God's Wisdom Revealed
(Note to readers from author - I think this came off much better being preached than it will just reading it.)
Video with lyrics of “The Motions” by Matthew West.
To whom and by whom is God's wisdom revealed?
3:1 For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles—
2 Surely you have heard about the administration of God's grace that was given to me for you, 3 that is, the mystery made known to me by revelation, as I have already written briefly. 4 In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, 5 which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles and prophets. 6 This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus.
7 I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God's grace given me through the working of his power. 8 Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. 10 His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to His eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. 13 I ask you, therefore, not to be discouraged because of my sufferings for you, which are your glory.
vs 2 – “the administration of God's grace”
GRACE = God working in His people
vs 6 – The mystery revealed – ALL PEOPLE ARE GOD's PEOPLE or at least they have the opportunity to be so.
“The Gentiles are heirs together with Israel”
“Members “together” of one body”
“Sharers together in the promise IN Christ Jesus”
Who are Gentiles? Anyone not a Jew. Who is left? No one.
When the church does its job, the wisdom of God is revealed to everyone.
Vss 9-10 God's intent was that now, through the church (those who have been saved by grace through faith), the manifold wisdom of God should be made known “to rulers and authorities in the heavenly world”
Eph 3:9-10 from the New International readers Version:
9 God told me to make clear to everyone how the mystery came about. In times past it was kept hidden in the mind of God, who created all things. 10 He wanted the rulers and authorities in the heavenly world to come to know his great wisdom. The church would make it known to them. NIrV
Who are these rulers and authorities in the heavenly realm? See Ephesians 6:12...
Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. NIV
(See also 1 Peter 1:12; 1 Corinthians 2:7)
The rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms are created beings outside of our physical universe. God has created other realms in what Paul called the heavenly realms. Through the church God will be glorified before these other beings.
vs11 His eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. NIV
God's Grace and God's Wisdom will lead to the purposes that He created them for.
God's work in us and His purpose behind the mercy He has shown to mankind will lead to greater glory for our God.
The church was and is God's plan to make His manifold wisdom known to beings beyond our knowledge. Rulers and Authorities in the heavenly realm.
Why are we here? What is God's purpose for mankind? You know, don't you? We have been talking about it. We were created to bring glory to God. Paul is saying God will be glorified by the fulfilling of His plan that was accomplished by Jesus Christ.
We are here to glorify God.
The world will be won, this church will grow...
...WHEN God's Grace and His Wisdom is revealed to the world through God's people, through us!
When we begin to live as if we believe God loves us and that He is indeed our Lord; as we begin to ask God to glorify Himself through us, we will see Him work in ways that will astound us and that will help people to believe that God is real, that HE loves them and that it is a good thing that He is LORD. God will be glorified upon the earth and in the heavenly realms before God's servants and His enemies.
Does this excite you? Does this make you feel anything?
I have come to believe that worship is as much about emotion as it is about truth. I am not a naturally exuberant person. Expressing emotion does not always come easy for me.
When God touches me; when I sense God's presence the most I am moved emotionally. Most of the time it relates to some truth, some fact, something in my life that God is working on in me.
We are so afraid of becoming like the pentecostals we avoid showing emotion in our services.
One of the things I like about comtemporary music is that it helps me to express truth and emotion.
When David danced before the Lord, do you suppose there was some emotion there?
When you express your love to God, or to your spouse does it affect you in your emotions? If it does not, does your spouse believe you love them?
This truth that we see today in this passage of Scripture. Does it move you down to your toes? Does it mean more to you than just any ho-hum fact?
The message we have for the world is that God loves them. Those who know they need God will get emotional when they believe it. When we praise God, do we express truth as well as emotion?
Worship should be a celebration of God's love and His Lordship. We celebrate because what we have is so important. God loves me. He died for me. He has come after me, pursued me. He still pursues me and is pushing me to grow and learn and be more like His Son, Jesus, the Christ.
This has eternal significance. This has significance beyond the world we know and perceive. God's glory, His Honor is on the line! I serve Him because I love and trust Him.
Do you believe God loves you? Do you live as if He is Lord of your life?
God loves you and wants you to accept His free gift of salvation. He loves you and He wants you to walk in a relationship with Him each day.
Sometimes when God speaks to me, I get very emotional. Sometimes it is sorrow for some failure in my walk with Him that He is correcting in me. Sometimes it is the truth of a song I have heard on a comtemporary Christian music station.
Did I say I like comtemporary Christian music? I like it because they are not afraid to express their emotion. That is one reason. There is so much truth in many of those songs.
We should be singing songs because they allow us to express the truth in an emotional way. This is the purpose of music. It touches us emotionally.
I sing because I'm happy. I sing because I'm free!
Why are people not drawn to our worship services? Because we do not sing comtemporary songs? I think it is because we do not allow ourselves to express our emotion. We could do that with the old songs, if we were not afraid of being embarrassed by such things.
God wants people to be drawn to us because we express the truth that He loves us and He is our Lord. God wants us to convince people we believe it. When does your spouse believe you mean it when you say you love her? When there is emotion in your voice.
Are you tired of going through the motions?