Therefore, I think it is better to take Paul’s words to mean that before Christ, the Ephesians were “condemned” in their sins. A person can be “spiritually alive” when the Spirit of God dwells within them, but there is no place in Scripture that speaks of being “spiritually dead.” It is as nonsensical as, “Brightly dark.” They are opposite ideas and cannot be paired together in such a way. The word mystery in Ephesians highlights a special message revealed to Christians through Paul and the apostles, who received it as revelation from God. I truly believe he says this so we will understand the next statement, “…and he made known to us the mystery of his will” (Eph. They were dead in the same way Adam and Eve died the day they ate the fruit in the Garden of Eden; driven away from the tree of life, condemned to death. This was something God had purposed in Himself. Mystery cannot be conceived apart from that revelation. The Mystery of His Will (1:9). Paul E. Billheimer, in his book, Destined for the Throne, observes, “If one wants to know the meaning and purpose of history, he must look at the end, the final outcome, the net result. The mystery of the redemption in Christ, belonging to the eternal plan of God, could be known to men only through revelation - making known. Of … Prayer for the day Just as You have guided all who love You in the past, I know my life is being lovingly directed. A verse by verse study of Ephesians 3:1-13, about the mystery revealed in the gospel of Christ. Which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God. What is the thing that was hidden from God’s people before Jesus came and revealed God’s master plan? 15:24-29; Phil. This means that throughout the OT this was being hinted at, but not directly said. Paul wrote to the Ephesians telling them exactly what the mystery was: When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. The first three chapters set the stage for the final chapters of Ephesians. Copyright © 2020 Juli Camarin, JCBlog.net. A mystery, as we have seen in previous messages, is a secret which only God understands, and which men desperately need to know, but about which they can never find out except through the disclosure of God. In Christ there is no longer any distinction. Eph 3:6 This mystery is that the Gentiles … You notice that Paul describes it as a mystery. It seems that in verse 14 the apostle Paul returns to what he started in verse 1 as he restarts his prayer to God on their behalf. Was the mystery he is talking about in Ephesians 3 the only mystery? Jonh Piper says about that in his Desiring God, Meditations of a Christian Hedonist: The mystery is this: God did not create the union of Christ and the church after … 1:9a). UNITY IN CHRIST! And finally, note his words in Ephesians 3:3–5: My passion is to share as the Word of God [ read more ], This is the MOST IMPORTANT link you'll ever click [ read more ], My mission is spreading the gospel of Jesus [ read more ], Subscribe & receive each post in your inbox [ subscribe now ]. The final and ultimate outcome and goal of events from eternity to eternity, the finished product of all the ages, is the spotless Bride of Christ, united with Him at the Marriage Supper of the Lamb and seated with her heavenly Bridegroom upon the throne of the universe—ruling and reigning with Him over an ever-increasing and expanding Kingdom” (Paul E. Billheimer). And we have a huge role to play both in this age and the one to come. Designed by Elegant Themes | Powered by WordPress. 1:22-23). This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel. 1:8). The Apostle Paul describes the greatest mystery of life to the Ephesians in these words: For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner for Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles -- assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace that was given to me for you, how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. In addition, this week we are introduced to a new term, “mystery” which forms an integral part of the letter to the Ephesians. Did you read that? These Gentiles are actually not Gentiles anymore. Prior to this calling, however, he had persecuted the church as an unbeliever. What [is] the fellowship of the mystery. The PRISONER of the Lord is the chosen vessel to make known God’s secret purpose. Then Paul mentions that this has been lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding (Eph. Even the Bible, whose primary purpose is to reveal and testify of Christ, who is the embodiment of the Triune God… You have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace that was given to me. God, in Christ, is creating for Himself the Church as a redeemed bride (Eph. This starts with making Christ the Lord of your life—this aligns you with God’s eternal purpose and will. This mystery has now been revealed through Jesus Christ: we are all one body. The mystery is not about spiritual versus physical. In the New Testament, the word mystery appears 27 times, and each time it conveys an idea that was previously unknown and something only known as God reveals it. Paul described how these Gentiles used to be cut off from God and the promises of Israel. They fit well in the ABC, ABC structure form. In Ephesians the mystery refers to God’s secret plan to integrate Jew and Gentile into one body. Please try again. But before he enters this prayer, he starts down another valuable road concerning this mystery. That is the part of God’s master plan that was so surprising. 29:13-14a). The mystery is simple, “Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.”. Paul says that he was given the responsibility as a steward of the gospel of … He is hidden, secret, and seemingly un-knowable. I get so wrapped up in day-to-day living that I lose track of the bigger picture. It also carries the weight of the idea, meaning the response is life-changing. "Let a man regard us in this manner, as servants of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God." Available in Paperback & eBook. It is not something that is in itself incomprehensible but something unknown until God chooses to reveal it. So, when God spoke to him, he was a man who was a prisoner. That is the thing the Jews did not expect. The notion will change our viewpoint and, by proximity, our behavior. What had God’s people not expected the Messiah to bring about? A mystery is that “which was not made known to people in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God’s holy apostles and prophets” (Ephesians 3:5). I know I do. Today, will you take a moment to quiet yourself and adjust your heart to His will? The epistle to the Ephesians reveals a remarkable use of the Greek noun μυστήριον (mystērion), rendered “mystery” or “secret” in most English versions. Because of Jesus, death no longer had a claim on them. 6 This mystery is[ a] that the Gentiles are All of this is the gift of God, and when we receive it by faith, we begin to experience this new reality in this life and on this earth. I tried to read the whole Bible with this sort of typology mentality until I realized I was overcomplicating the story and misreading everything. This "mystery" is not like the pagan mysteries, imparted only to the initiated few. by Wes | Nov 21, 2018 | Books of the Bible. Since prophecy is history written in advance, we have history’s final chapter in the Book of Revelation. The first three chapters of the book of Ephesians are packed tightly with a number of different images that Paul uses to describe our reconciliation with God. This insight into God’s eternal redemptive plan had never been disclosed before. Ephesians 3:1–13 explains Paul's ministry in the context of God's revealed mystery. I always thought the mystery was that the Jews were expecting something “physical,” but God had in mind something “spiritual.” I thought the mystery was that all of the “physical” things in the Old Testament were just pointing forward to “spiritual” things in the New Testament. The Lord planned Christ’s redemptive work “before the foundation of the world” ( Ephesians 1:4 ), and has now “made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure” ( Ephesians … He said they had been hopeless aliens and strangers, but because of “the blood of Christ,” they had been reconciled and even exalted. This is an amazing revelation! Before Christ, they would have died without any hope of being raised to immortality. 1:7). 1:10). The Mystery. Ephesians 3:4; Ephesians 3:9; Ephesians 6:19; Romans 16:25; Colossians 1:26-27). 21:1-4). The Mystery Revealed. What if our redemption was meant only for this world? Mystērion is used 27 times in the Greek New Testament, 1 Ephesians having the highest occurrence (6 times). The mystery that was hidden in previous generations, but came to light in Christ, was that the people of God who would “acquire possession” of the promised inheritance would be made up of both Jews and Gentiles. Mystery cannot be conceived apart from that revelation. What was that “mystery”? This royalty language soon gives way to temple language as Paul describes how they are the temple of God where the Holy Spirit dwells. No. Your subscription could not be saved. Ephesians 3:10, CSB: "This is so that God's multi-faceted wisdom may now be made known through the church to the rulers and authorities in the heavens." While we do not completely experience this now, when the times reach their fulfillment in the millennial reign of Christ, then everything will be subject to Him (1 Cor. Don’t we live this way? The Mystery (Ephesians 1:9) Ephesians Bible Study • Study 18 There is a great mystery, hidden from ages and generations, and God has given us the wisdom and … Paul begins in Ephesians 3:1 to state a prayer on behalf of the Gentiles. They are now part of the new Israel, the new creation, and they must live like it. Although all these are not the dispensation of the mystery, they are very closely related. What was surprising about the Gospel? God has an eternal purpose and nothing can thwart it. Don’t we have a narrow view of what was accomplished on the cross? Turning to the closing pages, what emerges as the finished product of the ages? This week we tackle Ephesians 3:1-13, which covers God’s great purpose in forming the church from both Jewish and Gentile families in a slightly different way than last week. Paul reminded them that, prior to Christ, they were “dead in their sins and trespasses.” Obviously, they were not dead in a medical sense, so we ought to ask ourselves in what sense they were dead. How that by revelation he made known to me the mystery; (as I wrote before in few words, by. We saw this in Ephesians 1:9-12: “He made … Please check your spam folders for confirmation email. Paul answers that question in Ephesians. Ephesians 1:17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: They thought the Messiah would come and give them the land back (as the prophets all seemed to say) and the Jews would live happily under the Messiah’s reign forever. It was demonstrated in his apostleship to the Gentiles. Whereof I am made a minister, according to the dispensation of God which is given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God [to fill up the Word of God, to complete it]; Even the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints. The mystery is not that the Jews were hoping for the wrong things. In chapter four, Paul transitions from, These are the blessings of being part of God’s royal family, and transitions to, Since you’re part of God’s royal family, here is how you must live. Paul speaks of the mystery or μuστήριον of the Father's will (1:9) and refers to God's dispensation or οἰκονομία (plan, stewardship, administration, economy) in 1:10 … Paul writes to the Ephesians, “This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 3:6). Ephesians 5:32 (NASB) This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church. He wrote, “So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God.”. It is one thing and one alone: the Eternal Companion of Jesus Christ, wholly God and wholly man. The first three chapters of Ephesians are spent describing in great detail the glorious blessings that Gentile Christians have received. Not life in a metaphorical sense, but literal life. 1 A Mystery is Revealed Paul is given a revelation which he shares with the Ephesians, so that they may have the same enlightenment that was granted him. God's grace as manifested in redemption is a mystery in virtue of its riches and depth - as the expression of God's very nature. A “mystery” in Scripture is a previously hidden truth now divinely revealed, but in which a supernatural element remains unknown despite the revelation. All Rights Reserved. A. God's Amazing Story of Redemption & Atonement, Unleashing the Power of Kingdom Perspective, Topical Articles About Whatever's on My Heart, Questions from Readers, Answers from Juli, A Growing List of Short Chapter Summaries, A Verse by Verse Walk Through Hebrews. We will talk about what that is in a moment. Ephesians 3, Verses 1-4 [⇑ See verse text ⇑] The revealing of the mystery in their generation had great implications (Ephesians 3:3–6). We must live like new creation people if we hope to one day “acquire possession” of the inheritance God has promised to his people. A. So, take just a second and ask yourself: What is the mystery? The first thing to note is that this was never a mystery to God, since He knows all things (1 John 3:20). I will be found by you,” declares the Lord” (Jer. 3 For this reason I, Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus on behalf of you Gentiles— 2 assuming that you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace that was given to me for you, 3 how the mystery was made known to me by revelation, as I have written briefly. the Mystery in Ephesians by John Pester I n the universe there is no greater mystery than the Tri-une God. Note Ephesians 3:11, “GOD’S ETERNAL PURPOSE.” In Ephesians 3 there is emphasis on the communication, the revelation of all of this to man; it is called The Revelation of The Mystery. Many say, as I have often said before, “Paul means they were ‘spiritually dead.’” But as far as I know, the word “spiritually” is never used in Scripture to describe death. These Gentile Christians, by putting their faith in Jesus, had become part of the ruling class. They had been exalted to seats in the “heavenly places” with Jesus. Applying Ephesians to our lives, if we want to be part of the new Israel, the new creation, we also must “walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called.” If we are in Christ, we are no longer Gentiles, we are part of God’s royal family. Paul speaks of the Father's Plan for Salvation (Ephesians 1:3-6), that he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Christ. The mystery - God's purpose of redemption hidden heretofore in His counsels, but now revealed (cf. Here’s the promise, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. When Jesus returns, our Ephesian brothers and sisters will be raised to live forever “in the kingdom of Christ and God.”. God is bringing everything together under the Lordship of Jesus, and He is setting apart for Himself the Church as a redeemed bride. This isn’t just part of the future promise, but part of their present reality as Paul is writing them this letter. This has been the plan from beginning to end. In the book of Ephesians, Paul emphasized (as he always seemed to do) that the Gospel of Jesus Christ was not a new idea. Paul describes himself as "the prisoner of Jesus Christ," because this was his circumstance at the time he wrote to the Ephesian church. Paul wrote to the Ephesians telling them exactly what the mystery was: When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. Start by asking Him to reveal this mystery to you and let understanding of that be the catalyst of change. However, Jesus died and was raised so they could be part of a spiritual kingdom and go up to heaven someday to live with God. In addition to the language about being dead and now being alive, Paul also uses all kinds of language that makes one think of royalty. The “fellowship of the mystery” is the Church the Body of Christ, the secret group of believers that God said nothing about until the resurrected, ascended, and glorified Lord Jesus Christ revealed it first to the Apostle Paul, and to us through his epistles, Romans through Philemon. Hear more about the mysteries of God in this 15-minute Billy Graham message. We have been redeemed so God could reveal His plan and will to us, and this is it: “…to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ” (Eph. Eph 3:9 And to make all [men] see. The office or stewardship of this mystery. Paul was called as a minister to the Gentiles, though he preached to anyone who would listen. Everything Jesus accomplished was part of God’s plan since “before the foundation of the world.” But there was one thing that was surprising about the Gospel, one thing that had been a secret or a “mystery” before, but now was revealed by the Gospel. the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to the sons of men in other generations as it has now been revealed to his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit. This is why God chose us, blessed us with every spiritual blessing, and lavished all wisdom and understanding on us—so we could understand His will and get on board with all that He has been doing since the beginning of time! “HAVING MADE KNOWN UNTO US THE MYSTERY OF HIS WILL, ACCORDING TO HIS GOOD PLEASURE WHICH HE HATH PURPOSED IN HIMSELF.” Here the statement is made that God has made known “THE MYSTERY OF HIS WILL,” His purpose. 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