Praise by the confidence you receive knowing:

No matter how long you have been saved: This is comforting and our foundation of faith.

He chose you – in advance –

You are in the right place at the right time according to His will.

He gives you enough grace and peace for each day

He sees you faultless because of Jesus. Jesus’ work on the cross was just for you – He purchased your freedom (We were slaves to sin- & now we are FREE)

He adopted you into His family – you have the created lineage and heritage now! And He cares about your life – He is the ultimate family planner, who is working everything in your life according to HIS plan.

He gives us a guarantee that he is with us & we are in his family, Proof that he will never leave us or forsake us: The deposit of the Holy Spirit.  Our conscience, our daily guide, our comforter, proof that we are now changed. from old life to new life with purpose. born again.

Whatever you were before- no name is higher than the name of Jesus, no power is greater. He has chosen and adopted you and is loving you!  You are worth it!

What was your favorite verse in this portion of Scripture? memorize it :o)

Discover how this verse fits into your circumstances? Now speak the verse out over your circumstances.

Ask God to help you believe you are loved, blessed, chosen, adopted, favored, redeemed and forgiven.

Don’t forget to receive through prayer that Grace and Peace God has for you in each circumstance :o)

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