Blessed in the Son
March 20, 2022

Blessed in the Son

Preacher:
Series:
Passage: Ephesians 1:7-12
Service Type:

Scripture:  Ephesians 1:7-12

Subject: Blessed

Central Theme: Identity of Blessing

Objective Statement:  Our “in Christ “identity can be clearly seen in three ways that Christ has blessed us.
Keyword:  Ways

Points:

  1. In Christ we are redeemed. (v.7-8)
  2. In Christ we are destined. (v.9-10)
  3. In Christ we are heirs. (v.11-12)

 

Introduction:

Connection:

  • Alright Trinity Baptist Church- I’m going to give you a little “inside baseball” when it comes to preaching.
  • The typical pastor at a church like ours speaks 2-3 times a week.
  • Right now I’m writing 3 messages a week at between 6-10 pages a piece.
  • You want to have engaging content and ideas to illustrate the points you are making.
  • So, years ago someone came up with the idea of the “sermon illustration” book.
  • It can be helpful, if only to spur on other ideas.
  • I don’t use them very often, but every once in a while I will.
  • This week I realized the age of the sermon illustration book that I have (I think I stole it from my dad 😊 ) when I looked up sermon illustrations on the word “rich” or “riches” and found this one:

The Beverly Hills Rich
Beverly Hills, California, is a city of superlatives.  Here live some of the richest and most famous people in the world.
The town of 33,000 people is rich.  Average income is $20,000.  Choice business property sells for $100,000 a front foot.  A home remodeling job may cost up to $250,000.
It's expensive.  Baber Jay Sebring, who clips Frank Sinatra’s and Marlon Brando’s hari, charges $25 a job, and $40 a house call.

  • If you could buy property in Beverly Hills for $100,000 today, I suggest you do it.
  • It’s amazing how time changes things.

Tension:

  • We are in a series studying Paul’s letter to the Ephesians that we are calling “We are rich”.
  • The reason we are calling it that, as we have said, is because this is the theme of the letter.
  • Ephesians can be summed up in two words, “In Christ”.
  • Today we are looking at the second part of Paul’s praise anthem that starts in verse 13 and goes through verse 14.
  • This is an identity shaping passage.
  • Identity is a big deal today.
  • The concept of social media makes us all have a platform. We have an online identity.  We post and portray ourselves a certain way online, and the truth is the way we are on there and the way we are in real life may be two different identities.
  • We have terms that get thrown about today that are hot topics: “gender identity”, “sexual identity”, and even “identity politics”.
  • You will always be messed up in these topics and in your own identity if you do not think this way: “I am who God says I am”.
  • He created us. He made the world.  He also died for us.  He is God and we are not.
  • And what we are learning in this book is that we have an identity that should be primary.
  • We are “in Christ”.
  • Or we are not in Christ.
  • If we are in Christ, then this passage tells us that we are blessed.
  • Verses 3-14 tell us that we are blessed in God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.
  • Today we are going to see our identity as blessed in God the Son.

Body:

Our “in Christ “identity can be clearly seen in three ways that Christ has blessed us.

1. In Christ we are redeemed. (v.7-8)

Ephesians 1:7-8

(7)  In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

Explanation:

  • These two verses are chalk full of intensity and meaning in regard to our blessing. Let’s talk about each phrase.
  • “In whom”-
    • This refers back to last person mentioned, namely Jesus Christ.
    • This whole sentence, and really the whole book is about what it means to be in Christ.
    • It is in Christ that we were chosen by God the Father to be holy and blameless, adopted and accepted.
    • Now it is through Christ that we are blessed. Namely here it is through Christ that we are redeemed.
    • That leads to this word…
  • “redemption”
    • What does the Bible mean when it says we are redeemed?
    • The word here is “απολυτρωσιν”.
      • It is defined as “a releasing effected by payment of a ransom by Thayer.
      • Strong defines it as “the act ransome in full, riddance, deliverance, redemption.”
    • The idea is that there is a payment that releases someone from the bondage.
    • The Bible makes it clear that the wages of sin is death.
    • There was a debt that needed to be paid so that we could be free.
    • In the ancient world there were slaves that were sold at auction, and there were abolitionists who would go to these auctions and “redeem”/”lutruo” the slaves from the slave market.
    • They would then set them free! They were no longer owned by the slave owner.
    • What was the currency of the ransom payment- the redemption- was made?
  • “through his blood”
    • Jesus Christ paid for our sin and bought us our freedom by shedding His blood on the cross.
  • This isn’t the only place where it says that we were redeemed by blood. It’s all over the Bible!
    • When Adam and Eve realized that they were naked they tried to cover their nakedness in the garden with fig leaves. God came and covered them with the skins of an animal.
    • God rejected Cain’s offering of vegetables, and accepted Able’s offering of an animal.
    • When God instituted the ceremonial law and the sacrificial system he made it clear that blood was necessary for the forgiveness of sins.

Leviticus 17:11

(11)  For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

  • In the New Testament we are told precisely why these sacrifices were instituted and what to what they were referring.

Hebrews 9:11-14

(11)  But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building;

(12)  Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.

(13)  For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:

(14)  How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

  • Paul says here that our redemption is “through His blood”. He said the same thing in Colossians.

Colossians 1:14

(14)  In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:

  • Colossians says that the redemption leads to the same thing it says here in Ephesians, namely…
  • “forgiveness of sins”
    • The payment was to pay off a debt.
    • It is a sin debt.
    • We are in bondage to our sin.
    • The wages of sin is death.
    • You need to be saved. Saved from what?
    • Saved from the bondage of sin, the penalty of sin, and the presence of sin.
    • Sin when it is finished brings forth death.
    • Because Jesus Christ shed his blood for us our sin debt can be paid and our sins can be forgiven.
    • What do we call a debt that his been paid by another? The debt has been forgiven.
    • How could he do it?
  • “according to the riches of his grace”
    • God gave us what was most precious to Him.
    • He gave us His Son.
    • But this payment of our sin wasn’t the end of His giving.
    • If the blessings and the forgiveness are according to the riches of His grace then the next word I want to point out is obvious…
  • “abounded”

(8)  Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence;

  • He hath abounded…
  • So, think about what we just established.
    • We were redeemed.
    • Our ransom- our sin debt- was paid.
    • We are no longer slaves.
    • No, God, in the riches of His grace has paid for our redemption by the blood of His dear Son.
    • But not only did He redeem us from our sin debt, he has adopted us into His family.
    • We are accepted in the beloved.
    • He didn’t just buy us off of the slave auction. He brought us home to live with Him!  We have are His kids.  We are part of His family!
    • All because of Jesus.
    • All because of the shed blood of Jesus!

Application:

  • If you are not in Christ, there are more than enough riches for you to be saved, redeemed, bought back, redeemed, and adopted into God’s family!

Transition Sentence:

  • Here is our identity- We are blessed because in Christ we are redeemed!
  • We are also blessed because…

2. In Christ we are destined. (v.9-10)

Ephesians 1:9-10

(9)  Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:

  • A statement is made here about God the Father in regard to this redemption through Christ, and how that He has abounded unto us.
  • There is a current aspect to this. What is it?
  • That God, in Christ, has made known to us the “mystery of his will”.
  • The word “mystery”, musterion in the Greek, is a word used in the New Testament that is used to describe something that is now revealed that had been previously undisclosed.
  • It’s something that was a secret, or hidden.
  • Now it is being revealed.
  • What was being held secret?
  • What was undisclosed that is now disclosed is how that Christ would redeem us. There is an “already/not yet” to our redemption.
  • We have already been forgiven of our sins.
  • We are already purchased from the penalty of sin by His blood.
  • But what does the redemption mean for us in the future?

(10)  That in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him:

  • God is going to so order the world that there will be a reconciliation of mankind to Himself, and from the earth that is cursed by sin to a new heaven and new earth because of Christ.
  • You might be saying? Explain it.  What do you mean?
  • The best way I know to explain this verse is with another. Are you ready to be excited?  Alright- here we go:

Revelation 21:1-7

(1)  And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.

(2)  And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

(3)  And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.

(4)  And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.

(5)  And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.

(6)  And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

(7)  He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

  • You see we are already redeemed.
  • But there is a redemption yet to come.
  • We who are in Christ have a destination.
  • We are citizens of another country.

Hebrews 13:14

(14)  For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.

  • If you are in Christ, your primary citizenship is not Findlay, nor Ohio, nor America- Our first citizenship is heaven.
  • We long for and belong to a home we’ve never been to, a place we’ve never seen.

Hebrews 11:8-10

(8)  By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went.

(9)  By faith he sojourned in the land of promise, as in a strange country, dwelling in tabernacles with Isaac and Jacob, the heirs with him of the same promise:

(10)  For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God.

Transition Sentence:

  • In Christ we have been redeemed.
  • In Christ we have a destination…we will be redeemed.

3. In Christ we are heirs. (v.11-12)

Ephesians 1:11-12

(11)  In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:

(12)  That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.

Explanation:

  • The words “in whom” refer to Christ.
  • It is in Christ that we have obtained an inheritance.
  • God chose a destination before hand. We who are in Christ are predestined to the purpose that God is working out.
  • Namely, that all things in heaven and earthed will be gathered together in Christ.
  • This is our inheritance.
  • Because we’ve been adopted in Christ, and our destination in Christ is heaven, we will enjoy this position and this destination as sons and daughters of Christ for all eternity!
  • Why did he do this? Why is He doing it?

“that we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ”.

  • God provided salvation through Christ by sending His Son to live a perfect life, die on the cross, shed his blood, and resurrecting from the dead.
  • He did this so that those who would trust in Christ would be holy and without blame before Him in love, adopted, accepted, redeemed, forgiven, destined and heirs to an inheritance- eternity in Christ forever!
  • What is our inheritance? Eternal life.
  • Eternal life starts now and lasts forever.
  • What will it look like in eternity?

John 14:1-6

(1)  Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.

(2)  In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

(3)  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

(4)  And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.

(5)  Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?

(6)  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

  • S. Lewis said this:

“…the hills and valleys of Heaven will be to those you know experience not as a copy is to an original, nor as a substitute is to the genuine article, but as the flower to the root, or the diamond to the coal.”

  • Randy Alcorn envisioned the relationship between Earth and Heaven in his book Safely home when he wrote of someone experiencing the new heaven and new earth:

“Compared to what he now beheld, the world he’d come from was a land of shadows, colorless and two-dimensional.  This place was fresh and captivating, resonating with color and beauty.  He could not only see and hear it, but feel and smell and taste it.  Every hillside, every mountain every waterfall, ever frolicking animal in the fields seemed to beckon him to come join them, to come from the outside and plunge into the inside.  This whole world had the feel of cool water on a blistering August afternoon.  The light beckoned him to dive in with abandon, to come join the great adventure…IT’s the substance that casts all those shadows in the other world.  The circles there are copies of spheres here.  The squares there are copies of cubes here.  The triangles there are copies of the pyriamids here.  Earth was a flatland.  This is..well, the inside is bigger than the outside, isn’t it?”

  • The New Heaven and New Earth will be an amazing place.
  • The fact that this is our destination for those in Christ suggests that we are going to a place that God owns, and has made.
  • The fact that it is our inheritance means that it is God’s purpose and plan to share this place and to share Himself with us. “I go to prepare a place for you, and if I go to prepare a place for you I will come again and receive you unto myself that where I am there ye may be also.”
  • It is all a part of our inheritance.
  • And it is who we are in Christ.

Transition Sentence:

  • We are blessed in Christ because we are…
    • Redeemed
    • Destined
    • Heirs…

Conclusion:

Application:

Revelation 21:6-8

(6)  And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.

(7)  He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.

  • But there is another destination that we must talk about.

(8)  But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

  • In Christ we are redeemed, destined, and heirs.
  • Outside of Christ we also have a destination…

Inspiration:

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