July 19/20

Main Text: Ephesians 6:21-24

21 So that you also may know how I am and what I am doing, Tychicus the beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord will tell you everything. 22 I have sent him to you for this very purpose, that you may know how we are, and that he may encourage your hearts.

23 Peace be to the brothers, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Grace be with all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with love incorruptible.

Made New to Live New.  This is our last weekend in the book of Ephesians.  Our hope is that you are now more comfortable and confident when you read Ephesians.  Our prayer is that you have been convinced and encouraged of who you are in Christ and challenged on how to live and reflect that to the world around you.  

Today we read Paul’s closing remarks to a letter that covers so much ground.  The gospel is laid out so clearly and orderly in this letter.  6 chapters, broken into two parts.  Chapters 1-3, “How we have been MADE NEW in Christ”.  And then chapters 4-6, “How we should LIVE NEW in Christ”.  Paul now gets to the end and is even using his benediction to remind them one last time.  

He begins this ending portion with something personal.  It is such a great reminder of how personal this letter was at the time.  Their postal system of the day wasn’t like ours is today.  So Paul sends this letter with a friend - Tychicus.  Who will deliver the letter, and pass on news to the Ephesians on how Paul was doing, to encourage the church there in Ephesus.  

This then brings us to the last two verses of the letter.  Words pronounced as a prayer of blessing for his listeners.  He prays that they would have grace, peace, love, and faith. 

Grace

Grace, as the song says, amazing grace. Through grace we go from death to life. We receive spiritual blessings, we have an amazing inheritance that we can’t see, can’t comprehend. Things that are so awesome that we need to have a revelation – an illumination from God – so that we can understand how wonderful they are. Paul prays that our eyes would be opened to what God has done through his Son Jesus Christ.

Peace 

The result of that grace is that we would receive peace.  Peace with God and peace with each other.  God has brought people of all walks together who believe and follow Jesus.  We have peace in God only through Christ Jesus.  Peace as the Spirit allows us to understand the un-understandable love of God. That we will have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God (Ephesians 3:18-19).  

Love

Paul writes how this life of grace and peace is worked out in love for God and love for each other.  We then spend the next three chapters fleshing out how we are called to live that calling, in unity, using our gifts in service to each other.  We are being equipped in our gifts and service, so that the body of Christ would be built up.  In doing this, we are called to put off our old self, and put on our new self, Christ’s righteousness, which will affect every aspect of our lives and reflect Christ around us.

GRACE, PEACE, LOVE, FAITH.  By grace you have been saved.  Amazing grace, beyond understanding.  Grace God gives us because of His love.  And the result is peace.  Peace with God, and peace with each other.  The result is a changed life.  A person that is now motivated by faith and love.  Love for those who haven’t found peace with God.  The result for us is a Christ follower whose sole purpose is to reflect God to the world around us.  Letting Him work in us and through us for His glory and purposes.

As you live in His GRACE, may His PEACE be ever apparent to the world around us through His LOVE that you display because of His FAITH that is within you.

Made new to live new!

Apply to Life

This week, as you reflect on the message, think of friends, co-workers, neighbors, family etc., that you could meet with to have a time of mutual sharing and fellowship as you open God’s Word together.


DISCUSS THE MESSAGE

Read: Ephesians 6:21-24

As you review some of the messages and themes we’ve discussed through Ephesians, what has impacted you the most?

In what ways has your life changed as a result of walking through this book of the Bible? What are some things that God has revealed to you about your life, your choices, your attitudes, etc., that have changed because of being saturated in God’s Word?

When Paul says “Peace” what kind of peace is he referring to?

How do you long for peace in your life? When do you experience peace?

When you consider the grace of God, what impacts you the most about the grace of God?

Who in your life needs to hear the message of the peace and grace of God? Take a moment to write down their names and mention them to the group that you meet with to pray for them and ask for accountability as you seek to make Jesus known to those God has sent you to.