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We Are the Church of the Living God

TUESDAY September 26

We Are the Church of the Living God

Why is it both important and exciting to be part of God’s church? Ephesians 3.

We are encouraged when we hear church members say positive things about the church. However, the most enthusiastic among us falls short of Paul’s exuberant testimony in Ephesians 3 about the church. Paul starts a report of his prayers for believers in Ephesus (Eph. 3:1; compare Eph. 1:15–23, NKJV) but breaks off to discuss God’s creation of the church (Eph. 3:2–13), and then completes his prayer report (Eph. 3:14–21). Along the way we come to understand important things about God’s “plan” or “mystery”:

• In eternity, God conceives of “the mystery” or “the plan” about the church (Eph. 3:3–5, 9, 11).

• Through the life and death of Jesus, that long-hidden plan is “accomplished” (Eph. 3:11, NKJV; compare Eph. 2:11–22).

• By revelation, Paul learns “the mystery” of the church and the astonishing fact that Gentiles are to be full partners in it (Eph. 3:3–6).

• Paul participates in spreading this good news as preacher to the Gentiles of “the unsearchable riches of Christ” (Eph. 3:8, 9).

• With many won to Christ, the church, composed as it is of both Jews and Gentiles, displays “the manifold wisdom of God” to “the principalities and powers in the heavenly places” (Eph. 3:10, NKJV), announcing their coming doom (compare Eph. 6:10–20). The plan to unite all things in Christ (Eph. 1:10) is underway, and their time is short.

This understanding of the church motivates Paul to pray for believers. Why not imagine him praying the heartfelt prayer of Ephesians 3:14–21 about you? Why not imagine him praying that you will be “filled with all the fullness of God” (Eph. 3:19) and participate fully in the amazing, unfolding mystery of a unified church?

What are the kinds of barriers between believers in our church that, in light of what Paul has written, should not be there? What can you do to help remove them?

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1 Comment

Willie Johnson
Sep 29, 2023

This quarter has refreshed our mind about what JESUS did for us individual and as a unity body, the church. There are divisions such as gender, race, ethnicity and class within the church that undermines the unity and the mission. We must look to JESUS and what he has taught us, the scriptures and its inspiration on Christian development. We are continually being transformed for Heaven and I can see where we will always need to remind each other that this divisions should not exist within the church.

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