We’ve been working our way through the book of Ephesians, learning to identify ourselves according to God’s definitions and not those of the world or the enemy. (Catch up here) Today we’re learning about our part in God’s eternal plan, which He has revealed to us through Scripture. Many generations throughout time waited with great faith that the days when the mysteries of God revealed would come. As you are discovering your God-given purpose, remember this position of privilege was longed for by so many before us!As you discover your God-given purpose in God's eternal plan, remember the position of privilege you hold that was longed for by generations of God's people who went before. Click To Tweet
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The Mysteries of God Revealed
Ephesians 3:1-5 – When I think of all this, I, Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus for the benefit of you Gentiles . . . assuming, by the way, that you know God gave me the special responsibility of extending his grace to you Gentiles. As I briefly wrote earlier, God himself revealed his mysterious plan to me. As you read what I have written, you will understand my insight into this plan regarding Christ. God did not reveal it to previous generations, but now by his Spirit he has revealed it to his holy apostles and prophets.
In Hebrews 11, the Bible recounts for us the stories of many in the Old Testament who lived lives marked by faith. Their faith in the One True God and in His promises caused God to declare them righteous in His sight, but each of them died waiting for a day when those promises would be fulfilled. (read Hebrews 11:39-40 here)
Then, Jesus came, and He WAS the mysteries of God revealed – the long promised Messiah!
Throughout His earthly ministry He taught the disciples about God’s eternal plan. Then, after His death, resurrection, and ascension, He revealed the intricate details of His purposes and plans through the Holy Spirit to the apostles and prophets. Those men recorded all of it for us, again, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and now we have received these revelations in the pages of the Bible. What unimaginable privilege!
2 Peter 1:20-21 – Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit and they spoke from God.
God’s Eternal Plan
What was God’s eternal plan? To unite everyone, Jew and Gentile, under Jesus and give us all equal access to this new and wonderful identity.
God’s eternal plan is the Gospel!
It is the Good News that we all get to be a part of His body. We all get to be chosen, purchased and adopted by Him. We all have a chance to come to Him and be made right forever in His sight thanks to the blood of Jesus.
Discovering Your God-Given Purpose
Ephesians 3:8-13 –Though I am the least deserving of all God’s people, he graciously gave me the privilege of telling the Gentiles about the endless treasures available to them in Christ. I was chosen to explain to everyone this mysterious plan that God, the Creator of all things, had kept secret from the beginning.
God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display His wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was His eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly and confidently into God’s presence. So please don’t lose heart because of my trials here. I am suffering for you, so you should feel honored.
The Good News of the Gospel IS God’s plan, and His purpose in revealing it to us was so that we would then reveal it to others. If you are discovering your God-given purpose, look no further. This is it! As part of our new identity, we’ve been called to carry His message, not only to this world, but according to this passage, to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places!The Good News of the Gospel IS God’s eternal plan, and His purpose in revealing it to us was so that we would then reveal it to others. As part of our new identity, we’ve been called to carry His message! Click To Tweet
Understanding God’s Plan
Isn’t it so easy to think of the angels and demons, and all those unseen powers that we know so little about as somehow far above us? We assume they have been given all the answers we’re still trying to find about all things eternal.
But the Bible tells us we’ve been given an identity that was never offered to those beings.
We’ve been given the opportunity to be redeemed!
We don’t know exactly how many angelic beings chose to reject God and follow Satan. We also don’t know how many may have rebelled in their own ways at other times. What we do know, according to Scripture, is that once those beings made their choice, it was made. They were condemned forever. God didn’t give them a second chance, as He has so graciously given us.
He didn’t send His Son to die for them. He hasn’t offered to them the chance to be eternally united to Jesus as His body and bride.
1 Peter 1:9- – The reward for trusting Him will be the salvation of your souls. This salvation was something even the prophets wanted to know more about when they prophesied about this gracious salvation prepared for you. They wondered what time or situation the Spirit of Christ within them was talking about when He told them in advance about Christ’s suffering and His great glory afterward.
They were told that their messages were not for themselves, but for you. And now this Good News has been announced to you by those who preached in the power of the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. It is all so wonderful that even the angels are eagerly watching these things happen.
(Most other translations word that last part something like, “these things into which even the angels long to look.)
Fulfilling Your God-Given Purpose in God’s Eternal Plan
I hope you feel as special as I do as you realize your identity as the recipients of the revelation of God’s plan.
His salvation is available to us!
We have His inerrant, inspired Word at our fingertips!
People throughout time have longed to stand where we stand. The angels themselves look in awe at the grace God has poured out on us! Let’s never again take it for granted, and live each day of our lives with our hearts set on taking this Good News to every corner of this earth, and on into the heavenly places!
Isaiah 55:6-11 – Seek the Lord while you can find Him. Call on Him now while He is near. Let the wicked change their ways and banish the very thought of doing wrong. Let them turn to the Lord that He may have mercy on them. Yes, turn to our God, for He will forgive generously.
“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And My ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so My ways are higher than your ways and My thoughts higher than your thoughts.
The rain and snow come down from the heavens and stay on the ground to water the earth. They cause the grain to grow, producing seed for the farmer and bread for the hungry. It is the same with My Word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it.
*How about you? How does it make you feel to know your identity and purpose is one that has been longed for by many throughout time? Do you believe you are fulfilling your purpose to demonstrate the Good News of the Gospel to both this world and the unseen world? Why, or why not?
If you enjoyed this post, check out the rest of the Identified Series as we work our way through the whole book of Ephesians to discover everything God has to teach us about who we are in Him.
***Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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