Sunday, September 25th, 2016
The letter written to the saints at Ephesus offers general instruction in the truths of God’s redemptive work in Christ; the unity of the church among diverse peoples; and proper conduct in the church, the home, and the world.
There are three main themes found in Ephesians. The first is that Christ has reconciled all creation to himself and to God. It also explains that Christ has united people from all nations to himself and to one another in his church. Throughout this beautiful letter there is an unmistakable theme that expresses the truth that Christians must live as new people.
As you read and study together, make sure to work hard at hearing from everyone that has gathered together. Pray for one another and be accountable to applying the word of God to your lives.
Questions for this week:
- In Ephesians 3:1-13, Paul digresses from his original thought to elaborate on the mystery of God-the inclusion of Gentiles in the family of God through the Gospel, and his participation in bringing God’s plan to fruition. In verse 13, because Paul understands God’s call on his life, he asks the church of Ephesus not to worry about his imprisonment. God’s commission triumphed over his tribulation. What about Paul’s attitude can you relate to? What about Paul’s attitude would you like to take in your own tribulations? How can your missional community group be an active part in bringing about that transformation?
- In Ephesians 3:16-19, Paul offers a beautiful prayer for the church of Ephesus. In this prayer, he petitions to God that the Ephesians would be strengthened by His power to know the marvelous and unfathomable nature of God manifest in the love of Christ. Here is a man trained up in rigorous study of God and his ways praying that the Ephesians would embrace an aspect of His love shrouded in mystery so that they would then be filled up with it. What do you think this means? In what ways do you embrace God as mysterious in your life? Does this bring a sense of discomfort? What are some aspects of this that you can discuss this with your missional community group this week?
- In his closing benediction of the first three chapters, Paul offers praise to God. In verse 20, He states that God’s power working in us is able to accomplish far beyond all that we ask or think. Reflect on this for a few minutes this week. Digest it slowly. Do you really sense an awareness of God’s power and presence in your life?
- Are you allowing God to accomplish His purposes or do you sense yourself attempting to take control? What would happen if you relinquished control to Him in certain areas of your life? Would you be more joyful, more serene? How can you invite your missional community into this conversation next week?