Cue the Confetti! It’s time to begin!!! I am so excited to begin our study of Ephesians with you!
Overview of Ephesians
The book of Ephesians is one of the four Prison Epistles, meaning Paul wrote them while he was in prison in Rome. The other three are Philippians, Colossians and Philemon. While many of Paul’s letters are very specific to the churches he wrote to, this letter is broad and is a book of encouragement and instruction.
Ephesians can be divided into two parts.
The first half is about our salvation and how God has chosen us, adopted us and sealed us with the Holy Spirit. While we were dead in our sins, God made us alive through grace by faith in his son.
The second half is about how to walk worthy of the calling to which we are called. Paul teaches believers how to conduct themselves in unity, purity, in family relationships, in the workplace and how to take a stand against spiritual forces of darkness.
The Purpose: The purpose of this letter is to remind Christians of their spiritual blessings and position in Christ and to encourage them to walk in a manner worthy of their calling, standing firm in their faith against the enemy’s schemes.
The Author: The Apostle Paul
Time Period: Between A.D. 60 and 61
Written by Paul from a Roman Prison to the Christians in Ephesus, as a letter to be circulated to other Roman cities as well
Key Verse: Ephesians 2:10
For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
- Salutation (1:1, 2)
- The Christian’s position in Christ (1:3-3:13)
- Prayer for the church (3:14-21)
- The Christian’s conduct in unity (4:1-16)
- The Christian’s conduct in purity (4:17-5:21)
- The Christian’s conduct in family relationships (5:22-6:4)
- The Christian’s conduct in the workplace (6:5-9)
- The Christian’s stand against spiritual forces of darkness (6:10-20)
- Conclusion (6:21-24)
For an even more in-depth Introduction to this week’s reading, watch this video. It is a great explanation of Ephesians!
NOW LET’S GET STARTED!
This Week’s Bible Reading Plan:
(Facebook Leaders: You can use this as your Facebook Header this week. Just right click and “save as” or screen shot it.)
This week’s Reflection & Discussion Questions
(Leaders: Copy and paste these into your groups. If you do not have a group, use these for a personal time of reflection.)
Like the book of Galatians, Ephesians opens with grace and closes with grace. First, Paul reminds the Ephesians that he is an apostle, which means “one who is sent” and he says – this is God’s will in his life. Then, he uses a familiar phrase used in all of his letters, wishing them both grace and peace. Take note of the word order that Paul always puts in his greetings. He puts grace first and peace second. We must first experience God’s grace before we experience his peace.
God is a God of both mercy and grace but those are not the same. Mercy is forgiveness and not receiving a punishment that is deserved, while grace is receiving a blessing we do not deserve. In God’s mercy, he has forgiven our sins and because of his grace we have reconciliation and peace with God. Is Christ your Savior? How have you experienced the peace of God in your life? When we do not have peace, often times it is because we are focusing on all the troubles this world brings rather than the mercy and grace God has already given us. In what area of your life do you need more peace today?
God has blessed us and so we must bless him in return. Our salvation does not just change us, it gives us a personal relationship with God. God loves us and has chosen us and adopted us as his children. His blessings are not material blessings, but spiritual blessings secure in heaven for us.
You are so loved! Are you living loved? If you minimize what God has done for you then you will not have much of an outpouring of love back to God. So, pause for a moment and consider…
GOD chose you.
God CHOSE you.
God chose YOU.
God sees you, desires you, wants you and has chosen you! We are made in God’s image – he wants the same thing in return – to be seen, pursued, desired, wanted and chosen. I commend you for committing to study the book of Ephesians. I pray you complete this study and that you never stop pursuing God. Take time right now to write out words of love and blessing to God for the spiritual blessings he has given you.
Through God’s great love for us, he chose and predestined us for adoption. Those who have heard the word of truth and believed in him, receive the Holy Spirit which acts as a seal, guaranteeing our inheritance in heaven.
Here we see God’s sovereignty at work in our salvation as he chose and predestined us. We also see man’s cooperation, as we heard the truth and believed. The Holy Spirit is present in every single believer. Isn’t that wonderful? God is with you all the time and his promises are sure. You are guaranteed an eternal life in heaven. No one can break the seal of God! In what area of your life are you struggling to trust God and how does knowing this truth give you more confidence in the Lord?
Paul is praying for the church. He is praying that they would have God’s wisdom and knowledge and that the eyes of their hearts would be enlightened to know of the great power of God. Paul was not praying that they would get the power of God but that they would know it. He wants them to experience it.
Paul speaks of the eyes of our heart being enlightened. Our heart is the center through which we live our lives. The eyes of our hearts need to see and to literally understand the knowledge of the exceeding greatness of God’s power towards us. This power is displayed through the work of Christ being raised from the dead and being seated in heavenly places. He has put all things under him and has defeated the enemy and death. Have the eyes of your heart seen – really seen and taken in this power? Take time right now to ponder the greatness of his might! How have you experienced the power of God in your life?
We were dead in our trespasses and sins BUT God! God being rich in mercy and love for us has made us alive with him. And we are not just saved through our faith but by HIS grace, through our faith. It is not a result of any of our good works or good behavior so that God receives all the glory. And now we are his workmanship. The word workmanship in Greek is poima which means a beautiful poem or a work of art.
There is no greater gift than the gift of our salvation! You are God’s poima – his work of art – his poem. Isn’t that beautiful? And as you do the good works that he prepared in advance – specifically for you to do – he is actively making you into a beautiful new creation. You see works do not save us but instead, after our salvation – we are compelled to do good works for his glory. What is the work that you feel God has called you to do? How are you being faithful to do these good works for his glory?
To print the 20 Reflection and Discussion Questions for Ephesians –> Click Here.
This Week’s Verses of the Day:
(Leaders: You can use these images in your groups by using right click and “save as” or screen shoting them.)
Here’s the Printable Bible Bookmark for Ephesians.
Here’s another explanation of the SOAK Bible Study Method and Bible Coloring Chart if you need more guidance:
Here is the SOAK method I refer to in the video:
And the Bible Coloring Bookmark:
Click HERE to Print the full page Coloring Chart
or Click HERE for the Bookmark Coloring Chart
Here are the highlighters, pens and pencils I refer to in the video:
Highlighters – Acid Free – Bible Hi-Glider
Fine Line Non-bleeding Pens – Micron Archival Ink and Multi-Colored Gel Pens
Colored Pencils – Crayola Twistables and Crayola Colored Pencils
I use the ESV Inductive Study Bible as my personal study Bible.
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I commend you for committing to study this book with us! If you want to go deeper in your study, I encourage you to use on-line commentaries and Bible Study tools.
I pray this book reminds you of all the spiritual blessings you have received in Christ. You are so deeply loved! And I pray you are encouraged to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called. May we experience the grace and peace of God every day in our lives and find victory in Jesus.
Now, let’s get started! Grab a cup of coffee or your favorite drink and open your Bible and SOAK it in! Be sure to leave at least 15-20 minutes for your reading each day.
Have a wonderful week in God’s Word – I’ll see you back here on the blog this Friday as we go deeper into God’s Word together! Don’t forget to join me every weekday morning out on Facebook and Instagram!
Keep walking with the King,
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