LESSON 3-Chptr 2-EPHESIANS
Our Position in Christ
The Church as the Household of God
Eph. 2:6 and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
Eph. 2:7 (for)that (purpose) in the ages to come He might show the exceeding (superabundant) riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
2:7 Timeless perpetuity (the eternal future) will continue to tell of the surpassing excellence of His grace towards us. Grace exhibits excessive evidence of the fact that we are embraced in God's kindness because we are associated (positioned) in Christ. Mirror
Ephesians 2:7, NLT: "So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus."
BECAUSE WE ARE BELIEVERS IN CHRIST (ONE WITH HIM), AND WE ARE MEMBERS OF HIS BODY AND WE SIT TOGETHER IN THE HEAVENLIES.
The sense is, we are raised up with Christ, and are made to partake of his honor and glory in order that others may forever be impressed wish a sense of the divine goodness and mercy to us.
The exceeding riches of his grace - The “abounding, overflowing” riches of grace; compare the notes, Ephesians 1:7. This is Paul’s favorite expression - an expression so beautiful and so full of meaning that it will bear often to be repeated.
Ephesians 1:7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.
Revelation 4:4 Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and on the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white [a]robes; and they had crowns of gold on their heads. NKJ
Contrary to common Christian understanding, "elders" are not "rulers" over the people but rather representatives of the people. That is, the fact that there are elders indicates that the people have a voice in the council of God. He (Jesus) represents us in the divine government or kingdom.
What is Kingdom?
The Kingdom of God is the Father's Domain (King’s Domain) in contrast to this campaign of rebellion we know of as HUMAN SOCIETY/WORLD SYSTEM/BABYLON. The Kingdom of God is the Father's RECLAMATION PROJECT, to capture again the earth's RESOURCES for the purposes of the Kingdom of God. As a SON, indwelled by HIS SPIRIT, you become the INSTRUMENT by which he will affect the LIBERATION of his ASSETS in the earth. His purpose is to bring the PEOPLE, the STRUCTURES (Humanistic designs), the earth itself into HARMONY with His PURPOSE.
Is there a difference between the Kingdom of God and Kingdom of Heaven? Some say, yes; some say no. In my research I found out they are the same. The phrase “kingdom of God” occurs 68 times in 10 different New Testament books, while “kingdom of heaven” occurs only 32 times, and only in the Gospel of Matthew. Based on Matthew’s exclusive use of the phrase and the Jewish nature of his Gospel, some interpreters have concluded that Matthew was writing concerning the millennial kingdom while the other New Testament authors were referring to the universal kingdom.
When Christ was speaking to the rich young ruler, He uses “kingdom of heaven” and “kingdom of God” interchangeably. “Then Jesus said to his disciples, ‘I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven’” (Matthew 19:23). In the very next verse, Christ proclaims, “Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God” (verse 24).
Mark and Luke used “kingdom of God” where Matthew used “kingdom of heaven” frequently in parallel accounts of the same parable Compare Matthew 11:11-12 with Luke 7:28; Matthew 13:11with Mark 4:11 and Luke 8:10; Matthew 13:24 with Mark 4:26; Matthew 13:31 with Mark 4:30 and Luke 13:18; Matthew 13:33 with Luke 13:20; Matthew 18:3 with Mark 10:14 and Luke 18:16; and Matthew 22:2 with Luke 13:29.
In each instance, Matthew used the phrase “kingdom of heaven” while Mark and/or Luke used “kingdom of God.”
The Kingdom is a Spiritual Kingdom entered in by people who are born of the Spirit, and lived in by people who are baptized in the Spirit, walk in the Spirit, pray in the Spirit, sing in the Spirit, and minister in the Spirit; use their gifts and talents for the enablement of others, i.e. WALK IT OUT, MINISTERING TO EVERYONE 24/7.
The kingdom of God means the rule or reign of God—in the entire universe, in the world, and in our hearts. The kingdom of God is within you. Paul said in: Romans 14:17 "for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit."
2. The entire ministry of Jesus is understood in relation to this important declaration of the presence of the kingdom. His ethical teachings, for example, cannot be understood apart from the announcement of the kingdom. This is what Jesus preached, the Gospel of the Kingdom of God.
However, in our view there are several opposing kingdoms, one is the world system. Principals in the world system are exactly opposite of the Kingdom of God.
·Don’t forgive or forget.
We will continue with Lesson 3 next week.
The blessings of the Lord are upon you whether by blood, adoption/sonship or assignment. The blessing of the LORD makes a person rich, and he adds no sorrow with it. Prov. 10:22
David & Mary Sue
Becca Card, Vice-President
Firestorm Ministries, Int'l.