Some thoughts from Ephesians 1. I am working on the book and making handouts for the Bible class Sunday morning. I think I will post them as I finish with them.
Introduction and greetings (1:1-2). It was customary for Paul to start his letters by stating from whom the letter (epistle) came. Paul was chosen by the Lord Jesus to be an apostle (one sent out, a messenger), proclaiming God’s will to many, including those who resided in Ephesus. Those to whom he addressed this letter were Christians, they were saints.
The significance of belonging to the body of Christ (1:3 – 3:21). The spiritual blessings (1:3-14). In this section we have the great encouragement of God. All spiritual blessing are in Christ (cf. Acts 4:12). The clear implication is that there are NO spiritual blessings outside of Christ. This was the plan of the Father. Consider, briefly, from verses 1 through 14 what spiritual blessings Paul identifies. First, in Christ we are to be holy and without blame (Hebrews 12:14). Second, we have been adopted as sons of the Father. Third, we have redemption, that is, the forgiveness of our sins. Fourth, we have an inheritance. Fifth, we are sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise (cf. 2 Timothy 2:19). On this last, Curtis Vaughan said the seal represent three uses: to authenticate as genuine, to render secure, and to denote ownership. These indeed are spiritual blessings (1:1-6).