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According to Ephesians 2, God’s grace is portrayed as coming onto the scene like an explosion that changes everything. We have been rescued from where we used to be, transforming our position in relation to God, ultimatly so we can be a vessel for the Holy Spirit. When Christ took the punishment for our sin, demonstrating his love for us, it changed our position. We have shifted from one place to another; from an alienated hopeless place into glorious freedom. Because of God’s great love and grace we have been:
1.Raised from the dead- 2: 1-5 1 “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh[a] and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.”
-Since the fall in the garden of eden, we have been dead in our sins. In our selfish desires to find what satisfies we naturally tend to move towards the things that separate us from God. When Christ comes on the scene, and takes our punishment, we come to life with Christ. Without Christ we would continue on our path in gratifying the cravings of our flesh. Christ has changed our postion from dead to alive.
Because of God’s great love and grace we have been:
- 2. Reconciled to God- 2: 12-13-“ remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”
- - remember - we were away from God, away from love and peace, without hope- but now (because of Christ) we have be reconciled to God.
Because of God’s great love and grace we have been:
3.United with God’s people – 2: 19-22- “Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”
- As we come alive, and are reconciled with Christ we are to become more like Christ by loving God and others. The only way to implement God's Characteristics, we need fellowhship and unity, and the body of christ as a whole as well us us individually, will be a dwelling for the Holy Spirit to move through.
Realizing the capacity of God’s Love and mercy transforms our heart to a position of:
- 1. Humility- 8-10- “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. “
- --Our works don’t save us. The good we do in our lives, is the outpouring of our transformed hearts. Our reaction to God’ Our shift in position to God is not our doing but Gods- we are dependent on Him for he is faithful, so this humbles us to a place where we can admit we are broken and need Christ. Remember where he brought you from to keep yourself humble
- - Testamony- trying to be perfect, but it’s Christ’s grace that saves, not us. Humility is what leads us to grasping God’s grace.
Realizing the capacity of God’s Love and mercy transforms our heart to a position of:2. Peace- 17-“ He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near.”
-We are at peace with God through Christ. Because Christ has reconciled us, there is no hostility between us and God. Grasping God’s love for us should give us a foundation in Christ that gives us peace with God, ourselves, and others. Standing firm in the God’s peace will keep us trusting in God no matter the circumstances. He is our peace, rest and refuge.
Realizing the capacity of God’s Love and mercy transforms our heart to a position of:3. Being a vessel for the Holy Spirit – 21-22 “In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”
- What does that mean? What does it look like? Fruits of the spirit - Galatians 5:22 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. “
- - The more we are transformed by God's grace, the more we will see the fruit in our lives.
- - When we remember where Christ has rescued us from, the more we will have a more humble, peaceful, Spirit filled heart, and it will flow like a stream through every area of our lives and in turn give God glory.